This was my first build since the days of the nVidia 8800GT! Having used an Alienware Laptop for the past 3 years I decided it was time to step up!

Build process was pretty much problem free so far and the system seems to be running nicely. The machine will be used for Gaming, some 3D Design Work (SolidWorks) and Adobe Creative Suite.

Mini Parts Reviews Intel i5 4690k - Fast as I think I'd ever need at the minute, easy to install - shame about the retail fan - I wish they sold them as chip only to save a bit of cash! Currently overclocked to 4.5Ghz on air cooling

Noctua NH-U12S - Absolute joy to install, fantastic build quality all round and the fan is silent! No clearance issues at all. Keeping a 4.5Ghz 4690k below 75 degrees C in Aida 64 which I think isn't bad considering the small enclosure and fairly small size. Around a 30-35 degree idle temp.

Asus Z97M-Plus - Great quality board, nice clean aesthetic and keeps in with the low-key visuals of this build. Great UEFI and overall solid build.

Corsair Vengeance Pro - Overclocked very easily and stable - not sure I like the look of it but it was cheap, again no clearance issues with the tower cooler.

Samsung 850 Evo - My first SSD, absolutely blown away with the performance - Windows boots in under 20 seconds, I can launch SolidWorks in less than 8.

WD Caviar Blue 1TB - It's a storage drive at the end of the day! Seems to do the job so far!

EVGA GTX 970 SC - I got a free backplate which makes it look much better, absolutely fantastic build quality. Haven't actually managed to play any games yet (still downloading) other than Day Z but I'm very impressed! If you make the fan speed 100% however it sounds like a jet engine however I doubt it gets over 40% in real world scenarios. An added bonus is the fans are off when the card isn't being used - great for silence!

Fractal Design Define Mini - Great finish and build quality, easy enough to build in with plenty of space, especially for a M-ATX Chassis. I wish the screws would of come in individual bags rather than having to sort through them (nit picking here). Also the chassis fans included are quite loud for a case aimed at those wanting a silent build but I've definitely heard worse!

XFX XTR 550w- Modular, 80+ Gold, Active fan switching (for silence), great build quality and best of all - flat cables helped with cable management greatly!!

Optical Drive - It does the job, but its pretty damn loud!


  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Excellent! Nice touch with the screenshot of PCPartPicker.

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice, clean build! I have the same chip and mobo combo. I'm starting to look into overclocking. Did you follow any guides online at all? If so, can you post the link so that I may do some more research on it. Thanks in advance!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

I just googled Asus z97 overclocking and followed a few guides from what came up. Basically you need to just go into the Advances UEFI - Set the AI Tweaker to manual mode, set the BLCK Frequency to 100, Set the Voltage to 1.0 on a manual over ride and try a multiplier of 40 to begin, this should give you a 4.0Ghz Clock. From here, we can begin to gradually increase voltages and multipliers until we reach a level we can suitably cool the CPU and remain stable under load.

One thing that wasn't mentioned on the guides I read, but gave me about 30 mins of frustration was that you have to to Advanced>CPU Configuration>Boot Performance mode>Max Turbo Performance (PG 3.30 in your mobo manual) if you want to have your constant overclocking frequency e.g 4.6 Ghz when you boot up windows.

I had a stable OC of 4.6Ghz at 1.175v with air cooling however I was hitting close to 100 degrees with Prime 95, temps weren't over 75 with Aida64 which I think isn't bad for the fairly small size of the cooler I'm running - Noctua NH-U12S.

There is always the auto overclocking feature on the board which I tested out and gave me a maximum clock of 4.5Ghz with the click of a button.

Hope that helps!

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Wow thanks for the detailed reply! It is much appreciated!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Can this run games like roblox and Minecraft? Also nice job!