Hi guys. Its been days since I first published my HTPC build. I have been busy these past few weeks and totally forgot to contribute to PCPartpicker. So Lets get it on!
Introduction: I was in grade school back then. We have a 80386 PC running MSDOS. From there I learned the command prompt and all stuffs about computers. I was a geek compared to my fellow neighbors. Then my dad seeing I was interested in PC bought a custom built AMD 486dx2. There, I learned more on assembling and repairing computers - hardware and software. I was very interested to desktop computers until the launch of the Pentium. After that, I can say it was the beginning of the popularity of the laptops especially when Intel released the core series. I became a laptop fanatic. Now, I am returning to my roots. Where all my knowledge began. Motherboards are getting smaller and fancier. Video cards are bigger and handsome compared to a Tseng labs video card before. PSU now have the metal colors associated to them. I must say, this is the golden year for desktop PCs and I dont want to miss it!!!
So I have three builds this year: 1. Main ITX rig (completed) 2. HTPC rig (completed) 3. another ITX rig (in progress)
Case: My first and main rig began when I saw an article about the launch of Inwin 901. I must say I was awed by its beauty. Simple yet elegant. Suggested retail price before was on $200+. After a couple of month, the Inwin 901 is now available to a retail store. The price was $220 + taxes here in Canada. I decided to wait for a nice deal. Then there was a day when it was on sale for $179.99. I bought it. Opened it and I was amazed on the build quality. It is excellent in quality, no weak spots, so many accessories, no sharp edges, thick aluminum. Everything was perfect. I firmly believe the price justifies it. The only con was it was heavy because of the glass.
CPU: My cpu is a i7-4770. I bought it for $220 from someone who is selling his HTPC. I got a nice deal here as the HT would come handy on some applications. Overclocking was not really my interest. I prefer efficiency over everything else especially the case has limited cooling option.
MB: I was so excited when I have my cpu and case. So it was natural to shop the remaining parts as soon as possible. My plan was to get a h97 itx board with wifi. but seeing the prices, I ordered a gigabyte b85 phoenix wifi from newegg. It was good, no problems at all. Layout was above average. Orange led around the motherboard seems pretty.
One day, I was surfing PCPartpicker and saw the Asus H97i-plus was on sale for $79. Pricematched it to a store and got it for $70. I bought two of the Asus. Best deal! I swapped it and removed the wifi from the Gigabyte. Asus bios is awesome compared to Gigabyte. Asus layout is also great. No wires in the middle of the board.
CPU cooler: Inwin 901 has limited cooling options. The Corsair H75 was the best 120mm out there. Got it for $65. It retails for $90. Again thanks to pcpartpicker. My first plan was to put the radiator inside the case to have a clean look. I bought a Gelid slim 120mm fan to complement it. But after many days, I got worried as the hose near the radiator is bent awkwardly and it may shorten the durability of the hose. Inwin 901 should widen the hole for the hose and just add rubber stops like in cases like corsair. Now the radiator is outside the case and reused one of the two original fan for the h75.
Memory: I am using a Corsair Dominator Platinum 1600Mhz CL9. build is excellent.
SSD: My SSD is a Sandisk extreme II 240gb. This SSD is on top 3 at that time and was Anand's fave SSD when it was launched. This would smoke most of the SSD in the market using MLC and a 5 year warranty. It retails for $200+ back then. It was on sale on another store so price matched it and got it for $130.
HDD: Using an old SATA2 1TB seagate HDD and a new 3TB seagate NAS hard disk for files and backup. Will plan to add 3TB for RAID in the future to simplify backup.
Video Card: GTX770 is a huge card. Got it from someone at this low price. LED was cool. Titan cooler was more cooler to see and touch. Heavy and can be use as a weapon to burglars. Can play any games in 1080 screen. For the inwin 901, better go for rear exhaust card to help in lessening heat inside the case.
PSU: Got a Seasonic X750 km3. This has flat cables which is ideal for this case. Build quality is very good. Heavy. Simple looking but great paint and Silent.
Keyboard/Mouse: Got a k70 silver/red led to complement the case. Looks and build quality are excellent for teh keyboard. I am using Thermaltake level 10 Mouse (white/silver aluminum) to complement the build. Mouse is awesome to look at as they say it was designed by BMW. There is a wireless model for this but only available in black.
Monitor: Got the u2414H from dell. Monitor is great and have 3 yr warranty. Will not purchase TN panels again.
there you have it folks. I completed this build in 6 months. I saved a lot of money. I am enjoying it but could not find the time to play games recently. Any questions just ask. I wont bite but I will help you in my best knowledge. Thanks everyone.
PS:My next build in in progress. I have a spare Asus h97i-plus itx board. Cpu is 4690k. (i know h97 wont overclock it) in a corsair 250d. You can check the last pic in the album. See ya guys.