I thought that since I never got around to uploading it, and I have finished all the upgrades and changes that I had originally planned, I would share my first build. Its the PC that really got me into PC gaming and building computers for others and teaching people how to build them. I built it in Sept 2014 with the help of one of my friends. The reason I chose many of the parts was so my PC would have room for upgrades. I started off with the 750 Ti, which proved to be an amazing gpu that got its money's worth and a motherboard that had a nice chipset and sli/crossfire support.
I wanted to wait for the 10 series gpus before I upgraded my graphics card, so I started off by adding more RAM, a liquid cooler to OC the cpu, more storage for all the screen recordings I had, and a new monitor I got for almost $100 off on black friday. The RAM had also dropped to about $50 with the rising popularity of DDR4, so I got a good deal there as well. I had to get a different cooler because of the ram, given the Hyper 212 EVO blocked off some ram slots, and the Captain 120EX looked way to good to pass up. I also switched over to my old Xbox 360 headset (Tritton 720) that turned out to be much better than the headset I had bought. The 750 Ti was still going strong on the 1440p monitor, and I could still run most things I played (Borderlands 2, CSGO, MW2, Long Dark, and Mincraft) at medium to high settings and still get 50-60 fps. However, the 750 Ti's greatness dropped off after I tried playing Batman Arkham Knight, ESO, Witcher 3, and PUBG on the new monitor and got the money together for a 1070 that still matched my color scheme.
Second Upgrade (Current Parts List)
Pictures 1 and 11-24
Given I was getting ready to go off to college, I knew that the NZXT Phantom was just too big to have to haul around. I had to downsize it. I originally had planned to get a smaller motherboard to put a small form factor case, but after seeing the prices of mini and micro Z97 motherboards online, it did not seem worth it. I decided I'd go for a Mid Tower with good airflow and one that still matched up with my theme. I found an Air 540 for about $20 off on Amazon and this case is stunning. It has extremely good cable managing, 3 fans, an SSD rack, and small SATA/power plug ins for the HDDs to make it super easy to build in.
How it Runs Now
I play nearly all my games at 1440p 60-75 fps ultra, with the exception of some settings on PUBG (its getting better as optimization updates come out) and hairworks on Witcher 3 off along with 1 or 2 other things on high. Its super quiet, I hardly hear anything sounds from the fan or the liquid cooler pump. The lighting at my dorm almost makes more sound.
I put in all the prices I paid for everything. Feel free to ask questions and leave comments :)
Runs fairly cool and does not reach high load often, even when playing newer games. It is easy to OC with an aftermarket cooler.
A very simple cooler to install since it is a closed off loop. It keeps my i5-4670K at around 25 degrees C at idle, is very quiet, and looks stunning, especially with a white themed build. It has a light on the cooler that pulses on and off so make sure to have a case with a window to see it.
High quality thermal paste, I use it on all the builds I have done. Lots of uses in one tube as well.
I've had this board for 3 years and it has an awesome layout and plenty of ports. The BIOS is very user friendly as well and board has lots of upgrade capability.
Looks sleek, matches the red on my motherboard, gets the job done. The only complaint is that the heat spreaders are pretty tall, so make sure to check the clearance with your cooler.
Very nice SSD, always fast, and has a modern look to it. No problems in the 3 years I have owned it.
Still runs great after 3 years, although there was some clicking about 1 year into it, it is long gone now (made sure to have a back up). Pretty quick hard drive and great price.
Perfect HDD to have as a backpack or for extra storage that you don't need to boot up instantly. It does take a few seconds to open sometimes, but it's very reliable and worth it for the price as a backup drive or just some extra storage.
Runs every game I throw at it like a beast. Runs Witcher 3 at 1440p with almost all the settings on ultra, except for mainly hairworks and a couple things on high. I wish it came with a backplate. but the card looks great and stays cool.
This case will make any build look amazing. There is tons of room in the back to manage cables, it has cool features for the HDDs and SSDs like built in SATA and power plugs and a nice rack for SSDs. It comes with 3 case fans with 2 in the front that have LEDs and one in the back. The power supply holder can be adjusted for multiple sizes, which is cool and it holds the PSU on its side. The panels and vents are easy to take off and the case has tons of room to work in, would recommend for anyone willing to spend the money it.
The cables are all black, its corsair quality and is super quiet. The fan only turns on when it needs to.
I bought it on Black Friday on Newegg for $260 and it was well worth it. The speakers are actually pretty good to where I don't need to buy any and with 1 ms response time and 75 hz refresh rate its hard to beat. The stand that comes with it is high quality as well and easily slides up and down when you need it to.
I have used it for 3 years and going and nothing on it has broken at all. The keys show no wear and the green backlit is still bright. It does not have any extra hotkeys on it like some of the steelseries keyboards, but I love how the keys are spread it nicely and not super tight like a mechanical keyboard.
The length of the mouse can be adjusted and it has a few programmable hotkeys. It is very lightweight and the mouse sensitivity can be adjusted to 3 different settings with a button it. Still works fine after 3 years.