Description

Title: The title "Three Shades of Blue" was chosen because the case, the sleeved cables, and the motherboard and fans are all slightly different shades of blue. Also because I am bad at coming up with names.

Summary: First off I would like to say that this is my first build published on PCPartPicker. Also, I think this deserves an explanation: this build was completed on June 26th but I am posting it 5 months later. I would like to say that I was very busy with stuff, but ultimately, I was just really lazy. Well now that it is finally posted here, I would love to hear your feedback. The goal of this build was to make a powerful and beautiful machine that would last me quite some time with minimal upgrades. The machine is used primarily for gaming with light photo editing, 3-D modeling, and rendering. The color scheme is based around the black and blue H440, and the max budget was around $2500. Below I wrote a brief reason why I chose each component and a mini review.

CPU: I wanted an unlocked CPU for overclocking. I also wanted an i7 with hyper threading because I do some light photo editing, 3-D modeling, and rendering. I would have gone with the 4770K, but the 4790K happened to have just been released during the time of this build. Luckily, I have a Micro Center near me, so I was able to get the 4790K on a discount.

CPU Cooler: I had a H100i in my previous build, so I thought it would be a good idea to go for the newer H105. I have heard good things about it and I like the aesthetic color ring to match the color scheme of my build.

Motherboard: I wanted a new Z97 motherboard to go with the new 4790K. I originally bought the MSI Z97-G55 SLI, but once I compared it to the rest of the parts, it didn't match the color scheme very well. I returned it for the ASRock Z97 Extreme 6 instead, which matches the color scheme a lot better. I was able to get a discount on the motherboard because I purchased it with a CPU at Micro Center.

Memory: This memory is a bit overkill, but I couldn't help myself; I needed it. I knew I wanted 16GB of RAM to help with photo editing, 3-D modeling, and rendering. Also, I do some light game server hosting. Ultimately, the main reason I chose this RAM is because it looks so sexy.

Storage: I chose to get a 120GB SSD for the OS and core programs. The 250GB is used to store my games. The 1TB HDD is used to store my miscellaneous files. I knew I had to get two SSD's to fill up both mounts on the PSU shroud.

Video Card: Originally I was going to go with a 780, but during the time of this build the XFX R9 290X was on sale for about $50 less than the 780. I did some research comparing the two cards and ultimately came to the decision to get the 290X. I also just love the look of this card. It has a very modern and sleek design, and the LED XFX logo on the bottom side of the card just adds an extra effect.

Case: This case is the base of the build. This case is absolutely beautiful. Originally, I was going to use the Corsair 760T, but once the black and blue H440 released, I knew as soon as I saw it that I have to make a build for this case. However, this case is not without flaws. It gets fingerprints and scratches like crazy, and I found cable management in this case to be quite difficult. I will say though that this case's superior beauty overbears its flaws.

Power Supply: I wanted a high wattage PSU just in case I decided to get a second video card; however, five months later, I have yet to get a second video card, so in that respect it was kind of a waste. At least I can say that my PSU has an awesome name: "RM1000" Sounds like some kind of killer robot. Anyways, I think the PSU runs really hot. I contacted Corsair about it and there didn't seem to be any issues, so I just went with it. I haven't had any problems yet.

Operating System: I was able to get Windows 8.1 for free because I am a student. For those of you who are curious, I am studying electrical engineering. I am not a huge fan of Windows 8.1; I like Windows 7 a lot more, but I am making it work.

Monitor: I love this monitor. I wanted a 24" bezel free LED IPS monitor and this one fit the bill. Worth every penny. This monitor would be ideal for double or triple monitor setups.

Case Fans: I chose to go with the corsair fans to match my color scheme. I wanted two 120mm PWM fans to increase air flow through the radiator on the H105 and a 140mm for rear exhaust. I used to the stock fans for the front three intake fans. The 140mm fan is very loud. I am not sure if it is my fan specifically or if it common for this model.

Keyboard: I really like this keyboard. At first I was a bit hesitate because I was unsure if I would fully utilize the custom binding keys. After having this keyboard for a while, I am very happy with my decision.

Mouse: I absolutely love this mouse. If there is one thing about this build that I would say I am most satisfied with, it would be this mouse. I did not try out this mouse before buying it, but I did read some reviews and thought it would be a good buy. It was definitely worth it. I don't like mice with a lot of buttons on them, I also like mice with some weight to them. This mouse is perfect.

Headphones: These headphones were an impulse buy. I bought these headphones close to their initial release before there were a lot of reviews out there. I mainly chose to buy these because of their looks; the LED rings is just so sexy, and the overall look is very well designed. These headphones are very comfortable and I can no problem wear them for hours on end. For the first couple months I had these headphones they seemed to work perfectly. Then I started experiencing problems with SteelSeries Engine 3. For those of you who are not familiar with Engine 3, it is basically the software used to customize and control some of the features on this headset. Then I started experiencing problems with what I believe to be the sound card. These problems were short lived and appear to be fixed, but at the time they were annoying. I have also had a lot of issues with the mic. Other than that, the sound quality is fairly good.

Mouse Mat: I chose this mouse mat because I wanted one that would be long enough to rest my keyboard on. I have a desk that has a glass surface, so the large mouse mat would minimize scratches. I have had no problems with this mat; it is very well designed.

Light Bar Upgrade Kit: Probably not worth the money, but I couldn't pass it up for the looks. The kit is very easy to use and straight forward.

Sleeved Cables: BitFenix makes very high quality sleeved cables. I am very happy with them. I know I could have bought or sleeved my own light blue or aqua cables to match the rest of the build, but I am content with this darker blue.

LED Strips: These are some quality LED strips: very bright, well spaced, perfect length, and the adhesive works great. I have no complaints with these LED strips; BitFenix did an excellent job.

Problems: Cable management was very difficult in this case. I ended up just shoving most of the access cables underneath the hard drive tray. Shortly after completing this build I was getting BSODed a lot. This was before I overclocked, so I thought some of components were faulty. I eventually figured out that in the bios the RAM was set on a different setting than it should be, and that seemed to fix that problem.

Final Thoughts: Well if you made it this far, I thank you for taking the time to read all of my build description. I hope you enjoyed it. I will say that I am very happy the way this build turned out. I really enjoyed this project and I can't wait to do my next. I look forward to reading and replying to your comments.

Thank you for your time.

Comments

  • 57 months ago
  • 8 points

Came here for pictures, was not disappointed.

+1

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Glad I did not disappoint you!

  • 56 months ago
  • 3 points

Surprised you didn't go with this card. :p https://pcpartpicker.com/part/sapphire-video-card-100362vxsr

  • 56 months ago
  • 1 point

I definitely would have, but I wanted a 290X, and the Sapphire 290X during the time of this build was much more expensive than the XFX card.

  • 57 months ago
  • 4 points

B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L. The only thing I would have done differently is getting the Sapphire Vapor-X version of the 290X, just cause it's blue :P

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

I completely agree, but at the time the Sapphire Card was quite more expensive than the XFX card.

  • 55 months ago
  • 4 points

It is so perfect I would +100 if I could (Currently drooling a little)

  • 55 months ago
  • 2 points

Thank you! I am glad you like it!

  • 57 months ago
  • 3 points

How are the temps and noise in that case? I've been waiting for a price drop on the blue one for a while now.

  • 57 months ago
  • 3 points

I am not too pleased with the noise of this case. It is relatively noisy compared to my Corsair 500R. This may be because there could be something wrong with my AF140; its really loud. As for the temps, everything is relatively normal.

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Strange that you're having a noisier experience. My custom loop with a ton of fans is virtually silent unless temps get above 60 degrees celsius and then it's a low, throaty hum. Compared to my other HAF-X air cooled build, it's night and day.

Something may be wrong with your fans.

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

I had a feeling it had something to do with my fans. I might be over exaggerating the noise level; it isn't bad enough to make me want to fix it.

  • 57 months ago
  • 3 points

I have the H440 myself. You have to be very conscious of airflow orientation considering airflow is less than that of other cases.I have noticed slightly higher temps than my previous case but if you have high end fans, the effect on temps is greatly dampened.

  • 57 months ago
  • 3 points

Sweet build! Looks real clean

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you!

  • 57 months ago
  • 3 points

frickin SWEET! nice colour choices mannn, have fun :) +1

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks a lot man!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

it would look sweet

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Woh

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

~Nice sleeving! Enjoy your build :)

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you! The BitFenix sleeved cables are very well designed.

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

u should totally do a custom water cooling loop in the future :D

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

I was definitely thinking about it. With this case it would totally be doable.

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Make sure the water in the loop is ANOTHER shade of blue! And maybe LED's?

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Well of course the water loop would be ANOTHER shade of blue!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Wouldn't be hard to do! Refer to my loop all you want :P You're in a blue H440 case and I'm in a white so we won't be competition :D

If you need any help feel free to ask! My custom loop is unique to other H440s and I would have no problem helping you with the wierdness challenge the case presents to water cooling.

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

I just took a look at your build, and wow, well done. If I ever decide to put a loop in this case, I well definitely talk to you. +1 for your build!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Oh man this looks great. Love the blues!

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks man!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Pure Beauty, I think I'm in Love looks great. :D <3<3

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you, but you can't have her; she's mine! :P

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

When did Bitfenix start selling cables with multiple colors in them because I got the alchemy ones as well but they only had single colored cables?

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

I am not entirely sure when, but if you are interested, you can buy them here: Performance PCs.

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

You can never have too much blue +1

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

That's right!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Better this time! Nicely done.

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks a lot man! I even added a few more pictures!

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

Yup! Still beautiful.

  • 57 months ago
  • 2 points

I see a fellow Corsair fanatic :3

  • 57 months ago
  • 1 point

Haha Indeed. If only Corsair made the H440! :P

  • 56 months ago
  • 2 points

Whoa, s*** is getting rough here on PCPP. Gg, great build, would've gone with a EVGA 970 FTW, or a 980 Stock.

Still, +1, thanks for the great pics and description..

  • 56 months ago
  • 2 points

Thank you for the +1. I would have gone with the 970 or 980, but during the time of this build, those cards were not released yet.

  • 56 months ago
  • 2 points

Just a suggestion; How much could you get if you sold those 2nd hand on Amazon? You could definitely use that money wisely for a bit more Efficient and better performing card. Still, thanks for the Answer.

  • 56 months ago
  • 2 points

BTW, I would F*** this build, everything here is exactly what I look for in a Killer PC, and it looks better than Scarlett Johanssen. Thanks again.

  • 55 months ago
  • 2 points

Whoa! I don't know about that! Scarlett Johanssen is a babe! But anyways, thank you for the compliment.

  • 55 months ago
  • 2 points

Thank you for the suggestion. Unfortunately the R9 290X's dropped a lot in the past months, so if I sold my card now, I could get at most maybe $250. On another note, I am actually interested in the 980's; however, there isn't a specific card that I like a lot. I am going to wait for R9 300 series to be released and make my final decision. I have also thought of going for 8GB of VRAM for ultra textures on Shadows of Mordor. We will see.

  • 55 months ago
  • 2 points

Great talking to you, and thanks for getting back to me so Quickly. Have a good one.

  • 55 months ago
  • 1 point

You as well.

  • 54 months ago
  • 2 points

So I have the same Motherboard and decided to see what others are doing with it. All I have to say is damn, this build looks completely sexy (both in hardware and actually looks). Great job +1

  • 54 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you! A lot of completed builds on this site with this motherboard also use the blue/black H440. The two just go together so well.

[comment deleted]
  • 53 months ago
  • 2 points

Any problems with 1.65v ram? I got a little warning when I built mine and it said it was not advisable to place 1.65v in 1.5v setup. I've heard you just tweak it on BIOS.

  • 53 months ago
  • 2 points

It shouldn't be a problem. My motherboards BIOS made it very easy to tweak clock speeds. As long as you have a fairly newer motherboard with an overclock tweaker, it should be fine.

  • 52 months ago
  • 2 points

Not enough pictures :/

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

I am sorry that 64 pictures are not enough for you sir.

  • 50 months ago
  • 2 points

I fell in love with this build the moment i set my eyes on it. This is absolutely phenomenal. Love that you did not go for a overkill build, but one that could help you in your daily tasks well. Great build!

  • 50 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you, means a lot! You bring a tear to my eye.

  • 50 months ago
  • 2 points

I have a recommendation: Put the h440 into your favorite parts list. Then everyone can see how much of a h440 fanatic you are!

  • 50 months ago
  • 1 point

That's a good idea! Thanks!

  • 50 months ago
  • 2 points

No Problem!

  • 45 months ago
  • 2 points

Sexy! How's that headset?

  • 45 months ago
  • 1 point

The SteelSeries Siberia Elite had a lot of problems. It was really buggy with the software, SteelSeries Engine 3. I also had a lot of problems with the mic and external sound card working consistently. I ended up sending it back because the mic died, and they set me the new SteelSeries Siberia Elite Prism which fixed all the problems the original had.

  • 44 months ago
  • 2 points

Hey man, thinking of getting this monitor for my build, mostly for photo editing, media consumption, and all around work. But i want to do some light to medium gaming, how does the monitor hold up to games? heard there's some ghosting.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

I love this monitor! All of the Dell Ultrasharp monitors look stunning. I recently picked up a second one, so I am currently running them in a dual monitor configuration.

These monitors are perfect for what you listed; however, like you said, ghosting maybe a problem because of the high response time. Personally, I have never experienced ghosting in game, but I am also not that picky.

Main reason I chose this monitor. I wanted a 60Hz IPS LED 24" monitor with very thin bezels and compatible with displayport. Visually speaking, this Ultrasharp panel is far superior than anything else I could have gotten, and the monitor itself looks amazing.

These monitors are very well designed. The frame is sturdy and the stand is stable. Now that I have two of these monitors, I am not tempted to buy an aftermarket dual monitor stand because the stock stands are perfect.

Bottom line, I would say this monitor is the best you could get at 1080p. It's not going to be cheap though.

  • 44 months ago
  • 2 points

That's perfect for me then. I'm not that picky as well with response times on games as Im not playing that much as it is. but the factory calibration is what is calling me to this monitor. It's pretty expensive to buy the equipment to calibrate so the fact that Dell does that out of box is amazing. Thanks for the thorough feedback, I appreciate it.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

No problem!

I recommend you try at least two of these side by side. The bezel is just too thin not to! :P

If you are curious, this is my current set up with two monitors.

I hope it suits you well.

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

How did you get the Bitfenix cable extensions soo cheap?

+1 For amazing blue build... Makes my brother jealous... he likes blue...

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

I bought the Bitfenix cable extensions at Performance PCs. Granted, that was more than a year ago, so the same cables might be more expensive now.

And glad you liked the build!