Description

Technically, this is my 2nd build. My 1st one is my own personal gaming computer, but I had help with installing the parts since I was a rookie. So I would call this my first official DIY build.

What do you use it for? My best friend Sean wanted a new rig to game on. He also works with AutoCAD and wanted something that could handle the program.

What worked well? Everything was pretty straight forward to install. The Thermaltake Versa H17 is a WONDERFUL case to work with. Easy cable management, pretty spacious for its size and has great case fan options. Not sure if the prices update with the completed build, but Microcenter always has a good deal on the CPU+MB combo and we ended up picking up the MB for ~$35. Most of the parts were on sale at the time such as the PSU being ~$35, case was $30, RAM was ~$65.

Any problems? The CPU runs a bit hot under load, but that can easily be solved with an aftermarket cooler. Not a huge deal, but the rear fan couldn't reach the dedicated system fan headers towards the bottom of the MB in a discreet way. We ended up using the CPU water pump header towards the top.

Part Reviews

Motherboard

Picked this up from Microcenter for ~$35 with the CPU/MB deal. For the price, it is a very solid board that comes with plenty of fan headers, the option for two m.2 drives (even though only one is NVMe) and AMD Store MI.

Would definitely recommend this board and buy again.

Video Card

Wonderful GPU for the price. Picked this up for $149.99. Has no problem running older games at max settings, but struggles a bit with newer games. With newer games, you can still run graphics relatively high, but need to make some sacrifices. Under load, it hovers around 75C. The design of the card is sleek and really cool looking, especially the back plate.

I've seen a lot of complaints that the fans don't kick on until ~60C, but this can be easily overwritten with Afterburner.

For gaming on a budget, I would definitely recommend this card for its price.

Case

I absolutely LOVE this case. Great cable management, spacious for a mATX and great fan options! The case looks subtle and sleek. Comes with a 120mm rear fan pre-installed. Grabbed this for $30 on sale.

The only negative thing I have to say about this is the front fans. I swapped 3 be quiet! Pure Wing PWM fans from an old rig to this one, so I'm not sure if it came with dedicated mounting options. There is the metal base to mount it to, but there are no dedicated screw holes, so be prepared to MacGyver the mounting of these fans with a longer screw and a washer/nut to hold it in place. They should also be mounted on the inside rather than the outside. Reason being that the top fan will not fit on the outside (in between the metal base and the case cover) due to the USB/Power/Reset wiring. If you take a look at the completed build pictures, you'll see that I placed the top fan on the inside of the metal base and the other 2 on the outside (due to laziness).

I would definitely recommend this case for any build if a side window is not a priority.

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Comments

  • 9 months ago
  • 2 points

The heat probably has more to do with the poor airflow of that case than anything. That card runs hot too, so it's probably toasty in there. Did you test with the side panel off? Either way, solid for a sub $800 build.

  • 9 months ago
  • 2 points

Here's an update:

So my friend mentioned that the place he lives in is usually much hotter than a normal house hold. He lives on the 2nd floor and the air is always blasting (he shares the place with his room mates). He even mentioned that in winter he has the windows open b/c it's so hot. So that solves why his parts were running so warm.

Fast forward to yesterday and he comes over with his build. We added a 140mm fan up top and I put it to some stress testing.
Now my place is a little cottage, one floor. The temps can fluctuate. In the winter it is very cold, in the summer in the sun it can get hot and stuffy. During the spring and even the summer, when the house is in the shade and the temperature outside is 60-70F, the house can be pretty cold.

Yesterday was a particularly cold day, but when stress testing temps steadied around 75C. During some moderately demanding gaming, temps maxed out around 65C.

  • 9 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah if the ambient temperature in his room is pretty high it will be tough to keep it cooler, but hopefully that additional exhaust helps even if it's small.

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

It doesn't matter if you have tight space as long you will use the correct case fans.

  • 9 months ago
  • 1 point

I haven't tested with the side panel off. Good suggestion, I'll try that soon. I also need to stick a fan up top as well.

Edit: This is my friends build. He just said he took the side panel off and the GPU runs at a steady 75C after an hour or two. He also said he's picking up a Corsair AIO cooler from someone, so going to install that and see how the CPU runs after.

  • 9 months ago
  • 2 points

I have the same case and I'm trying to install fans in the front of it. how did you take the front panel off?

  • 9 months ago
  • 2 points

Reach under the front panel, there will be a ledge to grip. Pull it from there and it'll pop right off. When installing the fans, install them on the inside of the case, not the outside on the front panel side. I say this because if you use 3 120mm fans, the top one won't fit due to the USB/Power/Reset cables.

  • 9 months ago
  • 1 point

ok thanks