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Gaming/Development Build 2017

by hulkamaphone



Date Published

Nov. 11, 2014

Date Built

Dec. 14, 2013

CPU Clock Rate

3.4 GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

36.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

63.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.15 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7 GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

42.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

81.0° C


UPDATE January 2017

Added an ultrawide monitor, G402 mouse and G610 keyboard. Removed wireless card as I'm now on wired connection.

Added GAMMAXX 400 CPU cooler. Have added the original case fans back into the build as summer temperatures in Australia are hot and I need to keep the machine cool. Had some issues removing the old Intel stock cooler, the pins had warped and became stuck. I eventually got them out without damaging the motherboard and installed the new cooler. Everything runs great now, very low temps and nice and quiet (considering fans mounted in top) compared with the old setup.

Also managed to sort out a lot of the cabling into a more cleaner setup. This is not a modular PSU so did take some effort but I think the result is great. Note to others, get a fully modular PSU!

UPDATE March 2016

Picked up a cheap GTX 780Ti and added to PC build. Also bought and installed a wireless network card.

Original Build

My first ever PC build, mostly used for mid-high level gaming, game development and general office/web activities.

I bought the HD7950 from Amazon on special in October 2013, it overclocks reasonably well, getting stable 1200 on core and 1500 on memory without voltage increase. Looking to upgrade to a GTX970 and 16GB ram at some point.

I have the Seagate HDD and Samsung SSD secured in the second 3.5" bay to keep things clean. Should have gone for a fully modular PSU but I was too impatient (modular was on back order).

Part Reviews


No major complaints, a very fast and capable CPU. Stock intel cooler isn't very quiet when doing CPU intensive tasks and runs hotter than I'd like. Good and reliable for the money.

CPU Cooler

Very good cooler for the price! Great value.

Thermal Compound

Easy to apply and works well.


A very good budget board, does everything I want in a smaller footprint than full ATX.


So good and very fast!


Good price and still working fine, not exactly silent and does take a few seconds to spin up when I need to access it on the odd occasion. Will do until larger SSD's become cheaper.

Video Card

Bought in mid-2016 on clearance to replace my HD7950 . This is a beast of a card. Max almost every game I have at 1080p. Still does near-max quality with the new 2560x1080 monitor.

Case Fan

Only 4/5 stars because they are so expensive but these fans are second to none. Compared with the Bitfenix and Fractal case fans, the Noctua's are so quiet and move a lot of air.

Comments Sorted by:

Sketcher 1 Build 1 point 54 months ago

Do you have the software to play Blu Ray? I'm assuming that drive didn't come with it, otherwise that is a bargain.

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 2 points 54 months ago

Sorry my bad, that was meant to be a DVDR no BD. I've updated the build now. That would have been a great buy!

Sketcher 1 Build 1 point 54 months ago

Ah, fair enough. A great buy it would have been, I spent £70 on mine.

RGoody 4 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

Try and get some dust filters, the inside of that isn't looking too good!

I like the part choice

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

Thanks for the advice, I might re-take the photos on a proper camera because the case didn't look that dusty when I installed the Noctuas. The photos did come out pretty average so it's always worth updating them. I'll check the dust levels too but the Define R4 does come with dust filters.

RGoody 4 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

It might just be my eyes, who knows xD, but that exhaust fan looks like it has a whole bunch of dust on and around it, and in that first picture, there's a ring of what looks like dust where that noctua fan sits on the bottom. Considering how much dust was on the top of the case, I figured thats what it was inside as well. What direction are you running all of those fans?

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

Just had another look at the shots and they do look like there is a lot of dust on and around the case. Maybe the quality is showing it up more? But at least this discussion has motivated me to re-check the case and take better shots next time!! haha.

The fan direction is Front-Floor: intake, Rear: exhaust.

the_walker_lives 1 Build 1 point 54 months ago

Just curious why you went with the 7950 over lets say a gtx 650 or r7 250x?

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

At the time I built the system (Dec 2013) the R7-cards where not available and Amazon had the 7950 discounted to a level that made it a great buy. I was originally looking at the HD7970 or GTX770 but in Australia the Nvidia cards are about $100 more. I think the 7950 performs better than the GTX650 anyway doesn't it?

The plan at the time was to get by with this for 1080p gaming and upgrade when the next generation of cards came out (R9 2XX or GTX9XX). I'll be looking to upgrade to a GTX970 in the next 6 months but they are really expensive in Australia (AUD$500+)

the_walker_lives 1 Build 1 point 54 months ago

How 100 bucks more? Well the 650 usually goes on sale about once a week on amazon, ncix, or newegg for the same price as you bought the 7950. But I guess that is only for us americans...

chiuonthis 1 Build 2 points 54 months ago

the r9 280 is essentially a rebranded 7950 which outperforms both the 650 and the r7 250x you mentioned

at $100, its a steal.

the_walker_lives 1 Build 1 point 54 months ago

I guess I was wrong as I thought that the r9 280 was a rebranded 7970 or something like that...

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

Not sure what happened there, meant to be $220 (at Oct 2013).

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 54 months ago

Updated pics, removed old ones with better quality shots.

cbrown67 1 point 53 months ago

Is the spectre pro good? Is it quiet and move a lot of air?

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 53 months ago

I think the Pros are pretty good. Move a lot more air than the standard Fractal Design Silent Series 140mm fans that came with the case. I don't notice sound much as I game/work with headphones on, but seem quiet enough for me.

I'm not a huge fan person but I'd recommend them.

cbrown67 1 point 53 months ago

Thanks for the reply, ill definitely consider these ;)

captainkirkthejerk 1 Build 1 point 45 months ago

I have the same case (and GPU actually) and am also looking into taking out the bottom rack and installing the 3.5 HDD into the 5.25 optical bay slot. Did you not have to use any sort of adapter to put the HDD/SSD up there?

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 41 months ago

Sorry for the late response (better late than never). I didn't secure the drives, they are just resting in that area. You could use velcro or something to secure them but I've never had any issues with that.

hulkamaphone submitter 2 Builds 1 point 27 months ago

Updated with new parts and pics!