This PC was built in 2014 and besides swapping some drives in and out, nothing else has changed since then. Let's take a look at what all was in this build and why it's time for an upgrade. I am taking everything out of the case, cleaning it up and getting it ready for the new components.
Case: Corsair C70 ATX Mid Tower
I love this case. It is one of the only things I am keeping. It looks like a giant ammo can and even has two handles on the top. Shopping for new cases left me pretty underwhelmed. Most cases are a variant of "black or white box with some glass on the side". They are pretty, but none of them stood out to me. So I decided to keep this very unique case.
Processor: Intel i5-4690k
This has been a great processor for gaming, work and running as a media center. But the new AMD Ryzen processors were calling my name, especially after building several work and gaming PCs for customers using Ryzen. One of the “problems” (or opportunities to buy more new stuff!) with upgrading a processor is you will most likely have to get a new motherboard. Processors have “Socket Types” that are not interchangeable. This is an older socket type, so upgrading the processor means a new motherboard also.
Motherboard: ASUS Sabretooth Z87
A great board and I loved how it looked in the case, but I can't keep it as stated above.
Memory: 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600MHz
16GB of RAM is actually still plenty for most builds. Want a high end gaming machine? 16GB will be fine in most cases. I am actually still going to have 16GB in my new build, but the *speed* of the RAM will be faster, this RAM was 1600MHz, which is on the very very low side now. Another issue with the newer board and processor is that DDR3 RAM is an older version. New RAM is DDR4 and will only work in modern boards.
Graphics Card: EVGA GTX 770
A great card for the time. Not so much now. I could run many games still, but it would struggle with newer ones and I would have to kick the in-game graphical settings down. The GPU is the most important thing in a computer when it comes to gaming. I could have just purchased a new GPU and plugged it in and been OK for the time being. But many newer games have also increased their system requirements to include better processors, and if I want this new build to last me another 6 years I need to future proof it.
Corsair HX750 Power Supply:
Probably would have been fine IF I had kept my box with all my leftover parts from the original build. Keep your spare parts people! I didn’t have enough power cables to power a newer GPU, and will also need a molex connector for (spoilers).
Corsair Hydro H100i Liquid CPU Cooler
This kept my processor cool and quiet and was probably overkill, but liquid cooling is… hey I just wanted it okay?
NZXT Hue 5.25 RGB Controller and LED Strip
This is what the control knobs on the front of the case were for. It ran a single RGB (Red Green Blue) LED strip inside the case that I could control the color, speed, brightness and pattern with the knobs. It wasn’t a ton of light, but gave off a nice ambient glow.
At one point I had a 256GB Solid State Drive as my boot drive, and a whopping five mechanical hard drives as storage to use the machine as a media server. I abandoned the media server a long time ago, so didn’t need all those drives. This freed up a ton of room, cables, and weight. I will be removing the hard drive bays as I won’t be needing them in the new build.
Keep a look out for next week’s post where I will talk about all the shiny new components going into the build!
If you need help with your gaming PC, or want us to build (or rebuild) one for you, give us a shout!
806 722 0770