I finally got my build together. It took quite a while as I was waiting for the bitcoin pricing madness to subside. I also ended up returning my corsair rm 750 to newegg because newegg is still selling the recalled models even though replacements have been out since Nov of 2013. Despite this, Newegg was a great place to get components with a lot of good deals. If you know you're going to build a rig make sure you take advantage of Newegg's 30 day trial premier membership. I saved a LOT in shipping and got my stuff faster plus I avoided RMA and restocking fees. Also, if you buy a lot from newegg in a short period they email you special deals beyond the usual promotions. I ended up canceling the 30 day trial just before it expired so I didn't even have to pay the $50/annual fee.
Overall I really liked the Fractal case, but I in a perfect world the side panels could have been a little more user friendly and fit more snugly. It almost felt like they were bowing out slightly even when there were no obstructions (like an abundance of cable). However, functionally, I don't think this caused any problem. I had an old Antec Solo where the sides came off more easily and the thumb screws stayed in place and I liked the design better. But overall, I'm very happy with the R4 design. Button and inputs on the top/front rather than the front of the case was a good design as well.
I was never trying to build a totally silent PC but all in all I'm very happy with the near silent outcome of my build. Fact is, hearing fades as we get older and being I'm over 40 I may not notice the background noise as much as someone in their 20s. Also, the desk I use has a cabinet made for the case so that dampens the noise even more and I haven't had an issue with overheating. (The back of the desk is open). Looking at individual components, nothing bothered me, but the loudest component I installed would probably have to be the antec case fan likely made more conspicuousness simply because it's mounted on the front of the case (mechanical switch on fan was set to low, the quietest setting). The sapphire R9 290 tri-x was surprisingly low noise. I was quite happy about this as the stock R9 290s have a reputation for being very loud. Of course the Seasonic is going to be louder than the Corsair I had being the Corsair runs fanless up to about half load. Even so, I can't say I've ever noticed any noise from the Seasonic. Oh, neither the corsair or the seasonic came with the cable I needed to power my Antec case fan which required a molex so I ended up buying a cheap ($2) molex adapter. Let me rephrase that... the Seasonic and Corsair both had modular cables with molex connections, but I didn't have room to use them and wouldn't have wanted to even if I did so the adapter was a better solution. With the adapter I just tapped into the non-molex power cable.
I started playing around with some CPU/GPU stressing software, but once I determined my components weren't defective I mostly lost interest. Likewise I played around with gigabyte's fan software. The software had a good interface, but I didn't spend too much time with it. The bottom line is that while not silent, my build without tweaking is quiet enough for me that I don't even notice the noise. Of course judging sound is very subjective. When it comes to noise level at load, I have played graphic intensive games but paired up with my 3.1 speaker system I've never noticed the case noise.
Bottom line, if you're looking for a totally silent build this isn't for you, but for a gaming rig I'm quite pleased. For those considering a gaming rig, take a good look at the Sapphire R9 290 tri-x (anandtech review link below). It's still a little pricy ($429 at new egg as of 4/26/14) but in the following months it is should come down even more now that the bitcoiners have moved on to bigger and better hardware.
Thanks again to everyone that helped. Had I taken all your advice I'm sure I would have had a quieter (but more expensive) build. Luca you were particularly helpful and patient with me.
Thanks for being there SPR!
PSU: Seasonic SSR-750
Mobo: GA-B85-HD3:http://www.gigabyte.com/products/produc ... id=4566#sp
CPU: Xeon E3 1230 V3http://ark.intel.com/products/75054/int ... e-3_30-ghz
GPU: Sapphire R9 290 Tri-x OC (100362-2SR)http://www.sapphiretech.com/presentatio ... 0101&lid=1
Case: Fractal Design R4 no window
Memory: G.Skill DDR3 1600 2x8GB
HDD: 1TB Western Digital Blue
SSD: Samsung EVO 250GB
Xtra case fan: Antec TrueQuiet 140mm fan
CPU Cooler: Mugen 4 (SCMG-400)
OS: Win 8.1
Anandtech Sapphire R9 290 Tri-x OC review:http://www.anandtech.com/show/7601/sapp ... cooled-290