2015 PC Build Part by Part

If my TigerDirect and NewEgg order histories are to be believed, most of my last PC hailed from 2010 which is both a testament to those parts and sad that it took this long for me to get around to building a new PC. Now, most of my life is spent being as frugal as possible but after the Evolve Alpha and some attempts at in-home streaming on Steam (and some gentle nudging from one Jay Osterday) I decided to go all out on this one. I needed a rig that could run the newest games, stream them to my living room, and do more intense video/photo work.

Here are all the components, sans case, power supply, and secondary hard drives.

The case (which is actually one of my favorite components) is the Nanoxia Deep Silence 2. Its big. Its heavy. Its quiet. While everyone else was building smaller and smaller machines I said, “NAY!” I want something with tons of room to work, lots of airflow, and plenty of sound deadening components to keep my screaming CPU cooler and video card quiet. 

The power supply is the Raidmax Hybrid 2 750W which has been with me for a long time. The nice thing about this case is that it has a dust filter over the power supply intake which should keep it clean and stop it from exploding like 2 of my previous PSUs. 

 

The Motherboard

The motherboard is the ASrock X99 Extreme3. When I was picking out components around October of last year the Extreme series was the best (if not the only?) Haswell-E board. For me, it gave me plenty of USB3 headers, SATA connectors, WiFi capabilities, and access to DDR4 memory. There are probably a thousand things on this board I don’t even know about yet.

 

The CPU

The CPU is an Intel Core i7-5820K. This was the cornerstone of the entire build. When Jay and I were picking out parts, we knew we wanted a Haswell-E build so once we found this chip, all the other parts fit in around it (thanks, PCpartpicker.com!).

 

CPU Cooler

The CPU cooler is the Corsair H80i and, to be honest, after looking around for a quiet cooler for the i7 I just went with what the guys over at Tested.com put on their haswell-E build. This does represent the first water cooling solution I’ve ever used so there’s that. Oh! How did I forget: two of the screw holes stripped immediately upon trying to thread the supplied screws. I ended up having to go to Lowes and get two slightly longer ones in order to mount it. You may want to do some research on this before you buy to see if that’s a common issue.

 

Primary Drive

I wasn’t absolutely positive I was going to get a new Hard Drive for this new build but when the Crucial MX100 512GB SSD went on sale over the holidays for $189 I couldn’t pass it up. One of the goals for his build was to increase my boot speeds (which is why I upgraded the OS as well) so moving to my first SSD definitely helped in that regard. 

 

OS

I know Windows 8 isn’t a popular OS but after using my lady’s laptop with it there’s no denying the speed enhancements. The new interface isn’t great but the improvements to boot times and other performance enhancements make it well worth the upgrade. I also hope that there’s an easy upgrade path from 8.1 to 10.

 

RAM

I wasn’t completely sold on DDR4 when Jay and I picked out the board and, to be honest, I’m still not. It was super expensive and when I haven’t seen anything come close to using even a quarter of the 16GB Ballistix DDR4 memory but my hope is that it’ll be relatively future proof and will see more use as I get into more intense photo/video work. 

 

GPU

The GPU is probably the least new part in the build (although its new to me) and was donated by Mr. Osterday. It works well enough for now, my hope being that the Haswell-E can help with some of the GPU load until I get a newer card. 

 

The Timelapse Set-up

Here’s the setup for the build timelapse. I’m going to say a bunch of things and pretend like I know them and that they’re accurate: Cannon 5D MkIII into the Macbook using the Cannon Utility. Right? Sure. Thanks, Jay!