Description

I am a 74 year old retiree living in the Houston, Texas, USA area after working 46 years in various sales, marketing, and purchasing positions in the chemical distribution business.

Black Hole (PC5) is actually a rebuild/update of my Old Man's Build PC4. Black hole is my 5th PC but only my 3rd build. It is used for everything - heavy Internet and email use, gaming, watching DVDs, financial tracking, photo editing, etc.

I named it Black Hole because of the windowed all-black color scheme and also because of the increasingly larger amount of money that was being sucked into this build. There was no attempt at trying to hold to a budget with this build. I just wanted to make Black Hole the fastest and most powerful PC I could at the time.

At first look you might think I have a lot of separate drives. I tried to separate everything to eliminate an chance of data loss in case of catastrophic drive failure. The Intel 750 400GB is an NVMe PCIe drive and is my system boot drive. The Samsung 840 Pro 256GB holds my miscellaneous programs. The Samsung 840 EVO is for data storage (documents, Pictures, Videos, music). The Samsung 850 Pro 1TB holds my games. Two Western Digital 3TB HDs in RAID 1 hold backups.

The i7-4790K CPU is overclocked to 4.5 GHz. My custom cooling loop keeps the CPU and GPU temps down quite well.

The CaseLabs Merlin SM8 was great to build in, although maybe just a little large for me. A lot of extras were ordered from CaseLabs, hence the 'Custom', but this did make the SM8 more expensive than CaseLabs list.

The only real problem I ran into involved the UV lights. I first tried to use Logisys' 12" UV Led strip lights. They were nice and bright at first but faded away to almost nothing in about three weeks. The Lamptron cold cathode lights seem to be working well. I cannot recommend the Logisys lights.

My costs may appear a little high but everything is fully costed including our Texas state sales tax and all shipping & handling costs.

My parts list includes absolutely everything down to cable ties and distilled water which does make it a bit long.

Comments

  • 40 months ago
  • 7 points

This is what I will do with my retirement.

  • 40 months ago
  • 4 points

I actually like how you listed out absolutely everything. I have been curious as to all the nuts and bolts you'd use in a custom loop, and how much it may cost. +1

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

Total cost for the water cooling loop alone ran almost $1,000. I went a little crazy.

  • 40 months ago
  • 3 points

this is seriously cool. Proof that building a pc is fun for any age

  • 40 months ago
  • 4 points

I think it helps to keep my brain working.

  • 40 months ago
  • 3 points

Grandpa Got Skills!

  • 39 months ago
  • 2 points

Grandpa got G.Skills!! ; )

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

74? Nice to see that PC building is for people of any age! +1 for your watercooling!

  • 40 months ago
  • 5 points

I used to build radios back in the 1950s, then nothing for almost 60 years. It is good to get back to working with electronics again.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Can it play all the Microsoft preloaded games at full fps?

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Probably not.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

I don't know much about the Microsoft games. I can run Battlefield 3 & 4 and SkyRim on Ultra setting. My Acer display and GPU both run V-Sync which keeps everything matched at best settings. I get at least 60fps.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm sorry for the misunderstanding. Haha, there is this huge thing that goes on here. When someone builds an awesome PC someone says but can it run minesweeper ? Someone else will say no way. Just a joke. I'm sure this PC will run absolutely anything thrown at it.

  • 40 months ago
  • 9 points

Put one over on the old man, huh?

  • 40 months ago
  • 0 points

I'm sorry haha

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Is that your Daughter in the picture? anyways +1

  • 40 months ago
  • 4 points

such a beauty

  • 40 months ago
  • 3 points

i mean.. uhh the build is beautiful

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks, either way.

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

That is my 23 year old granddaughter. She lives with us while going to college.

  • 40 months ago
  • 0 points

woah, good on you helping her out! Grand daughter, I'm 21 this year and I could very well be your grand son. Nice!

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Beautiful build that should have been showcased! Congratulations on completing it and your attention to detail.

I'm 53 now and have a 2 yr old grandson living with me. If my math is correct, I will be 74 by the time he's 23. A co-incidence?

Enjoy!

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

My granddaughter has been a real joy to have with us. I hope your experience is equally rewarding. Thanks.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Very descriptive desc.! Will you be using that PCI SSD for anything other than your OS? Like an overflow of mass storage? +1 for dat sexy build

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

No, I am going to leave it as my system drive only. I have a few more thing to load like Rosetta Stone which can only be installed on the C:\ drive. Thanks for your comments.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

This is so awesome! I love when the retired among us know how to work with technology. +1, most badass grandpa award goes too...

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for the kind words.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

This is an awesome build, but dont you think its a bit overkill for 1440p?

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

Sure it is overkill. That was the plan. I wanted the big display, but it looked a little grainy at 1080p. The extra pixels with 1440p give a great picture, so I bought the 4K monitor. Who knows, 5K is coming soon.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Me when I'm 74, except we'll be tinkering with full-room vr sets and whatnot.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

this is a very cool pc you have built, hwellen :)

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice build.

  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Best 74 year old ever.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you very much.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

you've got lots of toys in this build! now that's over with.

in terms of backup in case of disaster, i would recommend an offsite backup service. i use to have crazy amounts of hard drives like you in my case but i realized that in a real disaster like theft or fire, i would lose all my data. there are several services out there that will allow you to back up your entire data collection on their server. Amazon S3 is pretty good. just set it to incrementally save once a week. you wont even know it's there because it runs in the background. you only pay for what you use and it's dirt cheap.

another service, i forgot the name, has a replacement service. if your hd fails and your data is backup with them. they just send you a new hard drive with your data on it. saves you time from downloading terrabytes...

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for your comments.

I guess you could say I am overly concerned (read that obsessed) about data loss. That is why I have for about 5 years used Carbonite as my off-site backup. The only issue I have had with them is that the download for any restore of data is pretty slow, just as you mention.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah I've heard that about Carbonite as well but ideally, the only time you need to use their download is in a complete disaster. In which case, i'll be happy that my data is retrievable...

I've also down sized my data storage quite a bit. I'm no longer a hoarder of shows, movies, music...Almost everything is accessible via streaming or other means so I dont feel the need to keep everything myself. Photos are all i keep these days. Work files are all in cloud accounts.

  • 39 months ago
  • 1 point

badass

  • 26 months ago
  • 1 point

Old peeps buld PC, Great build

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  • 40 months ago
  • 1 point

This definitely.

  • 40 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks.