So 2 weeks ago I had never seen the inside of a PC. Heck, I had never touched a PC for more than 10 years. The last PC I had was a Pentium MMX with a whooping 950mb hard drive. You would turn it on, make yourself a coffee, come back and wait another 5 mins for Windows to load so you can play Jazz the Jackrabbit. I thought that big, blocky thing I saw a friend remove from a PC was a processor, I only just learnt it was called a hard drive. In short, I'm a computer idiot.
For the rest of my life I mostly bought prebuilt laptops as they served my needs well enough, but with my reintroduction to the Monster Hunter series, I thought I might buy myself a nice birthday present for gaming. I started Googling what PCs are the latest and hottest, and somehow my searches slowly led me to something called "pc building". I knew my brother-in-law built one recently, and I always thought this was something meant for rocket scientists. But Youtube, Pcpartpicker, Buildapc Reddit and many other sites later, I felt that this was something I could do, and it seemed fun because I love building stuff.
For the next week or so I did nothing but research PCs. Whether I was eating or taking a poop, I was always on my phone learning what an Nvme was or what a RAM does. I tried to piece together my knowledge and what I needed my PC for: Work and gaming and tried to best match parts to my needs. My requirements were:
- Ultrawide! I wanted to go ultrawide for better multitasking while working, and more more immersive gameplay. If there's one thing I love, it's big screens.
- 60-100fps while gaming (particularly Monster Hunter). As long as FPS doesn't drop below 60fps I'm happy. I did some walkarounds in shops and determined that my eyes can't really tell the difference for anything above 70ish fps, so yay for me. 60 is already mind-blowing to me considering I am used to gaming at 30-40fps on a good day.
- Cat-proof. I have a VERY furry cat, so i needed something with as little chance for fur getting in as possible, and still I have to plan that the PC WILL get clogged with fur sooner or later.
- Quiet. I am sensitive to noise and enjoy music, so quiet is a big plus for me.
My needs led me to put together this build. I went with water-cooling for both the CPU and GPU because it's hot where I live, I could probably run my fans at a lower speed for lower noise and chance of cat-hair clogging, and peace of mind as I know my system will be cool and happy even after long hours of gaming and work. I chose the H700 because it is mostly sealed, and the main intakes are filtered. CPU radiator is at the front with 3 intake fans. GPU radiator is up top with 2 exhaust fans. With a bit of work I managed to fit in an extra fan beside the GPU rad, which I ran as an intake to increase positive pressure even more (because cat fur). I was worried that having the intake fan and exhaust fan at the top so close together means I will be recycling hot air, considering the H700's top panel is mostly covered, so I made a bit of a ghetto cardboard shroud to separate the airstreams.
All in all building a PC wasn't as that intimidating, I just had a lot of redos cos I was trying to rearrange stuff to hide wires. The GPU cooler in particular took me about 5 redos just to reroute the fan wiring so that it looks pretty (read: out-of-sight). Nerve-wrecking moments include installing the CPU because I had no idea it would require so much pressure and sound so crunchy, actually pressing the power button for the first time, and when my cat knocks stuff over as I'm building.
Thankfully it booted up fine first try, and I ran a Userbenchmark as recommended by people. Great decision, because it alerted me that I had to turn on something called XMP, and after doing that, I am actually well-pleased with my results.
|CPU||Intel Core i7-9700K||113.6%|
|GPU||Nvidia RTX 2080||165.6%|
|SSD||Samsung 970 Evo Plus NVMe PCIe M.2 1TB||353%|
|RAM||G.SKILL Trident Z RGB DDR4 3200 C16 2x8GB||95.5%|
|MBD||Gigabyte GIGABYTE Z390 AORUS Ultra|
My PC now runs Monster Hunter: World at max settings with volumetric fog off on a 3440x1440 at between 80 to 100fps. GPU temps maintain a very stable, exact 67 degrees throughout while CPU temps fluctuate about 50ish degrees. Gamed for a total of 4 hours and temps still stayed constant, so i'm a happy man. Ultrawide + my old monitor means I have lots of estate to work with code, photos and research material at the same time.
As a bonus, my pet spider shed her skin on the day I completed my build. I decided to rebuild her shed skin and display it in my PC because why not :)