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Empress: der Wille zur Macht

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 


The will to power -- the primary driving force behind human achievement, ambition and a fundamental concept in the philosophy of Nietzsche. Technology has had a profound effect on my life; I replaced my first processor at the age of 10, I was educated as a mechanical design engineer and I'm working as a systems administrator in a technology-driven industry. I have decided to build a new computer and document the process in the hope that I will learn even more about the hobby I treasure.

The plan is to build, refine, optimize and test everything using air cooling before I get all of my components wet. In the past, I have purchased components with the intention to use liquid cooling, but once the system is up and running I lose most of my willpower. I promise that will not happen with Empress. I will see this through to completion and please, if you sense me losing motivation, direct me to this introduction!

___________________________________________



  • CPU: Intel Core i7-3970X
  • CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i (temporary)
  • Motherboard: Asus Rampage IV Extreme
  • Memory: Corsair Dominator Platinum 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133
  • Storage: 2 x Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB SSD (RAID 0)
  • Video Card: 3 x EVGA GeForce GTX 680 4GB
  • Sound Card: Asus Xonar Essense STX
  • Case: CaseLabs Merlin SM8 (white)
  • Power Supply: Corsair AX1200i

  • Arrived
  • Ordered
  • Researching

___________________________________________



My goal for this build is to create something that I am proud to use every day. I want to take my time and ensure that I'm making all of the right decisions: from component selection to cable routing and beyond. The color scheme will be white and red with hints of gold -- getting everything perfect is going to take time. I plan to have all of the components ordered by tomorrow; in all likelihood, I will begin building on Tuesday night and I should have everything up and running by the weekend. This will not be a showstopper à la cpachris because my pockets are finite, but I'm going to put as much effort as possible into making sure that I realize my vision. As time progresses, I will edit this post to include a table a contents with links to all of the build log updates and information about how and when I will get all of this hardware underwater. I appreciate you taking the time to read my thread and have a great day!

Teaser (my camera isn't great, so I'm waiting for the morning for better lighting)


Edited by Protokoll - 12/16/12 at 8:34am
post #2 of 5
Thread Starter 
I'm fairly certain that I'm going to pull the proverbial trigger on the 3970X and the Rampage IV Extreme, but I'm less certain about my memory and video card choices. Let me explain my reasoning behind those choices. I am going to be using this machine to run a vSphere environment with five to ten virtual machines and I'm also interested in implementing RAM caching to a certain extent. To this end, the 32GB of RAM is almost a necessity, but it's going to be much more difficult to overclock these dense memory modules and Corsair doesn't offer a 32GB kit at a higher frequency without a voltage increase. I'm not sure if I want to stress the IMC on my CPU with the increased voltage, since I'd rather use that headroom to hit a higher clock frequency. I could allocate less RAM to my VMs and use a 4 x 4GB 2133 kit, which would give me a slight performance boost at the cost of a significant pool of available memory. I'm still weighing the pros and cons of each possibility.

When considering GPUs, I had originally wanted to stick with AMD since their cards are more friendly with respect to voltage control and overclocking in general. In addition, the GHz Edition cards have been shown to slightly outperform the GTX 680. Right now I'm gaming at a resolution of 2560 x 1440, but I plan to step up to a higher resolution or a multi-monitor setup in the near future. I'm going to need a larger pool of RAM to game with very high texture detail at these resolutions. Unfortunately, there are very few water blocks for the GHz Edition cards and the selection for 7970 cards in general (particularly from EK) is disappointing. This has led me to the 4GB FTW+ cards from EVGA. Yes, they're not going to overclock as well and they're going to be more difficult to overclock due to the larger banks of memory, but EK makes a lovely block for them and I'm not positive what other cards I should consider.

If anyone could weigh in with their opinion on these two components, I would appreciate it. Thanks!
Edited by Protokoll - 12/14/12 at 7:49pm
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
I'm still waiting for the sun to show itself; it's going to snow in a few minutes, so that doesn't look likely. In other news, most of the components have been ordered and I just need to pick up the video cards, sound card, fans, and some extension cables. I'll order those and I can start basic assembly tomorrow. When I switch to liquid cooling, I'll be replacing the Corsair cables with some professionally sleeved MDPC-X cables. Right now I'm kicking around the idea of red radiators accompanied by fans with white frames, red blades and a gold accent ring. I think they will look quite nice.








post #4 of 5
Looks good, can't wait to see this!
post #5 of 5
If ram power was what you needed, IBE should be released next summer. Given how high you can run ram on IB, I assume IBE will have the access to performance. If your need for this system is more immediate though, ASUS claims that you can OC with all 8 modules filled without sac'ing any OC power from the CPU on the RIVE. I haven't tried this as 16gb is more than enough than I need for a rig I don't exactly use for productive purposes if you know what I mean wink.gif But I also haven't seen anyone proove them wrong either.

As far as GPU's go, you can also check out ASUS's new GTX 680 4gb DCII's. Not sure if EK's current DCII blocks will fit, but you can message ek_tibor to see if it does. I can only assume that the PCB hasn't changed from the 2gb versions if they only switched out the RAM modules.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7-3930K Asus Rampage IV Extreme EVGA GTX 690 Corsair Dominator GT 16 GB (4 x 4 GB) DDR3 2133... 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Samsung 840 Pro 256GB x 2 (RAID 0) Western Digital VelociRaptor 300GB Seagate Barracuda 3TB x 2 Koolance CPU-380i 
CoolingCoolingCoolingMonitor
HEATKILLER® GPU-X³ GTX 690 Hole Edition Noiseblocker NB-BlackSilentPro PK-3 x 12 Black Ice® GTX Gen Two Xtreme 560 x 3 Asus VG278HE 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Corsair Vengeance K60 SeaSonic Platinum-1000 CaseLabs STH-10 Corsair Vengeance M60 
Audio
Asus Xonar Phoebus 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7-3930K Asus Rampage IV Extreme EVGA GTX 690 Corsair Dominator GT 16 GB (4 x 4 GB) DDR3 2133... 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Samsung 840 Pro 256GB x 2 (RAID 0) Western Digital VelociRaptor 300GB Seagate Barracuda 3TB x 2 Koolance CPU-380i 
CoolingCoolingCoolingMonitor
HEATKILLER® GPU-X³ GTX 690 Hole Edition Noiseblocker NB-BlackSilentPro PK-3 x 12 Black Ice® GTX Gen Two Xtreme 560 x 3 Asus VG278HE 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Corsair Vengeance K60 SeaSonic Platinum-1000 CaseLabs STH-10 Corsair Vengeance M60 
Audio
Asus Xonar Phoebus 
  hide details  
Reply
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