Description

I was given £500 to spend on a computer. Out of the £500 I spent 400 on the components and the remaining £100 was spent on a monitor, keyboard and wi-fi adapter (I didn't add these parts to the list because I don't think they're relevant).

Part Reviews

CPU

The CPU I chose was the FX 6300 Black Edition from AMD, it was not my first choice but after doing a bit of research I found that the FX 6300 had better performance and overclocking ability than the A10 7850K that I was planning to buy. After buying the CPU and assembling the PC I then bought the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo to replace the stock cooler and then I overclocked my FX 6300 from the stock 3.5 GHz to 4.3 GHz; the CPU has been stable for months at a core voltage of 1.32 volts and a maximum temperature of 54 degrees Celsius under load.

Motherboard

The motherboard I chose was the GA-78-LMT-USB3 from Gigabyte, I can honestly say I chose this motherboard for the price and nothing else (I was a noob at the time so I didn't look at the important stuff). After getting the motherboard I quickly realised that I made a mistake; the motherboard supports SATA 2 not SATA3, which is quite disappointing and it uses traditional BIOS not UEFI - which made overclocking a pain. The good thing about this motherboard is that it supports up to 32GB of DDR3 RAM and features ATI Radeon HD 3000 series graphics, so I guess it's okay for a budget motherboard.

Memory

The RAM I chose was the HyperX Fury 8GB DDR3 from Kingston running at 1866 MHz. This RAM is pretty good and I got it for a good price so I'm happy with it. The only thing I've had a problem with is the frequency; for some reason the RAM has been underclocked from 1866 to 1600 MHz due to a BIOS error, I believe this was caused by the method of CPU overclocking I used when I first learned how to overclock - I somehow caused an error which stops my RAM from exceeding 1600 MHz, if it goes anywhere above 1600 then I get boot errors. Oh well, its no big deal, I'm sure a quick BIOS reset will fix it (but I'm not gonna do that).

Storage

I chose a 3.5 inch Seagate Barracuda as my main storage device, I didn't have money to buy an SSD at the time (and I also though SSDs were a waste of money - let me remind you that I was a noob at the time). Nothing else to say about this, it's pretty good.

Video Card

The GeForce GTX 750Ti is one of the best purchases I have ever made; not only is this card playing games like Metro Last Light, Bioshock Infinite, Warframe and Fallout 4 at medium to high settings, but with it I can play all my games at 1080p. Ever since I got this card I haven't played games at sub-1080p resolutions, its been 1080p all the way. This card is a decent overclocker too, right out of the box I increased the core clock by 135 MHz for a maximum of 1363 MHz and a memory clock of 2900 MHz. Even though its a good purchase, I regret buying the Asus model instead of the EVGA FTW model for an extra £5. The Asus model is cool and all but its just not as powerful as the EVGA FTW model, I can only dream of how much more overclocking I could have done with that FTW model - but alas, that will only ever be a dream...

Case

The last part I will talk about was the case, I chose the Zalman Z3 Plus case and I have to say, its a pretty good case. Its got plenty of room for longer graphics cards and comes with 4 fans - two at the front and two at the top. I managed to salvage a 120mm fan from my old case and stuck it on the back of the case, so now the case has 5 fans. Good case for the price I paid for it, although I wonder what it is better than the Cosair Spec-01 case I wanted - probably not but I'm still happy with it, I'm not gonna spend a lot of money on a case. Another thing I should mention is that this case does not make cable management easy (either that or I just suck at cable management), as you can see in the images, the cables are all over the place; my suggestion is that if you choose this case then go for a modular power supply.

Comments

  • 38 months ago
  • 3 points

nice job! if you are comfortable with going a little hotter then 54°c then u can still bump the cpu up to around 4.5ghz. the hyper evo will do a good job at keeping it cool.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

really? I actually didn't think the hyper evo could keep the cpu cool at 4.5, which is why I stopped at 4.3. I'll see what I can do, thanks :)

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

I concur, I have a FX8350 running at 4.4GHz on an evo and that has 2 extra cores. It should be really easy to get your 6 core to 4.5ghz. I had an issue with heat, but that was because I needed a fan on my VRM's. Once I installed an intake on the top of my case I didn't have any issue.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

I ran mine to 4.5 with a hyper evo. I had to adjust the vcore yo keep it stable. Push pull at 100% when it got to about 50c.

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

I couldn't get mine past 4.5 without a big bump in voltage. Sitting 4.3 @ 1.32 is pretty decent.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

every cpu is different, unfortunately.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

true

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

for a first build you did a good job on cable management :)

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

thanks, my case and my non-modular power supply made it hard but I tried my best :)

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

its really the sata cables that need fixing

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

haha yeah I'll fix that :)

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

hope the build lasts you that cpu when yes not being very powerful is a very good overclocker

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

My pro tip for cable management is to zip tie everything down like hell. Just zip tie zip tie zip tie.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

hahaha best thing I've heard all day, now I'll just need to get more zip ties

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

Kinda funny I had a part list like this one

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

lol, what a coincidence

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points
Why did you choose a GTX 750 Ti with a 6 pin PCI-E connector? You could've gone with a lower wattage 750 Ti for the same or lower price.

Anyways: +1 :D

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Obv. that sweet OC potential.

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

Oh, sorry. Didn't realise that; but low TDP 750 Tis also are good for OCing

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

I have an EVGA SC 750TI that was plug and play. I wish the mobo in my media center supported one too.

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

Hey I just have one comment, first of all congrats on your first build and when I was looking through the pictures I noticed that your ram sticks were side by side. They should be in separate lanes the dark gray with the dark gray and black with black so I would move one of those over by one. That also might help with the problem I read in the comments with ram speeds.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

I put the sticks in different slots and the speed went back to 1866, so I guess that was the problem. Thanks.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Not bad for that budge! +1. Also are you missing a slot cover, or am I seeing things?

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

thanks. I removed that slot cover when I installed my graphics card.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

mobo spec: DDR3 1600(O.C.)/ 1333/ 1066 so if you're locked at 1600 it's because that's the max OC speed.

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

when i first got the mobo and ram, the ram ran at 1866 just fine (without me changing any settings)....but after the bad CPU overclock attempt the ram was underclocked to 1600, idk why :/

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Definently oc that 750ti! I got a score of 4018 on 3dmark Firestrike, but a 4708 when I overclocked my little 750ti!

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

I can't overclock it further than I already have, I've tried getting it to 1400 mhz but all I get is stability issues. I can't increase the voltage to make the overclock stable because of a gpu bios setting, so I'm stuck here at 1363 mhz.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

If you can no longer get anything out of the core clock try overclocking the memory on the gpu, I found that gave me the biggest performance boost! Sucks that you cant modify the voltage though :(

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah I've tried that too but when I increase the memory clock past 2900 I get artifacts. This leads me to believe that a voltage increase can stabilize both the core and memory clock but I cannot access it. I should have gone for the EVGA FTW :(

  • 38 months ago
  • 2 points

Yea that really sucks that you cant unlock the voltage because on my evga ftw 750ti I usually use +20mv for the massive oc

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build, very similar to the one I did about 7 months back. I'm not sure how you still feel about them, but a SSD drive will definitely make a world of difference in performance. Initial start-up is quick for starters. My recent build was the first PC I ever had with a SSD drive. The trick is to install windows on the SSD drive.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

I plan to buy an SSD soon and install my OS and a few programs on it. Do you think a 120GB SSD is enough or should I go for a larger one?

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

That's the size I have on mine and it works nicely with just the OS and all related updates. If you plan on putting a few other programs on it, the 240 GB isn't a bad choice either. Also, the only other important thing to remember for SSDs is to not ever defrag them. Running the defragmentation function too many times on a SSD will heavily decrease any benefits in speed and performance you'll get.

  • 38 months ago
  • 1 point

been looking through builds with the FX-6300, but this one caught my eye for some reason.. Not only it is a budget build, but with all of the components you bought, it would be more than a budget pc :) congrats on your first build bro! Hope you're enjoying playing your favorite games with no problems! (not like mine, sadly)

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

Lol yeah I suppose it a little more than a budget :), thanks anyway. And yes I'm enjoying all my games, and I'm guessing you don't have a decent PC yourself?

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

I do have a decent gaming pc, but sometimes it can cause problems whenever I fix some of the hardware because of how messy it looks on the inside with all the cables :/ make sure to check my first build for more info :)

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

Hey I just saw your first build. I have to say it looks really good, a lot better than mine in fact :) the cable management may not be amazing and it causes you problems but I still think its a build to be proud of, good job :)

  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks, but today I decided to change my case for better air cooling and for cable management! I was really happy after transferring all the parts (90 minutes of frustration) and I don't have to worry about cable management haha :)

  • 37 months ago
  • 2 points

"90 minutes of frustration" haha i can totally relate :) . I'll probably do the same thing in the near future when I have money, i also wanna try water cooling some day. I'll probably do it after I get a new CPU, i'm quite interested in the new AMD Zen chips that are coming out, what do think? are you interested in them?

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 37 months ago
  • 1 point