UPDATE: I have just purchased 2 new monitors to go along with this new build. They are matching AOC I2367F's. I have updated my pictures with them. They are 23", 1920x1080p monitors. I got these for 99$ a piece at best buy on sale. They are usually $129.99 monitors, so I got a pretty decent deal on those saving ~$60. I think for the foreseeable future, this build is going to stay the same. I kept my old HP LP2065, but just put it in a vertical orientation. This is great for browsing web pages while waiting to spawn in many games. It works fine. I did not want to keep it in a horizontal state just because the resolution is not the same as the other monitors, being 1600x1200.
Hello everyone! This is my first build on pcpartpicker, but my 5th or 6th desktop build in general. This is my personal build that I will be using for day to day tasks. This will include light recording and video editing, heavy gaming (all modern AAA titles), and some productivity uses for school. As far as I have had this build, it seems to run extremely fast comparatively to my old build. The old specs are as follows
CPU: FX-6200 GPU: Asus Radeon HD 7790 Mobo: 970a-g43 RAM: 8gb crucial ballistix sport Case: Antec 302 OS: Windows 7 Professional
With that said, this was a big upgrade for me. It's almost double the price of my last build, but it's more than double the performance. I have no benchmarks of my prior system, but this one feels much better. Next is a little breakdown of the components that I have chosen.
CPU: i5-6600k - I wanted the latest and greatest. I got that with the Skylake processors. With this processor, I have gotten unmatched overclocking with an aftermarket CPU. I'm running a 4.6GHz overclock with a little over 1.3v. From stock speeds (3.5GHz out of the box) this is an amazing jump for just air cooling! This performs great. This will be future-proof enough that I wont have a bottleneck for a very long time. I am very pleased thus far with this CPU choice. 5/5 stars. Great product for the price.
CPU Cooler: Coolermaster Hyper 212 Evo - Very impressed with this cooler. It allows for decently low temperatures while overclocking. It also runs rather quiet under load. And for the $20 price tag I got it at, it's perfect for the job. 5/5 stars. Great cooler for the price.
GPU: MSI GTX 970 4GD5T - Well, what can I say. This is an incredible card. I got this card on sale on newegg for around $250! It was unbelievable. For that price, you simply cannot beat the performance that it puts out. The GTX 970 is already the performance/price king. And lowering the price by 50$ is just awesome. I have been able to overclock this card up to a core clockspeed of 1508MHz stable with a memory clock speed of 4010MHz. With the whole "Ramgate" issue, I was concerned buying this card, and I was just going to go with the r9 390. It's about the same price (300$) but it has 8gb ram. I ended up going with the 970 just because of the fact of the price. So far, I have had no issues this far with the overclocking. Although it runs a little hotter under load than I would like (79°C-80°C), it is still well within safe operating limits. Again, very pleased with this purchase. 4.5 out of 5 stars. Half of a star taken off for the whole vram issue, but that had a negligible effect.
Motherboard: MSI z170a Gaming m5 - As far as I can tell, this is a good motherboard. It came with a 1 year code of xsplit gamecaster which is kind of cool if you're just getting into streaming. The reason behind this purchase was that I wanted a mid tier motherboard for not a lot of money. This board has enough PCI slots for future expansion in case I want to SLI another 970, of add a soundcard. This chipset also allows for flawless overclocking of my CPU. I have had no problems this far. 5/5 stars. Good board for the price.
Ram: 16gb DDR4 Crucial Ballistix Sport (2x8gb) @2400MHz - I just needed some decently cheap DDR4 ram for the new Skylake processor. I looked no further, and just got some Crucial. In the past, I have had no problem with this memory. It's cheap, works well, and overclocks decently. As I will explain later in this build log, I am having a memory leak problem in my ram. I have yet to figure out where it is coming from, but I doubt it is due to my hardware. With that said, I will still give this memory a 5/5 stars unless updated in the future.
Storage: 120gb Kingston SSD, and 1tb Seagate Barracuda HDD - The SSD was a big upgrade from my last system. In my last system, I had only mechanical hard drives. Boot times were unbearably slow near the end of it's life. 30-40 second boot times are no fun. With this SSD and Windows 10, from pressing the power button to the sign-in screen, is about 9-10 second. It skips the whole Microsoft logo all together. It's an amazing upgrade. I highly encourage anyone on the fence about getting a SSD to get one. It is totally worth it. They have come down in price so much that they are now worth it. I use a 120gb SSD for the OS, and games with extremely long load times. It helps expedite those times down to about half of what a HDD would do. I then put all the rest of my files on the 1tb HDD. It gets the job done. Decent transfer speeds, with okay read speeds. It works, and that's all that matters. 5/5 stars for this combo.
Case: Antec 3 Hundred 2 - This is my case from the first computer I had ever built. It is an okay case to say the least. The cable management is alright, but it is not the best by any means. It is a very average case. It has all the necessary features (USB 3.0 header, front panel audio, 2 120mm case fans included) but it's not exceptional in anything. It is a very lackluster case. 3/5 stars. I will probably be upgrading this in the near future.
Power Supply: Thermaltake TR2 530w Semi-Modular - This component is also very average. I have had some coil whine with it, as well as some fan problems. At some points it sounds like a wire gets in contact with a fan and grinds on it. When in fact, there is nothing touching the fan. I have never been able to tell what it is from, but I know that the sound originates from the Power supply. This power supply really dictated my choice in graphics card, because of the mediocre wattage. 530w is not very much. My GTX 970 will run fine on it, but a r9 390 would not run at all. It's just too power hungry. I did not feel like upgrading this part, so I just went with the GTX 970. This will be upgraded ASAP to allow for a possible SLI setup in the future. 3/5 stars.
Problems: I have had a very limited amount of problems with this rig this far. The only problem that I have encountered is a memory leak. I have yet to find out what is causing it. It is most likely a bad driver, or a startup application. I have 16gb ram, and sometimes I will be using 15.5gb with no applications running at all. I have a feeling that I forgot to install the latest version of some driver, and it is biting me in the butt right now. Other than that, there are no other problems.
With all of this said, it is an understatement to say that I am pleased with how this build turned out. For the price that I built this at, it is hard to beat. Actual cost of building was ~$1050.
Future plans: I plan on upgrading my power supply to a 650w, or even a 700w power supply to allow for a SLI setup, or a potential GPU upgrade. As of right now, I am running on a single 1600x1200 monitor. I plan to be purchasing two 23.8" 1920x1080p monitors to go along with my current monitors. These will go in a 3 way horizontal array.
If you've gotten this far I applaud you. Almost 1500 words lol. But a quick note, the SSD is mounted on the back side of the case on the back side of the motherboard. So you wont be able to see it.