I posted sometime last week about a parts list I had put together (thanks for the feedback, all) and today while on some conference calls I really wanted no part of I assembled the PC.

Illustration for article titled First PC Build Done (Simracing Rig)
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Wrote a PCPartPicker post about it, so I’ll let that do the rest of the talking. Very excited to get some seat time with this at some decent settings for once! (yes i literally used to play iRacing on a Surface at minimum settings). I’m at $640 all in, which feels pretty good.

Background This is my very first build ever, about 12 years after I ended my 12 month stint as a Best Buy Geek Squad employee (I hope you all enjoy the irony of that as much as I do). I think the entirety of my time there was spent installing RAM and running overpriced new PC optimizations to remove all of the bloatware that came with Vista.

In any case, this went pretty well all things considered. Only real hang up was that I had trouble getting the RAM to seat properly (I was treating the RAM with kid gloves); after pulling and reconnecting pretty much everything, I finally got the RAM to pop into place properly and it booted right up.

Purpose Intended use here is almost entirely for simracing. Given that I’m upgrading my wheel, pedals, monitors, and cockpit all at the same time, I was trying to keep this a fairly budget build and think I did pretty well with it. I spent a little more in a couple of places to not cheap out, but I’m interested to hear feedback on the selection. I’d like the option to be able to stream while racing, and I’m under the impression that I should be able to do that.

Aside from budget, my only goal was to make a clean, understated build, and I think I achieved that nicely.

Components AMD Ryzen 5 2600X - this was an “open-box” find at my local MicroCenter, but there didn’t appear to be anything open-box about it. It all looked factory fresh to me, not even tested or recertified. I ordered everything except the case from Microcenter and it was a zoo with the COVID-19 paramters in place and I heard the kid ringing me up have an issue with the override, so I’m thinking I really lucked out and got a brand new chip for an open-box price. I won’t complain

ASRock B450M - I probably should have spent the money for the WiFi version, because I’m struggling to find any of my old long ethernet cables, but this was another open-box find at Microcenter. I was concerned that an open-box mobo might give me issues as a first-time builder, but other than a bent USB 3.0 pin (that a straightened with no issue) and a manual that could have been a little bit mroe clear, I didn’t have any problems

G.Skill Aegis RAM - maybe should have done my homework here as I’ve now seen several people posting about issues using the G.Skill RAM on a Ryzen 5 build, but I don’t appear to have any issues. Dual-channel is functioning and proper speeds are recognized

Inland Premium 512GB SSD - went with an M.2 SSD at the behest of a friend, and to be honest it’s kind of blowing my mind as someone who hasn’t been inside of a computer in over a decade. I’ve heard since that they may run a bit warm? I’ll keep an eye on it but we’ll see. The form factor is great, regardless. I have a couple of HDDs to slot in for bulk storage moving forward.

PowerColor Radeon RX 580 - I’ll be honest that I didn’t do a whole lot of homework here. I saw this card in several other budget builds and that it was well liked, had three DP outputs so I can run a triple-monitor setup, and the price didn’t seem awful, so I pulled the trigger. Visually I really enjoy that it’s a pretty low key card.

PowerSpec 650W Bronze PSU - again, didn’t put a lot of thought into this. PartPicker estimated my total wattage at around 375W, and got some feedback that I should double up my power supply relative to my planned draw. Also got recommended to go with a Gold certified PSU, but I cheaped out a bit.

Fractal Mini C Tower - This is the one place that I was planning on going much cheaper to begin with and I am THRILLED that I didn’t. This thing could not have been more user friendly to build in, and while I’m sure my cable management leaves something to be desired somewhere, I really didn’t have to do much to get this thing tidied up. Worth every penny, maybe should have splurged for the glass.

Conclusion That’s all I’ve got. I’ll check in here at some point after I get it up and running with my preferred sims. Very excited to have a dedicated rig after running iRacing at minimum settings on a Surface Pro4 for years and years (yes, I absolutely did it, and to be honest it worked well enough for seat time).

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