First Intel Build, going [H]ard.

Nobu

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Being as I just had the pleasure of obtaining (winning) a Z97 Sabertooth Mark S and STRIX GeForce 980 here at [H]ard|Forum, I figured it would be an injustice if I didn't at least attempt a build before selling either/or. ;)

That said, I'm going to need some help picking out a case and power supply, since I doubt my bargain-bin Enermax NAXN Tomahawk II 450W PSU will cut it, and I'd just like to see this in a better case than my current NZXT h230. I'll probably throw in my current 1TB HDD, h80i, and 16GB HyperX Predator RAM, so we won't worry about that for now.

Budget for this build is (USD) $300-500, leaving a little wiggle room, but I'd like to err on the lower end. I will be overclocking, and I'm planning for a full watercooling loop in the future (if I don't sell the PC). In UT, Ogden area.

Without further mind-numbing text, Pics!

IMG_01371.jpg

Hmm, wonder what's in the box...

...Ah, my brand-new Motherboard and Vidia card!

But I'm sure most frequenters of this site are familiar with what's inside already. ;)

For an idea of my taste, I like how the HAF XB EVO looks, for the most part, but I don't like all the plastic. The CaseLabs Mercury S8 Test Bench would be perfect (imo; it has enough room for a 120.2 radiator in the front or 120.3 on the side, plenty of storage, and it's purdy steel), but it doesn't come with panels (for obvious reasons); the Mercury S8 is much taller, unfortunately.
 

Nobu

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Oh, yeah, Intel i5-4690k is on order, due to arrive in about a week.
 

Dangman

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Well I can't really help you with a cube case recommendations since IMO, they're all fuckin' ugly and therefore not really worth spending my time researching. If you're open to non-cube cases, I do have a list of cases to check out.

With that said, for the PSU, I have two PSU recommendations:
$95 - Seasonic G Series SSR-650RM 650W Modular PSU
$145 - Seasonic SS-660XP2 660W Modular PSU

Either PSU will be fine but the 660W is of higher quality than the 650W.
 

Nobu

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Thanks. I'm open to suggestions, it's just that my preference is for shorter cases. I could put feet on the side of a tower and be happy...if the bottom wasn't ugly. ;)
 

Dangman

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I recommend the following cases:
$86 - Antec 1100 V2 ATX Case
$90 - NZXT Source 530 Full Tower Case
$100 - Thermaltake Core V5 Black ATX Case
$106 - NZXT Phantom PHAN-001BK Black Full Tower ATX Case
$110 - Corsair Carbide Series 500R ATX Case
$120 - Corsair Vengeance Series C70 Gunmetal Black ATX Case
$120 - Corsair Vengeance Series C70 Arctic White ATX Case
$120 - Corsair Obsidian Series 450D ATX Case
$120 - NZXT Phantom PHAN-001WT White Full Tower ATX Case
$126 - NZXT Phantom 530 Black Full Tower ATX Case
$135 - Corsair Obsidian Series 750D ATX Case
$140 - Corsair Graphite Series 730T ATX Case
$150 - NZXT Phantom 630 White Windowed Full Tower ATX Case
$150 - Phanteks Enthoo Luxe Full Tower Case
$158 - NZXT Phantom 630 Gunmetal Full Tower Case
$163 - Thermaltake Urban T81 Full Tower ATX Case
$160 - Corsair Graphite Series 760T Black Full Tower Case
$170 - Corsair Graphite Series 760T White Full Tower Case
197 - Corsair Graphite Black ATX Full Tower 780T
208 - Corsair Graphite White ATX Full Tower 780T
$240 - Silverstone FT02B-USB3.0 ATX Case
 

Quartz-1

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Rather than the Silverstone FT02, can I suggest the FT05 for its superior access to the rear of the motherboard and smaller size?
 

bloodhawke83

I Strike Fear into the Hearts of the Masses
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I got the Corsair Vengeance Series C70 green case, worth it's weight in gold.
 

atp1916

[H]ard|DCoTM x1
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Nothing better in life than that new parts smell + build excitement!
 

AthlonXP

Fully [H]
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Congrats on winning, hopefully you can post more pics of the setup once its complete.
 

Weenis

I said WEENIS, not...
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Congrats dude! I have the same video card, it's an awesome card.
 

Motley

2[H]4U
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Nothing better in life than that new parts smell + build excitement!

This here, I just build me a new rig, and love that "new electronics smell" that comes from the case for a couple of weeks. They need to make an air freshner for us hardware freeks. "that new PC smell" or something, that would be awesome.
 

Nobu

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Thanks, all. ^_^

If I had to choose from the corsair cases, I'd probably pick the Obsidian 450D. Nice brushed aluminum front, large window, and room to mount 140mm fans in front and on top. Didn't really care for any of the other ones (all either full tower or full-frontal plastic, except for a few). I'm sure the SilverStone is well built, but I don't really like the design.

Anyone have other PSU suggestions? If not, I might order the 660W Seasonic. Are they generally quiet?

I'll be sure to post pics when I start putting things together. For now I'm keeping the MB/GPU boxed to prevent damage.
 

Motley

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Thanks, all. ^_^

If I had to choose from the corsair cases, I'd probably pick the Obsidian 450D. Nice brushed aluminum front, large window, and room to mount 140mm fans in front and on top. Didn't really care for any of the other ones (all either full tower or full-frontal plastic, except for a few). I'm sure the SilverStone is well built, but I don't really like the design.

Anyone have other PSU suggestions? If not, I might order the 660W Seasonic. Are they generally quiet?

I'll be sure to post pics when I start putting things together. For now I'm keeping the MB/GPU boxed to prevent damage.

Have you looked at the NZXT cases? I have the NZXT Switch 810. Best case I've ever owned. Looks great, has awesome wire managment. And has plenty of room for extra fans, or CPU All in one raditor.

As far as PSU, get the Corsair 850HX. Ya never know if you will end up getting power hungry cards like the AMD 290X or the new 390X. Best to get high power quality PSU now, so you don't have to replace it later.
 

Nobu

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All I have to say is: Don't get the h230. It's overall an okay case, but they cut corners where ever they could to get the price as low as it is, and then made some not great decisions (like having only one of the two HDD cages removable, flimsy plastic for the drive caddies, and not easily removable coarse mesh filters). Anyway, I'm not really impressed with their large door bezels on their cases, and the ones without them are pretty cheap looking (or ultra-towers). I prefer a flat exposed front on my case--I've got nothing to hide, though the door does dampen some of the fan/air noise.

Thanks for the suggestion. I'll compare reviews for the corsair and seasonic and see which sounds better built. 850W seems a bit overkill, but it is good to be prepared.
 

Dangman

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Anyone have other PSU suggestions? If not, I might order the 660W Seasonic. Are they generally quiet?
Yes Seasonic PSUs tend to be very quiet.

A
Thanks for the suggestion. I'll compare reviews for the corsair and seasonic and see which sounds better built. 850W seems a bit overkill, but it is good to be prepared.
The Seasonic is better built. See the HardOCP review of the HX850 Gold and the Seasonic PLatinum-660:
http://www.hardocp.com/article/2013...num660_660w_power_supply_review/#.VO0_BPnF-0d
http://www.hardocp.com/article/2012/08/22/corsair_hx850_gold_power_supply_review/#.VO0-5PnF-0c

Though if you want to be lazy and just skip to the end and see why I recommend the 660:
Paul's Thoughts:

Is anyone still reading at this point of the review today? I mean, I don’t know what you really want me to say here since I would have bought this unit after page 4. Well, I guess, relative to other Seasonic units, like the PLATINUM-1000, this unit is kind of homely which isn’t ideal, but other than that this unit is just plain money! Did you read page 4? So, uh, with what little there is to say there, I should probably point out that Amazon is that ----> way.

The Bottom Line

The Seasonic PLATINUM-660 is the newest member of the Seasonic PLATINUM line of power supplies we have reviewed, and when all is said and done it is probably the best power supply we have reviewed overall. The PLATINUM-660 posts the best voltage regulation we have ever seen, close to the best efficiency we have ever seen, it is for all intents and purposes is silent compared to other components in a system, has outstanding DC Output Quality, absolutely excellent build quality, and even posts better Transient Load responses than we have seen in a long time from a unit of such a capacity. Perhaps the only way the Platinum-660 gets better is if Seasonic was giving these away! In case they aren't giving these away, you can find it for sale over at Amazon for $149.99 with Prime Shipping. Sure that may seem like a lot for a 660W PSU, but for one that performs this incredibly well, it isn’t. When you buy a Seasonic PLATINUM-660 you are simply getting exactly what you paid for; quite possibly the best PSU we have ever reviewed.
 

Nobu

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CPU came in today. Debating whether to try it temporarily with my current PSU just to see if it works. Don't really want to apply the heatsink before I know how I want it oriented...

Ordered a HAF XB EVO and Seasonic 760XP2 (used/"like new" from Amazon Warehouse, since it cost less than the 660 and would still fit with an inch to spare). 2-day shipping, should arrive Monday. Might would have gotten the 860, since it cost the same, new, as the 760, but it wouldn't fit. I'm sure 760 is plenty, anyway. :p

Strongly considered getting the Corsair 450d, but finally decided against it. Would have gotten an NZXT if they made quality mid-towers with at least a slim ODD--their loss, I guess. Also mailed caselabs about getting an S8 Test Bench but with panels, but they simply replied that they don't have any (panels). Not really surprised about that one.

Pics on Monday/Tuesday, as time permits. :D
 

schizrade

Supreme [H]ardness
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How bad ass does it fell to get the core parts of a bad ass rig for free???
 

felt

Limp Gawd
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Pics on Monday/Tuesday, as time permits. :D

Looking forward to them! Congrats on the new build, it's been about 2 years since I've done one...Can't wait to do it again soon, maybe...If the wifey permits.
 

Nobu

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@schizrade, felt:
Thanks...pretty badass. :cool:
I do have to pay taxes on them, though. ;)

@AP514:
It was (and is still) sticky'd in the Motherboard forum. I happened to see it, and entered into it. First time winning a random draw contest...I hardly ever win at gambling, so I don't often try. Every now and then I throw my hand in, but this is the first time I've got anything back.

Case/PSU have shipped, expected delivery date is Tuesday, but I may get lucky and get it in on Monday. I'll probably have to wait until Tuesday to pick it up anyway, though, since I have a "PO" box and they sometimes don't put the notice in until the next day.

Trying to think of what I can do to personalize the case...I'm not really good at coming up with my own art, though I'm not bad at drawing/painting. I also have some wood that I was planning on making a from-scratch case with, but ended up putting that on the shelf until I can get anything better than a knock-off dremmel tool with an unbalanced chuck. lol
 
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Nobu

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Finally came in, took about 5h to put together, but it's done:

IMG_0146.jpg

Getting started...
IMG_0147.jpg

Almost done...had to use another cooler I had laying around, because I couldn't find two of the screws for the intel mounting hardware that goes to my H80i. :/
IMG_0149.jpg

Close-up--that noctua fan rattles a bit when running...
IMG_0150.jpg

Done: Front view
IMG_0151.jpg

Top view

The case ended up better than I expected. The frame and panels are solid, and it's organized well. Only complaints I have are not being able to mount a PSU flush to the back, and it's extremely difficult to screw in the motherboard tray...maybe a manufacturing defect, but still irritating.

The motherboard and associated components went together without a hitch. Was missing one of the stand-offs, though--guess I miss-counted when I first opened the box. The Vortex Plus works for cooling the CPU, but it heats up to 97+ (not instantly, mind) when running Prime95. Drops below 55 in less than a minute after stopping p95, so I know it's working. Also, it's fan mount presses right up against the ram, so definitely not the best solution. lol

Edit: Rather, the case was missing a stand-off...and it wasn't, I'm just blind.
 
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Dangman

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The motherboard and associated components went together without a hitch. Was missing one of the stand-offs, though--guess I miss-counted when I first opened the box. The Vortex Plus works for cooling the CPU, but it heats up to 97+ (not instantly, mind) when running Prime95. Drops below 55 in less than a minute after stopping p95, so I know it's working. Also, it's fan mount presses right up against the ram, so definitely not the best solution. lol
Yeah that's kinda bad dude. My max temps with my Coolermaster Hyper 212+ is 55C under Prime95. Granted different case and ambient temps but those temps are still rather high considering the case choice.

Just as a stop-gap measure, try install a fan on the rear of that that case as an exhaust.
 

Nobu

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Well, for reference, room ambient is 23c, idle temps are 37c MB and 47c CPU core (don't have the 35/40mm assist fans installed, atm). The fans in the front are barely running (<800rpm), though, so until the CPU starts putting out some heat the case temps shouldn't climb much. About as much as I can expect from a $30 cooler that I bought because it would (barely) fit in a Silverstone SG06. Haven't messed with voltages or anything yet, if anything I might undervolt until I get a better cooler.

I did put a box on the top to focus airflow out the sides, since the fans in the front won't be able to push as much air with how slowly they're turning. Well, actually it was to dampen the noise from the noctua fan, but it seems to have stopped clicking, so now it only serves the purpose of blocking air from leaving the top. :eek:

Definitely not good, though...yep.
 
D

Deleted member 126051

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I dunno. Maybe try snagging a 200mm fan for the top vent? Even at low speeds that should evac PLENTY of air.

Also, you may want to look at re-seating the HSF, as those temps are sort of way out of line.
 

Nobu

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I might try re-seating the HSF, but I'm not sure it'll help much. The heat-pipes seem to be milled flush with the bottom of the sink, but there are ~1mm gaps between the aluminum and the contact surface of the pipes. I put paste on it, then spread the paste with a card to try and fill the gaps, but gaps are still gaps. I used the rice-grain method on the heat-spreader itself, which may not work so well with the gaps. If I do try again, I'll probably spread both sides.

Edit: Even at 600rpm, I can feel cool air coming out of the sides of the case, so I know they're at least moving some air. I'll consider the 200mm fan, but unless I can get this heatsink to cool properly on it's own I don't think it'll be worth it. Better to spend on a proper heatsink/aio or buy the missing hardware for the H80i I already have.
 
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Nobu

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So, fwiw, I found the hardware for my h80i, and installed it. Wasn't seating well at all at first--temps would skyrocket after starting p95, and you could tell after removing the heatsink since you could clearly see where the paste was applied, and it barely spread at all.

After a bit of finagling, figured out it was resting on the caps on the side of the cpu near the rear of the motherboard. Moved it as far as I could away from them while tightening the screws, and now it sits at mid 30c when idle, around 50c while p95 is running. However, got a hardware error in one thread ("Rounding was 0.4998045489, expected less than 0.4") after 28 minutes (might be my RAM--haven't run memtest86 with this mb/cpu combo yet).
 

Dangman

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Try applying a bit more thermal paste to the HSF if you can.
 

Nobu

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Been overclocking meanwhile, reached 4.38GHz at 2.22V, temp maxing at around 85c in P95 (no errs yet, about 20 minutes in). I'll try re-applying in a bit, since I did re-seat without cleaning/applying new paste earlier. Would be nice if I could find that Arctic paste that I had found in a box the other day. :/

Edit: started to destabilize after about 30 minutes, though there were still no errors. Windows weren't updating their contents unless interacted with, and they were sluggish at that (stopping p95 didn't help). Dropped the bclk to 170 and upped the multi to 26 for an overall increase in clock speed--we'll see if it's more stable or not in a little while. Also, ran memtest86, only had two errors in four runs--one in test 4 (forget which that is) and one in the row hammer test. Might drop the bclk a bit more to reduce that to zero.

Edit2: Well, bsod after about 5 minutes p95, so dropped bclk to 167. Now stable with p95 blend for 2.5h and small FFTs ran for 40 minutes without error, never rose above 85c. I'll decide later if I want to reapply the cheapie paste...still a bit irritated that I lost the good (well, better) shit right after I found it. -_-
 
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