Used for: work, software development, database management, data recovery tools, web development, image & video editing, excel, word, email, 500 web browser tabs

I actually built this in March, but I had the parts list here so decided to switch it to a build. My work paid for it and I was able to pick the parts and build it. Except the monitor. Oooooh the monitor. I also didn't pay for it but my boss sent it. Wooooo. Thankfully my work sees the value in giving me a good machine. It pays off.

My last work machine I built in November 2010 and it lasted until now, and I did so much with it. And actually my old machine (i7-950 3.06GHz on X58 platform, 4GB G.SKILL memory, Radeon HD 5550 512MB video card, Crucial C300 64GB SSD, 1TB WD Blue) is now being used as another workhorse in our lab.

I realized my video card could not work with this monitor at native resolution, so that forced the issue. But I was planning to build anyway. There have been driver issues with the Radeon 2000/3000/4000/5000 series in Windows 10, really causing headaches for several of us here and lots worldwide. It wasn't supposed to affect 5000, but it did. Resolution was capped at a non-native smaller ugly one, and oddly sleep options disappeared from the power menu. It worked, but for a while after a new Windows Update came through it didn't work well. Then after rolling back the driver, it worked normally again. But others had to jump through different kinds of hoops to fix the issue.

CPU - I really tried to hold off building a new computer too because of the AMD Ryzen segmentation fault issue. I was really excited about AMD's Ryzen CPUs with the performance, number of cores, and price. But the issue or bug(?) had been known for a while so I was watching that news. There was no guarantee whether I'd get a CPU that was a stepping after they fixed that or before. I figured it wouldn't affect me in the end since I don't compile in Linux. The markings on the CPU I got indicated that it might be one that was affected (not known to always be affected, and not known to always not be affected) - UA 1724PGT, made in Malaysia. I could've tried the test and if it failed, talked to AMD and shipped out my CPU to wait for a new one to return. But wow, that would be a hassle. I have to work every day and it takes a while to get everything I need working right on my system. Considering they aren't recalling or even announcing anything, and that only people compiling certain things in Linux have been affected, I just went with it. It has been rock solid.

I would have liked one of the Wraith coolers, but it didn't come with one so I got the Arctic Freezer 7 Pro, which seems to fill the same role the Cooler Master Hyper 212 does - just a solid, cheap, tower-style big fan CPU cooler. I have now used both and they work well. I didn't bother digging out my Arctic Silver Ceramique and just used it as it was. It cools so well and has a big enough fan that it's silent.

Storage - NVMe SSDs are/were pretty new, and significantly faster than SATA SSDs. They are expensive, but I did go for the 1TB and sink the most money of any component into that (outside the monitor) so it will be good for me for a long time. On my last machine, I did end up filling up the 64GB SSD with OS and programs and regular Windows cruft from 7.5 years. I don't want to go too small on the OS/programs drive. 4TB seemed good for the rest and I prefer WD.

Case - Speaking of Cooler Master, the MasterCase Pro 3 Micro ATX is really a great case, well-made and thought out, and I don't think you can beat the price. Cable management is excellent. I don't need a window, but ok. We use them for our lab computers now and looked good to me so I got one for my computer. The fans are good. I mention that because I've often bought better, quieter fans in past builds. Cases have really gotten better. I guess it is big for Micro ATX so don't get it if you want small. It's really like a mid-tower ATX case, just slightly shorter, and pretty wide. I like the handle thing and the diagonal/45 degree surface for USB and headphone ports as it's easy to see them under my desk.

Memory - I really paid attention to the supported memory and supported Ryzen speeds in Asus' memory QVL document. That way I won't have any hassle later. Normally I didn't think it was any issue but we have had something happen at work that made my coworker swear to only get memory from a support list. It turns out it's really hard to find the combination of memory speed and module configuration in something from the support list that is reasonably priced with comparable memory. I'm finding this again with a new Ryzen build. So that's how I ended up with the color-changing rainbow memory. G.Skill has always been good to me. There is a little G.Skill program you can get to control the colors supposedly, lol. Anyway, the memory showed up as 2133 I think originally, but XMP worked no problem to get it to 3000.

Video card - something to get the job done since my CPU doesn't have onboard video. If I ever need something for GPU compute, I could always change it. I don't play games on this thing.

Power supply - always Seasonic, rock-solid, silent. Among my work and my friends, I haven't actually heard of one failing. They have good quality capacitors, heat sinks, and fans. And I've used them since back when it actually took some doing to make a very quiet computer. Seasonic was well known among the silent PC online community back before they actually sold retail-branded PSUs (you know, gray metal PSU).

By the way, yes, the monitor is amazing. I wasn't sure what I'd think about the curved screen, but it really works well. I imagine with a screen so wide, it would be harder to see things on the ends without it. And I had come from a 1920x1200 screen (same dimensions I use at home) and I didn't want to have any shorter height even with more width. Thankfully this has more height with 3440 x 1440. I can't say how much but I believe it does make me more productive. The big problem I have though is my 1920 x 1200 wallpapers don't work very well anymore :D

Oh yeah, the computer is really fast! and it can really crank through stuff when I'm running something heavy.

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  • 21 months ago
  • 2 points

Now that's a workstation. Good Stuff!!

  • 21 months ago
  • 1 point