Description

07.09.18: I redid my delid with a solid copper, larger IHS. This brought a 3C drop in average temp. Nothing major, probably not worth it for most but I enjoyed doing it and that copper IHS looks sick! And you know that how it looks is very important since you can see it under the cooler lol.

This is an upgrade to my main rig that was a 5930K X99 system. I named the rig Errol after the Weasley family owl. I felt this was fitting due to the starting to age, but still respectable, platform. Even though the system has the latest hardware, it will always be Errol to me. So I give you, Errol Limited!

This was somewhat of a spontaneous upgrade. About a month ago I decided to upgrade my ultra wide, 60Hz monitor to something a little faster as well as my Razer keyboard and mouse because Synapse is trash. This led me to the Asus PG279Q, Bose Companion 2 speakers (because my phone is louder than the speakers in the monitor), Logitech G Pro Keyboard, and Steelseries Rival 310.

What a change this was! Going from 60Hz to 165Hz was unreal! From the moment I fist drug the cursor across the 165Hz screen, I knew I would never go back to 60Hz. My old monitor was a VA panel which was good but does not have the color reproduction of this IPS. Both my gaming and photo editing are so much more enjoyable now. My only complaint with the monitor are the speakers... Why even put speakers in there ASUS??? They are the worst speakers I have ever heard. I went with the Bose speakers because there were in-stock at my local Best Buy and are simple. As for my mouse and keyboard, I have been using Razer for years now (unfortunately) but between the horrible software, the even more horrible new software, and my Deathadder's wheel starting to squeak, I was done.

When it comes to keyboards, I prefer a tenkeyless to save desk space and I really liked how the USB cable was removable from my Blackwidow TE. This lead me to the Logitech G Pro. It is perfect! I think it looks better than the BW TE and I am loving the Romer-G switches, even though they are tactical and I am use to Razer's yellow linear switches. When it came time to pick out a new mouse, I didn't like the feel of any of the Logitech mice. So, for once, I decided to say ef brand loyalty and get whatever mouse I wanted. The Rival 310 is amazing. I didn't think a mouse could fit my hand better than the Deathadder but this mouse proved me wrong! It is so smooth and precise. Best part with changing peripherals is no more Synapse! The Steelseries and Logitech software have been trouble free!

Now... on to the important stuff. My upgrade itch was still there. Even though everything on my desk (other than my PC and mouse pad) was shiny and new, I wasn't satisfied. So, I began looking at upgrade options... which wasn't much on the X99 platform. It was basically down to a 6900K, 6950X, or changing platforms. After much debate, I choose the later due to price vs performance. It was the only option that would guarantee me (in my opinion) all around better performance with single core and multi core.

Ever since Coffee Lake launched, I have had an envious eye on it. A faster hex-core that cost much less than what I spent of my 5930K (which was also depressing). I also was impressed with the EVGA Z370 Micro from the day it was announced. I liked that it has an extra 4-pin for the CPU, 6 PWM fan headers, real-ish looking heatsinks on the VRM, and only two DDR4 DIMMs. Not to mention I have heard there costumer service is outstanding. I have had only ASUS boards and the one time I had to call ASUS was a complete waste of time. So once I made the decision to jump ship on the X99 platform, I knew just what to get.

I choose the 8086K over the 8700K because they seem to, maybe, be better overclockers and its a Limited Edition so why not lol. Thus the name: Errol Limited. Everything else for the build I already had from my old build, only things changed were the CPU and Motherboard.

The build went smooth with only one major disappointment. Those 6 PWM headers that I was were on the board, only 3 of them can actually be controlled... So it may be 6 PWM but it might as well be 3 PWM and 3 DC. Other than this, I have zero complaints. All of my benchmarks went up substantially. I will include a screenshot of a spreadsheet I put together comparing the 5930K @ 4.6GHz vs the 8086K.

I was able to get the 8086K stable at 5.0GHz on all cores at 1.31v. I then set it to adaptive with a max vcore of 1.315v and that is where I have been running it. Temps were a bit of an issue. My max core temp after stressing in OCCT was 89C. I already has the Rockit88 delid tool and liquid metal on hand so I went to work. The delid resulted in a 16C drop on my hottest core. Definitely a win! I am currently awaiting for the solid cooper IHS from Rockit Cool which I am hoping will bring temps down a few more degrees.

Looking past the technically only 3 PWM fan headers, the EVGA Z370 Micro has been great. Once the system post, the debug LED then displays CPU temp, I find this pretty cool. I love the boards simplicity. Nothing flashy, just functionality.

The Corsair Dominator Platinum SE was originally in a different rig. I moved it over to this rig to have 2x16GB sticks (X99 rig was running 4x8GB). At first, I was unsure of the colors and how well it looked in this rig. I feel it kinda clashes with the brown Noctua fans. But it has growing on me and typically looks good under my case lighting. Not to mention, I like just the idea of having a Limited Edition CPU and Special Edition DDR4 all in the same system.

Overall I am very pleased with the upgrade. My PC feels so much snappier and I notice a big performance increase when editing photos. The single core performance is so much better than Haswell-e and makes such a difference in my daily PC activities. I do not see myself going back to an extreme platform with the performance I am seeing from the Z370.

Please let me know what you think in the comments below and thanks for checking out my build!

Part Reviews

CPU

So much faster than my 5930K! Even without an overclock I saw an increase in performance! Highly recommended to anyone going to the Z370 platform that wants to for sure see 5.0GHz on all cores!

CPU Cooler

Great cooler for its size! Combined with the new NF-A12x25 fans and I am seeing lower temps than I saw from my NH-D14!

Memory

Loved this RAM from the first time I saw. I just think it looks great! I am had it in two different rigs now, one Z270 and one Z370. No issues at all!

Video Card

For a blower cooled card, this one is great! It isn't too loud and with direct airflow, does a decent job cooling. I have the fan graphed to run at 100% at 80C and with gaming with 100% GPU usage, I typically see 72-78C.

Case

This is by far the best case I have ever used! And I have built in 4 other cases! I love how FD stays with simple but useful designs. I have a feeling that I won't own a case that isn't made my FD.

Case Fan

It took them a long time but Noctua did it! These fans brought a 3C drop in temp compared to the F12 fans! Not to mention they do not put off the annoying hum that my F12 fans did. Totally worth the upgrade.

Monitor

I saw quite a few reviews for this monitor stating that some received theirs with excessive back light bleed and/or dead pixels. I am thankful to say that mine has been flawless! There is nothing like gaming at over 100Hz! The IPS panel (after some calibration) puts off very accurate, vivid colors! But be prepared to my PC speakers if you don't already have some! The internal speakers and complete garbage!

Keyboard

This keyboard is perfect for me! Tenkeyless, removable USB cable, and great switches! So much better than the Razer BW TE that I had before. Of course any software is better than Razer's Synapse...

Mouse

More comfortable, accurate, and better software than the Razer Deathadder that I had before. I actually picked this mouse out solely off of Steelseries' good reputation and I was not disappointed!

Comments

  • 16 months ago
  • 3 points

Looks good ! +1

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks!

  • 16 months ago
  • 3 points

Sweet build, and those dom plat SE's are sexy af. +1

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you! The moment that memory came out I had to have it. Its very unique.

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Do you have Reddit?

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Nope, why do you ask?

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

I made a subreddit for beautiful hardware and was going to ask you to post it

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Well thank you for the consideration! :)

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Very nice mini build :) +1

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Thank you!

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Another great build! Now update those pictures with the copper heat spreader!

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

I love the look of those new noctua fans.

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Me too! really cool design and I like how you can see the metal nut on the motor.

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Do you know if the Noctua - NF-A12x25 cool and sound the same or better than the Noctua - NF-F12 PWM predecessor?

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

According to my testing (which may be limited by the U12S cooler) two A12x25 fans vs two F12 fans showed a 3C drop in temp in favor of the A12x25. Now a buddy of mine did some testing on radiators comparing them to the obnoxious F12 iPPC 3000rpm fans and his results showed that the A12x25 fans were only 1C behind the F12 3000rpm! So there is definitely an improvement there! As far as noise goes, I do not even understand how Noctua has these rated slightly louder than the F12 fans because I cannot hear them at all and the F12 always bothered me. The F12 fans put off a hum to due the design of the focus flow frame. The a12x25 fans do not have this so there is no hum and it is as if they are quieter. I highly recommend them just for the acoustic improvement!

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Sweet. I'm definitely considering getting those fans. How are the NF-A14 PWM though? Do you recommend those as well?

  • 16 months ago
  • 2 points

I would recommend any Noctua fan lol. They are all superb! As far has how the A12x25 compares to the A14? I am not sure, I have never done any testing. I would think that since Noctua offers a 140mm to 120mm adapter that the A12x25 must be better than the A14 in some applications. This was my train of thought: I already had the A14 fans for intake, they are not as noisy as the F12, but they are louder than the A12x25. Upgrading isn't worth it IMO. Now if I was building something completely new and did not have any fans already, I would probably opt for three A12x25 fans on the front instead of two A14 fans. Also, I am keeping in mind that Noctua is is the process of developing a 140mm fan with the same design as the A12x25. Once it is available, I will get two of them for sure.

  • 1 month ago
  • 1 point

Nut

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

im looking into this mobo but im curious what the 6 pin at the bottom does

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

It is a great board! My only complaint is only having (3) true PWM fan headers. As far as the 6 pin at the bottom, to my understanding, it is to provide extra power to the PCIe slots for stability. It is more commonly found on workstation boards or boards that are capable of taking multiple X16 PCIe cards. From what I have read, it isn't really necessary unless you are using more than two GPUs. Both this board and my last board (ASUS X99-M WS) had this PCIe 6 pin plug and I used it simply because I had enough cables to. Rather it actually does anything or not? I do not know.

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

ok thanks, I was curious about that I just ordered it I'm looking forward to my first pc build

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Hope it goes well! You will love this board!

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

yea i ordered the parts im using an 8600k and the enthoo evolv m atx case

  • 16 months ago
  • 1 point

Gonna look sweet! I have always loved the look of the enthoo evolv but I hear it has been airflow. Thats why I went with the Design C. If the Meshify C mATX would have been out, I would have got it. Need my airflow lol

  • 15 months ago
  • 1 point

very nice build. whats your Vdroop setting when over-clocked? did you prevent or allowed vdroop?

  • 15 months ago
  • 1 point

Sorry for the very late response. Vdroop is enabled and set to auto.

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

I like that you went with the Corsair PSU, even though it lists as incompatible because of a 5mm difference. Would you recommend it in this case?

  • 13 months ago
  • 2 points

The PSU will fit no problem if you do not use the drive bays in front of it in the case. If you do use the drive bays, like I do, it is a VERY tight fit. This PSU would not be my first choice do to its size and it is complete overkill for my current setup. But I purchased this back when I had an X99 system with even more drives and 980 Ti SLI. In my opinion, the smaller PSU the better. Makes cable management easier.

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

Gotcha. I'm looking at doing a mATX Threadripper build myself and I'm looking at my options. I want a lot of power just to be on the safe side. Currently I've a Corsair PSU and I've been happy with it, except I only went with 650W. I don't think I'll be using the drive cage since I only want one spinning disk for my Steam library, but I'm also thinking about either a 280 or 360 radiator in the front, depending on what case. I've narrowed it down to the Meshify C, Meshify C mini and Define Mini C. Your input really helps! Thanks!

  • 13 months ago
  • 2 points

If you don't use the drive cage then you should be 100% fine. All of the HXi PSUs are 180mm in length. BUT the AX860 is only 160mm I think (not the AX860i). If I were to change, that is the PSU I would go with.

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

Congratulations mate! it looks really awesome!

I ordered Turbo GTX 1080 Ti today!

And i would like to ask if you faced any problems with the drivers. I'm using win 10 64bits.

Do you use nvidia's drivers or asus'?

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

The only drivers that will work with the card are Nvidia's drivers. The disk that is included with the card will simply include the Nvidia driver, which is probably very outdated, and Asus' overclocking utility. You would be better off to just got to Nvidia's site and download the latest Geforce driver. Then research and decide which overclocking utility you wish to use. I use MSI Afterburner.

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

I see!! Well i was thinking not to overclock it!! I guess it would go louder and warmer! I think it can provide an average of 50-60.fps in most titles.which i think is pretty descent!

Also i found some videos in YouTube in which they are saying that Nvidia as.a.company is downgrading some driver updates for they released the new rtx series so that people face fps drops and force them slowly to take the next step. But i think that 1080s.and 1080tis are still very very good.cards and expensive so they may not did something with the drivers of these cards. The video was about 9 series and 1050s.1050 tis if im not mistaken.

Have you experienced any framedrops after an Nvidia driver update?

Sorry if i write and ask.many things.

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

I highly doubt Nvidia would purposefully make older cards seem slower but I guess you never know. I don't update my graphics driver very often so I have not noticed anything. You can download the latest or older drivers from their site so putting out an update to lower performance would not help them as you could always just download and use the old driver.

  • 13 months ago
  • 1 point

yeah i think the same, but ok maybe some people may not notice! Anyway! thanks for your time! i cant wait for the card to arrive at my place! Thanks Eli! Bye

  • 12 months ago
  • 1 point

Great build! Could I please ask two questions?

  1. You said you'd opt for 3 A12x25 fans over 2 A14 fans in your intake if building from scratch. How easy is it to get 3x120 fans in the front of this case? I'm not seeing any examples of it anywhere! I do see a lot of 2x140. To fit the 3x120, would you have to remove something to fit the third 120, and would it be partially obstructed / effect airflow?

  2. What are your thoughts about the Meshify cases? I understand they have better air flow but are not as silent as the Define C series . But I'm wondering - if I built a case with quiet components (PSU, GPU) and all A12x25 fans (1 exhaust, 3 intake, and 2 in push pull on u12s) if it'd make the Meshify super quiet, too.

Thanks for any input!

  • 12 months ago
  • 1 point

Seeing as I have never mounted (3) 120mm fans on the front of this I cannot say. It was a squeeze to fit (2) 140mm fans in there.

I have also heard that the Meshify flows better but I have my doubts. I can remove my front panel and have just my filter in place and it results in no temperature decrease. If you have a good cooling GPU, PSU, and Noctua fans, you won't have to worry about noise.

  • 12 months ago
  • 1 point

That's awesome. Thank you so much!

Although I don't have the 140mm fans now, I think I might go with your plan of using the current versions, and then I can at least consider upgrading when the x25 variant arrives:)

Could I trouble you with one more question?

For a PSU, I'm thinking about a Corsair RMx, which is 180mm long. Fractal recommends a max PSU length of 175mm. However, I won't use the drive bays and can remove those.

Think I'd have any sort of problem fitting in the 180mm PSU and its cabling?

  • 12 months ago
  • 2 points

I was able to squeeze a 180mm PSU WITH the drives bays being used. Which was quite difficult but if you don't use the drive bays, it won't be an issue at all to use a 180mm PSU.

  • 12 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for posting with such detail. I'm building a similar computer (I'm hoping to take advantage of upcoming Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales to knock a bit off of some components), and your write-up is extremely helpful. Cheers from a fellow gamer✖photographer!

  • 12 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks so much! I really enjoying doing builds and sharing with the community! Hope your build goes well!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Heh, I independently ended up at the same monitor. I wanted something for productivity (photo editing + light video/animation) and gaming, but there doesn't appear to be a monitor out there for that specific dual purpose (someone suggested a curved monitor, but I really need something flat for editing). This is still a bump up from 1080p but I almost feel like I need to buy an additional 4K for max working space, with the possibility of a wider color gamut and maybe even HDR (which for me would just be a bonus as I don't produce HDR content support in other content in growing).

I know it's a bit of a lottery as far as light-bleed, but have you tried hardware color calibration with this monitor? If so, what were the results and what did you use? I'm going to wait a couple of days before actually buying a monitor (I don't even have a motherboard picked out yet!) If you have any "hot takes" on the matter or suggestions from your own experience, I'd love to hear it! I haven't been keeping up with monitors trend, but they seem very purpose-built these days (unlike the CRT of yore), unlike some other PC components.

All the best! - Tony R.

  • 11 months ago
  • 2 points

I am no, and will never claim to be a, professional photographer. With that being said, it is my main hobby and I have invested way more money into it rather than building PCs. I use to have a curved VA monitor prior to this one. I never had any complaints... until I got this monitor. My photos were actually way over saturated and the colours were off. I find this monitor to be a perfect balance for a photographer one also wants to game above 60fps. To answer your main question, no, I have never used a calibration tool. I started off with the recommended calibration setting (can’t remember what site I found them on) then adjusted from there using free online tools and the built in calibration tool for windows. For an amateur photographer like myself, I find this to be plenty enough. I may invest in a calibration tool eventually, maybe if I ever make any money off my photos. But I can say that this monitor looks amazing and I love the quality and colours of the display. I don’t think you would be disappointed.

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Cheers! random, but... If there is ever a photograph(s) that you are particularly proud of - which you may already have - I would recommend checking out "Photographer's Market insert current year here", it's really useful, especially when first starting out, assuming that's even something you want to do. Heh also I can relate, I spent more money on two lenses this year than the cost of this whole build.

I think it will be a few years before 4K gaming and monitors with 14-bit LUTs can be found in the same monitor (ASUS and Acer both have 4K G-Sync monitors, but being the first of their kind, there are issues to be worked out and Acer unfortunately has unreliable panels from my experience). Plus it will help when HDMI 2.1 (and to a lesser extent, DP 1.4, which you can already find) becomes the norm. Thanks for quashing my concerns!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks for the info! I may check it out!

  • 8 months ago
  • 1 point

does ur ram run at 3200?

  • 8 months ago
  • 1 point

Sure does, just set it to XMP