I got myself a new monster PC two days ago. My previous PC was 6 years old and still running the same Windows Vista that it came with. Although it actually didn’t start rusting apart just yet, I still felt that it was time to upgrade. The hard disk probably wouldn’t keep on working for much longer, and I also wanted to try new technology. Especially a Solid-State Drive, as I had heard a lot of good things about it.
I bought a PC online at a Danish web shop called MM Vision and got it delivered, assembled and ready to go. The old days of assembling my own PC was not something I wanted to bother with again, as long as I could just select the components on a list. So I ended up with the following…
- Casing: NZXT Phantom H630 Black Silent Ultra
- CPU: Intel Core i7-5960X 8×3.0GHz (Turbo 3.5GHz) with 20 MB cache
- Motherboard: Asus X99-A Socket 2011 V3
- GFX card: Asus GeForce GTX 980 STRIX 4GB
- Solid-State Drive: 1000 GB SSD Samsung 850
- Memory: 16 GB DDR4-2133 RAM Quadchannel
- Sound: Asus Crystal Sound 2 (Dolby Home Theater and DTS)
- DVD: Asus 24x DVD-burner
The casing really surprised me. It was enormous. For a moment I thought I was delivered a super computer for a nuclear control center. Strangely, the inside of it didn’t look all that impressive. No wild science fiction tubes or dashing neon lights. I didn’t mind that. As long as it delivered on the screen.
The PC also has Windows 10 which was a must. I had planned buying this PC for months but postponed it until I could get the new operating system along with it. After having used it for two days I must say that I’m generally very pleased with it. It’s slick, the flat no-nonsense design looks good, it’s well thought out with logically placed sections (especially the settings) and it doesn’t get in my way. Even the scroll bars remind me of the feel they had on an Amiga, and that’s a compliment. Windows 10 comes with my most sincere recommendations, but maybe I’m easily impressed because my previous PC ran Windows Vista.
That’s not to say that Windows 10 is perfect, though. It feels a bit like being rushed out before it was 100% ready. The File Explorer won’t remember its previous location, the quick access list sometimes pretend it’s empty, Microsoft Edge apparently can’t find virtual hosts from WampServer, and I’ve also seen a big graphical splodge on the desktop itself, although it did remove itself after a few seconds. I’m also not sure I’m all that fond of the focus on mobile devices. Even the Windows 10 settings now look like a sibling to the settings on my iPad, and then there’s that store…
One thing that disappointed me a bit was the SSD. I’d heard thunderous stories about how much faster it was compared to a hard disk and its moving parts, and I imagined it would be like when I had a cache hardware card in one of my old DOS computers back in the 90’s. Rebooting on that beast was fast like lightning. But sadly, the SSD isn’t quite that fast. Maybe my expectations were out of bounds, but it just feels like a slightly faster hard disk that doesn’t make any noise when being accessed.
The GTX 980 seemed mightly impressive. I tried it in a demo version of 3DMark, and the “Fire Strike” results said my PC was better than 89% of what’s out there. I think the “Sky Diver” one said 98% better. Guess I’m as ready for Witcher 3 and Fallout 4 as I can be for now.