I have been a Mac user since I was 16. I have used it for content creation with Adobe and Avid as well as Final Cut. The only time I bought a PC was a very basic refurbished one that claimed to be a "Gaming PC."
This was, in fact, a lie.
As I continued to sharpen my skills, the long render times and occasions when my trusty iMac would crash increased more and more. Finally, after I doing a lot of research, I knew it was time.
It was time to build my own computer.
Piece meal, over six months, I bought the components that I felt would help my digital media creations and make a damn fine Gaming PC - cause those Steam sales and Humble Bundles were getting way too good to pass up.
I did show some restraint, not going for the uber tier quality parts, and always waited for good deals. In fact, almost every component on this build was bought either on sale or with gift cards given to me for Amazon and the mouse and keyboard were Christmas gifts.
Finally, on February 10th, the CPU - the last part I needed - arrived. It was time.
This was my first PC build ever. The only time I'd ever touched computer components was to upgrade the ram or HDD on my Macs. Needless to say, I was nervous.
But, after a lot of video watching (mainly Linus Tech Tips) I felt comfortable enough to give it a try.
All in all, the work went smoothly. The only niggling frustrations came with mounting the heat sink, cable management, and a bonehead move where I forgot to hook up the CPU power cable.
But other than that, the system posted and Windows set-up was a breeze.
I didn't do any overclocking for one main reason. The cooler I bought is a very basic Noctua U9S heatsink with a 92mm fan. While it's gotten good reviews and I've seen some stellar temps on other X99 builds, I didn't want to push the Broadwell-E chip too hard since I'm so new at this.
I've only had the system for 24 hours and haven't had a chance to stress test her. When I do, I'll come back and edit this to give my deeper thoughts on the components and the system.
After a couple of months with my functional but dinky little Corsair 100R, I decided I wanted something with a little more character for my case. Enter the Be Quiet Dark Base Pro 900. Got to say, I'm impressed with the modular capabilities and the features. And the tempered glass is strangely soothing. I need to get some better PSU cables and do some better cable management, but overall, I'm diggin' my sexy new case.
Throw it out to y'all, what color do you think my LED strips be?
Well, after nearly two good years of the GTX 980 TI, I felt it was time to upgrade. With a good Black Friday deal on Amazon, I was able to snag an RTX 2070 from EVGA. I haven't really put it through the ringer yet, but I'm liking what I'm seeing so far and it actually feels good to future proof my machine a little bit on the GPU side for how ever long Nvidia decides to ride the ray tracing wave they hope will crest soon.
Do not let the low base clock fool you, if you're running programs that need the extra cores - looking at you Premiere Pro and After Effects - this thing is as fast as greased lightning.
While I was limited by my case size when it came to heatsinks, Noctua has a reputation that they have rightfully earned.
This little guy does a hell of a job keeping my CPU at steady temps. At 100% load, it kept the cpu below 70 degrees easily.
This is the closest thing I found to an "entry level" X99 mobo - if you could call anything in the X99 "entry level." Granted, it lacks the premiere features such as built in wifi but I don't care.
128 gb of ram support for future proofing, 8 sata ports, an m.2 slot, four pci-e 3.0x16 slots with two 2.0x1 slots, 8 usb 3.0 slots and 2 usb 2.0 slots.
It doesn't have the bells and whistles, but this black ATX beast has it where it's really important.
I decided to start with a basic 16gb kit and possibly upgrade in the future. Easy to install with some really nice heat sinks.
I had never even heard of an M.2 ssd before I started doing research on this. While the grass will always seem greener on Samsung's lawn, this tiny little drive has done a great job when it comes to game loads and boot times.
Way more power than I need at the moment, but I am super happy with this choice. Cable set up was a bit confusing, but that came down more on my lack of knowledge on building PCs. Corsair Link - the utility software - is a great simple program that lets me check temps, voltage and even fan speed at the press of a button.
I've warmed to Windows 10 over the last year and the included USB drive made installation so easy.
Great fans with that are easily adjustable and I really like the coloring of Noctua fans. They don't look like anything else on the market and they have the quality guaranteed from the little owls over at Noctua.
I don't think I can ever go back to a standard keyboard. Cherry MX Red switches feel so good to press with the right amount of resistance and click with each keystroke. The compact size makes it great for my desk - what with my mic, audio interface and Wacom tablet. The lack of RGB lighting is a little bit of a downer, but not enough to knock a star off.
If you're looking for a good mechanical keyboard to get you started, look no further.
As a former Mac apologist, even I found it hard to justify the design choices of their wireless mouse. The whole swipe and double click and no wheel just doesn't make sense - it's a PC mouse, not an iPad screen.
For my first gaming mouse, this was pretty good. The ability to change the weights on the bottom makes it good for adjusting sensitivity and the RGB lighting actually isn't as intrusive as I thought it was going to be.
The thing that knocks a star off is the utility software. Corsair needs to take a second look at it because, while not terrible, basic functions are hidden behind sub-menus that are kinda pointless.
Still, I'm really happy with it.