Let me start this description by thanking the guys behind pcpartpicker.com and all the users that I have been able to ask questions over the past year. Without you!, this build would surely not have been possible. On to the good stuff.
This build has been about a year in the making. I started last year about this time building while slowly buying parts as I could afford them. Money got tight so I had to put the build on hold for a while. During that time I used pcpartpicker forums to ask people about different parts, and what was most important performance/price. I think that I chose fairly decent parts.
The building of this pc was an absolute blast, and I only ran into two problems. I installed the motherboard before installing the CPU Cooler, so getting in there to tighten it down was kind of a pain. Also that Spinpoint HDD was from a previous computer and at first I didn't know to set my SATA config to IDE so bios would load the hard drive. Initially it wouldn't recognize the device and I thought I fried the drive lol. Other than that it was a breeze!
The OC was a bit trickier. Since this is my first overclock, I didn't know how meticulous a proper overclock could be. After about 20 hours over the course of 3 days I think I finally got it stable. I just didn't luck up and silicon lottery provided my a less than awesome overclocking CPU. To get 4.3 Ghz stable I am having to power it at 1.26v. I see a lot of OC's of 4.6 Ghz @ 1.2-1.22v. Tried a 4.6 & 4.5 but these clocks didn't load no matter what voltage I put in. I did get a stable overclock of 4.4 Ghz @1.29v while staying within a safe thermal threshold, but that voltage seemed a little to excessive and I backed it back down to 4.3.
If there is a $0.00 or other very low price beside the parts, it is because of birthday and Christmas gift cards were used in the aid of the purchase. Therefore I either consider getting them for free or cheap because I only included what came out of my pocket in the purchase price. Some of the parts I got on sale as well. What are your thoughts?