Build a Quiet Virtual Reality Dream PC

Oculus have made it clear that for you to enjoy the first generation of VR, it will not come cheap. Most of you will be buying or building a new PC to welcome home your new Oculus Rift and/or HTC Vive. Recently I described how you could build a PC ready for the Oculus Rift for around $1,000.
But what if you want the ultimate Oculus Rift/HTC Vive ready PC that is also pretty quiet?
Well, that is harder to achieve since you're going to need a silent case with padding, silent fans and very careful part selection.

Below I list two systems, the Base and Ultimate. In the base system, I assume you're bringing some parts from your current machine such as Video Card and Hard Drive/SSD. In the Ultimate System, this is everything you need to build a quiet Virtual Reality ass kicking machine.
If you want two video cards for SLI go ahead and throw that in too!

Case - Corsair Obsidian 550D

The mid-size Corsair Obsidian 550D can be had for around $130 and comes with noise reduction and sound isolation already installed. Obsidian Series 550D comes with two front-mounted 120mm intake fans and one 120mm exhaust fan. The front and side panels are fully lined with sound-damping material, and the top and side panels have sound-insulated vent covers to reduce noise leakage from unused fan mounting locations.

CPU - Quad-Core or Hexacore?

Quad-Core or Hexacore? That is the question - The answer? Hexacore.
Four is nice, but the six cores in the Intel Core i7 5820K is just better at 3.3GHz base clock with turbo up to 3.6GHz this thing will kick ass.
Intel Core i7 5820K
Sure perhaps you can get a quad-core to a higher clock with overclocking, but I prefer the power of 6 cores for everyday PC usage. Remember the power of Hyper-threading you will be enjoying a total of 12 cores.

CORSAIR Hydro Series H55 Quiet Edition Water / Liquid CPU Cooler
For this build, we are looking for decent cooling that can handle some overclocking and is of course pretty quiet. The Hydro H55 series provides a low-profile and low-noise liquid cooler with a low-speed 120mm fan. The fan is not software controllable like some of the larger models but does have a three-pin connector that is compatible with fan controllers. The H55 measures only 30db while spinning, so the H55 fits the bill of quiet.

CORSAIR Hydro Series H55 Quiet Edition Water / Liquid CPU Cooler
If you want some hardcore cooling the top panel of the Corsair Obsidian 550D provides room for two 120mm or 140mm fans, or a 240mm radiator for compatibility with Corsair Hydro Series CPU coolers such as the Corsair Hydro H110i.

Graphics Card - Titan X or GTX 980? 

Which video card, Titan or GTX 980? The GTX 980 is a damned fast card, and you can add 2 for the same price as just one Titan X.
Since the goal is also quiet, the GTX 980 can come with a with a silent heat pipe and fan cooler combined. The fan only turns on during more intense gaming. The 980 is dead silent otherwise. So quiet? check.

ASUS Graphics Cards STRIX-GTX980

Base System
Case Corsair Obsidian 550D $ 129.99
CPU    Intel Core i7 5820K  $ 389.99
MB ASUS X99-DELUXE (Intel X99 Chipset) $ 382.99
Memory CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 16GB (4 x 4GB) 288-Pin DDR4 SDRAM DDR4 2133 $ 159.99
CPU Cooler CORSAIR Hydro Series H55 Quiet Edition Water / Liquid CPU Cooler. 120mm $ 59.99
PSU 750W Corsair CX750M $ 71.99
DVD Drive ASUS 24X DVD Burner  $ 19.99
$ 1,214.93
Tax (8% for me, change to your own) $ 97.19
Base System Total $ 1,312.12
Ultimate System (Within Reason)
Video Card ASUS Graphics Cards STRIX-GTX980 $ 555.00
SSD Samsung 850 Pro 512GB  $ 257.99
HDD Western Digital Caviar Green 3 TB $ 99.96
$ 2,127.88
Tax (8% for me, change to your own) $ 170.23
Ultimate System Total $ 2,298.11


Will this system allow you to play any game with the settings to the max?
Probably pretty close, especially if you go GTX 980 SLI.
However remember we're building a Virtual Reality ready PC. Both the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive devices offer a 90 Hz refresh so ideally you would need to achieve 90 fps to match this.
Almost no PC on earth can reach 90fps in any game with all settings turned on. There will need to be some compromise to get to 90 fps.
This PC is going to get you as close as you can with today's technology without breaking the bank and do so without sounding like a helicopter is landing on your desk.

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