Building my first PC please advise me oh great citizens of Tek Syndicate

Hello everyone!

I'm here to get advice on my first computer build. My pc just died and making my own computer sounded like a fun and cost-efficient way to get my new PC. I'm going to split what I want/plan to do in sections. If more info is needed please tell me.


What I want to use this PC for

1: mid-level gaming

2: playing with some Linux 

3: home-office work (it needs to be quiet)



I would like to spend no higher than $1,300 usd. If there is something like a videocard that I could omit and upgrade later I will if that means I could get the right build.



I've got my heart set on the silverstone fortress ft03 mini case. It looks awesome and I've always wanted a compact computer that could pack a punch. 

I also want to only use solid state drives. I've got plenty of external hard drives so no need to have a gigantic one.

When I last played with Linux I remember that nvidia cards were much more compatible. If this is still the case I would like to get and nvidia video card. 

8gb of ram



I don't know much about monitors today. I've still got an old one from the late 90s and I would like to go widescreen 16:9. I don't require that large of a screen since I don't have much space for it. Please advise.

I've already purchased windows 7 ultimate 64 bit and at the moment want this to be my primary OS. I like a more traditional style of gui but if there is a reason why I might want to put the dreaded windows 8 on my new computer please explain.

As for most components I'm not really sure to begin. It would be great if you guys would be able to give me some advice as to what you would put in this little case to get it to do what I want it to do. If my budget is not realistic adjust for what you recommend me to do as far as the build goes and I will think about it.

I live in the US just so you know what my currency and shipping prices are like.


Thanks in advanced for your help


With a monitor:

P.S: The Silverstone PP05 is for better cable management.

Without a monitor:

You can choose if you want the Silverstone PP05, it gives you a short cable kit handy if you want better cooling in your case without having wires everywhere obstructing the airflow.

Another option

Are you going to be overclocking?  Also I think your budget is a bit high for what you are doing.  I think I computer half the price will suit you well.  

I'm with fatninjamke on this one. If you want us to pick a good build for a $1300 computer, thats all well and fine, but it seems like its a little much for your needs.

I like this: lots of power in a small quiet package :)

Do you care about little details? You don't sound like you need much a $800 pc will be more than enough. For what you ware doing there is NO need to spend $1300. People see your high budget and give a list with parts for the top of you budget and you get a bunch of bells and whistles you'll never use.  

How about this This pc will play any game max settings (except maybe cysis 3 and metro last light those are exceptions) and is way overkill for medium level gaming. There's still things you can do much cheaper, why not do your own research. You learn more that way and you'll actually know what your buying rather than wasting money like these other people tell you too.

what kind of office work are you doing?

quiet is the name of the game, stock 8350 cooler screams something alright, and quiet isn't it

Yes I'd be open to overclocking however I am worried that it will make my computer too loud. Would you mind touching on this a bit?

Wow that's fantastic that I wouldn't need to spend that much for what I'm looking for. What would you recommend then, if I was going to create a build around the 7-800 range?

Well that depends on what details your talking about, can you give me an example? I'm very picky about sound. The computer doesn't have to be completely silent but it has to be quiet enough for me to forget its running. I like your idea of bringing my budget down and the build that you did for me.

I would be doing different kinds of creative writing. What I meant was that I can't be annoyed by a loud fan while I work on my writing :)

Wow I'm really blown away with the enormous amount of responses  and helpful posts so far. Thank you all so much. After a lot of though t I would like to change my budget to around $800. I was under the impression that I would needs to spend way more for what I needed and I can't say thank you enough for the advice I've been given so far. What could I make for ~$800?

go z87 gigabyte motherboard, and intel 4670 cpu. GPU go with a gtx770.  ssd get a samsung they have a 250gb for $150 or less on amazon. cpu cooler i'd go a small form factor Noctua.  power supply Corsairs rm series are great I hear and 550 watt gold is $110 on amazon.  Case I would recommend Fractal design R4 or the new NZXT H440, I do not have mine yet but the reviews are great.

From my experience do not cheap it out a much as possible.  That way you will not have as many regrets.

I've devised this part list for you:

The CPU: Phenomenal CPU for the money, I run it myself and it runs everything great from games to video editing applications.  Very overclockable too.  

The cooler: I also used one of these, they do the job done very well and far quieter than the stock AMD CPU cooler.  Can also give you some overclocking headroom.

Motherboard: I used this motherboard to overclcock my own FX 6300 CPU to 4.5 GHz.  The Bios is easy to use and clear.  Quality stuff right here. 

RAM: Since RAM is so expensive right now, I only chose 4 Gb but it will work very well in gaming and office use.  You have the option of purchasing another stick when prices go down (Hopefully)

SSD: 240GB, very reasonably priced.  Logan recommends them. 

GPU: Graphics card will run every game at high to ultra settings at 1080P. It's an aftermarket cooler so it will be quieter and cooler than reference coolers.  Also it's from EVGA so you will be eligible for their step up program if you think that you need more horsepower.  

Case: Since silence looks like a big thing for you, I chose a more expensive case than I normally would in this price range.  It's an excellent case.  Super quiet, excellent build quality and easy to build in.  

Power Supply: Seasonic is one of the best manufacturers of power supplies.  Their products are hard to kill!  In this build I chose a semi modular one just for cleaner cable management and also this has more voltage than you need but the headroom is always nice.  

Now this system is definitely  overclockable.  Your concern however is that it will make the computer louder.  Overclocking can make your components run hotter only if you change the voltages too much.  A PC will run louder depending on how you set the fan speeds.  In the case I chose, there is a built in fan controller that can switch between three different settings.  However the case is lined with excellent sound dampening material so you will barley hear a difference.  The CPU cooler and the GPU fans however are controlled by software to ramp up by temperature.  It's not going to be leaf blower but more of a gentle hum.  

Are you stupid or something? He had a case he was dead set on and you went out and made a build in a whole new form factor. You also failed to include a hard drive to house games on. How many gamers have a steam and origin library combined under 210gbs? 30gb is already to the OS and essential programs so that leaves only 210gb for a GAMERS GAME LIBRARY.

If he's going to build a $1300 machine at least give him a $1300 option. People spend way more for way less productivity and gaming but have a better experience because of it. So don't go out and just trash a better experience when there is obviously one to be had. I'm not saying go buy a 780 ti over a 780 for a single 1080p monitor because you can, but in this price range, there is definitely a lot better experience from a $900 machine, to a $1300 one. If your going from $3000 to $3500 there's not much of a gain but here in his range, there sure is.  

oooh cave man ooga booga comme des fuck down.  

First of all, i'm not shoving the case down his throat and telling him to buy it.  It's merely a suggestion if he really wants a quiet PC, this is the case to get.  Alternatively there is the NZXT H440 but I like the fractal better.   

Second, if you're really paying attention to his post, you would've read that he has a couple of external HDDS laying around so he just needs to buy an SSD.  


Flattery has gotten you far indeed ;)