Hey guys, I was planning to build an awesome PC for a while now and it's time to retire my old i7 920 PC I got in 09' for this guy. I got many of the parts on Black Friday and Cyber Monday which was nice. Unfortunately, I had some woes with stock and such and I only got around to building it a few days ago. On top of that, the first GTX 780 I received was faulty and I had to get a replacement. I got into PC gaming a few years ago, because I had many friends who played console but the experience was just lacking in my opinion. I have been planning this build for over a year just for fun, watching youtube vids, reading forums for information and spending time on websites like these! I believe I got a few somewhat decent deals considering the fact that I live in Canada and our stuff is usually more expensive.. >_< My aim for this build was cleanliness and quality.
Purpose for this build: I do probably 60% gaming which includes Battlefield 4, Skyrim , AC4, Guild Wars 2 and some additional games I own. The other usage for this build is to accommodate a medium workstation load. Some rendering (including 3D), video editing and some other multi-threaded software.
Time to explain the part rationale.
CPU: I picked the 4770k because of editing purposes and because I wanted the extra firepower. I've been saving for this build so I didn't care too much about the budget. I tried to create a well rounded machine (an expensive one, at that) and I believed that having a 4770k at the helm wouldn't be a bad decision. Currently at 4.2 @ 1.2V
Cooler: I was sort of sketchy when looked at closed loop solutions but I do like the clean look it provides (It's got a cool LED on the block!). I was considering an NH-D14 as I know it's an excellent cooler but I saw the H100i on sale at Canada Computers for $69.99 (89.99 w/ $20 MIR) so I thought, "Why Not" and I went ahead and bought one. I was concerned about clearance issues with the RAM and MB heatsinks but I looked into some other completed builds on this site and other people appeared to have accomplished it. I tried it and it only took me about ten minutes to install... The rad is slightly offset but it is still in the correct mounting holes.
MB: I went with the Z87 sabertooth mainly for the aesthetics. I really like the clean look on top of the nice backplate that I get with it. Five year warranty seems good. Thermal armour looks pretty cool imo and it's been an all around good motherboard. No complaints.
RAM: Again, I went with 16gb so I could use it to edit and I sometimes run some virtual machines. Gskill seemed like a reputable brand and it was also 1600 (pretty standard nowadays). The best part was that it was on sale for $109.99 on Newegg, so I jumped at the opportunity and bought it. Automatically detected by the sabertooth for all advertised settings and it's working fine.
Storage: SSD/HDD Combo. Probably not surprising here, I mainly want the SSD for boot times and fast loading for BF4. I saw the 840 evo and the 530 on sale for the same price, but I opted for the 530 for a few reasons. It is an MLC drive, which I definitely like more than TLC and I do enjoy the products that Intel provides (I also like Samsung, too!). Seagate Barracuda I got for standard price of $59.99.
Graphics: I love the 780. It is a great card and maxes out everything I throw at it. I may be adding more monitors in the future and I saw this guy on sale for $459.99 (499.99 w/ $40 MIR) so I just went ahead and bought it.
Case: I like the clean looks and functionality of this case. I would recommend it to anyone. There are some shortcomings, however. Although possible to mount a 240 rad in the top, the (very) limited space is disappointing, as many people do want to mount 240s. I got the windowed version because I got the sabertooth. Build quality is excellent and sound dampening foam is a plus.
PSU: Got the RM850 for silence and a POSSIBLE SLI configuration in the future. This would most likely be implemented as I opt for more monitors. Black ribbon style cables are "OK" and are black, but are stiff. Zero fan mode is nice and 80+ Gold.
Optical Drive: Asus drive for installation of windows and I like to watch movies and burn stuff sometimes.
OS: Windows 8.1. Meh... It's okay.
Monitor: I saw this monitor on sale and I was looking for an IPS monitor. This one appeared to have good reviews so I just went ahead and bought it. Seems to be pretty good.
Problems I encountered:
GPU. As stated in the intro, I received a faulty first card. Weird blue lines at windows load up screen, Error 43 in windows and sometimes would not even boot into windows. Replacement card works fine.
NCIX OUT OF STOCK!!! I first ordered my fractal case on NCIX for $89.99 on the weekend of black friday. I opted for in store pickup as it's usually faster. I called to inquire about my order status only to be informed that my case would be arriving in B.C (I live in Ontario, which is across the country) on the 23rd. I really did not want to wait, so I cancelled that and got it for 115 at newegg.
H100i Clearance.. Not an issue for me, but beware buyers looking for a similar configuration in THIS case. I can CONFIRM that H100i w/ Z87 Sabertooth w/ Define R4 works, but I cannot confirm the compatibility of any other configs.
First Dell monitor would have an issue where the bottom right corner would turn dark once in a while. RMA'd it and the new one works. My personal ideology is that if I get a defective product, the highest rating I will give it is 4 stars and then deduct more if there's anything else that doesn't work or I don't like.
Overall, this build went pretty successfully. All my parts are working fine and I hope they will for years to come...
If you are still reading right now, I give you an internet high-five. :)
P.S. Razer Blackwidow was purchased after the Deathadder a few years back so they would match. :) Didn't include them in the part list because I don't believe they were a part of this build.
Special thanks to Linus from LinusTechTips (& Affiliated Forum), Paul from Newegg, the PcPartPicker community, NewbComputerBuild and everyone else who fed me tons of information to get this build completed.