GOAL: build the quietest desktop computer to use for light/medium games (Team Fortress 2, Rocket League, Heroes of the Storm) to run at medium/high settings on an ultrawide monitor.
The Noctua NH-D15 turned out to be massive, luckily I only had one stick of low-profile RAM so clearance wasn't an issue. The two included fan run very quietly at move a decent amount of air at the lowest speed (230 RPM). I also move my build a few times every year for LANs and the bracket has been a breeze to install and seem solid enough. The GTX 960 runs silently when under light load and the fan noise is very subtle even when running Furmark. The Corsair RMi power supply also delivers its promise of a silent run when under normal load. And the overall Fractal Design R5 does a fantastic job at keeping the noise down. Cable management was also very easy since the case is well designed overall.
Pros: overclockable with a lot of room, integrated GPU can run 1440p videos
Cons: heatsink not included
Pros: easy to install, excellent cooling (idle 27, load max 55), very quiet with the 2 included fans
Cons: very large, RAM clearance can be difficult, color of fans
Pros: solid motherboard, heatsink and color, 4 fan headers + water pump, USB 3 support, m.2 support, SLI support. Power on button and diagnostic POST LEDs, cheaper 'gaming' motherboard. UEFI BIOS, auto-OC, BIOS fan tuning.
Cons: price, no Wifi
Cons: intermittent clicking/seeking noise even when not using the hard drive
Pros: good performance, silent when idle and under load, fan noise very soft
Cons: no backplate included, only 2GB of RAM
Pros: design, accessible fan filters, plenty of space for cable management, solid case overall, excellent airflow with 2 included PWM fans
Cons: missing a few cable management loops at the back, left side panel latching mechanism makes the panel fall down easily and difficult to put back, no captive thumb screws on the left panel (WHY)
Pros: silent even when under load, USB monitoring, fully modular
Pros: out-of-factory calibrated panel, business design (personal preference), ultrawide curved monitor, 1440p, variety of inputs (DP, mini-DP, HDMI), easy to use OSD, monitor adjustements (swivel, raise, tilt)
Cons: power button difficult to hit when standing above the monitor (no physical button or delimitation)