This was a big brother little brother building project. I was the big brother and my little brother was the one with all the experience. When I was going through the parts for this computer build I found these posts really helpful so I’ll try to do the same. Overall this was a mostly simple build. There were really only three things that caught us by surprise or that I would change if I had it to do over again.
First of all, I got a Micro ATX motherboard because it suited my needs in terms of ports (the biggest thing I planned on running off of this build was an Oculus setup). If I had it to do over again, I would get the full ATX board to make it easier to fit everything on to and because the ascetics are so much better with the full sized white board.
Second I would go with a different CPU cooler. Not because this one isn’t functional but because the combination of the Micro ATX board and the super large radiators doesn’t look as good as it could have and the second fan that was supposed to sit on the end of the radiator doesn’t really fit well so I just attached it to the case as a vent fan. Third, I went with a 9th gen i5 CPU which is fantastic EXCEPT, the BIOS on this board needed to be updated, the only catch is that a 9th Gen CPU wont push video output until the BIOS is updated. Without having an 8th Gen CPU or older to do that, I had to go to a local computer store to have them update the BIOS for me. Cost me only $29 but it was annoying. Other than those three things, the build went off without a hitch and looks exactly how I hoped it would. On my next build (whenever that is) I think I’ll step up to a liquid cooler, go with a full ATX board and try some different themes. If you have any questions please let me know!
Great CPU. The only issue I had was with my motherboard. The BIOS wasn’t updated for these 9th Gen CPUs so they wont push video at all once completed and turned on (super disconcerting for a first time builder). Ended up having to take the completed computer to my local computer store to have them swap the chip to an older one, update the BIOS then swap back to my chip. After that worked like a champ!
This cooling setup is quiet and effective... BUT IT IS MASSIVE! Make sure you have enough space on your board to add both radiators and both fans otherwise you would be better off getting the single fan radiator setup. If you’re trying to display your motherboard, this isn’t the cooler for you.
Great board with one small exception. If you are planning to use a 9th Gen Intel CPU, this board WILL NOT PUSH ANY VIDEO until the BIOS is updated (which requires an 8th Gen CPU or older to be connected). This is super disconcerting on a first build when you fire up the machine for the first time. After quick BIOS update though, you’re good to go. Consider the full ATX version if your build doesn’t need the smaller size or if you plan on using more than two RAM sticks.
Great memory, great look on a white theme build. No issues at all.
No issues at all after a month of use. Used it as a boot drive and the system boots in less than 30 seconds. Great value.
No issues at all. Great value!
This drive seems to have been partitioned already. It’s really affordable and seems to run decently fast for an HDD as well.
Looks great, runs great and installs easy. No issues at all running Oculus VR software on high settings. No issues at all!
I was gifted this tower for a first build and astetically it fit in perfectly with my plan. The SSDs aren’t displayed however (they’re mounted on the back of the divider) which could be good or bad depending on whether or not you wanted to have them out in the open. No crazy bells or whistles on this case but a clean look with very little clutter was exactly what I was looking for.
Awesome power supply! So glad I went with a modular setup because there were several connections I didn’t end up needing. The only thing that keeps this from being a full 5 star rating is the cables themselves. People who get white power supplies would most likely want white cables as well. I ended up having to get my own which in retrospect I could have done regardless of what the power supply looked like. If you include white cables this would be A+.
Wireless Network Adapter
I was nervous because of the low cost of this wireless card. But after having used it in this last build there was no reason to be! For less than $20 you get access to great wireless network access. You aren’t going to get the fastest data connections off of this thing but for 99% of your needs this thing is going to be more than enough. I’ll use this in any build I do from now on.