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[Build Log] "Project Neptune" - Overkill Watercooled | Custom Painted Rampage V Extreme | 5960x | 980ti SLI | Custom-Painted Caselabs SMA8

post #1 of 77
Thread Starter 
First off, welcome to my first-ever build log! I've been lurking for a while and have learned a lot, so I figured this is as good a time as any for me to contribute to the community.

The build is a Haswell-E 5930k and SLI Titan X's in a custom-painted Caselabs SMA8. I'll be watercooling for the first time and am trying to go for overkill cooling that will keep my GPUs below in the 30s C under load while providing me room for future expansion.

This project has been in various stages of development for quite a while now. This ball really started rolling back in June when I was an early adopter of the 980ti. I'd been contently sitting on the sidelines and hadn't made any major upgrades in around a year, but the new card -- specifically using an AIO to water cool it -- whetted my appetite and this build is really the result of about three months of on again-off again planning on my part. A few important things (lol Motherboard) are still moving targets at this point, but with my deadline fast approaching (I put in for Nov 11-13 off work way back in September), I have enough pieces in place to set the wheels in motion. And who knows? Perhaps during the course of reflection for this log I'll gain some clarity around what exactly I want to do for my last few components.

PC Components
CPU - i7-5960x
MoBo - Rampage V Extreme
RAM - 32 (8x4)GB Kingston HyperX Predator DDR4 3000
GPU - EVGA 980ti SC
GPU - EVGA 980ti SC
Boot Drive - 512mb Samsung 950 Pro
Program Drive - 2x 1TB Samsung 850 EVO in RAID 0
Storage Drive- 2x 3TB WD Blue (RAID0)
PSU - EVGA SuperNOVA P2 1200W

Case
Custom painted Caselabs SMA8 - Gray exterior/Blue interior

Cooling
EK Rampage V Extreme Chipset/Mosfet Block
EK Supremacy EVO X99 CPU Block
2x EK 980ti/TitanX FC GPU block w/backplate
Reservoir - EK X4 250
Pumps - 2x EK D5 PWM in serial
Bottom - Black Ice Nemesis GTX 560 Rad - Aerocool DS140 fans mounted Push
Bottom - Black Ice Nemesis GTX 360 Rad - EK Vardar F2 120 fans mounted Push/Pull
Front Intake - Black Ice Nemesis GTX 280 Rad - Aerocool DS140 fans mounted in Push/Pull
Top - Black Ice GTS X-Flow 480 Rad - EK Vardar F2 120 fans mounted Push/Pull
Fittings from Primochill, EK, and Swiftech
Primochill 1/2in OD PETG tubing

I'll provide before/after pictures here, as well as relevant updates along the way. I'll also try to participate fully in any discussions that start here and am interested in any feedback, advice, or tips that more experienced water coolers can offer me.
Current Setup (Click to show)
  • i5-4790k
  • MSI Z97 Gaming 7
  • EVGA GTX 980ti
  • Corsair H90 (GPU)
  • Corsair H100i (CPU)
  • Fractal Design Define R5
There's nothing "wrong" with my current build per se, but there's definitely room for upgrades. This whole process started with a half-cocked scheme to build a custom water loop to cool my cpu and gpu. I did my research, found some radiators that I thought may work, priced things out, and that's when it occurred to me that if I'm in for a penny, I may as well be in for a pound: if I'm going to dump a few hundred dollars into a water cooling loop, I need a case that will really showcase it. And if I'm going to have a case to showcase my build, I need to have components that are worthy of being showcased. And let's not even mention those dookie brown Noctua fans... So, here we are. What began as a simple cooling upgrade has mutated into an intensive (and very expensive) project.
Goals (Click to show)
  1. I want to have a showcase build that I can put on the table next to my monitors and be proud of. To that end, I've really spared little expense in trying to pick out components that will have a striking yet understated visual impact.
  2. I'm a gamer. When I'm not working or spending time with my wife and daughter, I'm usually playing anything from World of Tanks to Project Cars to Witcher 3 and anything in between. I have a 144mhz G-Sync monitor that I would like to be able to use to its full potential, so I tried to choose components that would let me take advantage of my monitor's refresh rate while avoiding a lot of the driver issues that come with massive SLI setups.
  3. I don't want a Skunkworks clone. That machine's a work of art, but I feel like Jay has poisoned the well insofar as it seems like just about every SMA8 build you see winds up with pretty much the exact same layout. I hope to avoid this phenomenon, but also realize that there are only so many ways to run tubes and/or split a loop.
Let's see how this goes!
Edited by Sorphius - 3/30/16 at 10:45am
post #2 of 77
Thread Starter 
First update:

The case arrived while I was at work Friday.


I got around to unboxing it tonight.



Caselabs includes a hand-certified packaging manifest to make sure the order is correct. Nice touch!


In my effort to avoid a Skunkworks clone (and inspired in part by the offset reservoir placement in the build @ratzofftoya is doing, I drew up a possible sketch of the loop in Paint:

My idea was to daisy chain the reservoirs together to fill out the space while avoiding the complexities involved with having separate actual loops. I think it looks neat, so I made up some reservoir "blanks" with paper that I modeled in the case in various configurations:




After that experimenting I still like the look of the offset mounting, but I don't think the precise bend that I envisioned to link the reservoirs will work. Back to the drawing board...

With that, I finished labeling the panels for the painters and got them boxed back up again to take them down to the paint shop Monday morning.
post #3 of 77
Thread Starter 
I finally made up my mind with the reservoirs and how to use the space while maintaining a "clean" feel inside the main compartment, and I've decided to go with a dual-pump, dual-res, single-loop solution.



The x4-250s certainly aren't the most cost-effective option, but I really like the size and scale, and fee like they're the best solution to fill all the open space on the right side without resorting to gaudy, over-stated reservoirs like the FrozenQ Helixes.

I also dropped my brand-new caselabs case off at the paint shop this morning to get a custom coat. I'd be lying if I said I'm not a little nervous about how it will turn out, but I *think* it will look good. I'm having them do a variation of Gunmetal on the outside, with a pearl-coated French Racing Blue on the interior.
post #4 of 77
First time for me to see such Res configuration ...... interesting ..... but i would like the look of the dual loops with two different colors.... just my taste ..

All the luck ... looking to see the progress thumb.gif
STARFIRST
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 5820k Asus X99 A Gigabyte Geforce 970 Gaming G1 Corsair Vengeance 4x4 DDR4 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung EVO 850 - 500 GB Seagate 500 GB 7200 rpm LG  Custom water loop 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Win 7 pro 64 bit Viewsonic 24" 1080p 60HZ BenQ XL2411Z Corsair K70 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer DeathAdder Chroma GLORIOUS EXTENDED 
OtherOther
NZXT Sentry LXE fan controller XSPC LCD Temperature Display + G1/4″ Plug 
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STARFIRST
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 5820k Asus X99 A Gigabyte Geforce 970 Gaming G1 Corsair Vengeance 4x4 DDR4 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung EVO 850 - 500 GB Seagate 500 GB 7200 rpm LG  Custom water loop 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Win 7 pro 64 bit Viewsonic 24" 1080p 60HZ BenQ XL2411Z Corsair K70 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer DeathAdder Chroma GLORIOUS EXTENDED 
OtherOther
NZXT Sentry LXE fan controller XSPC LCD Temperature Display + G1/4″ Plug 
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post #5 of 77
Thread Starter 
Thanks. smile.gif I'll see how it turns out. I do like the look of different-colored loops, but I'm opting for max overall cooling efficiency by creating one big loop with all my components as opposed to the two smaller ones. I'm also fairly anal-retentive when it comes to color matching, and I've got a feeling it'll be tough to match a blue to the shade that I'm having them paint the case interior. I'm planning to go with clear distilled to start with, but depending on how I like that I may end up mixing up some Mayhem's pastel gray and throwing that in to compliment the accent color I'm using on the cable extensions.

Meanwhile, the first of several packages arrived yesterday from Performance PCs:


There are two more inbound -- one tomorrow and one Tuesday -- that will contain (hopefully) everything else I'll need to get started with my actual build first thing Wednesday morning.
post #6 of 77
Good ...

I appreciate if you can help and post the case parts list assembly the photo is not so clear (Planning for one for myself).

peace
STARFIRST
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 5820k Asus X99 A Gigabyte Geforce 970 Gaming G1 Corsair Vengeance 4x4 DDR4 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung EVO 850 - 500 GB Seagate 500 GB 7200 rpm LG  Custom water loop 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Win 7 pro 64 bit Viewsonic 24" 1080p 60HZ BenQ XL2411Z Corsair K70 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer DeathAdder Chroma GLORIOUS EXTENDED 
OtherOther
NZXT Sentry LXE fan controller XSPC LCD Temperature Display + G1/4″ Plug 
  hide details  
Reply
STARFIRST
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 5820k Asus X99 A Gigabyte Geforce 970 Gaming G1 Corsair Vengeance 4x4 DDR4 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung EVO 850 - 500 GB Seagate 500 GB 7200 rpm LG  Custom water loop 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Win 7 pro 64 bit Viewsonic 24" 1080p 60HZ BenQ XL2411Z Corsair K70 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer DeathAdder Chroma GLORIOUS EXTENDED 
OtherOther
NZXT Sentry LXE fan controller XSPC LCD Temperature Display + G1/4″ Plug 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 77
Thread Starter 
Sure thing. I'll take a picture tomorrow and upload it.
post #8 of 77
Thread Starter 
I went home for lunch today and had a care package from Newegg on the front step! (sorry for the horrible image quality):


According to tracking info, FedEx has a couple of packages slated for delivery today too, so with any luck by tonight I should have pretty much everything (parts-wise) in hand that I'll need for the build.

On the downside, I heard from the paint shop today and they've gotten backed up and probably won't get the case finished on time. mad.gif


@BrjSan
post #9 of 77
Thread Starter 
A couple more boxes arrived today while I was at work.

First off, a big shout-out to Dave at Mainframe Customs for doing a great job on my PSU extensions:


And of course, it wouldn't be a day without another box from Performance PCs. This one had a couple of 360 radiators, Mayhem's Pastel Extreme White, random fittings, my PETG tubing, and the monoblock for my Rampage V Extreme.:


Speaking of the Rampage V Extreme, @ratzofftoya's build inspired me to really stretch my comfort zone and have a go at painting my Rampage V too. I had the local paint shop mix up a jar of the color I'm doing my case, I'll probably try painting it tomorrow after work:


So for those of you keeping score at home, here's my total haul (not including fans) of water cooling components for the build:


On a slightly different (albeit still related) note, I called the body shop that was painting the case back today after they told me they weren't going to be able to finish the job in time and arranged to pick it up from them tomorrow. It scares the bejesus out of me to even think about doing it, but I'm going to set up a ghetto paint booth in the garage using $30 worth of PVC, 4mil plastic sheeting, a box fan, HVAC filters, and some duct tape, and paint the case myself.
post #10 of 77
Thanks for the photo m8, just to make sure, all the parts are in this one page, right.

I love it when i receives a box full of goodies ...

So are you going with bending the tubes or making straight cuts and link them?
STARFIRST
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 5820k Asus X99 A Gigabyte Geforce 970 Gaming G1 Corsair Vengeance 4x4 DDR4 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung EVO 850 - 500 GB Seagate 500 GB 7200 rpm LG  Custom water loop 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Win 7 pro 64 bit Viewsonic 24" 1080p 60HZ BenQ XL2411Z Corsair K70 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer DeathAdder Chroma GLORIOUS EXTENDED 
OtherOther
NZXT Sentry LXE fan controller XSPC LCD Temperature Display + G1/4″ Plug 
  hide details  
Reply
STARFIRST
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 5820k Asus X99 A Gigabyte Geforce 970 Gaming G1 Corsair Vengeance 4x4 DDR4 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung EVO 850 - 500 GB Seagate 500 GB 7200 rpm LG  Custom water loop 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Win 7 pro 64 bit Viewsonic 24" 1080p 60HZ BenQ XL2411Z Corsair K70 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX1200i Corsair 900D Razer DeathAdder Chroma GLORIOUS EXTENDED 
OtherOther
NZXT Sentry LXE fan controller XSPC LCD Temperature Display + G1/4″ Plug 
  hide details  
Reply
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