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Editing Workstation / Gaming Rig (Skylake Build)

by ansen



Date Published

Oct. 10, 2015

CPU Clock Rate

4 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.14 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7.01 GHz


I'm a freelancer and needed to replace my aging desktop with a new workhorse to use primarily for the Adobe Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, Lightroom, Premiere, and Audition mostly), but also for some gaming once the work gets done!

Really liked the look of the NZXT H440, read some really good things about its cable management, and already had black/red peripherals (Corsair K70 keyboard and M45 mouse) so I figured I'd keep the color scheme going.

This is actually the first time I've built a PC but overall things went together pretty smoothly. Got everything put together, powered her on, and... motherboard showed error D0 (looks like 00). Apparently that's "Late CPU Initialization." Well crap. Took the CPU back out and looked the socket over for any bent pins... didn't see anything. Reseated the CPU and hit the power switch one more time and... viola! Everything worked like a charm. Not sure what that was all about, but glad it all seems in fine working order now.

Looking forward to putting it through its paces!

Part Reviews


Not much to say here... may have been a bit overkill, but it fit into my budget and I do use some apps that can take advantage of the hyper-threading.

CPU Cooler

Not as much of a pain to install as I thought it might be! Fit just fine into my case, and is keeping my CPU at 26C at idle. Plus it just looks good!


Got a code D0 (late CPU initialization) on my first boot attempt. Reseated the CPU and that seems to have fixed it.

Everything was working great, but after downloading all the MSI utilities and drivers, PC is now shutting down completely when going into sleep mode. Trying to power back on results in an "early south bridge initialization" mobo error code. I have to turn the power supply off and on to get it booted again.

So... no using sleep mode for now! I tried reverting to the previous BIOS after updating, but that didn't fix it. Still trying to figure out what's causing the problem...


It's RAM! It works, it looks nice.


Decided I wasn't quite ready to shell out the money for a PCIe M.2 drive. Then when I was going to go buy my 2.5" Samsung Evo, I noticed the M.2 version was on sale at Amazon and was $10 cheaper. Figured why not! Plug and go, no cables to worry about, and nice and fast!


Solid budget secondary drive for storage.

Video Card

Works great! I'm sticking with 1080p for now, and this seems to handle whatever I've thrown at it just fine. Plus it fit my color scheme. :)


Love the aesthetics of this case. Love the way it hides all the cables with the power supply shroud. Bit of a tight fit on the back side, but all in all no complaints.0

Power Supply

After I already bought this power supply I started to see comments from people saying it's not a good unit. Wellll... too late for me! No complaints so far. Fully modular is nice, cables seem nice enough, I guess we'll see...

Comments Sorted by:

KingGazer154 1 Build 3 points 40 months ago

Good to know the case is just as good as the reviews you "red" about it. haha! but i may be a little baised if you were to look at my past build but i LOVE the red/blacks theme. This is an amazing looking build! +1

Jeffrey1215 3 points 40 months ago

How is your MSI Gaming M5 mono now? I am stucking between Asus Z170A and MSI Gaming M5.

Nice red and black rig.

amir.duran 1 point 27 months ago

I'm also thinking between Z170A and MSI M5. Did you buy any of these?

andyv001 2 points 40 months ago

Thanks for posting! Looking at a similar (slightly cheaper) build myself, this review was really helpful.

Vergere 7 Builds 1 point 40 months ago

looks like your parts list is missing your monitor's and the mouse and keyboard. Otherwise, good build!

ansen submitter 1 Build 1 point 40 months ago

I used peripherals that I already had on-hand (the monitors in particular are pretty old), but I went ahead and added them so everything's listed!

johngerges582 1 point 40 months ago

Not the greatest power supply, but not the worst. It's just an average psu. Not gonna explode or anything lol.

Excellent build though +1

soundreaper 1 Build 1 point 40 months ago

The build is excellent so +1!

But I'm crying on the inside because of the plethora of H440 builds ;( toooo maaaaany but enjoy your PC!

ansen submitter 1 Build 1 point 40 months ago

Haha, there's a reason why it's so popular! I think the case is my favorite part of the build!

AWholeLotOfLag 1 Build 1 point 40 months ago

+1 for h440, red/black scheme, and skylake. That's some pretty speedy ram you've got there! Beautiful machine (:

intel2012 4 Builds 1 point 40 months ago

very nice choice of parts. You have the go-to intel core cpu and a gtx 970 GPU, and you can't forget the H440 for its amazing cable management. i am liking the red/black theme. I am more of a zebra theme though.

unicornh 1 point 40 months ago

which screens are those looks very neat..

ansen submitter 1 Build 1 point 40 months ago

Those monitors are actually about 5 years old and from my previous PC. They are Dell ST2310's. They do have a nice aesthetic to them though.

I'd like to upgrade at some point, but I figured I'd stick to these for a bit while my wallet recovers!

unicornh 1 point 40 months ago

whoh! they stiil looks nice.. icheck them out.!

elysium13 1 Build 1 point 40 months ago

Great build and similar price to mine, but looks like you made out a bit better with the i7K where as I did not get a K. +1 to you sir

aaaabb 1 point 37 months ago

Is the radiator mounted on the top or in the front?

ansen submitter 1 Build 1 point 33 months ago

Sorry, I'm just now checking the comments again, this reply is probably too late to be helpful, but...

The radiator is top mounted. So I've got the three intakes at the front, the back exhaust, and then the radiator fans pushing out the top.

M786R 1 point 34 months ago

Hi there, sweet build..... This might be a noob question, but where is the USB 3.0 header on the motherboard for the front 2x USB 3.0 headers on the case?

ansen submitter 1 Build 1 point 33 months ago

Hey, sorry for the late reply, but it's next to the SATA ports on the right-hand side. It's right-angled as well, which is kinda nice.

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