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Build

Ascalon

by Omnislash89

25
17 Comments

Part List View full price breakdown

Details

Date Published

July 2, 2014

Date Built

May 31, 2014

CPU Clock Rate

4.7 GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

29.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

67.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.006 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

6.208 GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

31.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

65.0° C

Description

It all began when I piqued the interest of a colleague with talk about a gaming build based on the slowly-phasing out IVB-E processor/ X79 chipset. I wanted to prove that with a little tweaking, it could be made to last and prove to be more economical and stable than the upcoming Haswell processors when it comes to high-end gaming.

I wanted this system to run as cool as possible without getting into the complexities and expenses of a custom cooling loop, so I abused the Corsair Air 540's 280mm radiator room by shoving a push/pull configuration into the tiny clearance between the top of my Rampage IV GENE and the case. (PS2 Mouse/Keyboard jack caused a world of problems)

After installing all my currently in-hand components, I realized that the motherboard did not come out of box with a BIOS that could be used with the IVB-E, so I had quickly learn to flash in the updated version...and all the other drivers required for various cards and accessories.

After about a month of meticulous re-installations, and at least a hundred failed RAM overclocking attempts, I finally settled on a stable overclock. My only regret is not knowing why my LP sticks won't OC as well as they have been shown to on the related full ATX Rampage board...but I'll leave that to the RoG community to mull over.

I can't say this was a bad investment. For a first build, it has everything I desired. Had I a few hundred more dollars when I began this project, I probably would have gone for a full ATX board (and the increased PCI slot headroom it provides. (Afraid to use SLI with fan-cooled cards due to slim spacing between slots)

Will update description with relevant benchmarks as time allows me.

CPU-Z Validation: http://valid.x86.fr/pps99i

3D Mark 11: http://www.3dmark.com/3dm11/8508906

Current expansion plans include adding a second ZOTAC GTX 780 AMP! Edition card and a witty doodad for my other 3.5" bay (sideways on the Air 540 case).

Ideas and feedback greatly appreciated!

Part Reviews

CPU Cooler

Solid cooling performance for my well-overclocked system. Only issue is finding corsair 140mm fans. Had to purchase sleeves to mount SP 120s to this baby, but I haven't seen any performance issues since day 1. Will stick with corsair for all my cooling needs.

Memory

Not sure where the overclocking review are coming from, but my particular kit doesn't cooperate with increased frequencies or tightened timings. Will be upgrading to a proper quad-channel kit in due time. Only advantage of these is the low voltage and low profile (great for small form-factor builds, not for workstations)

Video Card

Good for the price. A few hiccups with overclocking, but solid performance otherwise. Should have frankly waiting a few months for the 900-series to come out (and the price drop of the previous generation). I'm still not complaining!

Power Supply

Excellent quality and efficiency...but died after approximately 18 months of operation, last 6 of which was near continuous operation due to participation in Folding@Home. Will execute warranty and stick with the EVGA brand. -1 star for the early product death.

Case Fan

Excellent clutch performance in a push-pull configuration. So hard to find a narrow fan, as required due to limited internal dimensions. I swear by this fan for all 140mm configurations.

Comments Sorted by:

Zveir 9 Builds 3 points 57 months ago

+1 For the EVGA 1000p2 PSU. Love seeing that Power Supply in builds.

Omnislash89 submitter 6 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

At the time of this comment, it has started to fail on me. I guess it wasn't designed to stand up to weeks of continuous operation with protein folding simulations.

Zveir 9 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

I don't think many things are set up for that.

Mine has been going strong for 2 years.

Omnislash89 submitter 6 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

2 years of continuous folding, or just average use?

Zveir 9 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

Average use. I don't do folding. I shut my system off every night as well.

Omnislash89 submitter 6 Builds 1 point 37 months ago

I've found that I may need to engage in weekly restarts to allow trimming to happen for my SSDs.

QuantumEssence 1 Build 2 points 57 months ago

16 GB for gaming? That $80 saved if you went to 8GB would have gotten you your rampage most likely.

Omnislash89 submitter 6 Builds 1 point 57 months ago

In retrospect, I agree wholeheartedly, but at the time this kit was on sale at a price competitive with a nice 1866MHz 8GB Ripjaws Z set that had nice stock timings. If I could do it over, I probably would have eaten the extra $40 and gotten the ATX Rampage instead.

Good insight.

QuantumEssence 1 Build 1 point 57 months ago

Ah makes sense, I'm the same way, I see a sale and I thin, "OOOO SHINY!" Then later I think to myself, "Why the hell did I do this, I would have rather had something else instead. :C"

Midreian 2 points 57 months ago

Don't be afraid of running SLI in a mATX setup. Most GPUs have the back end of the card open to allow for airflow to be sucked in even in tight spaces and with the Zotac 3x fan video card, you'd be perfectly fine with 2 of them running SLI.

vikingXcore 4 Builds 1 point 57 months ago

Yeah my EVGA 780 has got that vent in the back, just to back up what you said.

Williams0907 1 point 57 months ago

Badass +1

BaSkA 1 point 55 months ago

How is the G710+ doing?

Omnislash89 submitter 6 Builds 2 points 55 months ago

I habitually hit the "G6" button instead of Ctrl and "G1" instead of Esc every once in a while, but other than that, it's a very nice piece. The real selling point has got to be the backlit keys and the volume scroller. Idk what I would do without either at this point. They're such nice features.

The fact I don't have to waste a native USB port for my mouse is also awesome. Plug it right into the back of this baby!

D42RAW 0 points 57 months ago

Did you by chance happen to play geomon?

Omnislash89 submitter 6 Builds 1 point 56 months ago

I'm sorry, I have no idea what that is.

D42RAW 1 point 56 months ago

oh. it was an ios game.