So this is my first build and I have to say that it was quite a bit of fun and a learning experience.
The intent of this rig is to finally make the leap into PC gaming and thus far the results have been fantastic. I've been running Fallout: New Vegas and Deadpool thus far on the highest graphics, and its cranked them out like a champ.
For a little background: I bought the processor and the motherboard at Tiger Direct during the "No Tax Weekend" that we had for the back-to-school season. I had no idea about over-clocking at the time, so I was just excited to get my hands on some hardware and finally force myself to build a computer. Mind you, I don't regret the purchase, I just know now that it looks a little weird to not have a K-Series processor for an enthusiast build.
The Asus Z87 has been a joy to work with, great documentation so that I could find where everything plugs into. Being my first time building, I was extremely nervous when it came to mounting it in the case.
The Noctua NH-D14 is monstrous. Seriously, pictures don't do the thing justice. I was dumb enough to make two mistakes with this beast:
First, I installed it over my CPU, thermal paste and all, before installing my RAM. It's so big that it not only makes installing RAM after a fever dream, but covers up the first slot if you leave both fans in. So I had to remove it, install the RAM, reapply my paste after wiping it off. Then I had to move the forward fan UP so it wouldn't hit the RAM header. I'm fortunate that the motherboard wants the RAM set into the second and fourth slot, and not the first. Secondly, I somehow thought it would be easy to wire up the motherboard AFTER installing everything. How wrong I was. The Noctua made it a living hell to try to get certain wires attached from the PSU to the motherboard. I must have spent at least an hour with my giant monkey paw trying to connect it.
At the very least, it does it's job well. It's whisper quiet, and keeps my CPU and the rest of the rig frosty.
Upgraded my graphics from an ASUS 660Ti 3GB to the ASUS Strix 970 4GB. The Strix is a beast, plays Far Cry 4 and Dragon Age Inquisition on Ultra settings without a single complaint. Since I don't intend to go for a 4K monitor at any point in the near future, the 970 is the best balance between price and power. Loving the card thus far.