I'd like to thank PC Partpicker for this amazing website. I would have lost my mind trying to do this any other way. I'd also like to thank everyone else on this website that posts their builds, opinions, tips and tricks. I've read through a lot of builds and reviews and it really helped me make my decisions. And now for my setup.

CPU - i5-4690k - Love it, love it, love it. So far this processor has been awesome. I've oc'd up to 4.5 without any issues but usually run it at 4.1. I was upgrading from a AMD Phenom x4 955. This i5 just destroys that AMD. I realize it is an unfair comparison being that the Phenom is so much older but damn, this 4690k is just awesome.

Cooler - Hyper 212 EVO - Everyone uses it. I do like it but I ran into issues with this cooler and this case so be warned. The cpu cutout on the Aquila is not very big. Install the cooler to the motherboard before putting it in the case. You won't be able to do it any other way. The backplate for the 212 doesn't line up right with the cutout and ends up touching the case. It made it a little harder to get the board mounted and there is a slight (very slight) bend to the motherboard. I probably should have just found a different cooler but I wanted to get this thing built. Either the cutout on the Aquila is simply too small, or the cooler has a large backplate, or maybe its the motherboard having the cpu positioned in an odd way. In any case, it will work, but the backplate touches the case.

Motherboard - Not the one I wanted but it works good. I wanted the Gigabyte Z97 Gaming 5 but couldn't seem to find it anywhere. Downsides--only one PCI-E for video cards so doing Crossfire is out of the question but not a problem for me. The release lever on the PCI-E seems reversed from some other boards so to get the card out I had to use a screwdriver to hit the release then pull. Placement of some of the SATA connections are strange. There was one completely blocked by my video card. Another issue is that there are only 2 4-pin fan headers. I got a splitter and ran from the system header to the front 200mm, rear and top 120mm. The system is staying cool so I guess that'll work fine. The Gigabyte software for overclocking is really easy to use. Set your speed and restart. Done.

Ram - Kingston HyperX Beast DDR3-2400 - the 2400 wasn't listed on pcpartpicker for some reason but thats what I've got. Ran XMP and running fine at 2400. If I set it up in Bios it is fine, but if you try to use the Gigabyte OC software I had an issue on restart. Just use the Bios setup.

Storage - All these were leftovers from my old system. They all work great. Easy install too. Took HD's out of old with Windows 10 installed and put into the new machine. Everything booted up no problems but still did a reset in windows 10.

Video Card - Love this R9 280. In my old system it was an upgrade from an HD 6870. That card did pretty well average 30fps on BF4 at medium settings. But this card in the new system is really great. I'm getting well above 60fps on BF4 with Mostly Ultra and some High settings and it's only at about 50% load. Haven't ran any benchmarks yet but so far the combination of CPU and Video Card will be all I need for a long long time.

Case - Xigmatek Aquila - Really nice case. Well built, easy to work inside of for a Micro-ATX. Comes with two great fans, a 200mm front and 120mm rear. I added another 120mm on top from the old system which gave it some great airflow. Case stays really cool, fans are quiet. Front connections for USB and Audio are easy to get to. Build quality is really great. Be careful of the side window which can be easily scratched. I had the case for several months before getting the other parts and made the mistake of taking the protective covering off. Once the internal lights are on its hard to see though. The only downside was the previously mentioned CPU cooler not fitting correctly. If the cutout was just an inch bigger towards the back it would be fine. I may make an "adjustment" with a dremel at some point. Cable management was good. Lots of room in the bottom to store all the extra and the horizontal positioning of the MB allows a lot to be hidden easily.

PSU - I needed a replacement in the old system and got this a few months ago. Not modular but has a lot of power. Drives everything I need but will eventually replace it with a modular. partpicker says there may be issues fitting this PSU in the Aquila which is sort of true. All the cables coming out of the PSU were bound together with a ziptie close to the PSU that stiffened the cables. I had to cut that ziptie off, push through all the cables, then slide the PSU in at an angle. There is a fair bend on the cables coming out of the PSU but nothing to serious.

Burner - it burns things.

Monitor - wish I could get a 144 or an IPS. I've had this one for a while and it works good. Mounted with an arm to the wall. Have a LED strip on the back to so its fancy.


  • 49 months ago
  • 2 points

Why not the Cryorig H7 over the Evo 212?

  • 49 months ago
  • 1 point

I had looked at that cooler some. It is very nice but just kinda settled on the Evo 212. So far its doing a great job. Quiet and cool. If I could see the cooler more in the case I probably would have gone with it because it is nicer looking but the horizontal design makes the video card block most of the board.

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