I finally found the time to do a build and couldn't have been more excited! The whole process taught me a lot and I would definitely build another given the chance and/or need.
Since it was my first build, some of the items I bought ended up being extraneous, but I listed them to fully document the parts. I didn't know (or think to check) that the CPU cooler came with thermal paste pre-applied so I was surprised to find out. One pack of the Corsair Air Series fans ended up being extra because the case already came with two fans. Many of the parts came with twist ties in the packaging, so I ended up using twist ties instead of the cable ties I bought. For completion, I listed all accessories (keyboard/mouse/etc) too.
As to the prices of these parts, I bought all of them during either Black Friday or Cyber Monday. The Scythe case fan was a gift, hence the $0 price.
The build process itself went relatively smoothly. There were some minor stalls though. Given my newb self, I ended up taking over an hour to figure out the front panel connectors... I missed the fact that F_PANEL on the motherboard meant front panel! This was a good learning experience and I read each part manual more carefully afterwards. I also took some time debating how to install the CPU cooler and case fans, choosing to utilize the CPU cooler as exhaust and case fans as air intake after researching online for a few hours. A few days after finishing the initial build, I ended up unhooking all the wires to better manage the cables inside. It was bothering me knowing the mess inside the case. The computer itself booted up fine on the first try so I was really happy with that bit of luck.
Apologies for the lack of pictures. I was too eager to build and having a computer photoshoot was not on my mind. The picture doesn't include the Scythe fan, which was installed next to the CPU cooler on the back of the case.
I'm open to any suggestions and potential areas of improvement! A huge thanks to PCPP as well for having a large database of parts to help with research and the ability to keep track of parts and prices.
Haven't been able to stress test it, but definitely no complaints! Even under stress I bet it'll hold up well given all the reviews and benchmarks I've read.
Nice and quiet, it also keeps the CPU really cool. CPU temps idle at ~20C at the moment.
For my first build, this was easy to work with. I don't fully understand all of the BIOS yet, but it's easy to navigate. It also easily applied the XMP profile for the RAM I bought.
RAM is RAM. For a first timer, I don't have much else to say or anything else to compare with. The XMP profile was applied smoothly and I'm currently running with the RAM at 2666MHz.
Also another part I have no complaints about, especially for being able to get it at $129.99 on Cyber Monday. Windows boots up in ~10sec, which is always refreshing to see.
Haven't had the chance yet to fully utilize the power behind this card. However, it's definitely a nice step (understatement) up from trying to play games on a MBP...
I really enjoyed building in this case. The hard drive bays are fully removable, allowing for more space and air flow. I also like the minimalist look on the outside. It also has decent soundproofing, hiding a lot of the noise coming from some of the fans I bought.
Not sure how to review this one since this is my first build and I don't have any points to compare with so... 5 stars! No issues working with this PSU and it being fully modular definitely helped with cable management.
With this build, I now use a mix of macOS and Windows. I'm still taking some time to adjust to Windows, but I'm enjoying the new experience. However, knocking off a star for hiding settings in hard to find places.
Wireless Network Adapter
It does the job and gets me wifi. If only the antenna extensions could be a little bit longer. I probably could have done a better job at researching and found something cheaper though.
A bit louder than I expected, otherwise no complaints. The LED lights are a nice addition.
I really like the minimalist approach. The keyboard doesn't do anything too fancy but still seems to support some useful (yet to be explored) features.
Great mouse and extremely responsive. I'm currently using a wireless Amazon Basics mouse (which is also great don't get me wrong, but just completely different) so I had to turn down the sensitivity at first to slowly adjust to this one. I'm slowly starting to turn up the DPI again as I get used to using this mouse.
Maybe it was just me, but the wire kept getting tangled and in the way when building so I stopped using it altogether. I think it's just me though since this is my first time building a PC.
The remote isn't the most responsive and would take a few attempts to get the remote to send a signal to the lights. The connectors on the LEDs also looked a bit flimsy to me so I ended up using some electrical tape to keep things in place.