I actually followed the build guide for the Entry Level Gaming rig, but some things went horribly wrong during the build. A tiny bit of background. My last build was back in 2008/2009 and I went in the wrong direction for what I really wanted. Still, it was good at the time and served me until I got this current rig, but along the way, I made mistakes.
I went with a case that I can't even remember what it was, but it worked out, I suppose. The CPU was the Intel Core2Quad Q6600 at 2.4Ghz and was an LGA775, running on the Gigabyte EP43-UD3L Rev 1.2. It was a decent combo, I suppose. The PSU is an old Antec, but I don't have a model for that one. I could find out by looking inside the case, but maybe later. Video card was the EVGA Geforce 9800 GTX+ running with 512MB of VRAM. Extremely pitiful in this age of modern gaming. The RAM? Well, this is where the mistakes happened. I initially started off with 4GB of RAM and I believe the RAM was from Crucial, but then as time went on, I grabbed random RAM that fit and gave me more memory, but was mismatched brands and speeds. That made for a very sluggish system. I plan to eventually fix it up with better, yet older, parts that work very well together.
Now, on to the current build.
Obviously, the Intel Pentium G4560 is a powerhouse for being a budget CPU. You may not be able to overclock it, but honestly, you don't have to. It's a beast and the stock cooler it comes with is very quiet, even under load. I hear they are becoming scarce nowadays for various reasons, so I'm glad I picked it up when I did. Was worth the wait to fire it up and watch it work.
This is where things got messy. Seeing as I am on a really tight budget, I could only buy certain parts one at a time, or two if they were cheap enough. Bills and a very low income make it really difficult to build, thus why budget gaming rigs are a godsend. However, due to not being able to buy all the parts at once, I had to wait it out. The original motherboard I was going to get was the Gigabyte GA-B250M-DS3H. I bought the board the same time I bought the CPU, so they came in March. I couldn't finish the initial build and start using it until June. Well, when the final part got here, I hooked everything up and nothing. Turned on for a second, then turned off. After some more testing, I concluded it might be the PSU. Sent it back, waited a week more, got it, installed and powered up. Same result. I knew at that point it was the motherboard and not the PSU. The problem was the CPU power connector on the board was causing a short every time it turned on, so that was the issue. Sadly, the return on the motherboard was long since over, so I had to RMA it. Took them two days simply to respond and after waiting months to get this running, and after a wonderful gift, I decided to not waste my time waiting even longer. I got some money from college, apparently from a class action lawsuit I was a part of, and bought the ASRock B250 Pro4. Some people say ASRock is not very good, but I think it's fantastic. Worked perfectly, has 2 PCIe x16 slots instead of one like the Gigabyte board does and it looks great in my case! At the time of this post, the board is on its way back to me, but I'm going to test to make sure it works and then resell it to make up for the loss.
What do I really need to say about it? It's RAM, it works and it's great. I plan on getting two more sticks for a total of 16GB of RAM for music creation and no, I don't mean electronic-genre music. I use orchestral libraries and they tend to be hefty RAM eaters, so 16GB is the recommended amount I need.
This was a mistake on my part. The original build guide called for an AMD Radeon RX 470 4GB, but I waited too long. No one saw the mining craze booming again and by the time I was ready to buy the card I wanted, everything was gone and the only ones left were at an insane price. Needless to say, I was not happy as well as other gamers, so I went with something that was the next best thing, the GTX 1050 Ti from Zotac. Factory overclocked and with dual fans, it runs pretty well, all things considered. I haven't tried it with 1080p gaming due to only having an older 19" Acer 900p monitor, but that will change soon enough. Another great thing about it is that even under load, it's nice and quiet, especially compared to my old rig.
The original case in the build guide was nice and also a TESSERACT, but I wanted something with lighting. I've never had the pleasure of owning a case with any kind of lighting, so this is my first. At only about $5 more, at the time of when I purchased it, it was worth it for a window panel to peer into my case and 2 case fans with blue LEDs. I always leave my PC on and so I get to see it as I fall asleep. It's beautiful!
Well, you know the story on this one, but I have to say, I wish there was another cable for SATA power connectors included. Then I could have done away with USB enclosures. Still, it's quiet, low powered and works very well. Plus, Corsair, when I thought it was their part that was the problem, was very helpful and professional. Would gladly do business with them again and I'm sure I will in the future for my next build.
Honestly, I had a copy of Windows 7 Home and thanks to Microsoft not actually removing the ability to get a Windows 10 key for your upgrade using their Media Creation Tool, I was able to upgrade to Windows 10 Home without paying anything extra and can fully utilize my hardware. I am not a fan of Windows 10, at all, but if I want to run my Windows-only games with the fullest settings for my hardware, I had no real choice. At least Linux won't have that issue with it's games when I get it installed later on.
With the Ryzen 3 coming out very soon, I want to see how well it runs against the G4560. If it has a nice performance boost and is still within a manageable price bracket, I may just give up on Intel and this amazing ASRock board and get a B350 board with the Ryzen 3 instead. I also plan on upgrading my GPU later on down the line to a second hand RX 580 or a brand new one if they go back to MSRP prices, then simply sell this card or keep it for a rainy day.
Either way, I am loving this system and after not upgrading for such a long time, this was the perfect time to do it all. I'm very happy with this build, despite it missing some things I really wanted for it, and I plan on getting a few more things, like replacing my old HDD's with 1TB/2TB drives and replacing my current 500GB main Windows drive with an M2. SSD. Looking to also add in extra blue LED light strips for more blue light goodness.
I'll update this as time goes on and thanks for reading about my the history that led up to this build!
Great CPU for the price! Fast and cool. The stock cooler does an amazing job and I'm glad to have it.
This board is solid and has given me no issues so far. Works great with my build and I highly recommend it.
Despite it being a lower mid-range card, it is still pretty powerful for what it is. Factory overclocked and working well. It was worth the price until I upgrade!
Beautiful case, though the way cable management works for this is a little difficult, it is still a nice case with two pre-installed case fans with blue LED lighting. Worth it.
Powerful little power supply that gives me all the power I need. Corsair is also a great company with great customer service.