CPU - i5 2500K :
+ What is there to say! Best CPU of the moment.
Motherboard - AsRock Z68 Extreme4 Gen 3 : Does what I expects. Looks stable and performant.
+ looks good.
+ good general layout.
+ good feature set.
+ loads of fan headers.
+ good tools.
+ good freebies (4 SATA3 cables, two angled, two straight, good docs).
+ supports 775 / 1155 / 1156 CPU backplates.
- bios fan control could be better.
- location of the molex connector for the PCIE. It's a bit awkward.
- UEFI bios a bit simplistic.
- Comes with Norton. You're better off not installing drivers automatically and selecting the software one by one, if you don't want that ****e smeared all over your new build.
CPU Cooler - Thermalright MUX-120 :
+ SUPERB build quality. All metal.
+ really good mounting system. Easy, secure, and no over-pressure on the CPU.
+ comes with ChillFactor III (I've used some MX-4 I had left).
+ good quiet fan (replaced with an Apache Black I had left over. Not much difference except it's BLACK!).
+ looks great.
+ not heavy (600 grams?).
+ good RAM clearance.
+ Absolute bargain (paid £32).
+ decent performance (50C @ 4.4GHz).
+ good manual.
- Bit tall (160mm). Had reservations about fitting the cooler and the side fan, but it's just right. Maybe a problem with a SilverArrow. I recon I have 5 mm clearance.
- fiddly metal wire things to secure the fan. Don't look too secure either, but seems to hold.
Memory - Kingston HyperX Genesis 8GB 12800C9 : Nothing to report. Just works, and have no intention to overclock over 1600MHz.
GPUs - Sapphire 6950 2GB TOXIC Crossfire : Haven't had the time to stress them out. Crossfire worked out of the box. Did a Unigine run, 11fps min (looks like a hiccup), 150fps max.
SSD - Crucial M4 128GB :
+ Insane boot times. Thought my Vertex2E was fast, the M4 makes the boot dissapear.
+ Quick ATTO run, 250MBps write, over 500MBps read. fast!
- Dunno what bios it's running.
Corsair Carbide 500R : Everything I expected.
+ Good overall cable management. Lots of little holes and gromets at the right place.
+ Great layout. Everything just fits nice and neat. Plenty of room for GPUs.
+ BIG CPU backplate cutout, if I ever need it.
+ removable top, plenty of room for fans.
+ I like the extra width given to the side panels. helps cable management (in fairness, it needs it), and allows a nice 200mm fan blowing straight into the GPUs, leaving room for a nice CPU cooler as well).
+ Great 5.25'' tooless mechanism. It just slots in and wont move in a hurry.
+ motherboard standoffs already in place. A couple extra more thrown in a bag in case you need some.
+ Great build quality. Has a really nice solid feel. Cables for the front case peripherals are nice and chunky (HSB3, Firewire, audio...).
+ Everything is black, even the thumb screws. No red and yellow cables hanging around.
+ removable hard disk cages. Started using the bottom one, then decided to switch to the top one. Bit fiddly securing that one once the components were in.
+ thumb screws galore. A sign of quality!
+ has a USB3 to USB2 converter included. Not that it is much use to me.
+ White light on fans. Nice and neutral.
- Bit of a tight fit at the back, if like me you are not great at cable management. The extra 'hump' helps, but even then it's tight.
- Anchor points for cable ties could be better placed. Didn't find much use for them. They provide a couple of stick on cable placements, more useful but they don't stick quite so well.
- No manual.
- The exhaust fan has no light.
- The fan controller seem to be specifically designed for the case fans. Dunno if it would work with 3rd-party case fans.
- Not super quiet. I thought my previous rig could be a bit quieter, the new rig is slightly noisier.
- Haven't worked out how to remove the fan filters on the front fan. Doesn't look like it's a removable panel, like the top panel, and you have to pull the whole front out. Shame :'(
- Couldn't work out how to fit 120mm fans at the top. There is no way to fix them to the case (it's rubber-damped holes, with no metal for the screws to bite in).
- I could only put 3 PSU mounting screws. BTW, I should have use some thumb screws left over instead.
- hard drive cages, while good with hard drives, are too 'wobbly' for SSDs. But once they're in, who cares! HDDs add more rigidity and are well damped.
- Qpad 5K mouse is bugged in UEFI. No biggie. keyboard works just fine, and I have a spare laptop mouse in case. Think the new BIOS fixes some mouse issues but won't bother.
NOTE : Side fan is intake by default. Would recommend exhaust config for GPUs like MSI Twin Frozr cards that dump heat into the case.
PSU - Corsair AX 850 : Decided to get that one, couldn't wait for the Seasonic X-850 to come back in stock. Saved £15, not so bad after all.
+ Stunning. All black cables, all sleeved.
+ Performance. We all know about them. Seasonic X-850 platform.
- 8pin CPU cable too short (600mm). Just about fitted in the case round the back.
- cables are stiff as hell, could be just me not being used to PSUs.
- Only 4 PCIE 6+2 connectors. Not that it bothers me, and that you should run tri-sli on 850W anyway.
LG DVD-RW 22x :
+ read DVDs and stuff.
- bit noisy in operation. Though it was broken when Norton tried to install itself (don't ask!).
Samsung F3 : An 'old' drive that's been kicking around in my older build. Fast quiet drive, need to put the other one in.
Edited by papalazaru - 11/2/11 at 3:41am