Tis the season to upgrade the old PC. It’s been almost four years since i built my current system. Certain parts have been upgraded along the way, such as my video card and storage, but everything else has remained relatively the same. While my build was fine and dandy a few years ago, it began to show its age recently in more demanding tasks such as streaming and rendering. 100% load while on Twitch meant it was time. Visions of “more power” and Tim Taylor cried out in my head.
My initial goal was to only upgrade what i needed to and reuse what i could. The CPU was first on my agenda, which pretty much dictated every other part. I decided to upgrade from my quad-core 2500k to a hexa-core 5820k. This meant a platform change from my old Z68 motherboard to a new X99 board. Unfortunately this also brought the need for an upgrade to DDR4 memory. Them’s the breaks sometimes when it comes to upgrades. It was a much needed performance upgrade going from 4 threads to 12.
Now one does not simply acquire a six-core processor and not overclock the hell out of it. I’ve managed a stable 4.5GHz at 1.3 volts. I’m fairly certain i can push it much higher but i find no reason to do so. Keeping this overclock nice and cool is my H110i GTX. It’s my first venture into water cooling, though it’s an all in one system. No fussing about with tubes or liquids of any kind. It’s rather quiet at idle but sounds like a leaf blower at max. Good thing it never gets there!
I decided to stick all this in a new 760T case. The reasoning for this was purely superficial. While it is a full tower case and my previous one was a mid tower, it’s not that much bigger. It allowed me to install the radiator without having to drill any holes or make some gaudy adjustments that were sure to go wrong. The better airflow is definitely noticeable when it comes to temperatures inside the case. It just looks real nice and fits the color scheme of the motherboard. Yeah, i could have ditched this upgrade to save some dough, but i’m glad i didn’t.
Everything else pretty much stayed the same and was migrated over from the old case. The only other exception would be the upgrade to my SSD capacity. I had been rocking a 120GB Samsung EVO for quite a while. As you can imagine, that didn’t leave much room for many games. I was in a constant battle of install/uninstall just to save space and make room for games i wanted to try. I upgraded to a 500GB version of the same SSD, which cost me the same amount i paid for the previous capacity just a short while ago. More storage for the same price is always good. Hopefully now i can stop uninstalling everything and save some time.
For future upgrades, i need to look no further than a new monitor. I’d like to make the step up from 1080p into 1440p land. I don’t think 4K is quite ready for prime time just yet. High refresh rate is also a consideration but those options are limited. A 27″ 1440p – 144Hz G-Sync IPS panel is my goal down the line. I’m even considering one of the new 21:9 ultra widescreen ones as well but there are other consideration to make with that choice. For now, i’ll stick with what i have until prices come down a bit.
Full list of every part (new & old):
- CPU: Intel Core i7-5820K 3.3GHz 6-Core Processor
- CPU Cooler: Corsair H110i GTX 104.7 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler
- Motherboard: Asus X99-DELUXE/U3.1 ATX LGA2011-3 Motherboard
- Memory: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4-2666 Memory
- Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 128GB 2.5″ Solid State Drive
- Storage: Samsung 850 EVO-Series 500GB 2.5″ Solid State Drive
- Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 500GB 3.5″ 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
- Storage: Western Digital BLACK SERIES 1TB 3.5″ 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
- Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 970 4GB STRIX Video Card
- Case: Corsair 760T White V2 ATX Full Tower Case
- Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 850W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX
- Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro OEM (64-bit)
- Monitor: Asus VS248H-P 24.0″ Monitor
- Keyboard: Logitech G110 Wired Standard Keyboard
- Mouse: Logitech G600 MMO Gaming Mouse Wired Laser Mouse
- Headphones: SteelSeries 51006 Headphones