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UnfriendlyFire
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Sub $500 gaming rig (lots of used parts), hung up on 3 case choices

Sun Aug 11, 2019 12:56 pm

Thermaltake Versa H22 ATX Mid Tower: https://pcpartpicker.com/product/Pm4gXL ... b300m1nn00

Fractal Design Focus G ATX Mid Tower: https://pcpartpicker.com/product/ZHmxFT ... focus-bk-w

Phanteks Eclipse P300 ATX Mid Tower:
https://pcpartpicker.com/product/FCs8TW ... ec300ptgbk

I'm trying to determine which case is more appropriate for my build. I don't care much about the LEDs or the side window. Functionality, value and sturdiness over aesthetics.
I would be open to other budget cases. I also have a workshop if I need to make any hardware mods.

While my usage is gaming, my job requires me to be traveling constantly, sometimes months away from home, so I won't be able to use the desktop rig as much as I would prefer to until either I switch job (not likely as I like my current one) or I get promoted to a position where less travel is involved, which could take years.

I plan on doing light OCing without using excessive voltage increases and limited by the stock coolers. I won't buy any aftermarket coolers, and any fan upgrades to the case will be from eBay or dumpster diving.

I would also like to be able to "upgrade" to a used Zen 3 CPU 1-2 years after Zen 3 is launched, and also try to at least retain the case for a post Zen 3 upgrade.

This is my planned build before I came across two additional cases to consider: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/pJCjP3

Modifications to the list (all of the used parts will come from eBay unless if I had aqquired free ones):

- Used Ryzen 1600 or 2600 (whichever one has better value on eBay)

- Used RAM (if the 3600 MHz 16GB one is only a few dollars more compared to 3200 MHz, maybe get it?)

- Used RX 570 or 580 8GB (Not sure if I can get away with 4GB VRAM for 1080p and avoid stuttering, but I'm willing to keep graphic details at medium. I have used Reshade for my laptop to substitute MSAA with less computationally intensive AA methods)

- Used free 128GB SSD

- 2 sets of used free HDDs (500 and 320GB, one will be a standby replacement when the other dies). I have plenty of spare USB sticks and a USB hub to setup around 60 or 80GB of Ready Boost flash cache for the HDD if I can figure out how to get Windows 10 to enable Ready Boost on a secondary drive as I will install Steam on the HDD.

- Used free 1080p, 60hz 24" monitor. Will be trying to overdrive it to around 70hz. This is a hard constraint on CPU/GPU as I don't plan on replacing the monitor until it breaks or I find a better free one.

- Used free USB powered 2x 92mm axial fans and 4x 92mm blower fans from scrapped laptop coolers.

With the estimated eBay prices, my build cost is in the high $300 to low $400 range, lower if I go for the Ryzen 1600, 3200 MHz RAM and RX 570.
Last edited by UnfriendlyFire on Sun Aug 11, 2019 9:40 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
meerkt
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Re: Sub $500 gaming rig (lots of used parts), hung up on 3 case choices

Sun Aug 11, 2019 2:26 pm

Used HDDs are a risk, and a low-end 128GB SSD doesn't sound great either. Maybe get a new HDD and no SSD, then in the future a decent SSD (mid-market 250GB). If you really want to optimize every dollar, skip the DDR4-3600 and divert those few dollars to the SSD or HDD.

Is ReadyBoost with an average UFD really useful?
 
UnfriendlyFire
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Re: Sub $500 gaming rig (lots of used parts), hung up on 3 case choices

Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:41 pm

I just scavenged another 3 free used HDDs, so that leaves me with 500GB, 2x 320GB, 160GB and 80GB. Four of them will be backups or cold standby replacements when one of them starts to die. I expect them to die early, so I'll adjust my backup schedule for that assumption.

I just confirmed that there is no point trying to get ReadyBoost to work when I have 16GB RAM.

Regarding the SSD, I got a 256GB M.2 SSD, I have two SSDs for my rig so I can hold off on using the HDDs for a while.

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