Edit: Ok I could try and play this cool or admit it...I am really extremely pumped about being featured on pcpartpicker! And to everyone for the positive feedback its much appreciated . This is such a helpful site and a great community. Thank you.
Even though I work in the IT industry in software development, for a long time I was afraid of touching my computer. My first few computers were purchased from a store. If anything went wrong I called some computer technician dude to fix it at great expense.
Then one day, after I paid through the nose as he struggled for hours to fix my machine, I thought next time I am doing this myself. It's easier than it used to be. You can boot from a USB stick, windows is a lot more user friendly. My goal was simply to keep my machine running. I never cared about performance or looks. Just saving money and having a functioning PC.
There is something really satisfying about squeezing life out of a old machine. Upgrading bits and pieces. Sure I am an occaisonal gamer. I have a backlog and am still working through games that are several years old. I finally got Grim Fandango off my pile of shame in 2018. I would prefer to play the older ones first because its hard to go backwards when you get used to current gen graphics.
In 2016 when I finally got around to playing Bioshock Infinite it brought my Core2Duo, GTX 750 ti rig to its knees. My PC gamer colleagues said you really need to upgrade that old dinosaur you old dinosaur. So I got an upgrade kit on Amazon with a basic mATX motherboard Core i5 6400 stock cooler, 8GB of DDR4 Ram. Then a little later got a 1050ti. I had a Fractal Design R5 case. Nice quiet but big (and empty). But then one day i started watching YouTube..you know the ones Linus, JaysTwoCents....that was the start of the end....I fell down the rabbit hole...you know the tempered glass, RGB hole. My rational brain says water cooling is ridiculous.
The little demon says do it. I start stock piling parts. I get the parts delivered when my wife is at work. Black friday, ebay...this would not get approved by management. She will find out...broach the subject gently. "I need a project to be happy". Perhaps that line will work. "The kids will learn something".
It must sit on my desk, I want it to be small (20 litres max). I want it to be quiet. I want it to be narrow. I want it to be fun. I want it to look a bit like furniture. I want it to sit on my left hand side. I want to see inside...I want to water cool it!!! I want it to power a 3440 x 1440 widescreen 100Hz monitor. I had better design a case and make it. Designed in SketchUp. Laser cut plywood internals, hand made exterior. Yes RGB is over done but at least you can change the colours and keep it fresh.
Thanks PCPartpicker community you are all really helpful and inspirational.
Here it is...Inspired by wood, and the node 202. American oak veneer. Good temps, quiet, powerful enough (Ryzen 2600 and GTX1080). I might overclock if and when I need to. Yes I know the ram is a bit slow but its what I had.
Not perfect but I like it.