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Build

Budget Build 2017

by LAWISON

21
23 Comments

Part List View full price breakdown

Details

Date Published

June 9, 2017

CPU Clock Rate

3.5GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

22.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

54.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.30GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

32.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

56.0° C

Description

[UPDATE: 02/07/18]: The setup has changed slightly. I am now running:

Graphics: GTX 1050Ti - now running +100% voltage, +210 core, +1000 memory and it's still keeping to the same temperature brackets but with the ability to push the graphics settings up even more in some games. The weather lately has meant that it has been reaching approximately 64-65c, but that's more than low enough to keep me happy!

Case: Aerocool DS 200 - I have cut a hole out the front of the case; (this was around 8 months ago but I forgot to update this!) I know it was designed to be a quiet case but I literally only got it because it was on an amazing offer! This has dropped ambient case temperatures by 4-6c. I have also put the solid top on the case to restrict airflow to front -> back because it was getting hotter with the air leakage. I plan on getting more fans at some point.

Internet: None - I sold my wifi card to a client because I have since got round to ethernet cable and network switching the house (this was about 6 months ago), and I've got to say that the difference is immense and I wish I got round to doing it sooner.

Storage: 120GB SanDisk SSD Plus 120GB, HP 240GB SSD (just some generic one out of a pre-build), 1TB 7200RPM HDD, 160GB 5400RPM HDD - I have the OS on the 120GB drive along with all my launchers for game clients/overclocking software and anything else I need fast access to. The 240GB drive has Wolfenstien, Battlefield 1, RocketLeague and I think Fallout 4 on it as well. The 1TB drive has about 12 other games on it and all my random files. The 160GB drive is never plugged in unless I'm transferring photos/videos as it has now become the backup drive for memories etc. The Pentium definitely struggles when I have things active on more than one drive at a time (as in data transfers/downloads) but this isn't a big issue as I don't tend to use this computer for anything other than games.

I will start this build with the reason for starting this build in the first place, and why I went so low-spec when I could have gone all out.

When I was contemplating building a gaming computer for personal use, I was naturally drawn to the super high spec, sleek, RGB filled components. Then I thought, how much performance can I get out of a low cost build using the lower end of the market components? So this is what I came up with. It is designed to be cheap, whilst not compromising too much on performance or upgrade-ability - what's the point in a budget build if it isn't up-gradable?!

I did some research into processors on the Kabylake socket, that at the time were due to come out in a week. I heard rumors of Pentiums with Hyperthreading! I was sold on the thought and waited for them to be released. As I was going for ultimate bang for buck, I settled with a G4560 - an absolute monster for the money. On paper, a 3.5GHz 2 core, 4 thread processor sound a bit lackluster, but the hyper threading really sets this apart form previous Pentiums, and holds up well in games.

I didn't have the usual processor lying about to flash the bios on a B150 or H110 board, so I just got the cheapest B250 chipset at the time, which happened to be the MSI PRO-VD MATX. It has a white LED on the upper left of the motherboard that has software controls - you can make it breath, flash, stay on constantly etc. There are 3 red LEDs on the top right that tell you if you have a posting issue which could come in handy should you have any issues.

For RAM, I just got the cheapest single 8GB DDR4 stick I could find (I plan to get a further 8GB) and that was the Corsair Vengeance LPX 2400MHz. The motherboard only supports up to 2133MHz, so I miss a bit of performance there, but nothing too bad.

For storage, I went with the Sandisk SSD PLUS 120GB, as I wanted this to be a half decent computer, not an 'extreme' budget system, and a lot of games nowadays are a bit sluggish to load off of conventional hard drives (Battlefield 1 for example!). The whole system boots up in about 7 seconds which is more than fast enough to get my thumbs up, and has enough storage after installing Windows 10 for a few of my games (Battlefield 1, Stranded Deep and Dirty Bomb). The 160GB HDD is just a hard drive I had lying around in the attic so though, "eh, what can go wrong?" bearing in mind the attic was damp and the HDD is about 10 years old. [UPDATE 17/09/17: I have now added a 1TB HDD out of a broken laptop, this has games on it and some other bits and bobs, and the 160GB drive is now used for photo storage]

The graphics card took me a while to decide on. I was originally going to go for an RX 460, but then looked at benchmarks for the GTX 1050 and was like "oh hey, that's quicker for the money". I still held out because of all the extra cards being released and after a while I was stuck between a 4GB RX560 and a GTX 1050Ti. I went for the 1050Ti after watching numerous YouTube videos of benchmarks, as it more often than not came out above the RX 560. I must say that for £122.99, this is a pretty decent card! I run all less popular games at 1080p ULTRA, and Battlefield 1 runs at 1080p with everything on high or medium even when in 64 person lobbies, which is impressive considering the "minimum requirements" for the game. I was also worried about the G4560 bottlenecking the 1050Ti, but from my experience it hasn't ever happened, as I get the same frame rates as my friend who has the same graphics card, but has an i5 7400.

My power supply was a hard choice. I wanted something cheap, but not something cheap - if you know what I mean? Whilst I could have gone for something at £20, I also didn't want my computer bursting into flames, any of the components getting surge killed, or just power failures in general. That's why I ended up going with Corsairs VS450. It's cheap, it's mostly reliable, and if anything goes wrong it has an actual warranty. For the first 2 weeks I had an issue with the fan making a horrific noise because it was hitting the metal edges of the PSU shroud. I whacked it pretty hard on the top and haven't had the issue since (and yes the fan still works!). [UPDATE 17/09/17: The power supply is pretty useless at keeping the fan spinning without making noise, so I now have it just behind my computer, should I need to attack it to make it shut up! (I will be buying a new one soon!)]

My case was an easy choice. I wanted something mid-height with the option for full ATX and also a removable drive cage. The Aerocool DS 200 in white was on offer at better than half price. NO BRAINER! The integrated fan controller is great. The temperature readout is accurate, the included fans are silent when on the first of 3 settings that the fan controller has, it has a changeable top panel, USB 2, USB 3, headphone and mic jacks, it's what I needed. Oh and it's sound dampened, so whats not to like? Well, apart from the fact the side panels weigh quite a lot! [UPDATE: 17/10/17: I have cut a hole in the front of the case where the 140mm is currently situated to allow for better air flow. So far temps have dropped by 12c when gaming and 6c at idle, which I personally think was well worth it!]

The wifi card was just because I needed wifi at one point. I now have a 30M CAT6 cable that goes to an ethernet switch, so the wifi card is in there, but unused currently. It works, so I guess it's backup...

---------------------------------------------------------BENCHMARKS AND REVIEW------------------------------------------------------------

Before I got the graphics card I was running the system with just the G4560. Here are the iGPU benchmarks.

Battlefield 1: 25-32fps (All settings on minimum, DX12 off, Resolution minimum, Resolution scaling at 80%)

World of Tanks: 60fps (HD version installed, Medium preset, Resolution up to 1080p - 35fps instead of 60)

Dirty Bomb: 60fps (Minimum preset, 720p)

Stranded Deep: 45fps (Low preset, 1080p)

Need For Speed MW: 100+fps (The old game not the modern one, Maxed out)

COD MW1: 60fps (Recommended settings)

Istrolid: 40fps (There aren't graphics options)

PayDay 2: 35 fps (1080i, Low preset)

With the 1050Ti installed:

Battlefield 1: 47fps (1080p, Advanced graphics setting in this order: High, High, Med, Med, Med, Med, High, High, DX12 off, FPS limit 60)

World of Tanks: 61fps+ (1080p, Maxed out, V-Sync on)

Dirty Bomb: 61fps+ (1080p, Maxed out, V-sync on)

Stranded Deep:45-61fps+ (1080p, Maxed out, V-sync off)

Need For Speed MW: 100+fps (The old game not the modern one, Maxed out)

Need For Speed Shift: 78-224fps (Maxed out, V-sync off)

COD MW1: 61fps+ (Maxed out, V-sync on)

Istrolid: 100fps+ (There aren't graphics options)

PayDay 2: 48-61fps+ (Maxed out, V-sync off)

Rocket League: 90+fps (Maxed out, V-sync off)

Fortnite: 50-90fps (Maxed out, V-sync off)

Borderlands 2: 70-130fps (Max settings, V-sync off)

Saints Row IV: 100+fps (Maxed out, V-sync off)

Outlast: 200+fps (Maxed out)

Brink: 100+fps (Maxed out, V-sync off)

The Sims 4: 54-164fps (Maxed out, V-sync off)

Wolfenstein the New Order: 48-60+ (Maxed out, V-sync on because of major screen tear without)

Fallout 4: 48-54+ (Ultra preset with Godrays OFF - trust me don't use Godrays on a system like this!)

Skyrim Elder Scrolls: 45-68 (Ultra Preset - No mods, I can't say much more, I don't play it, my brother does!)

Overall I'm very impressed with this system. It didn't cost much for the power it has, aesthetically it looks great (with the side panels on!), it will run without overheating, it bottlenecks in multiplayer games like BF1 (CPU), but I expected that, it runs very cool, and it fits perfectly into my rooms colour theme!

In everyday tasks the system runs silently - I have a Mac Mini and it runs about as loud as that, and if you've ever used one you'd know how quite that is. It isn't like having a big, monochromatic room heater, as it runs under full load at 28 degrees C, cool enough for me to be happy. I definitely need to buy at least one more fan for the computer as the air pressure is a bit off in the case, but apart from that it's ok.

The 160GB HDD is slowly dying I think. It keeps getting very noisy and totally stops now and again when you use demanding games on it. I will eventually get either another 2.5"SSD or an M.2 SSD to take it's place, so that it can finally die a triumphant death (I'll attack it with a drill and lob it in a bin).

Future planned upgrades are: Another 8GB of RAM, followed by a K series i7 processor, followed by a z270 motherboard, followed by a GTX 1070/1080/1080Ti (they might be cheaper by the time I get this far) and then last but not least, at the same time as the graphics card I will probably buy a 1000w platinum power supply, if the one I currently have hasn't already died!

Part Reviews

CPU

I did some research into processors on the Kabylake socket, that at the time were due to come out in a week. I heard rumours of Pentiums with Hyperthreading! I was sold on the thought and waited for them to be released. As I was going for ultimate bang for buck, I settled with a G4560 - an absolute monster for the money. On paper, a 3.5GHz 2 core, 4 thread processor sound a bit lacklustre, but the hyper threading really sets this apart form previous Pentiums, and holds up well in games.

Motherboard

I didn't have the usual processor lying about to flash the bios on a B150 or H110 board, I just got the cheapest B250 chipset at the time, which happened to be the MSI PRO-VD MATX. It is a pretty standard board, nothing fancy - except for the armoured x16 PCIE port which was a nice touch. I don't use the system fan header as my case has a manual control for fans, but from where it is, I imagine that unless you're only using a rear exhaust fan, you'll have some cable tidying issues there! It has a white LED on the upper left of the motherboard that has software controls - you can make it breath, flash, stay on constantly etc. There are 3 red LEDs on the top right that tell you if you have a posting issue which could come in handy should you have any issues. My only complaint for this motherboard personally, would be that it is dark brown, but that's just me being fussy. It gets 5 stars for the placement on the system header (for people that use it!)

Memory

I just got the cheapest single 8GB DDR4 stick I could find (I plan to get a further 8GB) and that was the Corsair Vengeance LPX type. It is rated at 2400MHz, however the motherboard only supports up to 2133MHz, so I miss a bit of performance there, but nothing too bad.

Storage

The whole system boots up in about 7 seconds which is more than fast enough to get my thumbs up, and has enough storage after installing Windows 10 for a few of my games (Battlefield 1, DayZ, Stranded Deep, Dirty Bomb and World of Tanks).

Video Card

I was originally going to go for an RX 460, but then looked at benchmarks for the GTX 1050 and was like "oh hey, that's quicker for the money". I still held out because of all the extra cards being released and after a while I was stuck between a 4GB RX560 and a GTX 1050Ti. I went for the 1050Ti after watching numerous YouTube videos of benchmarks, as it more often than not came out above the RX 560. I must say that for £122.99, this is a pretty decent card! I run all less popular games at 1080p ULTRA, and Battlefield 1 runs at 1080p with everything on high or medium even when in 64 person lobbies, which is impressive considering the "minimum requirements" for the game.

Case

I wanted something mid-height with the option for full ATX and also a removable drive cage. The Aerocool DS 200 in white was on offer at better than half price. NO BRAINER! The integrated fan controller is great. The temperature readout is accurate, the included fans are silent when on the first of 3 settings that the fan controller has, it has a changeable top panel, USB 2, USB 3, headphone and mic jacks, it's what I needed. Oh and it's sound dampened, so whats not to like? Well, apart from the fact the side panels weigh quite a lot!

Power Supply

My power supply was a hard choice. I wanted something cheap, but not something cheap - if you know what I mean? Whilst I could have gone for something at £20, I also didn't want my computer bursting into flames, any of the components getting sick killed, or just power failures in general. Thats why I ended up going with Corsairs VS450. It's cheap, it's mostly reliable, and if anything goes wrong it has an actual warranty. For the first 2 weeks I had an issue with the fan making a horrific noise because it was hitting the metal edges of the PSU shroud. I whacked it pretty hard on the top and haven't had the issue since (and yes the fan still works!).

Wireless Network Adapter

I now have a 30M CAT6 cable that goes to an ethernet switch, so the wifi card is in there, but unused currently. It works on 2.4GHz connections, and can handle up to 100MB/s so it's fine for regular usage.

Comments Sorted by:

PrintBuildz 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Cool build!

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks!

GFTG2000 1 point 13 months ago

"(I'll attack it with a drill and lob it in a bin)", ROFLMAO

Holy damn, I read everything you wrote, I'm tired :)

I'll probably build something like that in the near future.

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Well, maybe a hammer, we'll see ;)

Haha, I wrote a fair amount so fair play to you :D

Link me in whenever you do your build, I'd love to see it!

TheseShiftyCtrls 1 point 13 months ago

Ewww. Is that a Mac mini I see??!!

In all seriusnous though, nice build.

+1

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

It is, and it's being replaced soon by this system (once I have more storage and a better processor) as it's currently used for my day job (Music Production).

Thanks!

TheseShiftyCtrls 1 point 13 months ago

Oh for a moment I thought you were one of those people

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

One of those...Apple purists...eh god no!

TheseShiftyCtrls 1 point 13 months ago

O ok just checking

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

It's ok, breath, you'll get through the state of shock soon ;)

mikears3349 1 point 13 months ago

Very nice build, almost the same as mine xD

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Whooo similar build buddy!

jk184 11 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Nice build. Everything you need. And nice setup too.

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks, it's taken a while to get this far with it!

PoeDomo 1 point 13 months ago

Nice build! I would do something similar if I went Pentium. What are the temps like? I was looking into a 560 4GB like you, but I'm probably going 1050 ti because this card is only 3$ more than a similar model.

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 2 points 13 months ago

Thanks! A pentium build is suprisingly solid even in AAA titles :D

Go for the 1050Ti, you won't regret it.

My temps are: CPU Idle: 34 (stock cooler) CPU Full Load: 45-50 (Higher temp is the current full load due to it being 27-32 degrees room temp lately)

GPU Idle: 32 (Zotac Mini 1050Ti) GPU Full Load: 48-56 (again higher temp due to room temp)

I hope this helps and I hope your build goes well if you get round to doing it!

WowOnce 1 point 11 months ago

Dude everyone should do the benchmarks like you did :) It's so organized and complete. +1

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 2 points 10 months ago

Thanks! My OCD finally came in handy :D

cajunsloth 7 Builds 0 points 13 months ago

Good, smart part choices. Solid upgrade path. Very clean setup and good job with the cable management. +1

LAWISON submitter 2 Builds 2 points 13 months ago

Thanks, yeah upgradability was my main aim out of this system! Cable management took me 2 rebuilds until I had it how I wanted it!