For the past few months, I needed a machine to do some serious video editing and VFX work, as well as perform good in games like Battlefield 4. I am a freshman high school student wanting to pursue a career in some sort of computer/broadcast work.
Before this, I was using a small Gateway desktop with a slow A6 CPU. I upgraded the RAM to 8 GB, which I will be reusing in my new rig, along with the 1 TB WD Green hard drive. I also had a 1 TB external hard drive, which I disassembled, and coincidentally, there was another WD Green within. It was meant to be...
This is my first computer build, and I wanted to go big with cooling for my over-clockable i5 processor, so I opted for a water-cooling setup. I used an XSPC kit because buying the parts separately would put me over my budget of about $1,000. I picked the 280mm (dual 140mm) radiator kit because it was the same price as the 240mm (dual 120mm) kit at the time. In the end, it caused more hassle because I had a limited choice on cases that could support the radiator internally, and had to return my beautiful Fractal Design Define R4 and get the Corsair C70 instead. I can't say that was bad though, because I found out that it had handles on it, which I wanted.
The final build was a little difficult, but after watching countless videos by LinusTechTips & TekSyndicate, and reading articles from Tom's Hardware, the process was easier, albeit tedious. Over the course of a few days working on it after-school, the rig started coming together.
When I finally finished though, I plugged the computer in, but it wouldn't POST. After hours of looking through forums and trial-and-error, I found that a pin was broken on the MSI motherboard I first bought. I returned it, instead opting for the Asus Z87-C, which is one of the cheapest Z87 boards Asus offers.
When I got it, it was a painless swap of motherboards, and the computer POSTed. It's kind of funny when you think how a single high-pitched beep could bring so much happiness. I then proceeded to install a copy of Windows 8.1 and start overclocking my system manually.
Overall, this system performs as I expect it, speeding through video renders because of Adobe's Mercury Playback Engine. It also plays Battlefield 4 maxed out at 1080p with about 40-50 fps. I didn't go for a SSD this time around, but I might upgrade later. I spend a few hours just working on cable management, and everything dirty is tucked in the back. I think the blue LED strip really adds to just how awesome this computer looks. Hope you like it!