Yes…..all white build number 8 thousand!!
I had this idea formulated in my mind for several months, long before I discovered PCPartPicker.com. It wasn’t till I found the site that I realized how many other builders had the same idea. Oh well, not only was my mind made up on what I wanted to do, but I had already purchased my case. White and more white, that’s how it was going to be, lol.
This is my first build, ever. Although, I have been home/desktop computer gaming for over 20 years. In fact, my very first Packard Bell cost more than this build did. I tend to get a new computer every 5 years or so, but I always went for the pre-built ones. My last one was a 2008 Dell XPS 730X, which actually has been absolutely rock solid for me. The only upgrades I ever did was to put in more RAM and faster video card, minor stuff. So I was pretty excited and a tad nervous when I embarked on this project. Also, I wanted to build something that I will get at least 5 years out of. I had to stick to a budget as well, I told my wife I would keep it around $1500. I knew at this price point that I would have to sacrifice on something, namely the video card. I have every intention to go twin 980’s in SLI and a 4k monitor sometime in the near future. This is what I ended up with for now.
Case: NZXT H440 in white. Beautiful and easy to work with. With the bright white LED’s, it just looks so cool and frosty inside! I read a lot of comments that complained of poor airflow and that good cable management on the “closed” side was difficult because of limited space between the case and the side panel. First: airflow seems fine to me. The cpu stays around 22-24c when just browsing the internet or idle. I ran the Firestike demo expecting it to jump up a little, but it never moved. I’ll explain my cooling solution below. Second: the backside of the case is very tight, but as you can see by my pictures, I used pretty smart cable management. It does not look horrible, I can get to every connection if I need too, and better yet, I can practically put the cover on with 1 hand, it does not bind up anywhere.
Cooling: Lots of fans! If you count in the gpu and power supply fans, there are 14! Corsair H105 in push pull configuration as an intake, SP 120’s up top as an exhaust, and AF140 in back as an exhaust. You would think all these fans would make it rather noisy. It’s not…it’s dead silent under most conditions, however once the cpu hits 30%, the 2 “push” fans on the water cooler will kick in and then you can hear it. Although it’s really not that bad or bothersome considering it sits just 3 feet from my ear. The foam insulation of the case does pretty well to mask it.
Other parts: Motherboard: Expensive yes…but white, a must have for the look I was going for and actually a damn fine board as well.
Memory: Again…white, fit my theme. PSU: Yeah…spent too much….but wanted something that was future proof. Probably more than I will ever need.
CPU: Went with this one for 2 reasons. Future proof (somewhat) and was on sale at MicroCenter for $279. I also could not afford to build an X99 system, so this would have to do for awhile.
Cooling: I was leaning towards the H100i, but finally decided on the H105. It has a larger radiator which easily fit my case and I didn’t want to deal with the Corsair Link crap, as I have read nothing good about it. Lots of fans, as I already noted, it stays frosty.
Video card: Found the 4gb version of the GTX960 for only a few dollars more than the 2gb. I also wanted the top cooling plate to help complete the look I was going for. I gave it a light coat of hi-temp spray paint (along with the ring on the water cooler). I think it looks pretty good. This was my main compromise, but I do plan to upgrade to some 980’s in SLI relatively soon.
Other stuff: Again, this is my first build. After seeing other builds on here, I really wanted to do a good job on cable management. I mean really, if you’re going to have a window to see the parts, why not make it neat and pretty. Take the extra time and spend a few more dollars and do it neatly. Otherwise, don’t bother with a windowed case. Changed out the 24pin, CPU power, and vid card power cables with the sleeved white ones. I’m not real happy with the video card wires though, they are a bit “floppy” and just don’t look as good as I had hoped. But overall, I’m very pleased with how it all came out. It looks good, all parts worked out of the box, it was a lot of fun working on it, and it should give me several years of gaming pleasure.