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70
The Valkyrie
by Parz
Permalink:   (91 comments)
Description

EDIT: New desk pictures added.

I have been waiting to build this computer for almost five years. I've been moving around a lot and finally am staying in one place for a little while so I decided it was time. Pretty huge jump from my old laptop.

This is my first build since I was in my teens. I need to clean up some cables and get some temp and benchmark numbers put in and will do so. I just finished the build last night and had work today, I'll try and get those up soon. EDIT: Temps and scores added.

I spent about a month researching parts and picking them up on good deals, I grabbed the Haswell from Micro Center the day it released and had to wait a week for the Maximus VI Hero, the day it arrived I began the build.

I saw someone do a parts breakdown and that really helped with some of my decisions so I will do the same:

The CPU: Love it, haven't stressed it too much just yet but am excited to see what it can do considering what I've been reading.

The Maximus VI Hero Motherboard: Also love it, the UEFI/BIOS is sleek and intuitive, the board components are high quality, and the code display on the top right that helps you identify problems is one of the coolest and smartest things I've heard of on a mobo. I love the SupremeFX sound just because I know that when I have driver problems with the Creative card [we all know they are coming] then I can plug into that. Sounds pretty good on my Sennheiser HD 380 Pros.

Corsair H100i: Keeps things nice and cool, I'm sure you all know more about it than I do, I know I can change the LED coloring and have, but the white on black contrast with the red LEDs in the case is nice, it's like highlighting the heart of the PC. NOTE: Setting this up in a Pull configuration [for easy cleaning] was the hardest part of this build. It is tough already to mount this in this case, but doing it in pull... well, here's what I did; I used scotch/cello-tape to hold the screws with the washers in place, then held both fans and slid them on after guiding the wires through the grommets, then somehow managed the get the radiator in place and turned a couple of screws until the whole thing held together. Good luck if that is in your plans.

Corsair Dominator Platinum: I'd be lying if I said I didn't buy them for their looks. Haven't OC'ed them yet but that's in the plans. Love the white LEDs.

SSD/HDD: Used Sean's Windows 7 Install & Optimization Guide [ www.overclock.net/t/1156654/seans-windows-7-install-optimization-guide-for-ssds-hdds ] and they are great.

GeForce GTX 780 with ACS: Looks great, cools great, so far have thrown SC2 at it in Ultra and it runs smooth as silk.

Define R4: Awesome case, best one I've ever owned, easy to modify, great cable management, great size, love the look and the front USB and audio ports. Love that it holds 140mm fans. Highly recommend. Went for the white as a throwback to the first computers I had/built.

Corsair AX760i: This was one of the hardest components to choose. I spent days agonizing over this choice, which I did not expect to happen. I researched everything about the PSU's on the market based on my assumed power needs. I didn't want too much or too little, and the certification was important. I wanted to leave myself some room for expansion if I wanted to add another GPU as well, and wasn't sure what my OC needs might be. I eventually went off who makes the actual components for the AXi series [Flextronics] and off of several reviews. The color scheme matching my plans didn't hurt.

*I didn't mention this before but I really like the Corsair Link stuff, works every time for me, cool to have such control and connectivity. Also, you can hook the AX760i straight to the cooling block of the H100i without the USB dongle and they will both show up in CL. I run at just above 60% most of the time and the fan barely ever runs. Love Platinum plus.

Optical Drive: Does it's job. Easy install.

Windows 7: I've been on Vista forever it seems like and I always wanted a system with 7. Also, that's my favorite number.

HP ZR2440w: Possibly the best 24in that's had a long test period on the market. Great color, customization, good setup out of the box [with new driver install]. Highly recommend it. I plan to either get a second of the same or a high refresh rate monitor. I will see how my needs evolve over the coming months.

CM Storm Trigger: Man I've missed having a mechanical keyboard. Went with the cherry red MX switches because I think the sound of the Black or Blue would drive my girl crazy [we are currently sharing an office in our home]. Backlight and macros are great. Good looking board too.

Mionix NAOS 8200. This is possibly the best feeling mouse I've ever owned. It is precise and you can change the LED coloring to your desire but the ergonomic design is simply incredible. Extremely smooth on the Steelseries Qkc.

Sound Blaster Zx: Sounds great, love the Audio Control Module for my headphones so I don't have to constantly go behind the tower if I need to move them to a different device. Haven't used the mic yet.

Prolimatech Vortex Aluminum 140mm Case Fans with Red LEDs: These things are awesome. Not PWM but I'm not concerned about that. I have them on the 1200 RPM regulating cables that come with them [partly because they can draw over 12W and I don't want to risk hurting my mobo] and adjust via software, but I don't ever need to. They move a lot of air, look amazing and can probably take off your finger. I removed the grill guards that came with them to fit into a positive pressure 3 intake [bottom, two front] 1 exhaust [back] set up.

I think that about covers it. I picked up a Hyken model computer chair from Staples that is awesome and I strongly recommend if you don't want to drop 800$+ on a Herman Miller, the desk I'm working on is temporary and we will be picking up a nice L-shape soon, and I plan on grabbing some AudioEngine A5+'s once I'm able to hear them in person to confirm that purchase.

I will tweak some things and play around in the coming days and get some performance data for you all, again I haven't had a rig like this... ever really, but not even a desktop for 5+ years.

Oh, if you are working on your first build, the satisfaction of the first bootup, when all of the anxiety washes away and you see the BIOS for the first time... is incredible. This whole experience, from start to finish, has been amazingly fun, I'm so glad I decided to do this again.

Good luck and enjoy!

P.S. Thank you so much to the developers of this site. I truly appreciate what you've done here; I couldn't have done this without you.

Part List
Details
Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor
CPU Clock Rate4.5GHz
CPU Temperature While Idle28.0° C
CPU Temperature Under Load79.0° C
EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card
GPU Core Clock Rate967MHz
GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate6.01Ghz
GPU Temperature While Idle28.0° C
GPU Temperature Under Load65.0° C
3DMark 11 Benchmark Results
Performance Preset ScoreP13255
Comments
When commenting on a completed build please keep your feedback polite and constructive, particularly if commenting on part choices and possible alternatives.
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Sorted by:
 
 
IamApropos [2 Builds] 9 points 10 months ago

beautiful build all around high end high quality high performance parts!

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 6 points 10 months ago

Thank you! I used your site and build for information and to have some image references for some of my parts! Very helpful and much appreciated.

 
 
IamApropos [2 Builds] 2 points 10 months ago

You're most welcome and I'm glad you found my site helpful :)

 
 
keensight21 2 points 9 months ago

would you mind helping me with choosing parts and other stuff?

 
 
miniclipgamer [2 Builds] 6 points 10 months ago

I know you liked the white LEDs and stuff, but you can also change the color of the lightbar on the ram modules, too. I'm not sure if you knew this already because you didn't say if you did or didn't in the description.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 3 points 10 months ago

I actually wasn't aware of that, thank you!

 
 
miniclipgamer [2 Builds] 7 points 9 months ago

Yeah, no problem!

I think someone has some serious butt hurt here though, because I keep getting downvoted for valid comments.

 
 
BLC 4 points 10 months ago

Wow, another great build I cant have -_- * goes to cry *

But amazing build man, nice job !

 
 
kenh536 [2 Builds] 3 points 10 months ago

Welcome to the naos 8200 owners club! I got one too and love the hell out of it. Now if only we had the same pc... lol =P

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Haha thank you! This mouse is awesome!

 
 
fsma92 [8 Builds] 2 points 10 months ago

Awesome build..

Would you mind sharing your background image?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago
 
 
fsma92 [8 Builds] 2 points 10 months ago

tyvm kind sir!

 
 
DaddyG 2 points 10 months ago

This is too sexy for my eyes. Please show your fps in demanding games.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Coming soon!

EDIT: Here is a slice of SC2 combat on Ultra settings pre-OC'ing.

2013-06-17 12:56:05 - SC2 Frames: 965 - Time: 11825ms - Avg: 81.607 - Min: 73 - Max: 91

When I have more time tomorrow I will OC a bit and bring some more numbers and temps, etc.

 
 
DaddyG 1 point 10 months ago

TY :)

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Unigine Valley Benchmark picture added.

 
 
noob_for_life 2 points 10 months ago

awesome build!!! what headset is that?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Sennheiser HD 380 Pro. Got them for a steal a few years ago from a shop in the UK. They retailed around 300$ back then but I think you can find them for about what I paid for them back then [around 100$].

 
 
Kalebtbacon 2 points 10 months ago

Amazing :D

 
 
jonahchavarria [1 Build] 2 points 10 months ago

beauty :)

 
 
Sabotage 2 points 10 months ago

Nice!

 
 
PCgamingFTW 2 points 10 months ago

That is awesome! Really nice build!

 
 
LeMonarque [2 Builds] 2 points 10 months ago

Might want to edit out that serial number label on your CPU box O_O

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Haha, wow, good catch. I didn't even think about that at the time.

 
 
maxbailey [1 Build] 2 points 8 months ago

Really nice build. I think the contrast between the blue and red LEDs looks great.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 8 months ago

Thank you!

 
 
SrgtMacfly [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

116$ for 4 fans haha

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 10 months ago

Worth every penny to me. They are kind of scary at full speed.

I've waited a long time to do this, I wasn't going to let a matter of a hundred dollars get in the way. They fit the form and function of what I want perfectly.

Love your closet build btw!

 
 
SrgtMacfly [1 Build] 2 points 10 months ago

as long as they do thier job haha no problems then!

 
 
ImElkay [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

is that the retail price for that mobo

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

It is/was sort of. I checked every day for that mobo after Haswell was released [June 3rd] and it appeared on SuperBiiz at 213$ on the 9th I think. It's 218$ now [June 16th].

Asus lists it at 249.99$ I think.

 
 
ImElkay [1 Build] 2 points 10 months ago

alright thanks

 
 
PickItApart 1 point 10 months ago

When you go big you go big. Awesome build. All your components are A+ ones. Nice build.

Why the HP monitor?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Haha thank you, I definitely do.

The monitor was one of the top three most difficult decisions on this build. I was considering a 27in but after trying a few out at Micro Center and Best Buy I realized two things, a) that 27in is huge and b) that 24in would be perfect, especially as I am going to do a dual monitor setup eventually.

After a couple days of just reading about the monitors from the past couple of years, looking at reviews and reading forum threads, I pared my choices down to this and the Dell U2410. I spoke to some friends and read a lot of user testimony and most recommended I go with the HP ZR2440w over the Dell. I am very happy with this monitor.

EDIT: I was primarily concerned with image quality which is why I went with an IPS monitor.

 
 
PickItApart 1 point 10 months ago

I like your choice in monitor. I do love the Ultrasharps too. I have the Dell U2311H for image quality and an Asus for gaming.

Most people don't think too much about the monitor and I agree with you. You gotta read reviews and what not. That's what I did too and I'm very happy with my choices.

For an all around monitor, IPS is the way to go. Your monitor has 6ms response time, which is decent.

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

cough OVERKILL? cough

nah this is going to make it to the front page of PCpartpicker's highest rated builds within weeks. Good job on everything, I wish I had the budget you do lmao.

you should post your Minecraft FPS just for the fun of it xD

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 4 points 10 months ago

2013-06-18 11:06:53 - java (Playing Minecraft) Frames: 4420 - Time: 2979ms - Avg: 1483.719 - Min: 1457 - Max: 1531

Thank you, btw!

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 2 points 10 months ago

DAFUQ

 
 
miniclipgamer [2 Builds] 1 point 10 months ago

I wonder how well this handles solitaire...

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Idk it might scrape by at 4 FPS, 3 max with fraps on...

 
 
miniclipgamer [2 Builds] 2 points 10 months ago

I think I've seen Earth Simulator run it at about 10 FPS.

 
 
hunter32tz [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

lmfao

 
 
th3m4dh4tt3r [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Actually, something relatively slow (compared to other computers) wouldn't surprise me. Minesweeper will not run on a cluster/super computer (no parallel compute support) so it would run on a single node, which probably would be freaking slow.

Realistically it would not matter the FPS cause it's such a slow paced game (just pushing buttons)

Just took your joke and made a mockery of it, GET IT? GET IT? Ahahaha

 
 
th3m4dh4tt3r [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Damn, the shaders and textures on that are killer, it'll probably just crash cause it doesn't enough VRAM.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

2013-06-18 10:51:48 - chrome (Playing Solitaire) Frames: 1565 - Time: 105597ms - Avg: 14.820 - Min: 0 - Max: 54

:)

 
 
xSWATxBadkid [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Solid rig, although that monitor seems overpriced to me...

As always, cables could use a but more managing :P

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

I know, I know. First time inside a case in awhile, especially building from scratch.

I will get to it soon, my OCD will make sure of that!

 
 
lachrymal 1 point 3 months ago

He may even be referring to your cables outside the case. lol you know all the business behind your desk. ;)

 
 
JeffChrist 1 point 10 months ago

Awesome build and great use of colors... but a build like that should be proudly displayed, not mostly hidden under the desk.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Thank you, I know, that is in the plans. It is a temporary solution until the new desk arrives.

 
 
th3m4dh4tt3r [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

You don't have the 760i selected, I assume this is a mistake?

 
 
xBlood_Monkey [7 Builds] 2 points 10 months ago

Yes he does. Click the link and you'll see that it takes you to the info page for the 760i.

 
 
th3m4dh4tt3r [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Aaah, my bad.

 
 
xBlood_Monkey [7 Builds] 1 point 10 months ago

It's just the way this site lists them in part lists. I really wish they would change that. :/

 
 
th3m4dh4tt3r [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

That's weird, I'm gonna make a post.

EDIT: I can't reproduce this now, is this just a one time bug?

 
 
xBlood_Monkey [7 Builds] 1 point 10 months ago

When you're choosing a PSU, the Corsair 760i and 860i appear as normal, but when you add them to your part list, the "i" is dropped.

 
 
th3m4dh4tt3r [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Oooh, I see. Alright, I will make a post about this

 
 
xBlood_Monkey [7 Builds] 1 point 10 months ago

Sweet. :)

 
 
Callidisius 1 point 10 months ago

You can change the corsair logo to red if you use the software. Just thought you might like to color coordinate.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

I know, I have played around with it a bit, I kind of like the white LED contrasting with the red LED considering all of the White/Red/Black going on with the hardware.

 
 
ItsJxzza 1 point 10 months ago

OMFG On the 3rd to last picture look in the bottom right. It's a cat but its head is streched and slightly transparent and you can just make out his face... This is so f***ing weird D:

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

Haha that's one of our dogs. Didn't realize he snuck in the pictures!

 
 
TheProSeidon 1 point 10 months ago

Very nice build have you overclocked it and if so what temps do you get? also does the asus logo light up on the mobo?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 10 months ago

I did OC. I was stable at 1.25V with 4.5 so I definitely didn't end up with one of the top tier chips. I went with an adaptive voltage setup and am at 1.14V with 4.3 and after a couple of hours with Aida64 I was maxing in the upper 70's to low 80's. [Currently maxing at 79].

Asus logo does not light up but the line between the mobo proper and the SupremeFX section does illuminate red constantly. As well as the buttons and LED readout for the QCodes in the upper right.

3DMark 11 and Unigine scores were obtained while OC'ed to 4.5.

 
 
nitrooo [2 Builds] 1 point 10 months ago

Question, if you had the chance to wait for the Maximus VI Formula or buy the Hero again, what would you do? Thats my dilemma right now.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 4 points 10 months ago

Hero, definitely.

The three major differences aside from looks appear to be the a) "Thermal Armor" which from what I've read from testing the Sabertooth's does nearly nothing to improve performance and in some cases made cleaning dust out a bigger chore, b) the 120db SNR which has yet to be tested and while the board may be capable of that, it doesn't ensure that it outputs 120db SNR, and I prefer discrete cards anyway, and lastly c) the steel backplating to prevent mobo bending.

I highly doubt that one of their ROG boards without the backplate is going to have a short shelf-life when holding multiple big GPU's. The whole point of the ROG line is that they are made for modders and overclockers and enthusiasts so they expect all of them to have added weight. Most of the big boys are like 3 to 4lbs roughly and this is the only mobo I've seen so far that implements something like this. If this was a significant issue then wouldn't every major mobo producer implement this feature?

Those three things all seem like marketing tactics. If you see a strong benefit to them and they hold value for you, then continue to wait and get what you want. For me, the Hero has everything I am looking for and then some.

 
 
nitrooo [2 Builds] 1 point 10 months ago

Thank you for the honest reply. I've been asking around, no help on reddit (maybe I am the noob nobody talks to lol) or the forums. I thought it felt more of a chore to clean but wasnt sure. Now, my last purchase will more than likely be the Hero.

Thanks again, Much props to The Valkyrie. Hopefully my imperial storm will look and preform as good as yours!

 
 
coreyduke [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

Nice work fitting that h100i in there :) I tried so hard to get one to fit with my Mobo in the r4 and it just wouldn't do it. Solid build! Did the PSU reach everything with ease? Mine has been such a pain - couldn't pop out the second drive bay because of the way they did the cables meant I had to put my second SSD there unless I wanted to remove the Mobo to put it on the back of the chassis.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 9 months ago

Thank you, that was a tough one.

The PSU reached everything just fine, had to do a bit of bending but it all worked out in the end!

 
 
ItsJxzza 1 point 9 months ago

Do you find this case good for airflow?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

After taking out the middle HDD bay, definitely.

 
 
Hakumisoso [2 Builds] 1 point 9 months ago

What voltage are you running @ 4.5 ghz @ full load?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

I was stable at 1.25V. My scores with 3DMark11 and Unigine were with these settings.

Now I am on adaptive 1.14V with 4.3ghz.

 
 
KalamazooKid 1 point 9 months ago

Instead of echoing the well-deserved praises that your build has received, I'll go for constructive criticism.

While I see that your case is resting on a wooden board in order to create some space between the intake and the carpet, I'd urge you to get a small table on either side of your desk specifically for your case. It'll improve airflow while also reducing the amount of dust that enters the machine. My solution for this was a $20 IKEA purchase (found here: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40104294/)..)

A very minor criticism of a fantastic build. I DID see that you mentioned plans for a different desk at a later point... maybe you were planning on placing the case on top of the desk, in which case, you wouldn't need to worry about a side table.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

Thank you for your compliments and suggestions!

Yes, it will be placed on top to be displayed and to maximize airflow.

 
 
DontUSASme 1 point 9 months ago

Is your case sitting on a piece of wood?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

It was on an unmounted shelf. Now it is up on a new desk. Pics soon!

EDIT: Pics added!

 
 
SMG1995 1 point 8 months ago

What is the clearance like with the h100i and the heatsinks? I will be doing a similar build and wanted to know if there will be enough space for a swiftech h220 or if the h100i is the largest closed loop you can fit with the VI hero and define r4.

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 8 months ago

It is SLIM. Maybe a centimeter. I strongly suggest plugging in your eight-pin power cable before installing your AIO cooler.

The H220 is very similar dimension-wise to the H100i.

H100i: Radiator dimensions: 120mm x 275mm x 27mm

H220: Body dimensions: 269mm x 128mm x 29mm

Good luck!

 
 
fishingdude23 1 point 5 months ago

dude, this Is amazing! best build I've ever seen!

[comment deleted]
 
 
lachrymal 1 point 3 months ago

Does the Corsair light on the cooler have a hue changer? Or is it always bluish?

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 3 months ago

It does, via the Corsair Link software.

 
 
RomeoWood [1 Build] 1 point 1 month ago

Great build, I've picked out some of the same components which is how I found it--how would you compare your mobo to the MSI gd65 in terms of bios / oc ease? Great job with cable mgmt & color scheme, looks like a fun rig!

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 1 month ago

I haven't worked with an MSI product myself, but the ROG line is basically designed for ease of use when overclocking.

There are a lot of great forums and websites outlining the exact processes you will need to go through with the ROG BIOS in order to achieve your goals. However if you have any idea what you're doing then the software itself is very intuitive and straightforward.

It was one of the most fun and easiest OC's I've ever done.

 
 
AustinL [1 Build] 0 points 10 months ago

Umm Bro there is a 24 inch asus monitor $280 on newegg 144Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time. Unless your monitor was already present before the computer then you should have gone with the ASUS VG248QE

 
 
Parz [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 10 months ago

I'm aware of that monitor, it was actually on the list and am still considering it. However that is a TN panel and while the high refresh rate is great for gaming due to avoiding motion blur, IPS monitors provide a higher quality overall image. Ironically a lot of games stylistically add motion blur which almost defeats the point.

Here is a good quick video on the differences if you aren't already aware: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNc2fKuVnGU

Here is the review that sealed me on the ZR2440w: http://www.pcworld.com/product/collection/12226/top-23-and-24-inch-monitors.html

I love the image quality on this IPS and that was the reason I went with it.

Ideally I'm going to get a high refresh rate monitor for gaming and am waiting to see how some new releases perform this year.

High refresh rate IPS's are hard to come by and usually need to be tinkered with [like the OC and Catleaps]. Hopefully we will see some that perform with high image quality and 120hz+ refresh rate out of box soon. Here is a discussion about the Overlords and Catleaps: http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2289145