So my wife's laptop finally died (hooray!) so I used that as an excuse to convince her it's better to build a PC myself than to buy something off the shelf. She was sceptical, but agreed.
I've been wanting a gaming PC for the last few months but knew the wife would get super mad if she knew how much they cost. So I put together this PC which will do her absolutely fine for the office work she needs it for.
Little does she know I am just a GPU away from having a sweet gaming rig! In a month or two when she isn't looking I'll sneak one in :)
The parts I used and my initial reasoning and subsequent thoughts;
CPU - 4690k - Can't go wrong with this. Obviously overkill for office work but not at all for gaming. Gives the flexibility of getting a NVidia or AMD GPU in the future, which getting a weaker CPU would limit to NVidia.
Cooler - Evo 212 - I didn't want to go down the AIO route because of price, pump noise and possible maintenance issues. The wife would be very suspicious I had overbuild the PC is she heard one of these whirring away! Evo 212 therefore the obvious choice.
Motherboard - I saw a Linus video that showed basically no real world difference in FPS between very basic and very expensive mobos. So I just brought the cheapest board from one of the big 3 brands (didn't want reliability or bios issues). It seemed to have all the I/Os and sata ports etc I wanted so I thought it was a good choice. HOWEVER I didn't clock the board layout, which means it is probably going to be impossible to fit a gpu AND the evo 212, as the cooler seems to go right up to the PCI slot. I'm really annoyed with myself for the oversight - I assumed that the only spatial considerations were cooler/case, gpu/case and cooler/ram. I didn't think gpu/cooler could be an issue. D'oh! I think I'm left with 4 options.
1 - Turn cooler around 90degrees and blow hot air into the gpu or the side of the case with no ventilation - probably worst option but also the cheapest and least fuss 2 - Buy an AIO cooler. Ideal solution temperature wise but I still have reservations mentioned above. Costly but at least the expense is going on a benefit other than fixing the PCI issue (i.e lower cpu temps) 3 - Fit the stock cooler. Would make the K chip and Z mobo pointless though if I can't OC 4 - Buy a new mobo with better layout. I really hope no one recommends this as rewiring everything will be a PITA lol
Seriously though any comments welcome as you guys have so much knowledge I would be grateful for your advice
Memory - 8GB 1600 - I've read that speed and timings have immaterial real world benefit. So I just brought a red stick :) Better to go single channel with upgrade potential than to get 2x 4gb IMO.
Storage - 850 EVO. Lightening quick, WMI gives it a score of 7.9 which says it all. Must have been my lucky day as I ordered a 240 and was send a 240 and 120 GB. Not sure if this was a some kind of test, hopefully not because if it was I think I failed!
Case - Prodigy - Wife wanted something small and discrete. One outta two ain't bad
PSU - Fractal Design 650W - Tier 2 and only £55. Massively overkill for now but has the horses for either a NVidia or AMD GPU in the future, which is good because still not decided on what to get. Currently thinking 970 or 290X. May go down a rung to 960/280x given only 1080p monitor atm but still undecided.
Monitor - I wanted bigger screen / higher resolution but wife capped size at 22". Naturally I was going to fight this but a good deal came up on this Viewsonic so we have this for now. I can sell it on at cost whenever I want so may upgrade in the future.
...and that's it! If you read this far, thank you for taking the time. Any comments welcome, especially re: GPU fitting issue mentioned above!
UPDATE - Did some stress testing and took temperatures whilst the rig was in the 'cupboard' (actually, given the desk doesn't have a back and the front door was open, it's more like a shelf, but heyho). Results:
3.5ghz - 32 Idle / 60 stress 4.0 ghz - 40 idle / 65 stress 4.4ghz - 45 idle / 72 stress 4.5 ghz - 45 idle / restarted under stress
I think this is OK right? I know a gpu will add more heat, but real world use will be less punishing than prime95, so net net it's fine?
(Think I'll go towards an NVidia GPU, just to be on the safe side :))