Description

This is my first gaming rig, well, basically, ever. And I love it.

Benchmark results: http://www.userbenchmark.com/UserRun/623998

My main goals were, that it should be

  • Silent on idle
  • Quiet under load
  • Open for future advancements
  • Capable of playing current games at or near ultra settings with at 2560 x 1440 p
  • Capable of playing a fully modded Skyrim at 1440p&60FPS

I failed in the last step, I have around 55fps with a moderately modded Skyrim (moderately as in I don't use 2K textures for things in the distance), but it does everything else brilliantly.

I keep it inside my desk, and the idle temperatures are still great. It is true that it is a specially made desk with fully open back and ventilation channels on the bottom. Under load I can pull Monolith out (it has its own drawer), and I can see a 10-15°C difference between being in a wooden box and in the free, but there's no surprise in that. (Temperatures are in open, "gaming" mode.)

Drawbacks: As the case weights 11kg, the PSU 3.5 kgs, it's not a build you will take with you for a walk.

Update: I upgraded with a 250GB Samsung 850 Evo M.2 for my gaming drive and a WD Red Pro @ 3TB for my background storage. I'll eventually phase out my Seagate as the OCZ-WD-Samsung Trio is more than enough.

Update: now I have a System SSD: the 850, a gaming SSD, the 860, and two background storage WD Reds.

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

When it comes to cost/value, the good old 212 EVO is unbeatable

Memory

1600 MHz, low profile, a CL of 8. And at a nice price. Need I say more?

Buying two of them is an overkill. Don't do it, unless you know why you need them.

Video Card

After hours, days, weeks of checking reviews, benchmarks of the different 970 and 980 cards, I went with this one. And it was a great choice. Silent, fast, cold. All you need from a card.

Case

Simplistic, elegant design, all around awesome case with great growth potential inside. I use classic air cooling at the moment, but I might upgrade to water-cooling as the case is begging for it. Thanks to it size and configurations, airflow is great, noise is nigh nothing (the only thing I ever hear is my optical drive checking out itself). If you prefer shiny illuminated extravagant rigs, this might not be the best choice. However should you want a polite beast, with excellent cable management, go for it!

Oh, and on an important side note: the case is heavy. 11 kg on its own. It's not for travelling types.

Power Supply

All around brilliant. Helps cable management being fully modular. Helps silence with the passive operation at low loads. Brilliant performance. The corsair link software needs further improvements, but it is useful as it is. It's 3.3 kgs, together with my Fractal Design Define R5, that means the build is around 15 kgs.

Optical Drive

Does it's job. Bit loud while booting up.

Monitor

If you want to buy a 27' IPS screen, and you have the power to run games in 1440p, this screen is a great choice. For graphical works, it is also brilliant. However, if you can wait a year or so (I guess early 2016), I think you'll be able to get 27' IPS 144p screens with g-sync at a similar price.

Comments

  • 34 months ago
  • 2 points

nice try, but you cant get a 27" 1440p monitor w/ g-sync for 350, or even 400. at least in November 2016.

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah, well it was a forecast from 20 months ago. I was sadly wrong.

  • 29 months ago
  • 2 points

Yep, unfortunately. But I got this monitor recently, and it surely kicks ***, still in 2017!

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

I like this build. Love how you didn't feel the need to use the 980. Very stable build.

  • 52 months ago
  • 2 points

Well, the 980 and 970 have similar benchmarks, the 980 is about only 20% better in performance, the 970 is about $200+ cheaper. He got it mainly because its a solid GPU that is a lot cheaper than 980, and they isn't a lot of a difference in performance.

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Exactly so. I tried to buy every element of the build at the inflection point of the cost/value curve. I found no way to rationalise chucking that extra $200 at a 20% performance increase. But, as you can see from the overkilling PSU, I plan on future SLI, and there having a dual 980 is $400 worth of extra cost for a very little difference in performance.

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Is the 970 still worth using? I just bought it and haven't built the whole computer yet. I bought it for my first gaming build and I'm still buying a couple parts.

  • 52 months ago
  • 2 points

970 is a boss.

  • 51 months ago
  • 2 points

If you have double the budget for double the power, go for a GTX 980 Ti. Otherwise it's still the 970

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

For all those wondering about 970 / 980 / 970 SLI / 980 SLI / Titan X:

In performance: https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/NVIDIA/GeForce_GTX_Titan_X/29.html

In performance per $: https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/NVIDIA/GeForce_GTX_Titan_X/31.html

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

This is almost exactly the same build as me, but mine has less ram. It seems to be awesome for me. What were your overclock settings if you don't mind me asking? did you do it with afterburner?

Thanks!

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

I use the Asrock utility and I have to verify this 4.3GHz. CPU-Z and other programs report it, but all I did was to choose performance option and a higher turbo boost setting in the utility.

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Okay, I checked: according to CPU-Z:

*Core Speed     4397.4 MHz
*Multiplier x Bus Speed 44.0 x 99.9 MHz

So it seems legit. All I did, was I set the A-Tuning app to "Advanced Turbo 20" an performance.

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Bro that 16GB RAM seems a bit overkill.

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

Depends what he uses the computer for. He may have got 16 just for future proofing.

  • 52 months ago
  • 2 points

Yes

  • 52 months ago
  • 1 point

It is an overkill. It was an idiotic rash decision. But I might use it at some point in the future. And it was on sale.

I have yet to have an over 50% RAM load.

[comment deleted]
  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

You said there was a monitor coming out is it out?

  • 32 months ago
  • 1 point

Sadly, no. The available models are still upwards of $700.

Acer XB271HU bmiprz

AOC AG271QG

ViewSonic XG2703-GS

  • 21 months ago
  • 1 point

If only that 1440p 144hz ips monitor existed for such a price lol +1