This is my first build ever, although I've wanted to do one for a long time. I'm a college student, and I secured a summer internship, so I figured that now would be the time to go for it with a reasonable $1500 budget. I'm going to use this machine for gaming (Kerbal Space Program (100+ FPS 1080p Max Settings), Fallout 4 (~60FPS 1080p Ultra Preset), and Diablo III (way too many FPS)), and any simulations/data processing I need to run for college (I'm a Physics and Astrophysics double major).
My first PC ever was a hand-me-down 2000 HP tower running Windows XP. I forced it to stay alive until 2011, when I got a 15" MacBook Pro. I love my Mac for schoolwork and astronomy work (Lots of UNIX programs), but Mac's just don't have the guts to game well.
I'm very happy with how it came out, and I haven't had any issues so far.
Lighting: I'm using CableMod's WideBeam Magnetic RGB strips and controller. They also work directly with ASUS AURA motherboards, but the IR controller is fine. It's SATA powered with a pass through port (Yes! No MOLEX!) and they are VERY BRIGHT (and dim-able).
I went a little overboard with documenting the entire build process in pictures, but the good ones are at the end.
I'd like to thank all of you at PCPartPicker for inspiring me to make this build. Here's to the first of many!
The 6700k was an easy choice, I considered the 6600k, but ultimately I knew I'd be kicking myself down the road if I didn't get the i7. I'm currently at a rock solid stable 4.60GHz overclock, and I'm going to stay here. 4.70GHz wanted a bit more voltage than I was willing to give it (near 1.435V). I didn't win the silicon lottery, but I'm very happy with the power.
The H100i V2 is a good AIO, and it keeps my 4.60GHz CPU at a nice 65 C at full load (benched over 12 hours on RealBench) on the "Quiet" setting. I can't make it any hotter, so it's doing it's job. Changing the glowing color of the Corsair logo is pretty sweet too, even if it eats up one of you USB2 headers.
The MSI M5 is a sweet board. Easy to build on, sturdy, and plenty of peripheral ports. The onboard audio sounds nice, and it looks sharp.
I like Crucial and have had good luck with their RAM before. These sticks XMP'ed to 2400MHz with one click as advertised. They look decent, and they don't get very hot.
The Samsung 850 EVO is perfect for it's price point. It does it's job, and it does it well.
I know that Pascal and Polaris are coming out as I write this, but I am very happy with the R9 390X. I got a great price on the card on Newegg, and it's plenty powerful for my needs. I bought it back in early April, when Pascal was still un-announced, so I pulled the trigger. I don't regret it, and it's a great card.
The Define S from Fractal Design is a joy to build in. It's spacious, has plenty of radiator space for my AIO, and has ample airflow. I love that the drives mount in the back, and it leaves plenty of space to expand my system in the future. The construction is sturdy and high quality, and the dust filters are a life-saver.
No, it's not a Seagate, Corsair, EVGA, or Seasonic. Please don't crucify me; I did my homework, and this PSU from Rosewill got good customer reviews on multiple sites, and was semi-modular. I know 1kW is a bit overkill for my rig, but I wanted the ability to SLI/CrossFire in the future.
Wireless Network Adapter
The PCI Express card I got from Gigabyte is working well. The connection is strong and stable. I have yet to test the Bluetooth module, but it eats up your second USB2 header, which for me, isn't a bit deal. I can always get a PCI card for more headers/ports.