So, in part one, I talked about the CPU, RAM, Motherboard and SSD. This time around we’ll be discussing the fans, the case, and the PSU. Even though it’s not exactly a key part of this build, I’ll also show you the GPU. As with the parts before, I had a budget to build to, so I tried to get the best parts I could that offered good value for money. So, on the next installment of the Ryzen PC series.
Certainly not the most exciting part of the build, but important nevertheless. I went with the Arctic F12 PWM PST fans:
A fan is kind of a weird thing to get excited about, but I was pretty pleased with these. As they’re PWM, the motherboard can control their speeds, and they also get great reviews and airflow for their size. To top it all off, they have a 1 year warranty, are carbon-neutral, and are great value for money. I also used one generic case fan that came with the case, but I don’t have a picture of that.
As far as CPU fans go, I went for the stock AMD cooler for the Ryzen 3600, the Wraith Stealth cooler. This may have been a bit of a mistake, as I will cover in a later post.
Ryzen PC: The Case
Now, on the the case itself. In many ways, this kind of defines the system as a whole. I wanted something that would look nice, and it would be nice to have a bit of that RGB goodness, but I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on it. I got very lucky on deals, and got the Phanteks Eclipse P300:
This case comes with a tempered glass window, subtle but nice RGB leds, many drive bays (2×2.5 inch and 2×3.5 inch!), space in the back for a total of 7 expansion cards, and air filters. It also has some other stuff like lots of cable management holes and preinstalled velcro straps that makes it really easy to work with. All of this cost me just £50 as well, which is amazing given I could easily have payed twice as much for a similar case.
Seeing as I’m powering all these expensive parts off it, I thought I’d better get a really good PSU. I also wanted to get a power-efficient one seeing as I knew I’d be spending a lot of time using the PC. After a lot of research, I eventually settled on the BeQuiet Pure Power 11 CM 500W:
This power supply is rated at 80+ gold for power efficiency, is semi-modular, and is once again very good value for money. As with the rest of the parts I bought, you can get better parts for sure, but I was trying to strike the balance between price and performance, with the ability to upgrade later. 500 Watts might not sound like a lot, but it was a good 150 watts more than PC Part Picker said I would need, and this put me in the sweet spot of the power efficiency curve too.
What did surprise me was the size of the fan on the bottom, and I loved the modular connectors – I’ve never seen these before.
The GPU was hardly the star of the show for the Ryzen PC. The primary aim here was to have a fast CPU for virtual machines and compiling stuff, but I thought it would be nice to have a new GPU as well. I did consider using the GPU from my old system, an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 645, except I’ve had numerous issues with the drivers, so I decided to get an AMD card.
I settled on the Radeon RX 460 – an older but still capable card. The Gigabyte Windforce OC edition with twin fans was my first choice, but it turned out it wasn’t in stock and PC Part Picker messed up there. Instead, I managed to find a OEM part that was essentially the same card, and performs just fine, but cost about half the price at the expense of not looking as nice. I don’t have a picture of this outside the case, but it’s not much to look at anyway.
What is worth noting it that is uses about half the power of the GTX 645, while being slightly less than twice as fast, which is crazy.
Ryzen PC: What’s next?
We’ve now covered all of the parts (except for a few I’m re-using), so next time we’ll jump straight into assembly and a a detailed overview of the case. It’s worth showing off the case’s features, and also a few of them weren’t too easy to notice (at least for me), so I will note them for you. By all means, if you can get the Phanteks P300 for a good price, I would wholeheartedly recommend it, but we’ll get into the specifics next time.
That’s it for now, but stay tuned for the next installment in this series!