This is my first build, after months of debating on getting a PS4/X1 and a new laptop or building I decided on the later (obviously). I didn't want to go middle of the road but also did not want to spend 3-4k either. I know nothing is future proof in this industry but at least it will provide usability for the next year or so and anything is better than the 5 year old laptop we were using. It is going to be used mostly for media (Netflix Youtube etc and music) but also some big title games GTAV, Battlefield, COD, FARCRY. So I knew I needed something strong for those demanding games but also didn't want to bust the bank, because at that point I would have went console with a cheaper laptop with a HDMI port. The idea was to get a strong start but leave options for upgrades later if and when needed. There is still a lot of overclocking and optimizing I can do with these parts but at this time its running strong no BSoD and quiet as all can be. My only regret is not doing a modular PSU, when I add my second HDD I am going to order some sleeved extensions and I will reroute some cables but for now it is OK. If you want some better pics or whatever just ask and I'd be happy to oblige.
CPU: The debates on AMD over Intel is enough to drive you crazy but in the long run the 8 cores, overclockablity and price won out with the 8350 black, out of the box it clocked at 4.02 with AI suite it automatically optimized it at 4.3ghz. temps started around 35c but idle is a solid 23c now under load haven't seen it higher than 41. UPDATE: Pushed the clock up a little with auto tuning, now it's a little over 4.5ghz. Temps are still vary stable.
CPU Cooler: Hyper 212, not much that I can say that hasn't been said a 100x over, ratings and reviews are great but it was a pain in the *** to install. It took a good hour of reading forums to understand that it is OK for it to rotate as long as it doesn't rock back and forth, which still doesn't make sense to me. Rookie mistake with the thermal paste too (make sure you remove the sticker off the bottom lol). If I decide to dabble into super over clocking looking for 5+ghz then I will switch it out for a water cooler.
Motherboard: I know people will say I over spent on the motherboard and should have used that money toward a better GPU but it has all the features I wanted, great support with drivers and it is still "new" enough that ASUS will keep it updated. Plus at the time it was 20 bucks cheaper than the PRO that I've read had issues with the 8350.
Memory: This is one of those categories that is very subjective to the individual, Kingston is a great company (that I've read) and their new line has some good reviews. 8gb is the standard so that's what I went with and at 1866mhz it is stable to overclock to 2033 with AI Suite. I don't know much about timings so I'll probably never mess with it or voltage so I'm happy with it as it sits.
Storage: Caviar blue at 6gb/s and 7200rpm is fast enough for me, I will add another 1 or 2 soon as Remote GO (motherboard feature) acts as a Cloud. Just didn't see the need for a SSD and the added $100
Video Card: Deep breath The 270x fit the budget, reviews are great, support is great and it takes overclocking really well. I'm not a huge gamer to begin with but I knew I need something that will play big title games at 1080p. If it goes on sale or I can snipe a new one off eBay I will be more than happy to add a second one. Benchmarks look OK to me and I haven't adjusted anything on the card, not sure why Heaven resolution was at 1030x751 I will rerun at 1920 Update: Well the 270 took a crap and since I've only had it for 3 weeks Amazon was willing to do a full refund (love this company). Soooo I went with a 290x, heat and power draw are the biggest concerns with these cards but after 5 hours of Unigine Valley at 1080p max temp only hit 70c. Case flow must be awesome because she's pushing out some heat. I will update the benchmarks to reflect the new card.
Case: Yayy it has a window so I can see all my money lol. Its simple, unobtrusive, USB 3.0 up front and has good airflow with the added 120s up top. I wish cable management was better but that's kind of my fault because I've seen people with the same case make it look amazing.
PSU: Again price and reviews is what sold me, only regret is not going modular because of cable management. I'm happy with 750w although I wish it had Corsair Link, I'm a sucker for sensors.
Optical Drive: $13....lol
Operating System Honestly I don't mind it now that I've used it for a few weeks, it really is more for a tablet but hopefully with the FREE Windows 10 upgrade for 8.1 users they rectify all the issues. They seem to follow that pattern, 1 good 1 bad then a patch then 1 good.
Monitor It was a $150 at micro center and the best looking non ISP they had set up. I haven't seen any ghosting issues, the blacks are black and she is BRIGHT, turned it down to 25. 2ms response time. checked all my boxes Second display is the 55'' Samsung for movies and YouTube. 1080p looks good
Mouse and KB: They have pretty lights lol(wife picked out the KB), I don't really care about the positive clicks on the board or the DPI that's why I bought the 360 controller. Games that don't support controller, well I guess I'll just have to make due.