Description

Hey everybody!

Thanks for looking at my build! This was my first build and let me say that I have been hooked. This build began in June 2015 and has been constantly evolving. I decided to build my own computer after I had just completed my undergrad work and received a Bachelors Degree in Computer Science. I had been using a 2011 Macbook Pro 13" for my entire time while in school and I just wanted to do something different. It was starting to show its age and also i was using Windows VMs for the majority of my classes.

This computer is mostly used for programming, watching youtube videos, and gaming. It does all these fantastically.

Future upgrades may include:

  • Larger Air cooler - maybe Noctua NH-U12S or Dark Rock 3 by be quiet! - DONE!
  • sleeved psu cables - I'm thinking white - partially done!
  • RGB lighting - to match the keyboard and mouse - DONE!
  • new graphics card when Pascal is released - upgraded to 1080 but sold it.

UPDATE: 4/22/18

Its been awhile since I have uploaded pics to show the upgrade that I have done on my computer. Here are some of the new items:

  • Added NZXT Hue+. Fantastic lighting! Highly recommend it!
  • Changed from ATX powersupply to Corsair SF600 SFX powersupply. This change was to give more airflow to the powersupply. ATX powersupplies are right next to the bottom of the card. Also SFX powersupply potentially could provide enough room to put 2.5 slot GPUs in a Mini ITX case.
  • Added white cable extensions to the 24-pin ATX cable and 8-pin EPS cable. They look fantastic!
  • Added a Samsung 850 EVO 500GB SSD for my Steam games. I wish I had more time to play them.
  • Removed the Noctua cooler and replaced with a Fractal Design S24 Celsius AIO. Nearly silent and provides additional headroom for overclocking my 4690k cpu. Currently temps are at 50C @ 4GHz with 100% utilization.

Thanks for looking. Feedback is welcome! Let me know what you think!

Part Reviews

CPU

When I originally purchased these parts, this was the best cpu for gaming. I wanted to try my hand at overclocking and I currently am running a modest overclock of 4.0GHz. I don't know how far I can push it but I know there is room for more. With a small overclock temps stay within what I feel comfortable. Prime95 pushes the temp to 78 - 80 degrees C. Normal gaming I don't get over 60 degrees C. Idle temps are around 30 - 32 degrees C.

Motherboard

I wanted to have a blue based theme and this board fit the budget well. It was pretty competitively priced as compared to similar models from different manufacturers. The onboard WIFI is really good since currently I don't have an Ethernet connection in my office. The BIOS is wonderfully layed out and easy navigate and I like that the BIOS is HD. It more appealing to look at and use.

Memory

The color matched the build that I wanted to work towards. It does its job and the capacity is more than I need for now but I have room to spare for future upgrades.

Storage

This drive is fast! It was the first SSD that I have purchased and have since put 2 additional SSDs in my wife's and my sister-in-law's Macbook Pros. Both of which are the Samsung 850 EVO's but 500GB instead. A great way to breath new life into an aging laptop IMO.

Video Card

Originally I had purchased a EVGA GTX 960 FTW for this build. I used it for about a month and decided I wanted a little more power. Through EVGA's Step Up Program, I was able to trade my 960 in and pay just the difference between the models and get the GTX 970 SSC instead. I am so glad that I did. This thing is a monster when it comes to gaming at 1080P. All games are maxed out at 60FPS with ultra settings. Currently I play Fallout 4 and Witcher 3 both on ultra. I couldn't be happier with this card.

Case

I always looked at a the Fractal Design cases and even planned to upgrade this build to a Define R5 or Define S but I really liked the small factor builds. I was so happy when this case became available. I purchased it as soon as I could. The quality of this case is amazing. I really like the multiple filters that are included and the sound dampening material as this case sits 2 feet from me when I use the computer. The included fans are quiet and the layout is fantastic. The only thing I would have liked for them to include but didn't is a fan controller or hub. Mini ITX motherboards are not known for having multiple fan headers. Mine only has two.

Comments

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Packs a punch in a small footprint. Nicely done; love the blue/black. Need to see that K70 ON!

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for the support! I added some pics of the K70. Take a look!

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice. I'm leaning towards a strafe but the K70 looks nice too.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

I do love me some mini-ITX. My girlfriend needs a PC this summer and this gave me a good look at the Thermaltake Core V1 layout.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

The Core V1 was a nice, inexpensive case. It would work well for a small build.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

This is really awesome!

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks!

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

I really love this build. A lot of power in a small form factor. +1 for sure

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! That's what I was wanting to achieve.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

Technically, you don't need the 2nd back fan on the cooler with that rear exhaust fan. Personally, I'd use that additional fan header for an extra front intake fan to help cool the gpu.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

The second intake fan was an upgrade that I was planning when I got some more money. I am already using two-way splitters on both fan headers. Looking to buy a fan hub for just that. I placed the intake fan lower than when I got it and more in the middle to hopefully get the GPU some more air and still get air to the CPU.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

I didn't think of this before. How about until you do get that hub, just move the rear exhaust fan to the front of the case?

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

congrats on the build, it looks great man! 10/10

  • 28 months ago
  • 1 point

The GPU and case in the pictures don't match the listed GPU and case.....

  • 28 months ago
  • 1 point

No, it does. The pictures show what it originally was and now where it is at. The part list is current. Did you look at all the pics?

  • 28 months ago
  • 1 point

Oh okay

  • 19 months ago
  • 1 point

i AM A BIG FAN OF "big fans" therefore I like the thermatake v1 .... BUT everyone says the fractal design nano is a very good case . I would just like it to be a bit smaller , maybe ditching the water cooling support. Is it as quiet as promised ? N.b. "the bios is nicely laid out"

  • 19 months ago
  • 1 point

Sorry for the delay. I love my Define Nano S. The fans that come with the case are very good. Since posting this build I added a second matching 140mm fractal-design fan to the front for additional intake. Very good and quiet configuration. Highly recommended. Also currently planning to add a 240 AIO in the front for additional overclocking potential.