This is my first build for myself. I am a programmer (dipping toes into hardware) who dabbles in media-creation and gaming, and thus wanted something for home-use besides my aging VIAO. This was a project of born of thriftiness and consisted of two months of watching, waiting and considering options. I'm a cheap college kid, just beginning to spread my wings, so I had a limited budget. Luckily Black Friday gave me a hand (despite how much as I am beginning to hate that day... so overrated and vicious).
The idea of this build was to give me something decently powerful for under $800, the further under $800 (without serious cut to performance) the better. I wanted parts that were nice enough that I would want to keep them around for a bit, and thus an decent upgrade path. I want to eventually dabble in water-cooling and (in maybe a year) over-clocking (since I'm equal parts chicken and crazy busy), so this will eventually become a practice build (when I'm a bit richer). I wanted none of the parts to be so expensive and that to replace them would make me cry, and a case large enough that I would never really be limited. Plus, the THOR V2 simply looks glorious - not cheaply flashy, but not the boring boxes in the office.
The hybrid drive was a bit of an uncertainty for me. A classmate gave me a good review of his, so I thought I'd give it a shot. An SSD is the obvious upgrade in my near future.
If you want a tale of my money-saving ways, the GPU is my proudest moment. I was going for a (relatively) cheap GPU as it would be an obvious future upgrade and I really don't need too much power right now. This was listed at $214 on Newegg at the time, but I nabbed it from online from TigerDirect, with promotions, for $137. It came with FarCry3 Blood Dragon, which I sold to a fellow classmate for an extra 10 bucks. So $127. Oh yeah.
The processor came with a free download of Assassin's Creed 4 which I didn't subtract from the price, and one of my friends gave me the OS because he never planned on using it. He's a great man. Though, I occasionally buy him pizza and beer, so it probably figured out in the end... ugh, friendship can be so expensive. Heh.
Even excluding the game and the free OS, I think I cut down the cost of this build by (incl rebates) a touch over $200. I am shamelessly proud of this.
Anyways, thoughts, suggestions, and everything else would be great.