A Build for Jody

Hey, Jody, your build is ready!

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Build Overview


Lots of things to accomplish here! Multipurpose setup for sure. We’re looking for:

  • Basic gaming performance, nothing too fancy
  • Media Center usage
  • Image editing
  • Video editing
  • Dual monitor setup
  • Streaming and podcasting
  • Existing setup: Only a USB mouse and a pocket full of money!
  • Budget: $1250 to $1500
  • Color preference: Black / Carbon / Grey / Silver / Blue
  • Target OS: Windows 10

$1506.63 at the time of posting.  Prices change constantly and rapidly in the world of PC parts.  Take your time to shop each piece for the best deal.  If you’re making substitutions, consider all specs for the item.

I used a few discount codes for this build:

  • Bluray Optical drive @ Newegg: promo code EMCRDBH65.
  • Items purchased at Jet.com can be lowered via promo code Triple15 if you are a new Jet customer. Works on first 3 orders. They can be lowered further by opting out of returns and paying by debit card. These discounts have been applied to the CPU in your build, but also go for all other Jet items.

Build Details

I’ve been chomping at the bit to do a full Ryzen build, and here we are at last!  When I saw Jody’s request come through, with all of its multipurpose necessities, I knew this was the right situation to show off what Ryzen can really do.  AMD is back, baby!

Before we dive into the build itself, let’s talk about outside peripherals.  Since we have so many needs to cover, I didn’t budget too, too much for periphs this time around.  We satiate the need for a dual monitor setup by grabbing two beautiful Asus 1080p monitors, each 23.8″.  I would have loved to grab bigger and better monitors at higher resolutions – especially for the video editing needs – but the budget just doesn’t allow for it.  I rounded out the desk periphs with a sweet mechanical keyboard (87 key, blue backlight, Cherry MX Brown) and some basic speakers.

All right, enough of that, let’s dive into the tower! Like I mentioned in the intro, we’ve got to go with Ryzen in this build, and I landed on a great deal for the Ryzen 7 1700.  This is gonna help take care of all of those multifaceted needs, even without the need for overclocking.

Backbone power is a huge necessity here, so we need to go big on both RAM and storage to get the best performance everywhere.  For RAM, there’s 16 GB of Corsair DDR4-3000 at a very nice CAS latency of 15 (and blue LEDs, because we’re cool like that).  Can we go further?  Hell yeah we can.  How about an Intel 600p!  With the 600p, not only do we get the fastest possible bus for storage (PCIe 3.0 x4), but we’ve also got the fastest possible SSD protocol for storage (NVMe), and at a whopping 512 GB of total space, there’s no doubt that read/writes, load times, and cold boots will be lightning fast.  This is the king of backbone performance and will assist with just about every requirement of the build.

The intel 600p will be the drive where you install Windows, as well as your photo and video editing apps.  This will ensure the fastest drive performance for those systems.  For typical data storage, we’ve got a traditional 2 TB HDD.  Speaking of which, since you’re looking for a media setup, consider hooking up that HDD to something like Plex to share media to all of your devices.

Okay, so what does it all plug into? The board I decided to go with is the Gigabyte GA-AB350M-D3H.  It was a great way to tie everything together, provide us with NVMe, and keep the price low.  It also gives you two extra empty RAM slots, just in case you want to upgrade your RAM to 32 GB down the line.

Let’s talk design.  To help enforce the color scheme, I landed on the high-rated Deepcool TESSERACT mid-tower case.  Great case for a great cost.  I didn’t put too much effort into lighting, but the case does come with two blue LED case fans.

It feels weird to wait this long to talk about the video card!  I usually do gaming-first builds, so this is a refreshing change of pace.  Since only basic-level gaming is necessary, I went with a GTX 1060 – specifically, Gigabyte’s 6 GB WindForce OC version – that will still provide some great 1080p while simultaneously supporting dual monitor perfection.

What else we got in here?  Oh yeah, I threw in an LG BluRay player, because of media purposes.  Grab a copy of Windows 10 from Kinguin to continue keeping the price down.  Rounding out the internal build, we’ve got a decent CPU cooler (good enough to get a tiny overclock out of) and a satisfactory power supply.

Build Summary


For the price, this build will outplay most others in sheer performance.  The power of Ryzen, combined with high-tier RAM and storage, knocks it out of the park for all things professional.  This build covers so many bases that any home user would shudder at its power.


The highest level of gaming just isn’t possible with the monitors and the video card. Although we went high-tier on our necessary components, there are higher tiers out there beyond our grasp at this budget.  Even with a few bucks more, some components (speakers, keyboard, data storage, cooler) could be upgraded to more appealing parts.  No mic/webcam to meet those streaming and podcasting needs.

A Build for Logan

Hey, Logan, your build is ready! Here are the details.

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Build goals: high-end gaming setup, starting from scratch with no existing peripherals.  Budget range $1500 to $2000.  The preferred design is Black, Carbon, Blue.

Total build price: $1975.68 at the time of posting.  Prices change constantly and rapidly in the world of PC parts.  Take your time to shop each piece for the best deal.  If you’re making substitutions, consider all specs for the item.

No emphasis on overclocking. Windows 10 running on Intel architecture.

Ahh, my first full build of 2017!  Big budget and starting from scratch?  Always a pleasure to oblige my transitioning peasants 😀

So obviously we’re gonna do a GTX 1080 build today.  I mean, it’d be a slap in the face not to with a budget like that.  Quite honestly, if you stick a 1080 in anything that can handle it, you’ve already got a kickass gaming computer.  EVGA’s most awesome 1080 – Superclocked with ACX 3.0 – is on sale today, so we gotta go that route for sure.

I wanted to focus a bit more on design today, what with the large overhead budget and focused gaming priority, so I decided to splurge on a kickass Gigabyte board, codenamed Designare.  On this beautiful board, you’ve got ambient RGB lighting that without a doubt will provide that “wow” factor to the entire build.  See the overview of the Designare here.  Pairing with the overall design is 16 GB of DDR4-2133 memory by PNY.

The Skylake i5 CPU, in lieu of that so-saught-after i7, will help keep the price down at no noticeable cut to gaming performance.  To mitigate that loss, you’ve got a 250 GB Samsung SSD connected through M.2 to deliver blinding fast read/write speeds, so everything balances out nicely for backbone performance.  The Samsung SSD will host Windows 10 Home, and it will be accompanied by a traditional 2TB HDD over SATA3.

To further bolster the design, I chose the ATX-sized NZXT S340 mid-tower case that will pair oh-so-beautifully with the color palette.   Top IO (2 USB 3.0), no ugly bay drive slots, and ample room to work in.  Eazy peazy.

Onto cooling.  Your CPU fan is the PCMR traditional Hyper 212 Evo; nothing fancy, but a great stock fan replacement.  I also threw in one NZXT Aer 140mm case fan with RGB control, which will pair nicely with the ambient lighting from the board.  I recommend mounting the case fan to the back, but that’s just me.  You can always buy a second one, then stick both on the front panel.

Rounding out the internal build, you have a fully modular 80+ Gold power supply by EVGA.

Since we’re starting from scratch, we save the best for last: peripherals!  Since we didn’t go too overboard on the internal build, we get to save a nice chunk of the budget for some lush desk estate.  Asus has a perfectly-budgeted 1440p 27-inch IPS display with the coveted 1ms response time – a must for gaming builds.  For input, let’s go full-Corsair.  We’ve got the K95 full-RGB keyboard and the Sabre full-RGB mouse, meaning you’ve got color control both inside and out of the system.  Finally, just to give us some audio out, we’ll pick up some traditional Logitech speakers (another PCMR budget staple).

To summarize your build:

PROS: The entire build marries together god-tier gaming performance from the GTX 1080 and beautiful ambient RGB lighting, both inside the case and out.

CONS: Really have to nitpick here! Some snobbish PCMR higher-ups will frown on your i5 (although you won’t feel the difference with gaming).  An audio upgrade may be necessary if you’re an audiophile. An extra terabyte of storage never hurt anyone.

A Build for Ben

Hey Ben, your build is ready! Here’s the details.

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Build prerequisites: high-end gaming capabilities paired with basic web usage, with a heightened emphasis on entertainment media.

Budget: $1250 to $1500

Total build price: $1425.99 (on budget)

No emphasis on overclocking.  Windows 10 running on Intel architecture.

I like – big – budgets and I cannot lie.  You other peasants can’t deny.  When a rig walks in with a itty bitty card and a-oh … I’m sorry.  The build.  Right.

Every now and then, I do a build that really excites me.  Big budget, and nothing to start with.  Console crushers are fun but pretty one-dimentional, not to mention transitioning peasants usually have cheap periphs they got from a friend, or garage sale, or something else that’s also depressing.  Starting from scratch when you’ve got a nice sum of cash burning in your pocket is equal parts dangerous and enjoyable.  Which is where Ben’s situation comes in.  He’s got the funds to make his Master Race debut, and this build will allow him to do so in spades.

With a disposable budget like this, the aim is simple: put peripherals first, and that’s exactly what I did.  The very first thing I added to the build was the pair of Corsair mouse and keyboard periphs.  The Corsair STRAFE keyboard means you have the best-of-the-best in quality, paired with those well sought after Cherry MX Silent keys, not to mention the friendly software that (ahem) other manufacturers can’t seem to get right.

You’re outfitted with a 1440p, 144 Hz, 27-inch monitor by Acer, so big and beautiful that it’ll slap a console peasant right in their dirty face.  Deal details here.

So what are these big beautiful periphs running on? A Core i3-6100 Skylake processor, paired with an H110 chipset board by ASRock.  Is it the best backbone?  No, but it will work more than adequately for your needs. Adding to it, you’ve got 8 GB of DDR4-2133 G.Skill RAM.  Again, for your needs, RAM neither needs to be top-tier in speed, nor have a large abundance.  I’ve seen some odd looks when I recommend 8 GB over 16 GB, but I like to think of it like this:  You can either buy another stick (another $34), or close your 100 tabs in Chrome.

The glorious age of Pascal is upon us, so of course we have to opt-in for one of those shiny new GeForce GTX cards.  I chose the 1070 because it’s that sweet spot for cost efficiency, and because its got everything it needs to unleash that sweet bitch of a monitor you’ve got.  Although it’s sold out at the moment, you can use this deal as a general idea for what you can expect pricewise.

You’ve got a dual-storage solution which consists of a Kingston 240 GB SSD running on SATA3 (this is where Windows will live), followed by 2 TB of storage on a basic HDD (this is where your personal data will live).  Ample storage and no sacrifice to power.

I’ve got a thing for Corsair, so I went for one of their cases.  I landed on the SPEC-02, which has everything you need for a great case.  Check out the case here. To power everything, you’ve got a 450W 80+ Bronze power supply by EVGA.

To round out the rest of the cost, you’ve got PCMR’s most recommended CPU cooler, a decent set of high-rated speakers, and (everyone’s favorite) the chump change for Windows 10.  To better highlight your media needs, I also threw in a Bluray writer, because hey why not.

To summarize your build:

PROS: welcome to the fucking Master Race bitch, strap in.  Make your online friends jealous with your periphs and video card.

CONS: Your PC unfortunately skipped Leg Day.  The motherboard and CPU are a little underwhelming, although they will provide an overabundance for your typical usage.  Consider upgrading if you anticipate batch processing jobs (video editing, Photoshop, server usage) in your future.