"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - INTRODUCTION


After over 10 years away from computer gaming, I got sucked back in when a friend put out a request to see if anyone was interested in starting to play Overwatch together.  While searching for information about building a gaming PC, I became intrigued with the idea of used parts, price/performance builds and began monitoring local Craigslist computer parts ads as well as Ebay auctions.  In my over-zealous and often misdirected parts collecting, I accumulated more components than I actually needed for my computing needs.  At that point, the obvious thing to do was to double down and keep buying MORE parts to assemble a complete system from all of the extras!


If you want to skip ahead to other parts of the build, follow the links below:

"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - INTRODUCTION
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 2 (parts hunting)
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 3 (case hacking)
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 4 (assembly)
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 5 (setup and overclock)

What I have quickly discovered about buying used components particularly on Craigslist is you must have a patient approach yet be willing to move very quickly to snap up good deals when they come up.  I found that most of the postings are over priced and often above retail value!  This was the reason I never previously explored used parts builds.  But, diving in deeper, I discovered that computer parts hunting has a lot of similarity to garage sale and thrift store shopping.  When garage sale shopping, you cannot go in expecting to find a specific item like a couch, dresser, washing machine, Legos, etc.  You kind of have to get out there every weekend and jump on what comes up when you find it.  Often times, you will find the most unexpected gems along the way.  In the same way, for used computer parts, you cannot expect to find the right deal on a specific motherboard, CPU, power supply, or other component exactly when you need it.  I discovered the best approach is to be patient and watch the listings every day.  Then, do your research and be open to multiple solutions to your performance goals, but be ready to jump immediately and decisively on the right deal on the right part when it comes up!

For these reasons, this used parts build which I actually have no practical use for turned out to be far better in terms of price/performance than my "main" computer that I needed to build for getting work done.  The reason being, I can afford to be very patient, make lower offers, and pass on marginal deals when building something I don't actually need.

That being said, I still maintained the mindset to execute a build as if it was going to be a long-term daily driver for my own use.  At the same time, being deep in the realm of questionable side projects, there was very little financial wiggle room.  Every purchase and upgrade would need to be carefully considered in order for the project to maintain a "low profile" on the home-front!

I guess there are two different methods of operating in the used price/performance economy.  You can be a prolific builder who simply snaps up EVERY good deal that comes your way regardless of having a specific project in mind and end up with a sizable inventory of parts options to plan multiple builds, or you can be focused on a specific build and only buy what you need, but in order to maintain good price/performance ratios, you may miss on a lot of parts or wait a long time for suitable components to become available at the right price.  Either way, the unfortunate reality is the people who would benefit the most from a well spec'd used performance PC build are likely not in the best position financially to "gamble" and play the parts parts hunting game.

With that in mind, I'm naming this build "Needy Healing" because it a computer specifically spec'd to run Overwatch, and anyone gaming on a ~$400 PC must be pretty needy!  I also felt like the computer case that I ended up using is quite "Genji-ish", and that little cyber ninja seems to always need healing.  Hopefully, I'll find someone who can make good use of this system when I am done. . . assuming it works!

Inspiration and critical information for this build came directly from two videos by Bryan from the "Tech Yes City" YouTube channel.

Top 5 Gaming CPUs of 2017
Top 5 USED GRAPHICS CARDS for GAMING in 2017

With that introduction, let's get to the parts spec for this build starting with a quick list and then getting into some details and reasoning behind them.

CPU - Intel X3460 2.8Ghz (target overclock 4Ghz) - $32
GPU - EVGA GTX 970 SC - $120
Motherboard - Asus P7P55D-E - $60
RAM - 16GB (2x8) PNY XLR8 DDR3 1600mhz - $40
PSU - FSP Group FX700-GLN 700W - $20
Hard Drive - OEM HP SSD 250GB (Samsung 850 pro equivalent) - $63.50
Fans - 4x Arctic F12 - $20
PWM fan splitter cable - $4.50
Hard Drive Dock - Icy Dock FLEX-FIT Trio MB343SP - $10
Case - Thermaltake Tsunami - FREE (bundled with PSU purchase)

OS - Windows 10 Professional OEM license - $29.42

Total system cost:  $399.42

Please click through to PART 2 for detailed descriptions of the parts that I accumulated for the build!  Or skip to the actual case hacking and build in PART 3.


"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - INTRODUCTION
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 2 (parts hunting)
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 3 (case hacking)
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 4 (assembly)
"Needy Healing" - Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - PART 5 (setup and overclock)

1 comment:

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