So i finally pulled the trigger…on building a new computer rig. My decision was made due to the circumstances of my old rig finally giving out on me when I trying to upload pics from Comic-Con 2013. Lucky for me I didn’t erase the pics from both my SD Card, I had a bad habit back in the day erasing files after I loaded them into my computer. This article is to show you what type of parts I use into making this custom rig, and here we go…
So I started off by doing my research on what type of processor I wanted to use on this rig. Once the first day of Comic-Con 2013 started I was informed of an outside event that was giving away processors. So I decided to go and check it out, once I signed up using my email I was given this CPU. An AMD A8-6600K quad core processor, yes I got this bad boy all for free! I have been a loyal fan of AMD since I built my first rig nine years ago, and that was the time of the AMD Athlon CPU. I knew that this was the start of the madness of this build!
This FM2 socket, A8-Series has a 3.9GHz quad core processor with a L2 4MB cache with 64 bit support. This CPU can be OC to 4.1 safely without any compromise, but one of our writers and computer tech geek, Wayne have safely OC this same processor to 4.7GHz!! Yes I know it is crazy! I cant wait until I push this bad boy to its limits!
For the motherboard I have chosen the ASUS F2A85-V Pro. This is an FM2 socket perfect for the A8 CPU with an AMD A85X (Hudson D4) North Bridge chip set, 4 memory slot (240-pin DDR3). Video card interface is supported by 3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 along with 7 SATA 6Gb/s. While this MoBo is a little over a year old, it is the top of the line FM2 socket until ASUS comes out with an FM3 socket type. To further keep up current technology, the ASUS F2A85-V Pro has 4 USB 3.0 ports, 1 HDMI port, 1eSATA 6Gb/s port. I can truly say that I am satisfied with this MoBo!
For the graphics, I cannot use on board graphics that is ASUS MoBo has. Keeping with the AMD-ATi Radeon, build I decided to look upon one company with a reliable set of GPU’s that many geeks have used over the years, and that is XFX. I have chosen the XFX Radeon 7850 2GB Double D, you have no idea how excited I was getting my hands on this GPU. Coming from the ATi Radeon 9800 Pro 512MB is one hell of any upgrade! With an interface of PCI Express 3.0 x16, core clock of 860MHz and a 1024 Stream Processors this just heaven for me! Add OpenGL 4.2 and DirectX 11 and this GPU just hit the sweet spot! To make this better the XFX Radeon 7850 is Cross Fire X ready. I would highly recommend this to anyone looking for a great GPU for a great price! Currently I have played Star Craft 2 Heart of the Swarm on the highest setting possible, without any lag at all. Lets see if I can push this to its limits with current games out in the market!
Looking into Corsair I have chosen two items to support is this build, first up is the Corsair Vengeance memory. Using 4 sticks, 4GB each with DDR3 1600 dual channel sticks, these are perfect for what I will be doing with this rig. 16BG of total memory add the 9-9-9-24 low latency timing on these memory is just fast as they come by and for the price, you cant beat that at all. Adding to the looks department, the blue heat sinks blends well to the color scheme of the ASUS MoBo.
The second item that I have bought from Corsair is the H90 liquid cooling for the A8 CPU. I could not justify using a basic heat sink that the A8 came with, having a processor that fast needed something to keep the temperature low for optimal performance. The Corsair Hydro Series H90 Water Cooler comes with a 140mm fan to push air through the 140mm radiator while circulating coolant through the two rubber hose. The cold plate base with copper plate makes the heat transfer faster with the liquid faster and quiet and can be mounted to anywhere in the case as along as the case has a 140mm mount. Installation was a straight on affair, unscrewing the stock plastic mount around the CPU socket and installing the back mount took less that a minute. But the downside is that we had to install the radiator on the side panel for the perfect fit without any problem. Hey who needs a basic heat sink and fan combo when you can spend a bit more and get persistent cooling? Why not!
Now the most important puzzle that I thought of is what type of hard drive should I use? The regular 7200 rpm hard drive? The fast spinning 10K rpm raptor hard drive? Or should use the newest solid state drive? After talking to several computer and tech geek, two of them are one of the two founding members of Two Shots of Geek Jorge and Wayne. They have both have said go with the solid state drive, so I did, and I boght two of them! The Intel 520 SSD is still one of the fastest drives you can get but with a price, but it was all worth it. Having a max sequential read of 550 MB/s and max sequential write of 500 MB/s while utilizing SATA III connection. Have a dedicated SSD for system files making start up very very fast without having to think about anything and starting up programs is just as fast as start up if not faster. Downloading new programs and system updates is faster than putting on your left shoe. The second SSD is dedicated for games, yes for games! Im a true geek and having the fastest loading time for in between levels is a must for any one! While having Steam loading games through SSD is just faster than having a 10K rpm hard drive. No waiting while signing on your profile on Steam or Blizzard seems effortless. Best bang for the buck if you dont deiced on blowing your money a good graphics card!
Now to power up all these hardware I have chosen the Cooler Master Silent Gold Pro 800 Watt power supply unit. Having a good consistent and reliable power supply is very important to ensure proper operations. Having a modular power supply ensures a clean bay, using enough wires to hook up and having room for the air to move out of the system without any obstructions. As Cooler Master have advertise, this power supply unit is very quiet once turned on. A very sleek black finish to the case and compact from the rest of the competition and very easy to install along with the power modular cables. For the price is in the same range as others in the market, reason on choosing this unit over others is that I have read nothing but great reviews with 4.5 star ratings on reviewers on the next. I do agree with those who have reviewed this unit and i’ll give it 4.5 stars out of 5.
Now to give all these a home, looking through countless pictures on the web, and seeing how companies have utilized the placement of the fans. I came upon the Corsair 300R Mid Tower case when looking at it in front of me. The 300R has all of the features that I was looking in a case, inside bay space, face placement and sleek look. The interior of this mid tower case has a lot of pace for parts to install without any short comings. Back open panel to hide all of the cables from the connection, enough space to fit a large size GPU. 5 trays for HDD storage on the lower corner of the case, 3 bays for placing blu-ray drives, and placing the power sully unit in the lower corner instead on top. For the air flow you can have 7 120mm fans, two in the front, two on the side panel, two on top for the exhaust and one upper corner. If you’re into the “go big or go home” motto, you can have up to 6 140mm fans replacing all six but not the upper corner fan near the CPU.
In conclusion, having a new computer is a great deal to anyone, but building your own is in a different feeling. The joy of putting parts together, and see the final outcome is just a geeks sweet dream. Another reason why building a custom PC is that you can trouble shoot the problem once something appears, knowing where to look for the hardware and what to look for in the software. Having a fast gaming computer for me is a another dream come true for this big geek! Keep checking up on this build of mine where I will update software and hardware to keep up with this growing technology. GEEK ON MY FRIENDS!!