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Budget Gaming Build - Core i3-2120 / Radeon HD 7750 / Rosewill Challenger

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philip Dec. 25, 2012

This build video is for Reddit user TheCenterOfEnnui, who asked the /r/buildapc community for help building a computer with his 12 year-old son. His original post was here. Since TheCenterOfEnnui did not have any experience building a computer, I offered to help by creating a build video tailored to the parts he would be using. I'm happy he accepted my offer, and this video is the result of that.

I purchased the exact same part list that he will be using with his son, and filmed my build step by step. Some of the things he will run into, I ran into during filming (like short power supply cables). Hopefully this video can serve as a guide if they run into any difficulties.

I will be auctioning off this completed build with 100% of the proceeds going to benefit Charity:water, a non-profit organization that provides clean, safe drinking water to people in developing countries.

The part list, as well as the pricing at the time of this post is:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Type Item Price
CPU Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor $109.99 @ NCIX US
Motherboard ASRock H61M-DGS Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard $44.99 @ SuperBiiz
Memory Samsung 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory $39.99 @ Newegg
Storage Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive $59.99 @ NCIX US
Video Card PowerColor Radeon HD 7750 1GB Video Card $85.99 @ SuperBiiz
Case Rosewill CHALLENGER ATX Mid Tower Case $54.11 @ Amazon
Power Supply SeaSonic 350W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply $40.20 @ Amazon
Optical Drive Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer $17.89 @ Outlet PC
Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) $89.98 @ Outlet PC
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available. $543.13
Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-12-25 14:49 EST-0500

Comments Sorted by:

IamApropos 3 Builds 23 points 76 months ago

Philip you are inspirational. I loved the video and hope to see more in the near future.

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 10 points 76 months ago


Gramis 4 points 76 months ago

Thanks for the vid. Better than most of the vids on installation out there. Im glad you used that MOBO, as i was gonna order that one myself.

question: Was that power supply put in upside-down? I heard from alot of people mounting a PSU that way will cause problems because heat rise and the fan needs to disperse that heat.

Edit: Thanks for clearing that up guys!

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 11 points 76 months ago

The fan on the power supply is actually an intake fan rather than an exhaust fan. You can technically mount it either way, but mounting it facing downward will ensure it draws in cold air from the exterior of the case. Unless of course the case sits on top of thick carpet - then facing upwards would be better. But if you face the fan upwards, it will draw in warm air from the case.

EDIT: I should have looked closer - lutzee already responded! Doh!

lutzee 4 Builds 5 points 76 months ago

Its okay, you added the bit about carpet I'll let you off ;)

lutzee 4 Builds 5 points 76 months ago

The power supply fan sucks air in, so having it suck air into it from underneath the case on the outside the air will be cool, it then gets exhausted out the back. If the case does not have the option for such a configuration the other way up sucking slightly warmer air out of the case is acceptable.

raygan 1 Build 3 points 76 months ago

I really enjoyed this video, you presented the material very well. I'll be sure to forward it to any of my pc-building novice friends.

I'd like to see you do more videos, particularly on topics like cable management, how to choose parts for a build, and an introduction to overclocking.

jibriil4ever 3 points 76 months ago

i am really glad i stumbled on this site, i love how you can check prices all at one place great site. keep it up guys. great noob friendley video

Ingwaz 2 points 76 months ago

Havent put together a pc except for my first time 4 years ago. Bit of a miracle that it went so well that time even. Just bought a bunch of new parts and looking forward to putting together a pretty nice rig and this was a great refresher video. Thank you for being awesome.

Oliver 5 Builds 2 points 76 months ago

Hi Phillip, for the "comment scores", what are they based on and what are they out of? Thanks! Your website has helped in a way I cannot express with words!

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 3 points 76 months ago

The comment scores come from the voting from other users on the site. Basically the up/down arrows you see to the left of the comment allow others to upvote and downvote any comment (other than their own). The comment score is just an aggregate of those votes.

cignus 2 points 76 months ago

Quick question would the Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core fin into this build?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

Definitely. Though I'd recommend a better motherboard - the H61 chipset in this motherboard would not allow you to overclock your CPU.

atothej77 1 point 76 months ago

could you suggest a motherboard to go with the 2500K? and video card?

cignus 1 point 76 months ago

Well i was thinking of using the Asus z77 Sabertooth with the I5-2500K but i'm thinking of upgrading to the new I5 >HERE< Can you tell if this will be ok and will it work?

Sabinlerose 1 point 76 months ago

If you're deadset on that board I would spent the extra dollars for the i5 3570k.

ShadowPhonic3 2 points 76 months ago

Dear Philip, I was wondering, have you ever thought about putting frys.com as one of the merchants for the site? Also, will you ever add an actual peripherals button, or will it always be "Custom"?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

Will have to see about Fry's. For peripherals, what types of components were you looking for?

Oliver 5 Builds 2 points 76 months ago

Hey Phillip, do you think that you could add the Xeon processors to the list? I might be building a server build for my dads office that use Xeons. Thanks!

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 2 points 76 months ago

I hope to get some basic Xeon support in very soon. :)

eithris 2 points 76 months ago

i've looked around and can't find a way to submit a feature request or suggestion, so i guess i'll just drop it here.

can you add onboard USB 3.0 connectors when sorting through motherboards? neither newegg nor ncix or anyone else lets me search that way either. right now i'm just clicking through every AM3+ motherboard looking for the cheapest one with onboard USB 3.0 instead of just rear panel...

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

I think that should be doable. I'll see if I can get that in.

HolicSoul 2 points 62 months ago

Is this a gaming PC or no? I'm just wondering because I REALLY want one and a video for building it because I have no experience in building a computer.

D3AD3L33T 1 point 76 months ago

Philip, thanks for the video. Assembling my first rig on thursday/friday and was feeling a little lost on the overall build/how the parts came together.

Thanks and Happy Holidays :)

MrGromit 1 point 76 months ago

Class-A job for an excellent cause.

JForce522 2 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

Great video! BTW, can you add the phanteks ph-tc12dx cpu cooler to the list of coolers? It is currently being sold on Newegg.

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

Certainly! You can now find it here: Phanteks PH-TC12DX

JForce522 2 Builds 2 points 76 months ago

Sorry to keep messaging you, but is there an official place to notify/ask for new part listings? I want the Nzxt Kraken X40/X60 and the AMD FX-8300 added to their respective lists, but I don't know how to properly go about doing it. Thank you!

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 2 points 76 months ago

Don't feel bad about messaging me - I'm happy to help. For right now, the best way to ask for new part listings is to use the contact form (link on bottom of page) or email me at philip@pcpartpicker.com. I will probably be adding a submission form for part requests soon though. In the meantime, you can also add "custom" parts to your part list. If you add in a part that I don't have, but it later gets added, it will automatically update and link up to current pricing.

Also, here are the parts you requested:

vicky 1 Build 1 point 76 months ago

Hi, great video!

I am looking for a video for the install of the os to a home built computer such as this and the setting up of it - is there a video guide already on this site or will yours be the first when you have done it?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

I'll be adding an article that describes the OS install process - should have it up within a week or so.

vicky 1 Build 1 point 75 months ago


isasko 1 point 76 months ago

so this would be a good gaming compter for a budget?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

I think it should work out ok. Not including OS, the budget ends up around $400, which isn't a lot of wiggle room. If I could go back and adjust anything, I'd switch out the power supply with one that has longer leads.

Hobojimbobo 1 point 76 months ago

I have been trying to convince my mother to let me build a computer, but she gave me a $500.00 limit, and every time I show her a list of parts that I have assembled she finds something wrong. This video of the build might just be my ace in the hole. But one thing, I don't need the OS so what power supply would you think would work in this build better?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

If I had to do it again, I'd probably go with something like the Corsair CX430M. I'd also bump up the video card from a 7770 to a 7850 if the budget permits.

Exedryl 1 point 76 months ago

You did a great job on going in depth on what you were doing like static charges touching the case and what parts were named and did! I am wondering when that win 7 installation video is/if coming out? I'm sure there is plenty of things you could help noobs like myself learn!

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

Sorry for the delayed response - I hope to get the Windows 7 install video out in the next few days.

D3AD3L33T 1 point 76 months ago

Phil, been building my new rig, (started tonight) one helpful thing you could of done was show what screw goes where. The case I own has a bajillion screws and very poor instructions. Got my mobo, fan, and memory in today. Planning on finishing off the rest tomorrow.

Overall the video is awesome, and explains the most out of all the build videos on the web. Can't wait till i'm finished.


adamisepic 1 point 76 months ago

Would it be possible for you to fix the lga 1136 x 2 socket? right now the dual socket boards just show a single 1136 socket

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 76 months ago

That will definitely be getting fixed soon. The motherboard you're mentioning (the EVGA 270-WS-W555-A1) is actually a dual socket motherboard, but I don't currently list any CPUs that are dual-capable... yet. Stay tuned on that front - I have some server component features in the works that will arrive very, very soon.

adamisepic 1 point 75 months ago

Great. thanks

AgaliareptX 1 point 76 months ago

Nice job, like it a lot. :D Unfortunate that he needed an OS though, with that money he could've gotten a higher end GPU and that would be a killer budget gaming build! Although he might have needed a slightly stronger PSU, not sure.

butremor 1 point 76 months ago

This is, hands down, the most thorough assembling video i've seen so far. Great job! Love it. Thanks!

alien0227 1 Build 1 point 75 months ago

I used the Challenger case in my first build, loved it, my Wife now has a Hackingtosh in it, she now loves it...

Javanode 1 Build 1 point 75 months ago

there's no video

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 2 points 75 months ago

That was incredibly odd - I noticed the problem too. It appears to be working again, so i can only presume it was an issue with Youtube. (It boiled down to a "refused to display document because display forbidden by x-frame-options" error, but I had the proper URL structure in the youtube embed to allow framing.) In any case, it should be back now.

rob123 1 point 75 months ago

When's the Auction?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 75 months ago

I should have the auction going in about a week. There were a few hiccups with TheCenterOfEnnui's build, and long story short I ended up giving him my case. I got a new case in, and have some cable extensions for the ATX power supply coming in over the next few days (to tidy up the wiring more before selling it). Once those extensions arrive and I reassemble it and install the OS, I'll post it for sale.

CaptRobo 1 point 75 months ago

Hey Philip, Im considering doing this build as my first, and i was wondering if I will need a wireless networking card to have internet function?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 75 months ago

The motherboard has onboard ethernet, so if you're connecting via an ethernet cable you shouldn't need anything extra. However if you connect to your network via wi-fi then you would definitely need a wireless network card (or usb wifi dongle).

Spenlard 1 point 74 months ago

Could've done 965/7770. This would've been a cool small form factor build though! Fractals 45$ microatx case would've been awesome for this.

warwolverinewarrior 1 point 74 months ago

CPU is sandy bridge, for $10 more you can get ivy bridge with 10-20% performance boost. Graphics card has 1600 mhz effective memory clock, for $10 more you can get a 7750 with 4800 mhz effective memory. This now can be used for gaming with only $20 difference. clock.http://pcpartpicker.com/p/GoD2

CaptRobo 1 point 74 months ago

Philip, I just got done assembling this build and from what I can tell I did everything by the book, the only thing is I believe my power supply is different it is a Seasonic SS-350ET 350W 80 PLUS BRONZE ATX12V Power Supply. So I get it all together and when I push the power button, no power. I made sure the HDD led, reset switch, and power switch are in the correct dock. I went through the video again and totally unhooked the power supply and re hooked it to no avail. Please help,


SilverbackEwok 1 point 74 months ago

Love the video! Keep up the good work!

gogo809 3 Builds 1 point 73 months ago

Philip, this video is a great resource for people that have never built a system before. I think you cover every single thing a new user would need. Isn't it time for another one? If so, would you do an AMD FX build. The sockets are way different and all your builds are Intel. There are other videos out there which detail this, but the best I have found is a linus tech quickie one, and I think it would be better if it was a complete system. Time for a monster case too. Get one of those corsair 500R's on sale. ;)

dudezx 1 point 69 months ago

hello philip i'm 15 and i am a gamer , i got a budget of 500-600$ i know it's less , but still cant do anything ok so i need some help , can u build a good gaming pc under 500-600$ , and i need a good graphic card in it so i can run good games like cod:ghosts atleast on medium settings without any lag , thanks for making a wonderful site , and helping people like me! i didn't find a place so i can talk to u personaly so sorry for making a comment here regarding this. thank u! :D

noahman 1 point 62 months ago

Hi Philip, i was wondering if this would be a good gaming computer and if there is anything you could change to keep the price around the same range of price.

MonkeyKing1969 2 Builds 1 point 58 months ago

It seems like using a Dremel or drill to create more holes in the case for routing wires woudl have been a better plan. Its a hassle to cut holes and clean holes, but wire routing would be FAR easier after you do that.

adamisepic 0 points 76 months ago

I build my first computer when I was 10 and it is great to see more kids my age being interested in hardcore computer building. Also, I would love to see water cooling incorporated into the site

vicky 1 Build 0 points 75 months ago

There is no mention of which soundcard was used. Was the soundcard integrated with the motherboard? If there was a soundcard that was separate I could not see mention of it please could it be added as a part needed.

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 75 months ago

Indeed - this build used the onboard audio from the motherboard.

vicky 1 Build 1 point 75 months ago

Thank you Philip!

[comment deleted by staff]