This is my first build in over a decade, so be kind.
I researched extensively before picking each and every part and built this system from the ground up to maximize performance per dollar spent.
My biggest splurge by far was the Acer Predator x34. But it was worth every cent and more! WOW!!! is all I have to say. I had been using an old Dell 27" ultrasharp for the last 10+ years and was desperately in need of a monitor upgrade. I often keep things like keyboards and monitors when I switch out systems so I didn't mind splurging on those items.
The Zalman CNPS9900MAX-B CPU Cooler which I personally think looks amazing served as my original stylistic inspiration for the build as well as the infinitely customizable Razer Blackwidow Chroma keyboard.
The Samsung 950 PRO 512 GB PCI-E SSD is the muscle I built the entire system around. Reading about this drive was what made up my mind to build a new system, and every choice I made afterwards was to maximize it's performance. I was totally mesmerized by it's potential 2500/1500 + read write speeds, and 3500/3000 + read write speeds in Raid 0.
I picked the MSI Z170A Xpower Gaming Titanium Motherboard mainly because it had two ultra M.2 slots and secondly because I loved the sleek minimalist silver color scheme it has. I picked the Fractal Design Define S case with a window for it's minimal design and superior cooling, sound and cable management.
I wanted to see if I could make a top of the line overclocked system that stayed cool and quite using air only that had the ability to raid 0 two ultra m.2's since I wanted to use m.2 exclusively. I figured with all the new generation parts running cooler these days and fewer moving parts (no optical or traditional drives) that air alone would be sufficient.
I know nearly everyone here seems to be obsessed with water cooled systems, but I just have an aversion to mixing water with electronics and honestly didn't think water would be necessary to cool a new system like I was building. In my opinion if you want a tube of bubbling water inside your case, buy a lava lamp and set it in there :)
I have this system moderately overclocked to 4.5 GHz and the CPU idles around 28-29 F and only goes up to the low 60's when stressed. The system rocks the benchmark charts, often outperforming systems with far better cards than the GTX 970 that I am using.
I built this system just prior to the geforce 1080 and 1070 cards being released, and am seriously considering ebaying my 970 and switching over to one of those two (probably the 1070) and paying the difference which once the price goes down to where it should be will raise the total cost of the system by $150 or so . I also have had a few issues with XMP settings and memory that have forced me to under clock the memory to 2,800 or so. But I have 4 sticks of DDR4 3000 CORSAIR Dominator Platinum on the way that New Egg just put on sale that I hope might solve the XMP issue.
Hope you enjoy the pics!