Description

My first foray into building my own PC. Got back into PC games a couple of years ago with a gaming laptop, the more I've enjoyed it, the more I've wanted to enhance the graphics, reduce fan noise and play the latest games.

I wanted to build a pretty capable PC for under £1,000 to allow me to game (mostly RPGs, single player story driven games etc) at ultra 1080p or try out 1440p at at least 60fps, if not 100+ but last a good few years before requiring upgrading.

For aesthetics I wanted a pretty plain, mainly black build with white accents. I'm not too much into RGB (I know, I'm losing frames!!) so I'm pretty pleased with the glow of the cooler fan, mobo and GPU lights. I would've liked 1 RGB fan in the rear exhaust to balance the look, and maybe some custom PCIE cables but they can wait!

Settled on a Ryzen build after watching a tonne of YouTube videos. It seems like the most capable CPU at the price point right now. I'm not a streamer so no need for more cores/threads and the 3600 seemed like a good price. Currently not overclocked, but I added the Hyper 212 if I want to go down that path. That was super easy to install but I did have to watch a YouTube guide as the included manual is garbage!

Fairly standard Corsair 3200mhz RAM running dual channel. Easy to install and the XMP picked up the frequency of it immediately.

The M.2 drive as a boot works well and this one is really fast! Also less cables to even easier to get the motherboard set up and in the case.

I was going to get an MSI Armor 2060 Super, but I read a lot of reviews stating they were loud and ran hot, so a Palit Jetstream came up in Black Friday and had an even faster factory clock (1800mhz ish) I grabbed and glad I did.

The build was pretty good - the NZXT case is fairly good to build in, although I had massive issues with one of the standoffs. It was poorly drilled and screws kept slipping in it, making it real hard to ensure the mobo was properly seated. I also found the I/O shield for the tomahawk was really flimsy and quite hard to align with board. That made the build frustrating but eventually got there. The pre-installed case fans for the NZXT case are kind of loud and only 3-pin so maybe they'll get upgraded soon.

It posted first time and all components were recognised which was awesome. I've not installed much on it yet as I want a SATA SSD so don't want to overload the boot drive much.

Benchmarks and Temps

But I have run Heaven benchmark and it seems to average around 100fps with everything on extreme. The only real world game I've played so far is The Outer Worlds, with all settings on ultra at 1080p I was averaging around 130fps with the GPU around 68c and the CPU around 50c

Next thing to learn is overclocking and controlling fan curves and noise without causing thermal issues. Any tips let me know in the comments! (and any recommended replacement fans!)

Apologies about the photos, need to get the pc setup on a desk and get some lights to get some decent pics

Part Reviews

CPU

Its fast, unlocked, comes with a cooler and is less than 200. I don't know enough to compare it to anything else but it works for me and was easy to install.

CPU Cooler

For the price I can't fault it! It was easy to setup, easy to install. Comes with mounts for AMD and Intel, even supplied with thermal paste. With the RGB lights and under 30 quid what's not to like?!

Motherboard

Dropping a star as there's no header for USB type c or wifi/bluetooth support - I knew that when I bought it, but c'mon on it's 2019 and that's pretty standard on everything these days! other than that, great board, lovely design, easy for a first timer to figure out all the elements to it and great BIOS for a beginner.

Storage

Easily a Samsung killer. Got a OEM Samsung M.2 in my laptop and this things feels faster!

Case

Nice design, great layout for a first time builder, plenty of space. Tempered glass side panel, all the HDD/SSD bays you'll need, hidden cable routing and PSU shroud.

But... the finishing lets it down, the thumb screws aren't great, some of the screw holes weren't well tapped and drilled out, the manual is non-existent. Thank god for YouTubers!

Case Fan

They're not very noisy, they push a good amount of air in quite a focused stream and the have 4 pin PWM control. Probably overkill having two of them but they're nice and discreet in all black.

Comments

  • 13 days ago
  • 2 points

👍

  • 13 days ago
  • 1 point

Deepcool RF120M(5 in 1)... 40 bucks and its 12v will work with your motherboard

  • 12 days ago
  • 1 point

I'll check them out. Do you know if they're quiet?

  • 12 days ago
  • 1 point

yep they are, she is using MSI command center and you can set the speeds.

  • 10 days ago
  • 1 point

Msi command centre... can you set fan curves in that? I really need to get my head around fan curves!

  • 10 days ago
  • 1 point

yep msi command center controls her fan speeds, but it does need a update as she has to click on her profile inside after shutting it down at night. I preset 3 profiles for her.