Socket 2011 Sandy Bridge-E Build

My main Core2Duo system from 2008 was beginning to show its age and I decided it was time for a desktop upgrade.  That system was originally built in 2003 and has been through several upgrade cycles already so I decided to start fresh this time with a new case and new components.

My goal for this build was to create a performance oriented desktop capable of a variety of different tasks.  I use my main desktop for various applications including:

  • Gaming
  • Video Editing (primarily video lectures)
  • Light photo editing
  • Program development & compiling (primarily C# and VB.net)
  • Movie watching and ripping
  • Multimedia lesson planning
  • Day-to-day use (Email, web-browsing, etc)

Storage wasn’t a concern for this build as all data is eventually stored externally on the network.

After a lengthy research process, a lot of product reviews, and more than a few glances at MaximumPC’s Best of the Best list I decided on the following components:

Kudos to Newegg.com for a pleasant shopping, ordering, and shipping experience.

The build went together easily.  Corsair has really designed a well thought-out case with the 600T.  Overclocking was a breeze, the P9X79 Pro is built for it and there is a lot of online documentation for suggested settings.  SSD optimization in Windows was a little tricky but not impossible.  Aesthetic cable routing took longer than anything.

Overall I’m more than pleased with the build.  From power on to fully useable desktop takes just 14 seconds.  Complete shutdown occurs in just 4 seconds.  Programs open virtually instantaneously and I can perform multiple tasks without issue.  I’ve gamed, coded, edited, and transcoded 2 hour videos (sometimes at the same time!) and nothing has made this rig break a sweat.

It’s important to note that only transcoding has really tapped the two extra cores on the i7-3930K, so if gaming is your ultimate goal you may be better served with the 1155 socket as you will likely never utilize the full potential of the 2011.

That being said the 2011 is a serious workhorse capable of handling even the most intensive computing tasks in stride.  I believe it currently offers the best upgrade path over the course of the next several years.  It comes at a bit of a price premium, but certainly delivers today and likely for years to come.

2 Comments

  1. Hey nice built…haha I have the exact same exept for a firepro w7000 for the graphic card. (3D work)

    Anyway I was wondering if your top fans were push IN or OUT the air for the H100 ?

    Thanks

    • I did a LOT of reading on the pros and cons of push IN or OUT for this build.
      My general takeaway is that the internet community doesn’t have a real consensus on which is truly better.
      In the end I found this article:
      SilverStone – What is positive air pressure?
      It basically highlights that in many cases positive air pressure is better for your graphics card cooling. This depends on your graphics card cooling design.
      So, for my build I ended up going push IN.

      Which one is best? Take a look at this tomsHARDWARE poll about which is better, positive or negative. Results from pull? 50% think positive / 50% think negative.

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