This build is mainly used for gaming and college work; however, it can also be used for things such as video editing. After finishing this build I felt a great sense of achievement, we all know the feeling for when it boots into the BIOS for the first time. For the build, I was going for mainly a red theme.
Before purchasing all of the parts for the machine, I thought long and hard of what components to purchase, and whether they will be the best for the price. I had a long time before I was able to purchase the parts, so everyday I would check for the best components and update the part list. Once I had money to purchase the components I did, and never looked back...
Run-down of the parts:
-Intel Core i7 4790k Processor: This was at the time the latest desktop 4th generation i7 available as it is the Haswell refresh, this is a very solid CPU, as it performs well in EVERY game I throw at it. Since I have A Corsair H110 liquid cooler, I over-clocked the CPU to 4.6GHz @ 1.28v, opposed to the stock turbo frequency of 4.0GHz. In a game such as CS:GO, which is very CPU intensive, I get around 200-400 FPS.
-Corsair Hydro Series H110 280mm : This is an all-in-one liquid cooler, the liquid cooler has 280mm radiator opposed to the H100i's 240mm radiator, meaning the radiator can support 2x140mm fans. Application of the CPU cooler was very easy, thermal paste was already pre-applied. At idle, temps are around 28-34 °C. Under heavy load, the temperatures can reach up to 65 °C, which is very acceptable considering the overclock.
-Asus Maximus VII Ranger Z97 Motherboard: This a very reliable ROG motherboard and also highly affordable, this motherboard contains many features such as, over-clocking or even setting up a RAID array. This motherboard features a UEFI BIOS, allowing me to easily change settings, and also shows all relevant information such as temperatures, frequencies, voltages, etc.
-Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB Dual Channel @ 2400MHz: This is a 16GB kit @ 2400MHz. This set of RAM's red heat spreaders look absolutely amazing and really fits with the red theme. This RAM is extremely fast, and is very stable. Installation of the RAM was very easy, as you can imagine.
-Storage: For storage, I have a 120GB Samsung 840 EVO for the operating system and programs such as Microsoft Office, and also for games which I play frequently, such as CS:GO. Even with the operating system on it, it still has a very read and write speed of around 500MB/S, using Crystal Disk Mark. The Seagate 1TB drive however, contains everything else, things which don't need to be accessed very frequently, and the drive is mostly used to house my Steam library.
-Gigabyte Radeon R9 280X 3GB GDDR5 Graphics Card: This is a very strong graphics card, I got a really great deal on this GPU for around £140, making this a very high performing card for the price, otherwise I would have gone for something slightly better. This GPU runs every game at very good framerate at +60 FPS on high-very high settings. For example, on Battlefield 4, the game runs at constant 60 FPS at 1080p on Ultra-settings, using the AMD Mantle API.
-Corsair Obsidian Series® 750D Full Tower ATX Case: The reason I chosen this case is because of its aesthetics, the case looks absolutely amazing with a minimalistic design, while still allowing lots of functionality. The case was amazing to build with. I have built PC's previously using other cases and this by far was the easiest to use. Stand-offs were pre-installed, cable management with this case was very easy due to the rubber grommets. This case supports a 280mm radiator at the top. The case comes with 3 140mm fans.
-Corsair RM Series RM750 — 750 Watt 80 PLUS Gold Power supply: This is a very reliable power supply and has a lot of headroom for if I was to upgrade the PC in the future. The fan on the power supply does not turn on unless under moderate load, which is great for normal computer use as it is completely silent. This power supply is fully modular, allowing me to decide which cables I will be using, this is great for cable management as I do not have to hide the cables I do not use.
Problems Encountered: Throughout building this PC, it was very easy, however there were a few drawbacks, for example, the motherboard has a total of 5 PWM fan headers on the motherboard, although I only have 5 fans, the H110 liquid cooler requires a fan header for the pump, resulting in not being able to plug a fan in. I resolved this problem by purchasing a 4Pin PWM Male to Female Y-Splitter cable, allowing me to use 2 fans at the same RPM, on one fan header. I used this for the H110's radiator fans. Another concern was that the GPU was getting very hot under load, around 80 °C, to solve this issue I re-applied thermal paste onto the GPU core, lowing the temperatures significantly
Overall this build went very well and I couldn't be happier with the result.