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Case, Power Supply, And Optical Drive

System Builder Marathon, Q1 2013: $600 Gaming PC

Case: Xigmatek Asgard II B/B CPC-T45UC-U01 ATX Mid Tower

Off we went in search of an affordable mid-tower case with at least one 120 mm exhaust fan. If what we found looks somewhat familiar, that's because we've used Xigmatek's Asgard II on three prior occasions.

This case employs 0.8 mm SECC steel construction with an aluminum front bezel, along with the black painted interior that many builders favor nowadays. A single 120 mm PWM-controlled exhaust fan comes installed, and you're afforded room for up to three additional coolers.

Read Customer Reviews of Xigmatek's Asgard II CPC-T45UC-U01 Case

Xigmatek addresses varying personal tastes by selling this chassis with three different bezel highlight colors. This is the second time we’ve chosen the all-black version. However, we've also used the silver and orange models in Marathons past.

Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 400C 400 W

Read Customer Reviews of Antec's Neo Eco 400C 400 W

Although AMD recommends a 500 W power supply with its Radeon HD 7850, the card only comes equipped with a single six-pin power lead. Moreover, at idle, we expect this combination of parts to sip power.

One 30 A +12 V rail is plenty; Antec's Neo Eco 400C (rated at 400 W) easily covers this system's requirements with reserve to spare. Features include 80 PLUS certification, active PFC circuitry, a quiet 120 mm fan, and Antec’s three-year warranty.

Optical Drive: Samsung DVD Burner 24x SATA Model SH-224BB/RSBS

Read Customer Reviews of Samsung's SH-224BB/RSBS 24x DVD Burner

More and more of you let us know in the comments section that you no longer require an optical drive. But we're not inclined to ditch our desktop’s burner just yet. Priced at a paltry $16 for a 24x SATA-based writer, that's affordable enough to cover those occasions when an optical drive does prove useful.

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