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My ongoing build, what I learned

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
My build experience:

Slowly built over a period of time until I felt mostly satisfied.

NZXT Source 220
I selected this case because of the style, I really liked the mesh front and the simplicity of it. To my surprise it's very well made and there was no risk of accidently cutting wires while moving them around as I've had happen in cases without rounded edging.

Intel Core i7-3770K
I selected the best CPU I knew of and afterward slightly regretted it. The price was way to high IMO and I'm not really sure it was worth it honestly. Had I a chance to go back I would probably go AMD. Also I had issues with this and the Hyper Evo 212 which everyone says is so great, my temps went haywire using it. Ridiculious temps so I moved onto the cooler below. Delidded mine btw.

Noctua NH-D14
The Hyper Evo 212 IMO was overhyped and cannot handle a simple 1.2 core voltage on the 3770k without going into the 90's. This cooler brought things under control and to my surprise actually fit into my mid tower case (had to move the 140mm fan nearer the base). I was totally satisfied using this because my overclock was now 1.25 core volts at 4.7ghz with 80C full load. Absolutely acceptable to me versus the Evo.

ASUS USB-N66

Best USB wifi adapter? Maybe.... the software it comes with is junk though. I was thinking of using an Intel 6300 with a pcie adapter because their software is so much better.

EVGA 02G-P4-2676-KR GeForce GTX 670 FTW LE
Bought 1 in 2012, the other this month. Very fast and the least expensive I could find at the time. They are unfortunately loud, very loud, at 80% fan speed which on a full load is what's required to keep them at 75c or near it. That's ridiculious IMO and indicates a design flaw but yea........... No regrets here but maybe AMD would've been cheaper? The Adapative VSync was the reason didn't go AMD, not that it works very well.

ARCTIC Accelero TT II
ARCTIC Accelero Hybrid Extreme

Running SLI with 2 TT II's kept their idle temps great, but when on load WOW the top nearly shot to 90C! Clearly another design flaw IMO but can't be helped either since they are right next to one another in the slots. It forced me to buy 1 liquid cooling solution which arrives today or tommorrow, I'll report back with temps then.

ASUS Xonar D1
Best soundcard I could afford at the time, what's sad is compared to the DSX or lower brands it makes them seem like onboard. I was actually kind of mad switching from the DSX to this and clearly hearing the differences in sound production, my speakers sounded amazing for the first time.

COUGAR CF-V12H 120mm
Cougar CF-V14HP 140mm

I only use the above fans now, mostly because they are very good and quiet. I have tried brands like Enermax, Cool Master, bla bla bla all kinds. They all stink! These don't vibrate my case like those others which was one of those things you don't believe until you hear the difference. Also these fans look great and their RPM's are read correctly by my motherboard. I can't tell you how many fans I tried with this mobo where the RPM's went wildly all over the place showing insane numbers like 13903 and the like. Sometimes the Enermax ones would work fine, other times they'd read nutty figures. It caused me no end of annoyance till I found these.

FSP Group AURUM GOLD 750W
My other Rosewill PSU fried, I had no choice but to get this and don't regret it I bought mine for like 80 bucks at Fry's on sale.

NZXT APERTURE M Multi-Media Card Reader (5.25 bay)
I thought this card reader was cool as hell, that is until I found it was causing my system to hang at boots. For whatever reason this junk during a reset causes my system to hang at boot, most of the time it just takes a min or 2 for the thing to boot, but sometimes it never does. I disconnected the media card reader now and only use the usb 3.0 ports. I should note that 1 of these had a USB port that shorted out and reset my system until I discovered it. JUNK Soon to be replaced with a different solution.

ASUS P8Z77-V Pro/Thunderbolt
Bought because I destroyed the socket of an ASRock mobo, I dropped the CPU in it and it bent the pins badly. I wanted the replacement to have thunderbolt and bingo this was the one I found. Not a bad mobo, but I suffered alot from the BIOS reset bug that many overclockers faced. It just kept resetting all the time all my settings in BIOS and I finally went nuts until the 2003 bios was released and it STOPPED. For that reason alone I would really reconsider using ASUS again. The problem was so obvious too it was their stupid ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall) that kept triggering the resets. They took soooooo long to fix it.

ASUS BW-12B1ST (12X BD-R/16X DVD+R + 8mb cache)
I bought this for the size of the cache, 8mb. Now my car won't read the CD's it burns even though my last burner wrote them fine. Clearly it's not the best burner for sensitive audio players from 2003. I find it weird honestly and it's another annoying factor even though it's a rebadged burner I still blame ASUS for it.

Crucial Ballistix Tactical Tracer 4GB
I have 4 of these with pretty LED's on them which I can't see because I have no side window on my case, they are disabled now. I bought them because I had issues with other memory vendors so played it safe. There is an software application that lets you change the patterns of LED's and such.

Crucial M4 CT128M4SSD2 2.5" 128GB SATA III
I bought it for like 140 I think, it's good but not the best.

Western Digital WD Scorpio Black 750 GB
For storage drives I went with these, 5 of them to be exact. They're dirt cheap on Amazon and are very quiet. Mostly I wanted small drives (mobile) because of the midtower I have and also it reduces the heat somewhat. I use drive bay adapters below which are my favorites.

Scythe 2.5 Twin Mounter Rev.C
These have rubber grommets to dampen vibrations from the hard drives, not really an issue with mobile drives like mine but still pretty good design. They are unfortunately hard to find and I spent alot of time tracking down spares. I do not twin mount drives, just leave the bottom free for cooling reasons.

The one thing that I had to find which wasn't very easy is a fan controller. I wanted something a little more definite on what the voltages being used were and I settled on:

Akust PCI Slot Fan Power Splitter / Reducer

Unfortunately running SLI prevented me from using this in a PCI slot, I had to be creative. I decided to mount it in the lower drive bay but having no skills and the PC already being assembled meant I had think outside the box.

Firstly I cut a DVD cover apart so this card could sit on it once I unscrewed the PCI bracket from it. Then I drilled holes in that DVD cut out and screwed the PCB into that instead. I used some 3m squares on the PCB to lift it slightly off the plastic cut out I made, this way the stuff wasn't touching it. Then I used them on the underside to stick it to the drive bay. The result was a neatly organized and somewhat secure mounting that can be removed if I ever desire to.

Front fans run at 6 volts, top 2 run at 5 volts, bottom fan is connected to the mobo and I can change it's speed + the back fan where the liquid cooler for the gtx 670 ftw will go. The fans for the Noctua NH-D14 appearantly use 7 volts on the low noise adapter so I went with 10 volts for both instead of a full 12 which i consider slightly to loud for my tastes.

Intel(R) IPP JPEG encoder 7.0.1041 - Jul 19 2011;
Intel(R) IPP JPEG encoder 7.0.1041 - Jul 19 2011;



Edited by natures4fun - 9/18/13 at 8:07am
post #2 of 8
Looks like a nice build, but im suprised by the 3770k comment. Which AMD cpu would you have gotten instead out of interest?
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post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
I think I'd have gone with the AMD FX-8350 because it's $100 cheaper and has 8 cores. Of course the 3770k is still faster but for $100 difference that's a big cost savings and you will have better support for future games that make use of more cores. I just think I could've saved alot and still ended up with a system I was satisfied with by using AMD
post #4 of 8
I must admit the performance difference from a 8350 to 3770k wont particularly be noticeable outside of looking at benchmarks, but still be happy, you have a superb cpu on your hands thumb.gif
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post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Here are the pictures of what I have done. With the Accelero Twin Turbo on the bottom and the liquid cooler unit on top.

I am not happy the backplate on the liquid cooler impacted the twin turbo II shroud. Because of this I had to put it on top SLI which is not what I wanted, I would've preferred it was on bottom. Anyways I had terrible, just terrible temperatures with these, 75C in SLI! Granted not the 90C I was getting with 2 twin turbo's but I was really confused.

I added 3 intakes in the front! 1 bottom, 1 side! and still it was running hot. I decided to make the side fan exhaust and WOW it all became normal.

Now full load with furmark I get 66C bottom, 64C top. NOT BAD

I still need to run tests on the CPU and see what temps I get there but I'm going to work now so no more time.

This is the result I was looking for, something normal and not crazy. Appearantly all the heat from the twin turbo II was being passed onto the top SLI cooler and even being liquid based still went nuts with temps, probably due to the exhaust on the radiator moving hot air. Now with another exhaust temps are normalized........

It was HELL fitting everything into a mid tower, HELL. And my room gets so hot now LOL But that's good right it shows the heats being moved out of the case LOL

Anyways ahem...... I will test more later but here are pictures




post #6 of 8
Impressive build, just one thing though....................Those CABLES!
Please tell me you have a plan to tidy them up? cowboy.gif
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
I wouldn't know how. These are tidy I spent hours sorting them and tying them down in certain ways to find what would fit into the midtower. If you look carefully I made room for the side fan barely by moving wires out of the way. You should've seen it before, the darn thing was a MESS. When I added the liquid cooler I had to seriously move some wires around in the front right that was just becoming to much. I will look into it but I almost can't do anything else because this things a midtower which sucks badly. I would've gotten a full tower but I can't because this stupid desk only allows a mid.

*sigh* if I sort more I"ll post again!
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
I'm getting better temps than I originally thought. With the back fan the radiator is on at 1300 rpms and the wide at 1000 + bottom at 1000 I have full loads on the GTX 670 FTW's of 63C! Both identical. THAT IS AMAZING..........

I call this a success.......... the CPU at 4.2 1.150 core volts is set to 4.2GHZ and full load with that + the GTX 670's at full load was 75C. I will probably settle on 4.5GHZ at 1.170 but yea wow these temps are so much better than I'd have guessed
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