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Just some random tips I've learned after building a few systems

post #1 of 2
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- Spend time researching each component you plan on using - You'd be amazed what you'll learn from detailed reviews.
- Order the case first before ordering the components - This will give you a chance to inspect every area of space you'll be installing to. Is there enough room to run all of the cables behind the mobo? Do I need to remove the drive cages; are they bolted in or screwed in? Do I have enough room to replace the stock fans? Where is the best place to fit a 240 rad? Do I have room for a bigger rad?
- Take the time to test all of your components first before installing - It's much easier to find out something isn't working before you install it rather than after.
- I don't suggest cases with fans on the side panel - This is just more trouble than it's worth. The fan doesn't look good, and if it's a big fan it can get in the way of the power cables for your GPU.
- Use a magnetic screwdriver - Trust me, dropping screws is very annoying
- Unless you absolutely much install your lighting where it will be visible, don't use cold cathodes. CCs are harder to install, require this annoying regulator that for some reason is always blue, require a switch that covers one of your case PCI slots, and are not very reliable.
LED light strips on the other hand are none of these things, and are just as bright. The one downside is that they don't look very good, but you should be installing lighting where the strip isn't visible anyway.
- Barb fittings are just as good as compression fittings, but don't look as nice. For a "Budget" water cooling build, feel free to use barb fittings.
- Angled fittings always look nice, they eliminate a whole lot of tubing.
- On boards from 3 different manufacturers I've ran into the problem of my keyboard not working after post to get into the BIOS or the Raid controller. This was resolved every time with a BIOS update.
- In general: Fans with less than 2.0 static pressure are case fans (or very cheap/bad rad fans). Fans with more than 2.0 static pressure are rad fans.
- In general: Rads with less than 20 FPI are for "quiet" fans. Rads with more than 20 FPI are for "high performance" fans. Less FPI means lower fan RPMs required to push air through the fins. If you are going for a very quiet system, get rads with less than 20 FPI.
- Install your "big" cables first (24 pin, GPU power, etc..) before your smaller cables. This will make the cable management behind the motherboard much easier.
post #2 of 2
I'd add make sure your standoff's are installed in your case as well as doing a dry boot before loading everything in to discover a problem.
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