My first real build. After complaining about what my cheap Black Friday/Walmart/HP special single core laptop couldn't do, a coworker offered to give me what remained of his old system from 2005. What he gave me was an orange NZXT Hush case, with a Q6600 on a Gigabyte ga-g31m-es2l (only allowed 4gb ddr2 ram), 2x1gb ddr2, an old optical drive, 125gb hdd, and a 650w power supply. The case did originally have a 3/4 door across the front, but the front panel was in-op when I got it, and the door covered half of the intake fan, so I removed it all. Another buddy of mine had won a new GTX 960 at a gaming convention, but he was already running 2 higher cards in SLI, so I bought it from him at a considerable savings. I learned how to put the machine together, and enjoyed it in the original configuration for around 10 months. I did want more, though. I read about some better motherboards and cpus from that generation, but couldn't really justify the cost that was attached to some of those. The system was meant to work around a very low budget. I read about overclocking and that the q6600 had been overclocked by many people many times, and I gave that a shot. I barely knew what I was doing, and I'm still mostly in the dark about it. Any attempts that I made to overclock, raising the clock speed by any amount, failed. My best guess was that it was that motherboard. Then, just after Christmas of 2016, a local ad popped up on Craigslist for the EP43t board that allowed up to 16gb of ddr3. The price was low and I figured that it might be a better shot at trying to overclock. The fellow that I bought it from had ordered it from someone in Greece (it was still in the Greek post shipping box) and was going to use it for mining, but decided to go a different direction. When I told him my hopeful plans for the board, he was surprised to learn that it would support 16gb ram (there were conflicting posts about the board online), but he sold me the board anyway. I purchased some better ram and the Hyper 212 cooler, and went to work. Unfortunately, I have still failed to get this chip to overclock. I had it at 3.0 Ghz for about 2.5 hours once, and then it crashed. After that, it fails to post at any speed above 2.4. So I decided to leave it that way. Everything still runs great, I don't think that I've ever seen it utilize more than 6gb or so of ram (playing Witcher 3), and it never gets very warm at all. Its rare that the fans on the GPU even spool up. The case has only 2 fans, and foam lining inside for sound deadening. It is very quiet, but it seems to need cleaning quite often. I've been using it until January of 2019, when I built a new old system to play with. I do have some love for this old machine, so I didn't cannibalize any parts from it for the new build. I am considering trying out the tape-the-pin overclock, but I highly doubt that the gains will be much to rave about. It can play most of the games in my collection at around 30-40 fps at 1080p. I play Cities:Skylines and 7 Days to Die, the Witcher 3, The Forest, Roller Coaster Tycoon 3-Platinum, Subnautica, Mad Max, Ori and the Blind Forest, Car Mechanic Simulator, The Long Dark, The Talos Principle, etc. Rise of the Tomb Raider benchmark gave average fps of 37-44, and the last section suffered from pop-in and missing objects (that I only knew were missing when I ran the benchmark with my newer build). Assetto Corsa benchmark gave an average fps of 58.
Die hard old chip, a historical landmark
Big, quiet, cool. Have 2 now
Lots of USB 2.0 ports, supports 16 gb ddr3
My first SSDs ever. Impressive, from that perspective
More card than I can use, so I've got that going for me, which is nice
Quiet. Top PSU mount, door covers single intake fan. No additional fan mounts, no means of cable management. Orange.
Still working without a hiccup, since 2005
Wireless Network Adapter
Wifi and bluetooth in one step. Have 2 now