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Build Guide

Excellent Gaming Build

by manirelli



CPU/CPU Cooler

For the Excellent Intel Gaming Build build we selected the Intel i5-7600k as our processor. To cool the i5-7600k while overclocking we selected the be quiet! Dark Rock 3. The Dark Rock 3 is an excellent choice for our build aesthetically and will keep the temperature of the CPU cool while overclocking.


To allow overclocking on the processor, we set the parametric filters for ATX motherboards that support up to 64GB of DDR4 memory, six SATA 6Gb/s devices, multiple expansion cards, and crossfire or SLI functionality. With our increased budget we selected 16GB of RAM. The parametric filter finds the best price on 16GB kits of memory that are within Intel’s recommended specifications. Using the parametric filters this build will incorporate an SSD with at least 480GB of space and a minimum 3TB of mechanical storage at 7200rpm.


With this budget we decided to go all out on the graphics card. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 is one of the single best cards on the market right now. At 1080p or even 1440p you will not have any problems with AAA games and the 1080 is perfectly suited for VR gaming as well. When using a GTX 1080 you should consider stepping up your monitor to a 120/144hz screen for the best gaming experience.


All of our components are housed in the NZXT S340 Elite. This case has a gorgeous red/black finish, a large side panel window, room for enthusiast CPU coolers, watercooling radiators, and front panel USB3.0. For our power supply, we're using a parametric selection of well-reviewed fully and semi-modular units, all of which are 80+ Gold certified and provide more than enough power for this system while at stock clocks or overclocking.

Part List Customize This Part List

Compatibility Check: No issues/incompatibilities found.

Estimated Wattage: 392W
Component Selection Base Promo Shipping Tax Price Where
CPU $296.75 $296.75 shopRBC Buy
CPU Cooler $79.99 FREE $79.99 DirectCanada Buy
From parametric filter
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Chipset: Intel Z270
  • SLI/CrossFire: 2-Way SLI Capable, CrossFire Capable
  • SATA 6Gb/s Ports: 6 - 10
  • Max RAM: 64GB - 1TB
$159.50 -$35.00 $124.50 Vuugo Buy
$35.00 mail-in rebate
From parametric filter
  • Type: 288-pin DIMM
  • Size: 16GB (2x8GB)
  • Heat Spreader: Yes
$118.29 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime $118.29 Amazon Canada Buy
From parametric filter
  • Capacity: 480GB - 10TB
  • Type: SSD
  • Interface: SATA 6 Gb/s
  • Form Factor: 2.5"
$187.05 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime $187.05 Amazon Canada Buy
From parametric filter
  • Capacity: 3TB - 10TB
  • Type: 7200RPM
  • Interface: SATA 6 Gb/s
  • Form Factor: 3.5"
$101.50 $101.50 shopRBC Buy
Video Card
From parametric filter
  • Chipset: GeForce GTX 1080
$688.88 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime $688.88 Amazon Canada Buy
Case $124.50 $124.50 Vuugo Buy
Power Supply $104.98 -$20.00 $84.98 NCIX Buy
$20.00 mail-in rebate
Base Total: $1861.44
Mail-in Rebates: -$55.00
Total: $1806.44
* Using your selected merchants and only including nearby in-store pickup prices)
* Some physical dimension restrictions cannot (yet) be automatically checked, such as cpu cooler / RAM clearance with modules using tall heat spreaders.

Comments Sorted by:

mredible 5 points 24 days ago

Hi, This will be my first gaming build. I have a few questions to do with cooling. Will this PC be kept cool enough? What temperature will the GPU & CPU run at when maxed out on AAA games in this setup? And how does the temperature of the CPU and GPU affect the lifetime of the PC? Would you recommend liquid cooling for this build and if so what would you recommend? Thank you.

Hp7242 1 Build 3 points 22 days ago

I'm no expert, so do not just take my word for it. You may have to do research on the parts yourself, but it should be kept cool enough, CPU might run low 70s if you overclock it (which you should if you get a "K" series CPU), GPU may run low 80s with the blower style cooler, but you can adjust the fan curve if that does not make you happy. You should not worry about the heat affecting the lifetime of the PC. You will probably upgrade parts before they ever come close to dying, and if they die sooner than that, you can probably get a replacement for free because of a defect. I would not recommend liquid cooling for this PC unless you know what you are doing and are willing to pay a couple hundred dollars more. I think you would be fine with just the cooling the parts come with though. Hope this helps!

Lordgaben2156 1 point 17 days ago

temps should be cool enough that water cooling is not required and there should be no overheating or reduced lifespan

ItsMuni 2 points 21 days ago

I'm also thinking of building this as well, I'm fairly new to building so apologies if my question is a bit ignorant , but will i also need to buy a ethernet adapter for this ? or will it have one ? same thing for an audio adapter. Since that GTX 1080 isn't in stock , thoughts on this one? Its the same same build but with a different 1080 , https://pcpartpicker.com/list/gnK8BP Thank you.

Anarkhiya 2 points 21 days ago

Hey Muni,

Good news! No, you will not. The motherboard comes with an on-board ethernet adapter which, when built, will be on the back of the case. So case closed!

For future reference, when you're checking out motherboards, look on the left side under specifications, and check for the section 'Onboard Ethernet.' It being present signifies you'll find an adapter on the motherboard.

Also, the secondary 1080 you linked is actually a bit better than the one in the default build, so definitely, it will do.

Happy building!

*Edits for spelling, derp.

[comment deleted]
joeyharnois 2 points 1 day ago

Hey, so I'm just wondering on why you decided to get a 1080 with an i5, would this not create a fairly substantial CPU bottleneck. Honestly if I were buying this computer I would get an i5 6600k because it's not much difference in performance for a cheaper price. Also the storage is a huge risk because you shouldn't cheap out to get more storage, you should get 1tb for 50gb because honestly unless you own like 13453145 games you'll never use that much storage. And lastly the motherboard and power supply probably need a change too, a 550 watt power supply for something of this caliber you should at least have a 650, and with the money you would be saving with the other changes I recommended it would probably still be cheaper, and the motherboard either needs to be a higher quality or you need a more reliable PSU. I had a problem with a cheap power supply where it didn't work but it would still send power to the motherboard in short bursts and it could have shorted my board but I have a higher end board that wasn't cheap so it saved my entire system. So basically what I'm trying to say is that just research the parts and if you have a smaller budget either check the Linus Tech Tips forums or Toms Hardware because they have smart people who can help you a lot.

Roofless 1 point 17 days ago

Would you be able to use this as a Hackintosh?

Aslayer360 1 point 3 days ago

Yes, if you wanted to.

wildmike85 1 point 16 days ago

When I placed my order, the only available 1080 was a Zotac mini. Is there any reason to be cautious with a mini GPU? Does it perform the same as EVGA that is available now? Am I able to overclock it? I'm definitely reading and learning a lot, but I really appreciate any help. This is my first build. Thanks, guys!

lol-m8 2 points 11 days ago

The only concern I would have with the Zotac Mini is overclocking, since it might not have the proper cooling to overclock far enough to have an effect on performance. It will though perform almost identically with the EVGA ACX 3.0 GTX 1080. I wouldn't recommend overclocking with the Zotac Mini, since you might crash or experience a lot more heat on the card. Hopefully this helps you out.

Over9000GHz 1 point 12 days ago

Hey Ryan,

Do you have the video on where you built this PC? I have seen videos based on a youtube channel (Boy Scout) where a guy named Ryan (is that you?) built PC's and I enjoyed every one of them. I might buy this build later too.

Thank you a lot.

discokong 1 point 6 days ago

I'm looking to make this my first gaming build. Would there be any issues with this build if I were to swap out the case for the Fractal Define R5 ATX Mid? Would the cooler still be necessary considering the case would come with 2 fans?

fallingPC 1 point 6 days ago

need suggestions. are the components i used good? for the cooler i would be using air cooler since i may not overclock the cpu. and i really need suggestions if i should stick with the mother board or switch it over with the rog ix hero


PixelWastelander 1 point 5 days ago

Hi, I'm pretty new to the PC world, but I'm ready to get into it. I've seen a lot about Player Unknown's Battlegrounds, and I've heard that it's very demanding. Would this build be able to run PUBG at higher settings? Thanks for the help.

TechLewis 1 point 4 days ago

I love this build and the price fits in nicely with my budget, but i was wondering if this will be able to hold up with streaming videos? From what ive been reading, it looks like its best to go with a better CPU for streaming, but I would like to spend my extra bucks on getting a 144hz monitor. Any tips are appreciated, this site and community are awesome.

Aslayer360 2 points 3 days ago

I would recommend ryzen. You get far more cores, for a more reasonable price compared to Intel. If you want your game to look smoother, and feel better, the monitor would be good. My personal preference, though, is to get a better cpu, because it will be better in the long run.

TechLewis 1 point 2 days ago

Ive been looking at that streaming, gaming, and editing rig more now. I just dont know if I stream enough to dish out another 400$ for it haha. But i feel like that build will hold up for a good while until something crazy gets released on the market. Thanks for the input!

Wafflyleader 1 point 3 days ago

would i be able to make the gpu a gtx 1080ti without problem?

Aslayer360 1 point 3 days ago

No problem if you were building this yourself.

Aslayer360 1 point 3 days ago

Nice build. One thing though, on amazon as of now, a ryzen 7 1700 is going for 40 dollars more. With this, you get double the cores and double the threads. Also, Ryzen 5 1600 is another viable option if you can't afford to pay 40 dollars more.

wildmike85 1 point 2 days ago

I built the pc, and everything is great, but I have a question about the RAM positioning. Does it matter what ports the RAM occupies? They are labeled slot 1 2 3 and 4, but they're staggered. Again, any help is appreciated. Thanks, guys.

Piyush_Gupta 1 point 5 hours ago

I am planning to build a new PC. Earlier I had picked i5 7600k but now since Kaby Lake X is out. Should I consider i5 7640X instead? Prices are same but X299 MotherBoard is expensive as compared to z270

Note: Wattages are estimates only. Actual power draw may differ from listed values.
Component Estimated Wattage
Intel - Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor 11W - 91W
be quiet! - Dark Rock 3 67.8 CFM Fluid Dynamic Bearing CPU Cooler 5W - 10W
ASRock - Z270 Pro4 ATX LGA1151 Motherboard 17W - 70W
Patriot - Viper Elite 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-2133 Memory 11W - 11W
SanDisk - Ultra II 480GB 2.5" Solid State Drive 2W - 10W
Seagate - Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive 4W - 20W
EVGA - GeForce GTX 1080 8GB SC2 Gaming iCX Video Card 45W - 180W
Total: 95W - 392W