Hi, I've been working on finishing this computer for about 2 months now due to random events that kept setting back my progress on it, and it is my first pcpartpicker post and first water-cooled build. I built this machine so that I can play games at 4k, edit 4k media, any programs I may want to use for school(I'm studying engineering) and all around last me a decent amount of time without needing an upgrade. A main reason is that Star Citizen finally looks like it might actually be released soon, and I want to play that game sooo badly. I also needed a computer that was small enough to be able to move around semi-frequently as I am currently in college and like to take it home for the larger breaks. Most of my parts I was able to be patient and buy for pretty decent prices.
Some of my water cooling parts may seem uncharacteristically low priced however, that is due to my aio unit that I ran the computer on until I got all my water cooling parts being defective. I had to ship it back to EK, who very kindly gave me a discount code for the cost of shipping which I then used in my order to get a discount on my parts. The shipping cost (and discount code) was ~$66, so if you want to add that into the cost of the build I guess you can. I got the predator to expand, and originally was not going to get the x99 water block(which has the low price), but with the majority of the defects in the predators being the water blocks included, and some people saying the x99 block lowered temperatures for my cpu, I decided to grab one.
I originally ran this system with the gpus on air and the EK predator aio. When I had to rma the predator I got a 212 evo and used that until I got all of my water cooling parts and my predator back. I then water-cooled the thing and finished my leak test on 1/22/16. I only had an overclock of 4.4 on the aio, but with the expanded loop I bumped it up to 4.5 without any problems so far, but the main performance boost is the gpus, while I haven't really spent the time to overclock them yet, I plan on doing so soon as that's a reason I bought them was to have cards that could oc really well. The main reason I decided to shoot my wallet with the kingpins was so I could use them as single slot cards, and with the 40 lane 5930k, still have a wifi card, with a 5820k the bottom slot on my motherboard is disabled if using an m.2 drive, but I have confirmed that it runs in x4 mode with the m.2 enabled with my 40 lane 5930k.
Building the computer was pretty nice the first time around except for installing the water block for the predator, as there wasn't included 2011-3 mounting hardware (I ordered it separately) and I had gotten all the parts in the day before and put it together, with the aio as the last to install, that part took very little time and was nice and simple. It took 3 of us 2 hours to get that damn water block on, the new predator I got came with mounting software for 2011-3 that made the process much easier(I tested it out of curiosity). Adding the 212 evo after the predator failed was comparatively a breeze. Setting up my water cooling loop was pretty straight forward, a couple fittings were a bit hard to open, but everything went ok. Bleeding the loop however, was a pain. I highly recommend adding an external res if you have the room for it so you can monitor your fluid levels, clear tubing also would have helped, but I like the look of the matte black a lot. Basically I spent a couple hours flipping the system around and filling it without being able turning the pump on until the end as the res was at the top so most of the fluid would drain and I couldn't tell easily how fast the pump might drain the res.
The one thing I'm missing is a 4k or 1440p 144 hz monitor. I just don't know what to get. I would really like a 4k monitor, but I hate display scaling with a burning passion and won't get anything under 32 inches for that, which is large and rather cumbersome in some cases, not to mention there isn't one for a decent price that seems good. I've looked at the ultra-wide predator x34 from acer, but its price is just more than I really want to pay. The acer predator might just be what I get, though I just don't know what I think about ultra-wides, and I also feel it might be a pain to move every couple of months.
Overall, I'm happy with what I have, and am very thankful for star citizen being a thing that made me switch to gaming on pcs a couple years back, and being the ultimate inspiration to build this one. As this hasn't been running for a very long time I will update this if there is anything I feel needs to be changed, probably the gpu clocks and maybe temps as I tweak those, and maybe I can get my cpu clocked a bit higher too. I would like 32 GB of ram, and I kind of want dominator platinum as it would look great I think. I also plan on making some sleeved extensions and I have ordered a nice sli bridge. Comments are appreciated.