Still in process, just getting my initial thoughts down. Gotta get that OS loaded...

This is my first build. My goal was to get more performance for my money and have a good time doing something new. Even though I can't geek hard on the high end components, I still had a great time comparing parts and builds and balancing performance with cost. I'll be using this machine for school, database and programming, GIS work, and day-to-day web, photos, music, movies.

Installing the CPU was easy. I had originally installed the OEM heatsink but decided to upgrade to an aftermarket model. I also added two additional case fans. May seem like overkill but I live in Baja Arizona and my house doesn't have A/C, only a swamp cooler. Summer is coming...

One hiccup was attaching the front panel cables to the mobo. Some of the cables had a clear +- orientation but some only had a little arrow pointing to one pin. I assumed it was the + and so far my machine hasn't exploded so I think I got it right.

I really liked the case. Really really like the case. It made cable management easy and came with fairly clear instructions on installation of the components. It's a great size with the expansion options that work for me. I also like that the LEDs are unobtrusive. I'm not looking for a machine that doubles as a nightlight.

Monitor and OS were free.

Down the line I'll probably get a HDD for backup. I may get a discrete graphics card, after seeing how the integrated graphics handles the GIS that I do. Even less probable, but possible, an SSD for my OS and software.


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