My roommate in college was a big time gamer and I was new to the PC gaming world myself so I had him help build a machine to get into gaming and to have as a graduation gift to myself.

We went in with a budget of roughly 1,000 and wanted to make sure that it wasn't obsolete on delivery so we built around the (at the time relatively new) i7-2600k. Easily the most expensive piece to the puzzle and its still working great as of this writing. The monitor was your mid-shelf HD 60hz gaming monitor. 8GB RAM, a 1 TB HDD (recently replaced with a 960GB SSD) and a GTX560 1 GB GPU rounded out the build. The graphics card came with a game coupon for my first experience in full settings PC gaming, Arkham City, and its still one of my favorite games ever.

We went budget on most things and I have only two regrets: 1. Not knowing that the processor needed a better cooler and 2. going super cheap on a case. When we finished the build I turned it on and everything was super quick and it was something I had never experienced before from my earlier Dell-premade type PCs. However after firing up a load test the CPU got hot, really hot. Luckily I noticed before I killed the damn thing. Had to shelve my new toy until the cooler and some thermal paste got shipped. Huge bummer. Once that was installed everything ran like a dream until I tried to plug in something into the case's front USB ports. NONE of the 4 available worked, got a new case (same type unfortunately) shipped and this has now served me well for approaching 5 years.

Since then I have replaced the HDD like I said, got the cool gaming peripherals that are listed and maybe most importantly fixed the god awful cable management shown.

I now am undertaking the process of building/replacing and can't wait.

EDIT 1: Replaced the Power Supply, GPU and Monitor. And oh boy is that 1070 sweet in 1440p 144Hz. Cable management shown was not final, and I finally got it to look good after much trying. I will need to add a pic of it later.

Part Reviews


Hard not to give 5 stars except it needs to be clearer that an extra cooler is needed. Otherwise amazing and stood up to anything I threw at it.

CPU Cooler

Good, inexpensive option that I needed on the fly. Have had no issues.

Slightly larger than listed and barely, and I mean barely fit in my case.


RAM slots run into GPU and is nearly impossible to work around where the wire slots are for certain things.


Got it fairly cheap and can't complain. Great stuff.


Good god this thing is awesome. What a mistake it was not to get this from the outset. So quick.

Video Card

Man, this thing is a beast. I have only tested a few games on it but it runs Overwatch at 1440p 120Hz at an almost constant 130 fps at high or ultra settings. It really is a thing of beauty.


4, out of 4 USB ports on the front of the case failed. ALL 4! Decent return policy though...

Power Supply

Bought this on the cheap to run the new GPU for a few months until I get around to finishing the new part list. Some of the cables are really stiff. Hard to plug in. Add that its non-modular and it was somewhat of a pain. However, it was so inexpensive its hard to argue.

Optical Drive

Hard to install and didn't come with software like I thought it would.

Wireless Network Adapter

Fast and easy to use.


Great picture and menu, but only one HDMI input was rough when my desk had PC and Xbox360 to input into it.


Oh boy, is 1440p 144Hz buttery smooth and equally brilliant. Monitor worked great out of the box, was expecting to have to color correct based on reviews. Disabled the sleep thing that I heard about. GSync is worth the hype.


Got it for christmas and was my first mechanical keyboard. Love it.


Fits my giant sized hands well, I'm 6'5" and thats a tough task.


Cables tangle easily and it messes up my hair. But solid mic and sound quality.

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  • 47 months ago
  • 3 points

and makes me take a shower before gaming then going out

Well, you won't smell stinky then. +1

  • 47 months ago
  • 2 points

Sweet jesus the cable management ._.

Well that wont affect performance at all. +1 For the story, I feel like your experience is what a lot of first time builders go through. I certainly did! We're not all lucky/smart enough to get it right on the first try. ;) But you do gain a lot of valuable experience!

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point
The parts choice is perfect, but your cable management... meh.


  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice cable management

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

can't tell if sarcastic or not...

  • 41 months ago
  • 1 point

I would recommend managing those cables a little better. Will clean up your tower and help with better airflow with less obstructions. I have the same case, and admittedly it's cable management options are pretty bad, but you could easily hide most of your cables. It takes a little elbow grease with the blackbone but it can be done.

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