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The Gundam - April 2013 Build

by skyfox64


Part List View full price breakdown


CPU Clock Rate


CPU Temperature While Idle

36.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

60.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate


GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate


GPU Temperature While Idle

36.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

65.0° C


Tl;dr: Gundam: My PC build + home theater masterpiece

This was my first build. It was completed back in April 2013. The parts were picked over several weeks in March and was pieced together in weeks following. For months after my build, I had totally forgotten to post my build on here. I felt that this was ironic due to the fact that this site and looking at many other people's builds is what helped me start out to begin with. I pretty much have to just say thank you to everyone on here. So many people don't know it, but they helped me greatly in my build's coming together. Also, I would like to give a shout out to the many forums out there, such as, but especially Tom's hardware ;D and places like Anandtech.

Through the photos, you'll see various shots of how far this PC has come. It's gone from one apartment to the next, and it's even accumulated a bit of dust through the front intake... I'm only reminded after posting photos of it so I'll get to cleaning that. But yeah, in the photos there's some highlights. Namely: Zelda and Pokemon stuff, 60" TV, a coffee mug with Link on it, a creeper head plush my sister made for me, my old laptop, an AU camelbak, a Pikachu, Zubat, a Togepi and a Pokeball. And the computery stuff like: the bench test, the BIOS screen, the modding and fusing of a HDD and the LED's controller, the adding of the LED's, the pedestal I built just for the Gundam to sit on away from the dirty floor, the bootscreen that welcomes you as a Gundam Pilot -- yeah that stuff.

I did my fair share of O.C.-ing but decided to do just a little bit of one. I decided on 1866MHz, CAS latency 9, dual-channel RAM for many reasons. The price vs performance ratio will drop the higher you go past 1600MHz, but since 1866MHz was one notch up, I went with it. The 1866MHz RAM was O.C.-ed to 2133MHz. 2133MHz is slightly more noticeable over 1600MHz than 1866MHz. Depending on what I'm doing, which has been bitcoin-mining at one time or another, I O.C. the Radeon 7950 usually around 1000MHz to 1100MHz. I leave the i7 O.C.-ed at 4.2GHz. I could do up to 4.6GHz but because it's not needed for my uses and I wish to prolong the longevity of the components a bit, I've left it at a small overclock. One day I would like to do a mineral oil based build and do a insane overclock.

The system is silent. The case definitely helps. During normal use it actually blows cool air out the back. 4 SP fans in a push pull intake on the H100i in the front and 1 normal intake fan on the bottom brings in a huge airflow of cool air from outside the case. The only exhaust is the 1 rear AF 140mm fan, thus keeping a positive pressure inside of the case also ridding the system of any hot air. Positive pressure is important when keeping dust out, and the system clean.

The NZXT LED's are nice and were pretty fun to work with, especially when sneaking the 2TB HDD behind it. I was worried about it at first but the HDD actually stays cooler than the SSD. From photos you'll notice the SSD is placed behind the Mobo. It stays at max of around 40 C back there. It's temps are around that of the CPU's, given they're near each other.

I use this PC for home theater use to simple browsing to gaming to even coding. I sometimes even use CAD and 3D modeling software for school. To keep me future-proof, I built it to be well-rounded and it indeed is. I mean come on, it's hooked up to a 60" LED TV - it's going to be awesome no matter what. ....now all I need is to do 180 inches of EYE FINITY :D Say whutt. I would break the bank.



Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($244 after taxes @ Microcenter)

CPU Cooler:

Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($91.99 @ Newegg after $10 MIR)


Asus P8Z77-V ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($177.00 @ Microcenter after 2-year warranty and taxes)


G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($103.49 @ Newegg after %10 off Promo)


Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Samsung 840 Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($159.99 @ Adorama)

Video Card:

Gigabyte Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($299.99 @ Newegg; comes with Crysis 3 and Bioshock Infinite)


Fractal Design Define R4 w/Window (Titanium Grey) ATX Mid Tower Case ($104.45 @ NCIX US)

Case Fan:

Corsair Air Series SP120 High Performance Edition (2-Pack) 62.7 CFM 120mm Fans ($27.99 @ Amazon)
Corsair Air Series AF140 Quiet Edition 67.8 CFM 140mm Fan ($18.99 @ Newegg)

Power Supply:

SeaSonic 660W 80 PLUS Platinum Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg after $36 instant savings + $20 MIR)

Optical Drive:

Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($55.99 @ Newegg + 25 Blu-Ray Discs ($15.00 value))


ASUS SPDIF Optical and RCA Out Plate Cable Bracket ($13.58)
NZXT HUE RGB LED Controller ($32.99)
Keyboard: Logitech K800 Wireless Slim Keyboard ($68.60 @ Amazon)


Left-angle SATA 6Gbps data cables x2 $9.58 @ Newegg
Left-angle SATA power adapter cables x2 $5.86 @ PCH Cables
Fan Splitter x3 $11.07 @ Newegg
PWM Fan extender x2 $9.98 @ Newegg
10ft Coaxial SPDIF/RCA Cable $5.14 @ Amazon
Total: $41.63

           Full Retail Total:       $2,202.07   
           Total after taxes and so forth:  $1,620.65   
           Savings if coming from Full Retail:  $581.42     
           Estimated actual real-world savings: somewhere between $300-$400  
                                                  PC Total: $1,620.65

  Free or already had:

Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($Free from a friend) (~$140 value)
Mouse: Razer Naga Epic Wireless Laser (17 button MMO gaming mouse) ($129.99 value)
Total valued price: ~$270

  Home Theater:

Samsung UN60ES6003 60" LED HDTV ($1297.97 + $250 4-year warranty + S&H = $1547.97 @ TigerDirect)
KRK RP6G2 Rokit G2 Studio Monitors x2 ($399.99 @ Amazon; comes with two stands and XLR cables)
Matrix Mini-I DAC/Pre-Amp ($315.99 @ Tam Audio) (Used for XLR balanced connection between source and studio monitors)

PC Total: $1,620.65                        PC Total Full Retail Value: $2,202.07
HT Total: $2,364.78                              HT Full Retail Value: +$3,000
Free or already had-Total: FREE!                             Free stuff's Retail Value: ~$270
                    Total: $3,916.83                           Full Retail Value Total: $5,477.07

Comments Sorted by:

Colinislegend 2 Builds 8 points 49 months ago

You should've spent some of that money on a new couch!!

Just kidding man. Awesome theatre, I'm jealous.

Who needs couches anyway? I'd sit on the floor to have that set up. :)


skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 2 points 49 months ago

lol I'm in college! I spend money where it counts ;D

I sit on the floor sometimes to eat off the coffee table lol

But yeah, thanks so much. I did an internship and decided - hey - It's time I finally got a new machine + a new TV to go with it.

DjArtifact 4 points 49 months ago

Really nice battlestation and really nice build.


skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 2 points 49 months ago

Thanks! It was a real pleasure putting it together.

RyneSmith 7 Builds 4 points 49 months ago

Awesome job my friend, an amazing setup!

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 2 points 49 months ago

Thank you, thank you.

spencerharden 2 points 49 months ago

the pics are awesome because the legend of zelda in it

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

Awwe thanks, I'm glad someone noticed! lol Yeah I'm big on Zelda. I should've taken a picture of my door and you'd have seen this: http://www.etsy.com/listing/97121967/legend-of-zelda-inspired-key-hanger?ref=tre-2720350005-2

spencerharden 1 point 49 months ago


skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

You should get one! The lady is kinda backed up on orders though.

spencerharden 1 point 49 months ago

i would see y . but i cant im putting all my money in this pc build right now cant be wasting my money right now

spencerharden 0 points 49 months ago

u should check out my build and give some feedback http://pcpartpicker.com/b/Gzf

ilian11 1 Build 2 points 49 months ago

enjoyed looking through your pics and setup, thanks for sharing!

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

Well thank you :) I really appreciate it.

F00_13 1 Build 2 points 49 months ago

War Damn.

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

Nice eye! I can't believe you caught that.

Warrrrrrr Eagle!

YourLocalPCNoob 1 Build 1 point 49 months ago

Do you use the AF or the SP on the radiators?

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

SP for static pressure. They're made to push and pull air when right up against a radiator. :)

blaziecat1103 1 point 49 months ago

I see you have a creeper inspecting your system. That's an omen meaning that your Blu-Ray drive is going to blow up. :)

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

I hope not! But that wouldn't be like my whole base and goodies blowing up :) More like just a chest full of lapus lazuli and not like a chest full of diamond which would be like my CPU. xD

Itroitnyah 1 Build 1 point 49 months ago

I think this is the first time I've seen a pair of studio reference monitors used as in an entertainment system set up. Do you use them for music production/composition as well, or just for the entertainment setup?

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

Oh no, I'm not involved in music production. They were an alternative to using speakers. I searched all over audiophile-like forums and multiple times I was told that for the best sound quality, and for cheaper, I should choose studio monitors. They're great. Love em. I hear things I never knew were there. From there I add my own effects through equalizers on the PC and also for the tele. Thanks for noticing btw!

Itroitnyah 1 Build 1 point 49 months ago

Aaah, alright. I personally would have recommended getting a pair or Polk or Pioneer speakers for around the same price, mostly due to the studio monitors being very directional, and without acoustic treatments have natural reverb (although it isn't noticeable unless you've been using monitors for quite some time in a treated room). But the directional problem is the only real downside here. Great choice on monitors too, I've heard mostly wonderful things about KRK

I personally use a part of Yamaha HS80M, and I absolutely love them. I can hear absolutely everything with them

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

I can tell you're an audiophile. :D I'm just a padawan, if that. Trying to learn what's good. Those Yamaha's have good reviews. Before I came to KRK, I was actually looking at some Pioneers. I checked out JBL and Polk as well.

Yeah, they're definitely directional, which isn't entirely bad. I chose these due to their forward firing bass, of which bass doesn't exactly work that way. I was thinking of my neighbors when I did my shopping, being that I didn't want noise complaints on me just cause I liked watching a couple of movies loud. Same for games, too. Haha

Itroitnyah 1 Build 2 points 49 months ago

Haha, yeah I'm a bit of an audiophile. I've just been doing music production for a bit so I know a lot about this type of stuff. Gunna go to college for music and audio degrees too.

Yochewy 1 point 49 months ago

How is the noise level of your fans?

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 49 months ago

What noise level?

jk lol

I have so many fans and they're all set at very low speeds. Even on low, everything stays cool. Through programs, I set the fans to run faster if temps rise, which even during gaming, between the graphics cards fans and the others, it doesn't get all that noticeable. Plus the case greatly helps with sound dampening. When I game, I sometimes open the front door though to allow better air flow. However, this also makes it so the noise is not longer dampened.

One more note, I did not place fans on the top vents because this would decrease overall noise dampening.

When planning this build, I knew I would not game using my headset that often, so I planned around potential [fan] noise. I went with several viable solutions. The key components include the H100i along with the many fans(6 total), the case and even the power supply. The Seasonic features a hybrid fan mode which has 3 modes: fanless, silent, and cooling(actually running). The PSU fan of course never runs during normal use, as for during hardcore gaming, I can't hear any other fan over the 7950's or the combined 4 on the radiator with the door open.

To answer your question, I haven't measured the noise levels using decibels or a sound meter. Just take my word for it and know that I think it's pretty darn quiet ;)

lachrymal 1 point 46 months ago

Is that a step stool and where did you get it? I need one for my pc because my cheap pos desk gives me no room for a tower and would like to keep it up off the floor.

skyfox64 submitter 2 Builds 1 point 46 months ago

It's something I pieced together. I had a black lacquered press board fitted with 4 black feet I picked up from Home Depot. I made it because I wanted the pc a bit further away from the floor. The bottom intake probably appreciates it.