I recently acquired a Corsair SPEC-01 case and a Kraken X61 all in one liquid cooler in opened-package "new" condition. I am nearly certain both of these items were store returns that somehow made their way into the hands of a distressed merchandise retailer and subsequently onto Craigslist where I found the case for $25 and the cooler for a cool $60.
When trolling for used PC parts deals, you often don't get to pick and choose the exact parts combinations for builds and have to figure out how to work with what luck brings your way. Lucky for me, I think builds are much more interesting when the parts don't quite fit together without some hacking and creativity!
With the system build complete, it's time to get all of our software installed and get to the business of setting up a stable overclock to see if this old CPU can run Overwatch smoothly. As this is the first time I am overclocking a PC, I am sure the process of getting everything sorted out will involve a lot of trial and error, but fortunately, we are using core components that did not break the bank! So, this sets up a great opportunity to be a little bit adventurous and learn as much as I can about the process.
Time to assemble the parts! In this segment, I will test, clean, and assemble the parts for this budget/performance Overwatch PC build. The process should be pretty similar to most other PC assembly guides, but follow along if you want to see me muddle my way through this build after the jump.
Case hacking! This would be the first time I have modded a PC case, and luckily, this project will provide me with a great learning opportunity. For this build, I obtained a Thermaltake Tsunami case for free as it came attached the the Craigslist power supply. I had originally planned to use an entry level Corsair SPEC-01 case, but after poking around this old case, I started to see some good potential. It has higher "cool factor"and saving $25 on the tight overall budget by using a free part is always a bonus!
These are my adventures in parts hunting for the used budget/performance PC build introduced here:
"Needy Healing" Used Parts Overwatch PC Build - INTRODUCTION
In this post, I will go into some details about how I collected the components for this gaming build and some of the reasons for selecting them. Feel free to skip through to PART 3 if the short list provided in the introduction is enough, and you want to get right into the build action.
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!
This is part 2 in my ongoing DIY sports lighting project and details assembling a 24V DC power supply for the battery charger. Part 1 of the project can be found here.
Most of the higher power balance chargers for Lithium Polymer (Lipo) batteries require a separate DC power supply. For our project, we will be using the Revolectrix Power Powerlab 8x2 which can charge at 40 amps per channel. Feeding this beast requires either an expensive (~$300+) 2000 watt power supply, or a bit of DIY modification to some widely available computer server power supplies to adapt them to the task. Being as the overall lighting system cost was already running out of control, I decided to adapt powerful and reliable Hewlett Packard DPS-1200FB server power supplies which are readily available used from $20-$30 each.