Hello and thanks for checking out my profile. I hope you look around and like what you see, I welcome any and all feed back. I built this rig to be able to meet all my needs for work and personal and to be somewhat future proof. I do a lot of music production and video rendering, streaming videos and music, watching videos in 5.1 etc.... So, in keeping with my wanting this build to be future proof and be able to perform all I needed it for, I chose the Skylake i7-6700k and the Z170 platform. The 6700k brought me current in intel's world, I had been 3rd generation for years and it was time to upgrade. I watched a lot of benchmarks comparing 4th and 5th gen i7's and while the performance gains over the 5th and 6th gen i7 was at best 5-10% with Skylake, it was close to a 30% performance hike over the current Ivy Bridge I had. As for the Z170 platform, I was very much attracted to the added pci lanes, DDR4 memory, SATA Express and of course M.2. Its was very hard to ignore the crazy fast read / write speeds of the M.2 PCI SSD. For that drive, I chose Samsung's SM951 128GB for my boot drive, let me tell you, it is CRAZY fast, 5 second boot up with windows 10.
Here is a complete rundown of the build:
MOBO: I chose the MSI Z170A M7. I read a lot about this board early on and really liked what it had to offer. I reviewed other Z170 boards as they became available but none of them stood out over this MSI in the price range. For me it has proved to be a solid board so far, from build to post and OS, absolutely no issues at all.
CPU: I chose the Skylake I7-6700K. I liked the performance boost it had over my 3rd gen i7-3770k and it allowed me to get current with my processor. I also felt it was a perfect match for my needs. This processor is performing very well so far. I haven't done any over clocking yet. My stock idle temps are 20-26c with Corsair's H110i GTX AIO. My idle temps on the Ivy Bridge were 35-40c.
Graphics: Being a fan of MSI products and again, reading and watching all the benchmarks, I chose the GTX 970. I started out with one card and a 1080 panel to see how it would perform for my needs and tastes and it did very well. I mainly play GTA V and it handled it pretty well with 60 or so fps, very low power draw and low heat. Shortly after I installed the first card, I found a deal on my second card and with future intentions of going to 4k, couldn't pass it up. Now paired with the 6700k with everything on very high, 40-50FPS + (4k/60hz) is the norm. Very nice cards for the price / performance.
UPDATE.....After playing games in 4k with the 970s for awhile, I have stepped up to sli 980ti's and must say, it was worth every penny. The MSI GTX 980ti's are monsters, they easily chew up any game on max settings ( No AA Needed on a 4k panel ). Frame rates are well into the upper 50's to lower 60's on just about everything I play. I haven't done any huge over clocking on them yet, really have had no need to.
Monitor: I chose an Acer B286hk. I bought it at a steal on ebay as an "open box" deal. This monitor has blown me away with its crisp detail. The colors are very vibrant and sharp. Gaming on this panel is a joy, GTA V looks amazing and streaming 4k videos is amazing. Coupled with the Blu Ray, this makes a great overall 4k experience. It might not be the best choice for gaming but as I stated before, I wanted this build to be able to wear many hats and this panel has not let me down.
Memory: I chose 16gb (2X8) 3000Mhz Corsair LPX. (CMK16GX4M2B3000C15R). I had researched this memory and found it to be compatible with my mobo and that it had none of the issues booting with XMP and would run at its overclock at 3000Mhz without any issues.
SSD: For my boot drive, I chose Samsung's SM951 (128 GB). This thing is crazy fast and paired with the 6700k and 3000mhz memory this build is super snappy and quick. Load times make you chuckle. My other solid states are Kingston Hyperx Savage. Two of the three are 240GB for mass storage in raid zero and the third savage is 480GB for games and such. They are super fast and I thought they would match my build pretty well.
Sound Card: I chose Creative Sound Labs Sound Blaster Z 5.1 PCI card. I am an audiophile and this card is amazing. It is paired up with Logitech's X-540 speaker system, its simply amazing. Gaming and watching movies in 5.1 sound with this thundering bass is incredible.
Power Supply: Corsair AX1200i. This power supply needs no introduction, it is by far the best supply myself or anyone could own. Very high quality caps and components, VERY stable. Paired with corsair's link software and coupled with the H110i GTX cooler, you can monitor everything power and temp related in real time and adjust voltages , rails, fan speeds, led effects....etc. Very nice supply and worth the money. It's just silly to spend a ton of money on great gear only to cheap out on your supply and possibly go down in flames, spend a little more on your power supply and protect your investment, and not to mention your power bill.
Case: Corsair 760t was the choice here. This case was simply a pleasure to build in, especially with an sli rig and multiple drives. Air flow was very important to me and I have achieved it very easily with this case, everything runs very cool. I especially loved the large open view side panel.
Sleeved Cables: I felt this build deserved a little flare so I chose Corsair's Sleeved Cable kit. This kit is very well made, very high quality craftsmanship. The sleeve material is more a nylon coating than para-cord. The connectors are very sturdy and interface all the connections securely. The heat shrinks are all very uniform. This kit will add a nice final touch to any build.
MSI SLI Bridge: What can I say, it just looks cool.
Thanks for checking out my build, please feel free to comment and let me know what you like/dislike or have any questions on any of the pieces.