Hey there, thanks for taking the time to check out my build.
I wanted to do a new build for a few years now. I just couldn’t afford it. I use my PC mostly for gaming and internet browsing along with school work and other multimedia tasks. I know there is no such thing as future proof when it comes to PC hardware but I was looking to do this build with quality components that are going to last me a few years. I also wanted this build to allow me play BF4 at Ultra levels with high frame rates and also get excellent frame rates in the other games I play. The build itself was easy and joy to do and was done over the course of 2 days when I could find time (full time dad to an infant and preteen daughter along with working full time so I have no real free time). If I had true free time I could have probably done the build itself in less than 2 hours.
I am coming from a build I did originally back in 2007 and I have upgraded it over the years when I could afford it. I did my final upgrade a few years ago when I bought an SSD. Putting more money into it was just not worth it IMHO. Old reliable had a final configuration that consisted of an Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 CPU that I OC’d to 3.8Ghz, an Evercool 120 MM Transformer 4 Heat Pipe CPU Cooler, 8 GB of OCZ Reaper DDR 2 1066 memory, a Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 Intel P45 Motherboard, a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Pro Sound Card, an EVGA Superclocked GeForce GTX 570 HD GPU, a Western Digital WD Black 640 GB HDD, a Western Digital VelociRaptor 300 GB HDD, an OCZ Vertex 2 90 GB SDD (died after 2 years 6 months in 2013 – RMA’d to OCZ and they sent me a refurbished one late last year and it has been working fine), BFG Tech 1200 watt 80 plus rated PSU, Samsung Blu-ray DVD -/+ R Combo Drive, 26 inch Samsung LCD monitor, and a Samsung 840 Pro 128 GB SSD (used to replace the Vertex 2 to get my PC back up and running). Everything was in an Antec 900 case that I bought when I did my original build back in 2007.
I purchased all the parts back in mid February through early March of this year over the course of several weeks with my tax rebate. I bought almost all the parts from Amazon and Newegg as they had the best prices at the time and I got fee 2 day shipping from both of them. The only other place I bought from is the case from Microcenter. Some of the parts of this new build are older parts from my previous build. I decided to keep using these parts as they are still useful.
Now, on to my part selection and reasoning behind their purchase. By the way, my apologies for the lousy photos. All i have for use as a camera is my Samsung Galaxy Note 2.
CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K – Excellent processor and I got it at a great price. I was considering an i7-4930k, but that CPU is very expensive and just not worth it to me for a “mostly gaming” rig. The I7 4770K is newer CPU and that means a newer chipset, it’s unlocked (for when I want to give serious overclocking a try), has hyper-threading, and even at stock speeds, is faster than Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge.
CPU COOLER: I wanted something that would do a good job on the heat generating 4770K, especially when overclocking. I chose the Corsair H100i. I have ready mostly good about this cooler and I wanted to give liquid cooling a try. I am pleased so far. It cools very well and it is aesthetically pleasing to look at.
MOTHERBOARD: I went with the Asus Sabertooth Z87 over a couple other Asus board's (the Hero and Formula) and a few Gigabyte boards (I read on various forum's and hardware site's the over clocking problems with some of the Gigabyte board's I was looking at as well as problems with the USB ports). I really like the 5 year warranty, the thermal armor looks down right bad ass, and again, I have read mostly good reviews about this board. There are plenty of SATA ports, fan headers, and USB ports and USB headers. I also love the dust covers that come with the board to cover the unused ports and slots on the board and a small dust screen for rear I/O intake assist fan.
RAM: I wanted reliability, speed, and lastly, good looks. OCZ doesn’t make RAM anymore, so I went with 8GB (2x4GB) of Corsair Dominator Platinum DDR3 1866 memory. I also splurged and got the Dominator Platinum Light Bar Upgrade Kit over at Corsair.com. This kit looked amazing before the light bar upgrade and now it looks just flat out gorgeous. 8GB is good enough for my current needs at the moment.
STORAGE: I already had a Samsung 840 Pro 128 GB SSD on hand that I pulled out of my old rig when my OCZ Vertex 2 died on me and was replaced with a refurbished unit from OCZ. I use this for the OS, Office Suite, and other system drivers and software. I also bought another Samsung 840 Pro, but the 256 GB flavor for the games I play the most, which are BF2, BFBC 2, BF 3, and BF 4. Both SSD’s are greased lightning fast and carry a 5 year warranty. For my Steam library, other non-Steam games, photos, videos, movies, music, and various documents I went with a Western Digital Black series 2TB HDD. I have had nothing but good experience with Western Digital drives in the past and this beauty also comes with a 5 year warranty.
GPU: I love to game at a high FPS and I love eye candy. The 780Ti is a beast of a card, is faster than the 780 I planned on originally getting, is one of the fastest GPU’s available, and is a gorgeous piece of tech. I chose EVGA because of their excellent warranty and the stock cooling is excellent as is and looks amazing. I considered a 290 and 290X but the AMD cards run hot and were very expensive at the time of my purchase thanks to their demand by the bit coin miners. I also didn’t want to have to get aftermarket cooling on a video card that should have had a better stock cooling solution to begin with. On top of all that I remembered also remembered the problems I had with drivers from ATI/AMD with a few of their cards I purchased in the past. I picked up a back plate for the card from EVGA for looks, to add rigidity, and to help a bit with cooling. The back plate was easy to install and adds more style to an already amazing GPU. I also got 4 free games from EVGA, including Assassins Creed 4.
CASE: I originally wanted a Cooler Master Cosmos II, but that case is very expensive and huge. Honestly I didn’t want to pay that much for a case and have all that room that would go to waste. I really liked the Corsair Air 540, but it seems overly popular and not as unique as I originally thought, and I am not crazy about it only having only 2 3.5 HDD bays. I also didn’t like that it was pretty much wide open on the bottom of the case. I looked at a few other cases before I settled on the Corsair 750D. I got it an excellent price as well from Microcenter. This is my first full tower case and it was a pleasure to work in. My Asus Sabertooth fit with no problems at all with the bottom and top armor still attached to the board. This case is very well designed with plenty of holes in the motherboard tray for threading your cables and keeping them out of sight. It also has lots of tie down points behind the tray itself. The case comes with removable dust filters for the PSU at the bottom, front intake fans, and top of the case. Plenty of room for upgrades too and good airflow throughout the case. The case is amazing and looks very elegant and stylish and not as gaudy as a lot of cases out there. Everything about this case is amazing. I can’t recommend it enough.
CASE FILTERS: I live in Phoenix, AZ and if you didn’t know, we are in a desert here. It can get dusty no matter what you do or how often you clean. I bought some custom fan filters for my case from demcifilter.com. The filters that came with the case are fine, but I wanted to keep as much dust out as possible and I wanted to take a proactive approach. The filters that came from Demcifilter have a finer mesh than the stock filters and are removable and washable. I especially wanted to get a dust filter for the bottom of the case, as the case didn’t come with one except for the intake for the PSU, that way I can have a 120 MM fan shooting cooler air into my video card and having this fan bring in air that is as dust free as possible.
OPTICAL DRIVE: I pulled my Samsung Blu-ray DVD -/+ R Combo Drive from my old rig. I like the drive itself and having an optical drive has come in handy.
PSU: For the power supply I didn’t want to go cheap and risk my components. I got a Tier 1 rated Seasonic X Series X-850 850W 80 Plus Gold Certified Full Modular PSU. It’s whisper quiet, it comes with a 7 year warranty, and is more than enough for what I need right now. And if i should decide to SLI in the future, I should still be fine. The cables are nice and long (no problems reaching components in my new full tower case) and come in nice storage bags. This was the first PSU I have ever used that comes with flat cables.
OPERATING SYTEM: Windows 8.1 Pro System Builder OEM DVD 64-Bit. I like it, as I can go from a cold boot to desktop in seconds.
SOUND CARD: I have always preferred dedicated sound versus onboard sound. I loved my Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Pro Sound Card I bought in 2007. It still works and puts out excellent sound and even with the old drivers, I never had an issue. For my new build, I wanted a new sound card and Creative is still my choice. I chose the Creative Sound Blaster Z SBX PCIE Gaming Sound Card. The card puts out amazing sound and I love the fact I can switch from my headset to speakers without unplugging and switching their perspective cables from the back of the case.
FANS: I replaced the case stock fans with Corsair Air Series AF140 Quiet Edition fans and for my Corsair H100i I replaced its stock fans with Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition fans. I love these fans as they are very quiet for the amount of air they move. They also look good. There was only one snag with the fans and their installation. The power cables on the AF140 fans are not very long. They would not reach the motherboard fan headers from the front of my Corsair 750D case. I had to go to Fry’s Electronics to get a couple of 3 pin cable extensions.
KEYBOARD: I wanted a new mechanical keyboard with my new build. I looked into the various mechanical keyboards and different cherry switches. I wanted a keyboard that felt good to type on for extended periods of time as well as gaming. I went with the Corsair Vengeance K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Gunmetal with cherry Brown switches. Corsair really put a lot of thought into this keyboard and it shows. The adjustable backlight intensity, the volume wheel (much better than a button as it allows finer control), the keys are easy to remove to replace, the red textured WASD keys feel very good and have a slight grippy feel, and the premium aluminum finish is fantastic and beautiful to look at. The cord is braided and thick and feels high quality. One of the many amazing features of this keyboard is that the keys are raised above the keyboard itself. So it makes cleaning a snap. I am surprised more mechanical keyboards do not have this raised key feature. On top of all that, I love the clicky sound the keys make and the light tactile feedback. I love this keyboard. Best keyboard I have ever owned so far. My fiancé loves to use it as well, for her school work and gaming.
MOUSE: I wanted a new mouse to go with my new build. I have been using a Logitech G5 that I bought back in 2007 and it has been great. I wanted a mouse that felt good in my hand and that was responsive. I went with the ROCCAT Kone XTD. It fit all my requirements and it looks flashy. The lights add an amazing look to an already amazing mouse. It's also hilarious that when you increase the sensitivity to the mouse a voice that sounds progressively urgent tells you the DPI settings. 8200 DPI! Lol
MONITOR: I am still using my old Samsung 2693HM Glossy Black 26" 5ms DVI HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor. It works great still and has rich and vibrant color. The monitor I picked up back in October of 2008 and it's still going strong. This monitor will probably the first thing I replace later this year or early next year.
SPEAKERS: Still rocking my old Logitech THX Z-5300e 280 Watts RMS 5.1 speaker set I bought along with my original build in 2007.
HEADSET: I am using a SteelSeries - Siberia V2 Gaming Headset I got last year from BestBuy.
That wraps it up. 8)
Thanks again for checking my build out and leaving your comments.
4/21/2014 I added some better pics of the keyboard and changed my builds name.
|CPU||Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core||$279.99|
|CPU Cooler||Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid||$89.99|
|Motherboard||Asus Sabertooth Z87 ATX LGA1150||$229.99|
|Memory||Corsair Dominator Platinum 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866||$124.99|
|Storage||Samsung 840 Pro Series 128GB 2.5" SSD||$104.99||Amazon|
|Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" SSD||$198.99|
|Western Digital BLACK SERIES 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM||$146.99|
|Video Card||EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Superclocked||$699.99|
|Case||Corsair 750D ATX Full Tower||$129.99|
|Power Supply||SeaSonic 850W ATX12V / EPS12V||$159.99|
|Operating System||Microsoft Windows 8.1 Pro (OEM) (64-bit)||$129.99|
|Sound Card||Creative Labs Z PCIe||$80.76|
|Case Fan||Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition (2-Pack) 37.9 CFM 120mm||$27.98|
|Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition (2-Pack) 37.9 CFM 120mm||$27.98|
|Corsair Air Series AF140 Quiet Edition 67.8 CFM 140mm||$19.12|
|Corsair Air Series AF140 Quiet Edition 67.8 CFM 140mm||$19.12|
|Corsair Air Series AF140 Quiet Edition 67.8 CFM 140mm||$19.12|
|Keyboard||Corsair Vengeance K70||$129.99|
|Mouse||ROCCAT Kone XTD Wired Laser||$79.99|
|Custom||EVGA GeForce GTX 780 ti Backplate||$19.99|
|Corsair Dominator Platinum Light Bar Upgrade Kit||$19.99|
|SAMSUNG Black 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-/+R 48X CD-ROM SATA Internal Blu-ray Combo Model SH-B123L/RSBP LightScribe Support||(Purchased)|
|Logitech THX Z-5300e 280 Watts RMS 5.1 Speaker||(Purchased)|
|SAMSUNG 2693HM Glossy Black 26" 5ms DVI HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor with Height/Pivot Adjustments 400 cd/m2 DC 3000:1 Built in Speakers||(Purchased)|
|Demciflex Corsair Obsidian 750D Dust Filter Kit||$49.95|
|SteelSeries - Siberia V2 Gaming Headset - Black||(Purchased)|
|QPAD FX29 Battlefield 4 L.E. Pro Gaming Mouse Pad||$11.99|
|Date Published||April 16, 2014|
|Date Built||March 21, 2014|