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CaseLabs Merlin SM8: Update

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Made some minor updates to the Merlin SM8 that I thought you guys may be interested in.

First and most importantly I finally got rid of the awful orange SLI cable Asus so graciously provided with their P8Z77-V motherboard.

Finding a black SLI cable proved to be more difficult than I had originally anticipated and I was unable to find a double slot cable at all. I ended up paying 12 bucks for it from PerformancePCs.com which I think is a little overpriced but I would probably have payed more if I had too.

One bonus is that it is an EVGA branded SLI cable which is the same brand as my video cards. The fact that its too long bothers me but not nearly as much as the previous cable.

Once I got my hands on this new cable I painted the original but didn't like how it turned out.





The second change I made is somewhat minor but I really think it is a nice touch and adds to the overall aesthetic and color scheme of the system. I purchased some blue anodized aluminum socket head allen screws (mouthful) as well as some black washers and used them for the motherboard mounts. At first I didn't think they would be noticeable but they really stand out.

You can see in the picture above I also replaced the thumbscrews that CaseLabs provided. Unfortunately they were beginning to oxidize in the humid Florida weather. I wrote CaseLabs about this issue as a complimentary "heads-up" but did not receive a reply. Not a big deal, I still love them tongue.gif




The third change I made was removing the Corsair Link system in its entirety.

This is a product I really wanted to like. I still think it is a great idea, however, Corsair unfortunately executed it very poorly.

The software bugs and lack of support are enough to drive you up the wall but when its compounded by a complete lack of additional parts it becomes intolerable. I'm sorry but 3 x 3 LED isn't enough to sufficiently light a case this size.

I simply got sick and tired of having to fiddle with the software every time I booted up my computer so I finally just removed it and I haven't looked back.

I replaced the Link Lighting system with 4 60cm Akasa white LED's that fit perfectly around the top, bottom and sides of my system.

Personally I think I'm finished with colored LED's. I prefer having the various hardware components make-up the color scheme rather than lighting effects. Plus I think white looks classy..





This is just a quick picture of my cable management without the Corsair link system.





So here's a pic of my system as it currently stands; sitting on an AV cart, powering my Dell U2711 1440p monitor.

Sadly, something is wrong with the motherboard and its been giving me a variety of issues, mainly Kernal panics.

I'm going to be replacing the P8Z77-V and the 2600K when Haswell arrives. I am also going to add VRM blocks to whatever board I end up getting.

Hope you guys liked the update, let me know what you think!

Peace out!

post #2 of 3
Now I need to go find me some white screws for my mobo. Damn, I thought I was done. Looks sick!
LiquidGlass
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LiquidGlass
(14 items)
 
Case Labs ST10-X
(17 items)
 
Raven (Sold)
(15 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 7700K Asus Rog Strix Z270i Zotac GTX1080TI FE G.Skill Trident RGB 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung 960 Evo Custom Loop Windows 10 Pro OLED55C6V 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech G810 Corsair SF600 Lian Li Q37 Logitech G403 Wireless 
Mouse PadAudio
Corsair MM300 Bose CineMate GSII 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3820 Gigabyte UP4 ATI Radeon HD 7970 3GB ATI Radeon HD 7970 3GB 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveHard Drive
ATI Radeon HD 7970 3GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3 Ram OCZ Vertex 4 SSD 128GB OCZ Vertex 4 SSD 128GB 
Optical DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Blu Ray Reader & DVD-RW Burner Custom Watercooling Loop  Microsoft Windows 8 HP w2558hc 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Anansi Corsair AX1200 W/ White Sleeving Caselabs ST10-X Extreme Edition Razer Mamba 
Audio
Logitech G930 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 3770k Asus P8Z77-V EVGA Nvidia GTX 680 Signature 2 SC Corsair Vengence 16 GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Crucial M4 128 GB SSD Sony DVD-RW Drive XSPC Rasa 750 RS360  Windows 7 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Dual 24" View Sonic LED's Razer Gaming Keyboard Corsair AX750 SilverStone Tek RV02B-EW-USB3.0 
MouseAudioAudio
Razer Mamba Bose Cinemate GS Series II System Logitech G930 Wireless Surround Head Phones 
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post #3 of 3
Wow those screws and washers add just the right touch to the motherboard, looks great! The build looks great, and good luck with your upgrade to Haswell!
B.o.B. 900D
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B.o.B. 900D
(14 items)
 
HTPC
(12 items)
 
PolarBur
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
3930k Rampage IV Extreme 2x MSI 7870 64gb Vengeance 1600mhz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
840 pro 256gb, 12tb storage in RAID 5 Why? RIVE block, 7870 blocks, EK Supremacy, 480 UT60... Windows 7 Professional 
MonitorPowerCaseMouse
23" Dell, 40" HDTV Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer Mamba 2012 
Mouse PadAudio
Corsair MM200 Sennheiser HD280 Pro 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
3570k Asus P8Z77-V 550 Ti 8gb 1600 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
Vertex 4 250gb, 3tb Seagate (2), 2tb WD Green External Blu-Ray Windows 7 Professional 55" Vizio M3D550KDE 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech K400 Corsair CX430M Fractal Design Node 605 Logitech K400 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Phenom II X6 1090T ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3 Sapphire 5850 Toxic 4gb G.SKill DDR3 1600 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
30gb SSD, 1tb WD black Sony Optiarc Windows 7 64bit Dell ST2310 23" 1080p + 40" 1080p HDTV 
PowerCaseMouse
1000w CM HAF 932 blue edition Razer Mamba 
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