Archive | September, 2012

So it begins, a whole new build

13 Sep

It’s been quite a while since I both posted here and built a new machine. A small update to my life is that I was successful in jumping my Titanic and now work at the local state college. Better pay, better benefits, less stress, consistent schedule. Win all the way around.

My passion has been working with my hands, especially in regards to computers. My last build died a horrible electric static discharge death, but I think I might have actually come from all the moving that the computer had endured and somewhere along the way, I think the case my have gotten bent and shorted the board. I purchased a new computer prebuilt, mainly cause it was super cheap and I wanted a new desktop, but the experience isn’t the same as a build.

So here is my ultimate plan. I going to take my existing prebuilt and turn it into a media server/MAME cabinet. The MAME part will be a project farther down the road, but in the mean time, I’ll take out the stock 750gb hdd and do a 3tb RAID server.

But this post in more about my dream build. It’s a weird cobble of dream and almost dream parts, mostly inspired by the website Hardware Revolution. Parts I have are:
850 Kingwin PSU
180GB Intel SSD
750GB frankenstein hdd from current computer
ASRock Extreme 6 Motherboard
16gb Corsair Dominator Memory
Cool Master Haf X Case
Phantek “Holy Crap what is this?!?!” fan
OEM copy of win 7 ultimate
HUP copy of Office 2010
Webroot AV
i7 3930k

I’ll admit that I have a little bit of fear going into this build. It is the most expensive build I’ve every put together and I’d hate for anything to be DOA or killed by my hand.
My first step in the build is of course gathering all the parts. I’m almost complete, just missing the GPU. Second, I have to uninstall my OEM copy off my wife’s computer. That means backing up her files and spending an afternoon reinstalling her original OS and software. Third will be creating the backup discs from my current machine, gutting the hdd, installing the 3tb RAID(no looking forward to that) and redoing the OS with my media software.
And then, finally, finally, on to the build. The two main areas of hesitation are around the CPU and the GPU areas. The combined areas run me about a thousand.
The CPU is a near top of the line for the Sandy Bridge series of chips. The cost of the chip, coupled with the sheer size of the CPU cooler I got, has me looking for another pair of pants just thinking about it. I’ve been toying with the idea of getting it professionally installed by some of my friends on the geek squad, but then that would be robbing me of the full experience wouldn’t it?
Never in my life have I let $500 go so easily and I still wrestle with it in regards to the GPU. It does help a little in that I’ll be spreading the cost over 18 months and getting a free game out of it, but yet it is $500 that can go to a bunch of different things. And the mass of this too has me worried.

I’ll be out of vacation next week, so I’ll start the build when I get back. Give my nerves sometimes to settle and enjoy the anticipation.