Overclock.net banner

HELIOS - ASSEMBLED 2015-SEP-06 - (Caselabs SMH10 | Black/Copper | EVGA SR-2 Black Edition)

56790 275
w600


Table of Contents

Note: For those posts which are retroactive, the date reflects the date of
the post, not the date when I did the corresponding work.

01. 2013-JUL-01: The SMH10 - Unboxing and Assembly
02. 2013-JUL-01: Radiators
03. 2013-JUL-01: PSU & Pump Mounting, Making the 24 Pin Cable
04. 2013-JUL-06: What 40 Hours of Cabling Will Get You...
05. 2013-JUL-18: Various Small Bits
06. 2013-JUL-22: A Copper Face Plate for the Lamptron FC5V2
07. 2013-JUL-25: The Aqua Computer Aqualis Copper Edition
08. 2013-JUL-29: Interlude: A Retroactive Build Log on My Previous Build, ZEUS
09. 2013-SEP-14: Prototype: The Bitfenix Spectre Pro Copper Edition
10. 2013-SEP-15: Painting the M/B Block Screws
11. 2013-SEP-20: Fan Disassembly: How-To
12. 2013-SEP-22: Quick and Messy Status Shots
13. 2013-SEP-23: The Bitfenix Spectre Pro Copper Edition (cont.)
14. 2013-SEP-23: Copper Paint vs. Actual Copper: A Comparison
15. 2013-OCT-01: Colour-Coordinating the Kryographics Titan
16. 2013-OCT-08: Loop Planning
17. 2013-OCT-09: Colour-Coordinating the Raystorms
18. 2013-OCT-13: Deciding on a Backplate, Small M/B Teaser
19. 2013-OCT-13: The EVGA SR-2 Black Editon
20. 2013-OCT-28: Requesting Opinions on Fittings...
21. 2013-OCT-29: Colour-Coordinating the RAM Blocks
22. 2015-SEP-03: Finally, Progress!
23. 2015-SEP-06: Assembled

Current Status

aw--helios--2015-09-06--27--overview-front-side.jpeg

aw--helios--2015-09-06--28--overview-front-side.jpeg

aw--helios--2015-09-06--29--overview-back-side.jpeg

Prologue

Hello everybody.
smile.gif


I hope I've put this in the right sub-forum.

Many, many years ago I first came across OCN, but since I was out of the
PC building game for a few years (military, college, bad health) I only got back
into it earlier this year, and finally decided to join up here.

A very short introduction: 27 years old, male, Swiss, finished high school
in 2005, army 2005~2007 (Lt, infantry), worked in Logistics and accounting
2007~2008, studied mechanical engineering 2008~2012. Unfortunately
I was befallen by bad health for extended periods of time during my studies
(nothing life-threatening, but it did prevent me from working for college as
much as I should have) and had to drop out last summer (I will be starting
a degree in electrical engineering next September if all goes according to
plan though).

Since then I've been recuperation (still one more operation required next
August) and did some web development work from home. Finally, this spring
I had the money and time to start putting together a rig which I'd been planning
for a very long time.

Yes, yes, I'm aware: The SR-2 is old news by now. Originally I started putting this
build together in late summer 2011. Shortly afterwards, everything was put on
halt due to health troubles. After it became clear that the pause was going to
be significantly longer than expected, I considered selling off the hardware I had
already bought (the SR-2 among it), since being ill is not exactly cheap for a college
student, even in a country with mandatory health insurance.

However, I still would have made a significant loss, and I just have an inherent
weak spot for dual CPU systems, so I persisted. And this spring I finally had the
money to start buying the remaining components.

The good thing about having to wait this long is that in the meantime, Caselabs
had come out with pretty much the perfect case for my plans: The SMH10.
Originally, it was going to be a scratchbuild. The case I would have made myself
would have been quite similar in layout to the SMH10, also built from aluminium
(2 mm ~ 3 mm). But naturally, it's rather difficult to manufacture something of
similar quality with only the basic DIY tools, and if I had bought the tools
needed for making my own awesome case it would have cost about the same if not
slightly more than an SMH10, so I just went for that instead.

I'm still far off from getting everything I need, so this will take some time to
complete (I hope to be done some time in summer).

Before anyone thinks I'm a millionaire or something: I worked before I went
to college. I've been working since I had to drop out last summer/fall.
Besides that, I'm rather frugal with most other things in my life. So this build
is mostly the result of hard work, dedication and lots and lots of patience.
No miracles were worked and no cheat codes used.
smile.gif


The Name

Hysterical Excess Labouring Independently Of Sanity, aka HELIOS.

Because: It's been going on for almost two years. And I am definitely starting
to question my sanity.

Also: I've been naming my PC's after Greek deities since forever. The first PC I
built was an AMD Thunderbird C 1.4 GHz machine back in 2001, which lasted me for
a few years, and it was called Helios (I use the name as the PC's host name
within our network, for those wondering what practical use it has).

It died a fiery death at the hands of a water cooling accident: Using the Eheim
1048 I had been befallen by the rattling pump wheel. Naturally, I wrapped some
tape around the axle which solved that problem. Unfortunately, the tape became
brittle over time and eventually, a piece of tape broke off and clogged the
loop. Killed the flow, cooked the CPU (no overheating protection back then).

After that, I took that name out of use, until now. It's time for a revival.

The Inspiration

For the most part, PrometheusCU. I'm sure many of you are familiar with it,
and those who aren't: Go read it, now! I'll wait a few days.

Sadly, its creator passed on and never finished it (it did go to a friend of his,
but no activity since last summer, at least not in the original thread
frown.gif
).
I don't nearly have his set of skills and/or tools, but that doesn't change
the inspiration part.

Main PC Guts

As a side note: The computing power of this rig will mostly go to BOINC (I might
use it for gaming from time to time, we shall see). If [email protected] ever get their stuff
together with regards to GPU folding on Linux (highly unlikely
frown.gif
), I might
switch over to folding again, since I'd been doing that for about 18 months
before switching to BOINC due to the GPU problem (and a few other niggles I
have with the project's behavior towards its donors).

The O/S will most likely be Arch Linux (since I've been using that for about two
years now and am quite comfortable with it), or if I feel experimental Gentoo or
even FreeBSD. Certainly not Windows. I need my xterm and Z shell and UNIX
utilities.

Anyway:
  • M/B: EVGA SR-2
  • CPU: 2 x Xeon x5680 (not ES, normal retail version, got them for half price
    on eBay, brand spanking new)
  • RAM: 24 GB of Corsair Dominator 1866
  • GPU: 1 x Geforce Titan (should do well at computing)
  • SSD: Intel 520 120 GB
  • HDD: TBD
  • PSU: Enermax Platimax 1200 W (don't need that much power, but the
    weaker models aren't fully modular, more reasoning for my decision later on)
  • Case: Caselabs SMH10, reverse ATX layout, obviously in black
W/C parts

Well, of course it will be under water!. In fact, all my PC's for the last 12 years
have had to get wet.
  • CPU blocks: XSPC Raystorm Copper Edition
  • GPU block: Probably the Aquacomputer Titan block in copper with
    the acrylic top. Haven't ordered it yet though, so this might still change.
  • RAM blocks: Alphacool Dominator water blocks in copper with plexi
    tops. Yes, cooling your RAM with water is absolutely unnecessary.
    I just like how it looks.
  • M/B block: MIPS SR-2 block in Acetal/Copper
  • Pumps: 2 x Aquacomputer D5 without Aquabus
  • Pump tops: 2 x Alphacool D5 pump tops in Acetal
  • Reservoir: Aquacomputer Aqualis Pro
  • Radiators: 2 x Hardware Labs SR-1 560 + 1 x Alphacool NexXxoS XT45
    Full Copper 480 (that's ~14.89 120mm single radiators, for those
    wondering).
  • Fans: For the moment, Bitfenix Spectre Pros in 140 mm and 120 mm,
    respectively. Some people seem to be having bearing troubles, if that
    happens, I will probably go for some Noctuas.
  • Fan and Pump Controller:Lamptron FC5v2
  • Flow Meter and Display: Koolance INS-FM17N with the DCB-FM01
    as its display. I know flow monitoring isn't really necessary, and the
    Koolance flow meter doesn't really look good. This is mostly about satisfying
    my curiosity, and there's enough places in the SMH10 where I can hide the
    display and the sensor so that it doesn't uglify the build.
  • Fittings: 16/10 mm compression fittings, Alphacool shiny copper and
    possibly also in black
  • Tubing: 15 mm OD copper tubing (possibly some normal 16/10 tubing
    in some parts, to be determined). And yes, I have figured out a way to fit
    15mm OD tubing into 16/10 compression fittings and getting it watertight
    (at least according to first tests, let's hope it keeps working).

Although I started this build a few months ago (some may already have seen it
in other places) it is still very much an ongoing project and will be for quite a
while. I will be catching this log up to date over the coming few days.

So, for those who have not been deterred by my introductory novella, let's
get to it.
smile.gif
  • Rep+
Reactions: DerComissar
261 - 276 of 276 Posts

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
Wow,wow,wow! Just awesome! Man I love the black and copper.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
Discussion Starter · #263 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evil-Mobo View Post

Wow !!!
drool.gif


Side bar- what distro are you running on the mac?
Thanks!

That would be Arch Linux, followed this tutorial: http://loicpefferkorn.net/2015/01/arch-linux-on-macbook-pro-retina-2014-with-dm-crypt-lvm-and-suspend-to-disk/
Works pretty well actually. The webcam doesn't work since there's no driver for it, which I'm okay with,
but it would be cool if the SD card reader would work. Ah well, such is life.

I use it as my daily driver and am overall very happy with it.
smile.gif


Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

Wow,wow,wow! Just awesome! Man I love the black and copper.
There have been times when I've just stood in front of the rig and looked at it for a few minutes, feels
really good after all these years, finally having it in a somewhat assembled state.
biggrin.gif


Side note: This is the concept for the copper tubing I originally had in mind. 16 mm OD/12 mm ID,
cut a G1/4" thread into it, screw fitting into thread. Works very well, just need to make sure you have
a clean cut on the pipe so that the fitting's O ring can seal properly.

I really like the look of it since it avoids the usual rather bulky hardline fittings (except for those Monsoon
ones I think). But the problem is that you can't really bend 16/12 tubing very tightly at all, so you need
angles everywhere, and you need angles which are revolvable on both ends and have male threads on
both ends, which means Bitspower, which means lots and lots of money, which I don't have for the time
being. Ah well, some day...

aw--helios--2015-09-07--01--copper-tube-threading.jpeg

aw--helios--2015-09-07--02--copper-tube-fitting.jpeg
 

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
Love the idea. Bending 16mm would absolutely suck. Ha-ha. But depending on the loop design, it could work with more straight runs. Hmm I might have to grab a tap and give it a try.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,522 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by alpenwasser View Post

feels really good after all these years, finally having it in a somewhat assembled state.
biggrin.gif


Side note: This is the concept for the copper tubing I originally had in mind. 16 mm OD/12 mm ID,
cut a G1/4" thread into it, screw fitting into thread. Works very well, just need to make sure you have
a clean cut on the pipe so that the fitting's O ring can seal properly.

I really like the look of it since it avoids the usual rather bulky hardline fittings (except for those Monsoon
ones I think). But the problem is that you can't really bend 16/12 tubing very tightly at all, so you need
angles everywhere, and you need angles which are revolvable on both ends and have male threads on
both ends, which means Bitspower, which means lots and lots of money, which I don't have for the time
being. Ah well, some day...
aw--helios--2015-09-07--01--copper-tube-threading.jpeg

aw--helios--2015-09-07--02--copper-tube-fitting.jpeg
I feel you on the almost finished front. I started my build 2 years ago and am finally about to complete it.
redface.gif


Loving the hardline concept. I hope you get a big bonus and spare time to try it out.
thumb.gif
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
Discussion Starter · #266 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

Love the idea. Bending 16mm would absolutely suck. Ha-ha. But depending on the loop design, it could work with more straight runs. Hmm I might have to grab a tap and give it a try.
Hehe, yeah, I've spent many dozen hours (I counted
biggrin.gif
) coming up with different loop layouts and in the
end you have to rely on straight runs with 16/12, such is life. Might be one of the reasons why my soft tubing
runs are also mostly straight. I didn't just copy the copper tube layout (I lacked a few things for that), but I'm
sure it still played into it.

Have fun then!
thumb.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by sinnedone View Post

I feel you on the almost finished front. I started my build 2 years ago and am finally about to complete it.
redface.gif


Loving the hardline concept. I hope you get a big bonus and spare time to try it out.
thumb.gif
Hehe, patience and persistence wins the race. Somewhen, somewhere, at some point.
biggrin.gif


And thanks, I do hope to get to do it at some point, but probably not in the near future. But hey, I'm a
very patient man by now.
thumb.gif
 

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
A comment from yesterday... I see you have Arch distro... Out of all current linux distros which would you recommend?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
Discussion Starter · #269 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

A comment from yesterday... I see you have Arch distro... Out of all current linux distros which would you recommend?
Hm, I suppose that would depend on the target user. For somebody who's not quite as into the
command line as I am, I think Mint might be worth a look. I've also heard that Ubuntu has mostly
fixed the quirks and such in their Unity UI and that it's usable again, so that might also be worth
exploring too, though I haven't personally tried it in quite a while (I switched from Ubuntu to Arch
in 2011 when Ubuntu introduced Unity and it was still quite immature).

If you're looking for something which doesn't specifically cater to command-line averse folks,
I'd recommend checking out Slackware, Debian or Arch. Friend of mine has been using Debian
for years and is very happy with it, especially on his servers.

Gentoo is also pretty nice if you want to delve into the deep end of the pool. I have a buddy in
school who uses it as his daily driver on his laptop, seems quite happy with it. I last used it
quite a few years ago. Definitely a cool experience, but a bit too much work for my tastes.

In the end, what distro you choose will probably depend quite a lot on personal preferences,
not merely whether a distro is good from a technical POV. For me, Arch fits my personal preferences
very well, but I get that it might not be for everyone. I like the package manager, I like that it has
a very minimal base install on top of which you can then make your setup, I like the rolling
release model, I like that I don't need to fiddle with GUI tools for configuring most of my system
and can do that from the command line. But this can be completely different for somebody else,
and that's perfectly fine in my book.

It also has a very good wiki, and the userbase is large enough that you're usually not the first
and only person to run into an issue and can find some help to resolve your problem when you
have one (this is also true for many other distros of course). The user repository is also pretty
nice. Sometimes people seem a bit scared of the bleeding edge and all that, but honestly, in
my four and a half years of using Arch, I've had one serious case of breakage due to a system
upgrade (Gnome-related), that's it.

Anyway, I'll stop rambling now, feel free to ask more if need be.
thumb.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by billyboy8888 View Post

I think I've read that you are going to use this system mostly for BOINC? As in donating horsepower to research or actually for your own stuff?
Donating for research. These are my projects and credits at the moment:

sig.png
 

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
Thank you for the input. I was just curious. I was using Mint for a while. I like it but I'm a windows person. Every once in a while I tinker around with it. I'd love to fully jump into Linux just can't seem to get there.

Edit... So yeah I just noticed you have two 560's in the bottom. Wow! Both 45mm thick?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
Discussion Starter · #271 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

Thank you for the input. I was just curious. I was using Mint for a while. I like it but I'm a windows person. Every once in a while I tinker around with it. I'd love to fully jump into Linux just can't seem to get there.
I've been using Linux almost exclusively since about 2007~2008 or so, and am very happy with it,
and Windows just isn't really for me anymore, but yeah, I get that for most people it's probably the
other way around.

But I don't really game anymore (well, I have a PS3, but last time I turned that on was like two years
ago or so), which makes abstaining from Windows a whole lot easier though.

Plus, I know many people say that "Linux is easy if you choose the right distro" or something like
that, but honestly, I have invested a lot of time over the years into reading documentation and stuff
like that. I'm not necessarily talking about troubleshooting, just reading up on how to get something
done. And not everyone might have the time for that, or the desire, or both.
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

Edit... So yeah I just noticed you have two 560's in the bottom. Wow! Both 45mm thick?
Haha, yup, I do indeed. They're HWLabs SR-1s. So, 55.9 mm thick according to HWLabs, though
only a 33 mm core according to xtremerigs' review. Since I'm running my fans at ~450~650 rpm
they seemed like the natural choice at the time of purchase (which was back in 2013).

Reason I have the Alphacool in the roof is that the HWLabs would have cost me one more PCIe
slot, and I wanted to keep one open in case I decided to install a RAID controller or something
like that. The XT45 performed very well at low fan speeds in Martin's review, so I went with that.
I've thought about replacing the roof rad with something sexier like an XSPC or an EKWB, but
so far the urge hasn't been strong enough justify spending the money.
biggrin.gif


EDIT: I'm still working on temp measurements and such, but as a preliminary note: Having dual
560s and a 480... not as ridiculous as one might think when running the fans as low as I do.
 

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by alpenwasser View Post

I've been using Linux almost exclusively since about 2007~2008 or so, and am very happy with it,
and Windows just isn't really for me anymore, but yeah, I get that for most people it's probably the
other way around.

But I don't really game anymore (well, I have a PS3, but last time I turned that on was like two years
ago or so), which makes abstaining from Windows a whole lot easier though.

Plus, I know many people say that "Linux is easy if you choose the right distro" or something like
that, but honestly, I have invested a lot of time over the years into reading documentation and stuff
like that. I'm not necessarily talking about troubleshooting, just reading up on how to get something
done. And not everyone might have the time for that, or the desire, or both.
Haha, yup, I do indeed. They're HWLabs SR-1s. So, 55.9 mm thick according to HWLabs, though
only a 33 mm core according to xtremerigs' review. Since I'm running my fans at ~450~650 rpm
they seemed like the natural choice at the time of purchase (which was back in 2013).

Reason I have the Alphacool in the roof is that the HWLabs would have cost me one more PCIe
slot, and I wanted to keep one open in case I decided to install a RAID controller or something
like that. The XT45 performed very well at low fan speeds in Martin's review, so I went with that.
I've thought about replacing the roof rad with something sexier like an XSPC or an EKWB, but
so far the urge hasn't been strong enough justify spending the money.
biggrin.gif


EDIT: I'm still working on temp measurements and such, but as a preliminary note: Having dual
560s and a 480... not as ridiculous as one might think when running the fans as low as I do.
I go through phases... Solely Windows then randomly I'll pick up a distro a few times a year. My "gaming" rig stays on Windows but my laptop could have Linux or windows, currently running W10. But it seems I have that itch again. Ha-ha already downloaded Arch, maybe I'll just run it in a VM. It may sound funny but I want to like Linux so much but just haven't been able to make that jump. Anyways, two 560's and a 480... That's just awesome. So how much space do you have between the lower radiators? 60mm or so I'm guessing. But I'm assuming both are in push/pull.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
Discussion Starter · #273 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

I go through phases... Solely Windows then randomly I'll pick up a distro a few times a year. My "gaming" rig stays on Windows but my laptop could have Linux or windows, currently running W10. But it seems I have that itch again. Ha-ha already downloaded Arch, maybe I'll just run it in a VM. It may sound funny but I want to like Linux so much but just haven't been able to make that jump.
Yeah, making that jump is not always as easy as it might seem. I've been able to do it because I've
had the time and inclination to do all the work required, but it does require some effort. Putting Arch
in a VM sounds like a pretty reasonable approach, especially if you're not that experienced with it.

Oh and if you run into trouble, feel free to ask. I can't promise I'll be able to help, but I have a few
years of Arch under my belt, so hopefully I won't be completely useless.
biggrin.gif


Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

Anyways, two 560's and a 480... That's just awesome. So how much space do you have between the lower radiators? 60mm or so I'm guessing. But I'm assuming both are in push/pull.
Just push. I didn't really think it made much sense to go P/P with such a low-density radiator with
such a thin core, and according to the xtremerigs review, that seems to be about right. For me, the
added cost wasn't really worth the comparatively small performance gain.

Space between them is ~105 mm or so (bit tricky to measure accurately with everything bolted
together). So in theory, I could mount a second PSU between those radiators. It'd basically just
be like running the PSU in a bit of a hotbox (temperature inside the bottom compartment is about
42 C at the moment with the fans at ~650 rpm), so as long as I don't overdo it with the load and pick
a decent unit it would still work. Though it's not exactly what I'd call an ideal solution I will admit.
biggrin.gif
 

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by alpenwasser View Post

Yeah, making that jump is not always as easy as it might seem. I've been able to do it because I've
had the time and inclination to do all the work required, but it does require some effort. Putting Arch
in a VM sounds like a pretty reasonable approach, especially if you're not that experienced with it.

Oh and if you run into trouble, feel free to ask. I can't promise I'll be able to help, but I have a few
years of Arch under my belt, so hopefully I won't be completely useless.
biggrin.gif

Just push. I didn't really think it made much sense to go P/P with such a low-density radiator with
such a thin core, and according to the xtremerigs review, that seems to be about right. For me, the
added cost wasn't really worth the comparatively small performance gain.

Space between them is ~105 mm or so (bit tricky to measure accurately with everything bolted
together). So in theory, I could mount a second PSU between those radiators. It'd basically just
be like running the PSU in a bit of a hotbox (temperature inside the bottom compartment is about
42 C at the moment with the fans at ~650 rpm), so as long as I don't overdo it with the load and pick
a decent unit it would still work. Though it's not exactly what I'd call an ideal solution I will admit.
biggrin.gif
I guess I'm just in search of my "ideal" distro. We will see what happens.

Those 560's in push makes sense. You give me horrible ideas... Ha-ha

I appreciate you offering to help with Linux.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
Discussion Starter · #275 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

I guess I'm just in search of my "ideal" distro. We will see what happens.
Oh, I know that pain. I was on Ubuntu from 2007 until spring 2011, when they brought out Unity. I wasn't
inherently as averse to their ideas as many others seemed to be, but at that point it was just too buggy and
immature for me to use, so I started looking around for alternatives, and eventually settled on Arch.

But as said, if you want to find something with which you'll be truly happy there aren't really any shortcuts
since it's a lot about personal preference, not just technological matters, and you can't really make an informed
decision on that except by just trying things out until you find something which suits you.

Best of luck then!
thumb.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

Those 560's in push makes sense. You give me horrible ideas... Ha-ha
"alpenwasser - bringing horrible ideas to a mind near you since the alpen have been wassering." Muhahahaha!
devil.gif


But yeah, I do rather like those dual 560s in the basement. Makes me feel like I'm actually using
the space in this case (well, the SR-2's monstrous dimensions help with that too). I'm actually
pretty happy with the space usage in the build overall. It's not super stuffed, but I also never felt
like I needed to add "filling" material just so that the case won't look empty (for example those
two reservoirs which we so often see in SMA8 builds, with which I find no fault, but as we discussed
elsewhere if I remember right they are a pretty common sight these days).
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtuning View Post

I appreciate you offering to help with Linux.
No problem, as you can probably tell I am rather passionate about the subject.
biggrin.gif
 

·
Gamer
Joined
·
4,025 Posts
Being passionate about something is what makes life great!
 
261 - 276 of 276 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top