I saw the ax George Washington used to chop down the cherry tree. The handle had been replaced eight times, and the head had been replaced three times, but this ax occupied the same space....

My sons have each built their own gaming systems, and have started to upgrade various parts as they had better understanding, increased requirements, and more disposable income. I bought a case, and have been marching assorted parts through it as the boys pull old stuff out of their systems. From my standpoint, it has only been one computer, but each part has been replaced, some a few times.

As the compatibility check shows, the case has USB 3.0, but the motherboard only has 2.0 headers. First, I purchased a PCIe USB 3.0 card, but the PCIe slot is covered by the video card, so I have settled for a four-port USB 2.0 panel. Those are the light gray wires going to the back panel, immediately above the power supply.

I also added an NZXT 10-port fan connector, which is the rectangular box with three LEDs, just above and to the right of the video card.

I'm still using the stock CPU fan, but then I can keep my beer cold by setting it on top of the case, so cooling is not really an issue. I think #2 son is about to replace his CPU/motherboard, so I will probably his old one soon, and then I will add proper cooling for the CPU.

All in all, not a bad rig for the $100 or so I've put into it myself!


Ok, so here's an update, to go with the pictures I just added.

Both of my boys have NZXT S340 cases, which look great and have really good cable management. I decided that I could have a case like theirs, but I didn't want to trash my Corsair 300R, because it is also a nice case, so I got out the power tools....

I cut a rectangle out of the side panel, and added metal strips to cover the rough edges. I used silicon caulk to attach a plexiglas window in the side. Since the piece I cut out had two fan mounts, I shaped it into a cover for the power supply to hide the umbilical cord and whatnot at the bottom. I added a two-inch wide metal strip to cover the cable openings in the panel that supports the motherboard.

I also replaced the stock CPU fan with a CoolerMaster Hyper 2122 Evo, not because it needed it, but because #2 son is talking about upgrading his motherboard, and I will need the extra cooling when I get his CPU.

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

I added this CPU cooler to my system in anticipation of upgrading the CPU and motherboard in the near future. My AMD A8-6600K 3.9 GHz Quad-core is no rocket, but the idle temp dropped from 64C with the stock fan to 33C with the Hyper 212. I'm really happy with those results, because my previous, mass-produced systems had their lives cut short by poor cooling.


As inexpensive and large as SSDs have become, I would strongly recommend you add one of these to your system. Win10 now boots in eight seconds, and my sons are routinely the first to load maps when they game online.


i like this case. It has a nice, open design, so I have great airflow. The drive bays are easy to use, and work well. Cable management is also better than most.

Power Supply

Four out of five dentists recommend modular power supplies for their patients who purchase power supplies. That would have been funny if I wrote this review twenty years ago.


This is the first time I have purchased a keyboard, since I've always found free ones laying around. It was a good investment. I like the raised keys, because we have pets, and all that fur and dust can't get trapped inside. You can just blow or shake it out very easily.

Sometimes, I hit the programmable G-keys, because I'm not used to an extra column of keys on the left side, and the backlight will turn on if you press a key when your system is off. Otherwise, no complaints at all.


  • 47 months ago
  • 2 points Trigger's Broom :-) Keep on building & Seasons greetings to you.

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

I really like the description. And the computer as well! Glad it works well for you :)

  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

For your usb 3.0 pcie card: find and buy a pcie x1 cable/extender/ribbon and insert it in the slot and fold it sideways (between 87-90 degrees, really) and then place back your gpu and voilà! that's how I managed to use a pcie slot that was blocked by a 2-slot wide gpu, which is so common.

note: I miss the old days of the M4 and M5 motherboards where they placed an 1x pcie on the other side of the x16 (like nearer to the cpu rather than farther) so you could have a 2-slot gpu AND use that nifty x1 pcie.



  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

If George Washington had this computer, he would have won the war without crossing the river :)

miss the 600 series cards. good system! +1

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