(Update: Revised clock speed down)
Some of the driving factors behind this build:
- I had not built a computer since March 2009 (I built this one mostly in May 2015). I wanted to get back in touch with what has been happening in hardware.
- I had been tiding myself over by gaming on PS4, but I really had an itch to get back into PC gaming.
- I had been tiding myself over for programming and office activities with a laptop that was kind of slow and had some odd behaviors in Windows.
Some of the goals and design decisions for the build:
- Go with the X99 platform because it's great and is a little more future proof (has the new socket type, supports DDR4).
- Aside from going with X99, try to identify very cost-effective parts by doing lots of research.
- Go with air cooling for now, but try to get parts that would allow for water cooling in the future, if possible.
- Try to have it be reasonably quiet.
- Go with black & white colors where possible.
- I planned to put the computer on my desk to the right of my monitor, so I figured I might as well get a case with a window and have it look nice inside.
- The case needed to be narrow enough to fit on the raised part of my desk to the right of the monitor (as shown in the last picture).
Reasons I went with air cooling for now:
- The all-in-one units don't seem to strike the right cost-performance balance for now if you care about noise and don't need ultimate performance.
- I didn't have enough time to research parts for a custom loop.
- I intended to use the ASUS 5-way-optimization thing, which does some fan optimization.
- The following video influenced me to try the ASUS auto OC, and supported the air cooling idea: ASUS X99 Software Features & Overclocking
- The ASUS software automatically overclocked it to 4.4 GHz, which was higher than I was expecting.
- The system is very stable -- I've had maybe one crash in almost 2 months of use.
- No problems at all with gaming. Lots of Battlefield 4.
- It looks great overall and when looking in through the window. The light bars are a little brighter than I would like, but it's ok.
About the storage: I have a separate server, so this one doesn't have much storage. Also, I'm waiting for a good M.2 NVMe drive to come out; these 850 EVOs are will become backup storage once I get that drive.
The pictures show an optical drive, which is there only temporarily.