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The Beast - a $5,000ish gaming & VM host hybrid, and my first build in quite a while!

by Kbart818

Description

My brother recently asked me to help him build a computer that would be used both for gaming and for his work. I hadn't built a computer in several years, but I jumped at the opportunity to help him put something together, and his budget and goals for the system made it a lot of fun to build. So like I said, it had been a while, but PCPartPicker and /r/buildapc were both instrumental in helping me get up to speed. All in all, build day went great. Took about 12 hours from unboxing to loading the OS.

Everything pretty much came together as planned, and fit gracefully into the 750D tower. The Rampage V Extreme board is beautiful both aesthetically and functionally. I also like the H100i closed-circuit water cooling system - it was a piece of cake to assemble and it performs really well. The Corsair 120mm fans I attached to it are dead silent too, which is nice. The NZXT HUE LED strip is pretty cool. I learned about it from looking at a lot of the beautiful systems on this website. The adhesive on the strip is not great though, so I applied a fairly strong double-sided tape at several points along the LED strip's path. Oh, and I'm far from a master of cable management, but I tried to make it as tidy as I could. All things considered it was a really fun build and I was absolutely thrilled to have it boot successfully on the first attempt!

The only problem I ran into is not the end of the world as far as build-day issues go. The short of it is, the computer will only boot to the OS if it is booting fresh, as opposed to rebooting. If I try to reboot it - either from within the OS or from BIOS/POST, it will hang before loading the OS, and the screen will display a blank, non-blinking cursor. The diagnostic code displayed on the board is AE, which the code table indicates means "Legacy Boot Event.' I haven't had time to research the issue very much yet, but I will soon. In the meantime, it does boot 100% successfully as long as it is doing so from being powered off (or in sleep mode).

Comments Sorted by:

Forester 11 points 44 months ago

But can it run minecraft

brandonhu 7 points 44 months ago

The real question is can it play Minesweeper at 30fps?

Lachlantula 1 Build 3 points 44 months ago

Or can it even POST?

brandonhu 3 points 44 months ago

Dude. #BSOD all day.

Lachlantula 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

bring it

MrPlatypi01 2 points 44 months ago

No, because the memory allocation system is horrendous. :P

I think it is memory allocation....it has something to do with memory I think.

Noble_ 1 Build 4 points 44 months ago

Nice red and black theme you have going on there! Looks great!

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 6 points 44 months ago

Thanks! The motherboard and MSI 980s made it easy to choose a theme. It's cool how you can get sleeved cable sets and case fans with modular color rings these days. Last build I did, that kind of thing didn't exist.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

Where can you get sleeved cables? I'm kind of lost.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

I got this set from Newegg

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

huh. I need blue ones.

nolanrules 3 Builds 2 points 44 months ago

check nzxt website

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Bumblescrum 1 Build 3 points 44 months ago

Depending on how long ago you got those 850 Evo's, they are on sale at Newegg for 450$, maybe you can get a price match and get some money back to buy 5 more new games.

Arkwoman1990 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

those are the Pros not the Evos though

Bumblescrum 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

You are right...woops, saw a sale and was a bit fast to share the info.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Yeah I actually picked them up on sale! Thanks for the heads up though dude.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Oops yeah, got the Pros on sale / $60 bucks off = $570/ea if I recall correctly.

Woody1999 2 Builds 2 points 44 months ago

Absolutely beautiful. A piece of art, at least in my mind.

Well done mate, hope you and your brother enjoy this awesome rig massively.

Woody

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Thanks man, I'm sure it will be thoroughly enjoyed :)

alexcyrus 2 points 44 months ago

Beautiful, and quality parts too. Seems a little bit strange that with a full tower case and $5k+ budget and you picked the H100i AIO cooler. Most of us pick it because we want an to save a few bucks on an AIO cooler.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

I'm not a water cooling guy and I didn't want to drop the dough on a custom circuit. The H100i just gets such awesome community acceptance and feedback, it seemed like a good choice. If cooling ever becomes an issue - which I doubt it will any time in the near future - I'm sure we can find a solution.

alexcyrus 1 point 44 months ago

I have it in my current gaming build. It keeps my i5-4670k OC'ed at 4.5 GHz under 67 degree stress test. I bought it mainly because I am cheap, lol, and wanted to keep my total cost under $2k. The only downside to it is that you cannot control the pump speed. The pump will run at 2200+ RPM ALL THE TIME! You won't be able to game at 1 AM without getting nag by your gf/wife. The loud pump noise is the only reason I am replacing it with a Noctua DH-D15

piemancoder 2 points 44 months ago

Will anyone ever make a rig capable of running minesweeper 360p @15fps? Guess I'll have to keep looking.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

Dude 30fps is all the rage.

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epicnerdgreg 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

sees build

dies from envy

Kriston_S@101 2 points 44 months ago

Wow this looks very professional. And let this be a lesson to other builders, you don't need to stuff all your cables behind your case to make it look good.

reoper6 1 point 44 months ago

Its beautiful.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

Honestly though, is the 5960X really needed for gaming? I personally think above 6 core is unnecessary.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 3 points 44 months ago

Yeah, 5960X is unnecessary for gaming. You can save a lot of money not going 8-core (& slower clock speed) if gaming is the sole priority. This computer will be used for multithreaded, multi-core utilizing applications and fairly robust small sets of virtualized systems though, hence the octa-core. This computer was designed to tear it up in both work and play.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

yeah, I missed the VM part of the title. Still decent build, just way way out of my budget. is the z97 pc mate decent?

reoper6 1 point 44 months ago

Its okay but if you can wait a bit for the Z97X killer from asrock to drop again its worth it. I got mine for $100 and its almost flawless

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

I alr got my z97 pc mate as a combo with my g3258. only 50 dollars, so go figure.

TechyinAZ 14 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

Pretty!!

Lightz 1 point 44 months ago

Oh my! <3

parkerthepicker 1 point 44 months ago

What games and hows performance? and +1 for actually having a beast build!

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 3 points 44 months ago

Thanks much!! He is into WoW some, but he hasn't had a computer capable of running modern game engines until now. I think he's going to be playing some FarCry 4 and will also explore some new stuff on Steam. I felt bad for posting this without benchmarks but I will update the description when my brother has a chance to put it through it's paces.

collegekid2k 3 Builds 1 point 41 months ago

3 months now, how about them benchmarks?

qsball1999 1 point 44 months ago

Nice build.

qsball1999 1 point 44 months ago

overclocking?

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Maybe eventually. I just wanted to put something together for him that would be rock solid stock first though. That being said I can't get over how OC-friendly this motherboard is. BIOS almost looks like a game in and of itself hahaha. Neither my brother nor I have much experience with OC'ing, but there is no excuse not to dabble some now.

qsball1999 2 points 44 months ago

Watch a few of LinusTechTips OC Videos, It's not that hard.

Even try his Forums: Linustechtips.com for help there, Maybe people have helped me out there.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Thank you for the advice! I will check it out myself and pass it along to my brother.

Meithen 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

Nice build! Another awesome rig in a 750D, I love this case.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

Dude Meithen you have easily one of the nicest computers I've ever seen. That is absolutely gorgeous.

Meithen 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

Thank you! When I saw this earlier I just gave it a quick look because I was doing something else, but now that I came back and looked at the parts list, holy ****! That is one knarly build! I'd tell my brother that I get to come over and play on it too lol.

Painwithin 2 Builds 2 points 44 months ago

Crazy build! makes me want to upgrade mine, same with yours Kbart818!

but the amount of work put into Meithens... words dont explain.

Nice builds to the both of you.

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Meithen 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

Thanks!

pegotico 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

very nice build!!!

sanchezliny 1 point 44 months ago

I might have to agree with the title. +1

gokuss4elsat 1 point 44 months ago

nice gaming deskopt

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

Are LED strips expensive? And where do you get them?

jshoop 1 point 44 months ago

nzxt hue, found online pretty easily for abour $30 us dollars

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

NZXT LEDs only? also do you have a liquid cooled GPU? I think I saw that controller thing from waterforce.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Yes, just the NZXT LEDs. The Motherboard has an illuminated Republic of Gamers logo an the H100i "Corsair" logo is illuminated, but the LED strip is the only other lighting. Nope, no liquid cooling on the GPU. What you see in the front of the case is either the Rampage V Extreme "OC Panel," or the NZXT LED controller (with the 3 knobs / GRB).

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

huh. where did you get the case strip lights?

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Newegg. Here's a link to it, though it appears to be sold out right now. If you aren't familiar with it, you should check out some review/demo videos on YouTube. It really looks great in person, plus it is versatile.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

Where do you get the LCD strips? And ohhhhhhh. That's actually really nice.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Nah, I got them here on Newegg, though they are out of stock right now it seems.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

aww. I need blue sleeving for the z97 pc mate that I am using for my build now. $5,000 is still insane for a gaming build, but you have a VM use case, so I guess thats reasonable.

aknives 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Without even looking at the components, JEEZUS that is a sexy build.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Thanks dude!

ThatOtherGuy265 1 point 44 months ago

Dang...I wish I had a PC like this :(

Amazing build though!

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Thank you! You and me both hahaha. It was a hell of a lot of fun to build, but alas I had to send it away with my brother. On the other hand, I'll get to live vicariously through his gaming experiences because I don't really have time to game right now anyway hehe.

Brin3 1 point 44 months ago

Daaayum... this is THE BEAST :o

JustAnotherGamer 1 point 44 months ago

I see this joining the highest rated section very soon...

UncleSteve32 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

I think my evga 400 watt power supply is better than that. Lol

ebrainer1 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Black and red builds always look badass. You've got my upvote!

Octothorpe 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

How loud is that AF140 in your opinion? I got one used, and it seems to be unusually noisy for something labeled at 24DB.

Nice pc, by the way, but I guess that can go without saying.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

That's strange yours is loud - this one is very, very quiet. There may well be quieter fans on the market but to me the AF140 runs dead silent.

Octothorpe 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

Strange, maybe i've got a bit of an issue with the motor since it's used. Thanks for the reply! Do you happen to run the voltage limiter on yours or is it quiet even without it?

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

It is just running stock.

wcreek 2 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

Wish MSI would expand their Krait edition stuff like they announced a Krait edition 970 but I kind of would like a Krait edition R9 290(X) I guess that's because AMD is soon to replace the R9 200 series. Either way for a Black-Red build (which is normally a color scheme I hate) I must say, not bad.

LazyWampa 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

build is $5K........doesnt include peripherals and monitor...... (<3.<3)

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Razer Black Widow keyboard, an older but nice Razer mouse, and a somewhat old school Dell 3007WFP display. In the market for a new display now, and leaning towards the Samsung SB970 but it has been sold out on Amazon for quite a while. The ol' trusty 3007WFP is serving as a fine hold-over and a damn nice space-heater :P

LazyWampa 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Nice. I have the Samsung U28D590D 4K monitor, and an ASUS 1080p IPS monitor. I also have SLI MSI 980s. have you considered going 4K? :) its SOOOOOOOOOOOO perrty. All other peripherals are logitech stuff :P

Matty 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Robbing banks does have it's perks.... +1

Sed8Op8 3 Builds 1 point 44 months ago

64GB DDR4,2TB of the Fastest Sata based storage currently available,8 core Crazy *** CPU and SLI'ed 980s lulz IMHO it's fairly beastly. Your brother does not know what he missed building this bad MoFo ... Great build custom water cooling is really the only way you could have made this anymore badass... Very clean very nice very powerful!

Tommo791 1 point 44 months ago

First of all, this build is bloody fantastic. Secondly, where do the screws come from for mounting the 4 fans to h100i? Surely the 2 fans on top need to be mounted through the case, fan and the radiator, or am i just missing an obvious point.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Thanks much. I actually hadn't even thought about this until I was unpacking the H100i and just about to mount the SP120s to it. What I ended up doing with the top two fans was, I used two diagonal holes on each fan for screws mounting to the radiator, and the other two diagonal holes to mount the fans to the top of the case. There may be a better way to do this but it seemed pretty solid. Might put a couple zip-ties on it just to be safe though.

Tommo791 1 point 44 months ago

Okay, do they feel rigid enough?

bloodroses75 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

What software are you using for the VM hosting? With the right software setup, you should have no problems gaming inside the VMs :)

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Primarily VirtualBox, and I don't doubt it. I'm not a virtaulization expert, but it'll be fun to see what kind of performance VMs are capable of with adequate resources allocated to them.

bloodroses75 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

Biggest thing will be to get VT-d enabled so that the virtual machine can have direct access to one of the video cards. If so, your device manager inside the VM will show the AMD card instead of the virtual box custom driver.

VirtualBox supposedly has support for this feature via PCI-pass through: http://www.virtualbox.org/manual/ch09.html#pcipassthrough

Unfortunately, I haven't had personal experience with that part of it since my CPU (4670k) doesn't support VT-d.

MRE_Teck 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Holy heaven!!!!

Vacationer 1 point 43 months ago

very very good looking machine why you didn't go for SSD's Raid 0?

LimeTime 1 point 42 months ago

I would've gone for faster RAM at just 32gb instead of 64gb, but I don't know what your brothers job is so he might need that much RAM :/

crazyman3921 1 point 41 months ago

why is the cpu so much for so little power

T_Fouts 1 point 38 months ago

Did you replace the fans on your cpu coolers with the corsair ones, they look really nice?

ohadk123 1 Build 1 point 36 months ago

2 1tb ssd? its just an overkill for my opinion and just cost alot, you should have puted this money on better video card

venderbender 1 point 30 months ago

Great looking build!

hunter95xx 1 point 29 months ago

This is just begging to be water-cooled with a full custom loop

mariothetec -1 points 44 months ago

why didn't you plan this build to be water cooled

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

The CPU is closed-circuit water cooled. As for custom circuit water cooling, $$$, and it just wasn't a priority.

brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

huh. nice still. is closed-loop manageable? aka low maintenance, cause I've heard horror stories about like replacing coolant and stuff via youtube. #mineraloilrig #linusisdabest

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brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

So is it 6 months or 2 years?

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brandonhu 1 point 44 months ago

Isn't it water cooled? At least for the CPU.

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brandonhu 2 points 44 months ago

Exactly. My PAE UP build is actually creative. sighs Oh the humanity.

Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 2 points 44 months ago

These comments made me lulz. The funny thing is, I'm envious of you guys who can do the truly creative builds that require both artistic vision and technical aptitude.

camoninja22 1 point 42 months ago

It is my first build and I'm doing a smaller build using the Asus rampage 5 extreme and I have a question so did you say you mounted a fan to the mobo? here is the link http://pcpartpicker.com/p/DG7ppg

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Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Exactly - in my opinion, the custom-loop cooling absolutely pushes the boundaries in terms of artistic creativity and engineering skills. This build I did took some thought and aesthetics weren't ignored or anything, but it isn't "risky" or extreme I realize. Just a nice looking, solid, high-end system.

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bloodroses75 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

That was my exact same thought too... lol

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Kbart818 submitter 1 Build 1 point 44 months ago

Yes, you can easily change the color, brightness, and a few different usage modes (blinking, alternating, and breathing across the color spectrum, which I consider to be the only non-default mode that would be worth using). I personally think it is worth the money if it fits the lighting style you're looking to implement.

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