The New Computer

I remember a while ago I said I’d write about my new computer, so without further ado, here is said post!

Obviously, the first thing to talk about are the specifications, so they’re listed below:

  • CPU | Intel Core i5-4690K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor
  • CPU Cooler | Noctua NH-U14S 55.0 CFM CPU Cooler
  • Motherboard | Asus Z97-PRO (Wi-Fi ac) ATX LGA1150 Motherboard
  • RAM | Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 CAS 9 Memory
  • Graphics Card | Sapphire AMD R9 280X VAPOR-X TRI-X
  • Solid State Drive | Samsung 840 EVO 500GB 2.5″ Solid State Drive
  • Hard Disk Drive | Western Digital Red 2TB 3.5″ 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive
  • Case | Corsair 760T White ATX Full Tower Case
  • Power Supply | Corsair 860W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply
  • Optical Drive | Pioneer BDR-209DBK Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer
  • Monitor | Asus VE247H 23.6″ Monitor
  • Primary Operating System | Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard Edition
  • Secondary Operating System | Ubuntu 14.04 LTS
  • Other | Motherboard 4 pin Buzzer

I spent several weeks reading oh so many reviews about every single part, and eventually decided on the selection you see above.  One advantage of building your own computer is that you can choose the specifications exactly, but it can take quite a lot of time if you get keen.  Depending on your level of geekery, you can end up reading (and being interested in) exceptionally detailed reviews (like this one for the power supply I bought).

One of the first steps in the build was to install the CPU.  This is a simple thing to do, but can be expensive if you make a small mistake.  The CPU goes in a special socket on the motherboard that has 1150 tiny pins (which correspond to 1150 tiny contacts on the bottom of the CPU) – it looks like this.  If you bend even just one of these, then you’ve got either a very difficult DIY repair job (as the motherboard makers don’t repair this part), or you buy a new motherboard.  Fortunately I was very careful, and managed to put the CPU in without any trouble.

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The CPU placed in the socket

Once this was done, the next stage was to install the CPU cooler. Most CPUs come with one, including mine, but I elected to get a better one (as I intend to overclock it in a couple of years, and adding this now would save me the hassle of changing it later).

Cpu cooler added

CPU cooler added

Next was to connect this partial assembly up to the power supply and do a trial boot outside the case (in case something doesn’t work, you don’t want to have to remove it all from the case).

Fortunately it all worked fine, and I heard the reassuring “beep” noise that you don’t really hear in computers any more (hence the purchase of a motherboard buzzer).  After this was just the installation inside the case which was fairly painless, and plugging all the remaining fans and cables in (along with connecting the SSD and Hard Drive up).

A few days later, my graphics card arrived, and after that, the Blu Ray drive.  Once they had been added in, it was all finished!  All that remains now is for a few more pictures!

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The final result (click to enlarge)

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Moving On

Well, that’s it, I’ve left the company flat, and am now nice and settled in my new room.  It’s located in a much leafier part of town, and it’s much quieter than previously (which was adjacent to a train line).  Out of my window I can see a large patch of grass and the bus stop (and the corner shop/mini supermarket that’s next door which is super handy if I can’t be bothered/forget to go to the main one).  When I moved in yesterday (around 15:00) there was some random bloke asleep on the pavement outside the front.  I’m not sure if he’s still there, haven’t checked yet.

It’s a glorious day, and I’m sitting at my desk reading.  The desk belongs to my parents, but they kindly loaned it to me as it was just gathering dust/spiders’ nests in the garage at home – cleaning it up was a rather entertaining exercise I can tell you.

So what’s up this week?  Well, work obviously.  It’s still super busy and there’s a lot to learn still (of course), but I am still enjoying it.  I’ll also be getting a new computer (hopefully) this week, which is definitely needed (my current one is very old, slow and has a major problem with its fans resulting in it shutting down due to dangerously high cpu temperatures quite a lot).  I’m buying the parts separately, and building it myself as a: It’s cheaper, b: You know exactly what you’re getting, and c: I’m super geeky and it’ll be a lot of fun.  I might even do a special post about building it because I’m that cool :P!