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The Adam of my labor

by PC3-PO


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

March 21, 2018

CPU Clock Rate

3.6 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.721 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

10 GHz


This build was a lot of fun to complete. It began as a simple Coffee lake upgrade and somehow, somewhere along the way, a custom loop crept into the mix. Oh well. The design phase lasted a bit longer than expected, as there are so many options to choose from when it comes to water cooling components. Additionally, I thought about waiting for the Phanteks R160/R220 to become available, however, that might be a later upgrade at this point. This machine is used primarily for work - IT. And also primarily for gaming!

Case: I purchased this case for a previous build (that my brother now games on. Finally got him off the console! #pcmasterrace) in all black, and liked it so much I decided to get the Pro M SE for this build. Additionally, I removed the radiator bracket and rear bracket guide (bracket guide removal required drilling out 4 rivets) from the case, and fabricated a bracket to mount the radiator to the top of the case, allowing me to tuck the radiator higher up, and expose more of the case interior.

Motherboard: I've always had good experiences with Gigabyte motherboards, so I figured I would give the Aorus Gaming 5 a go. So far so good. As anyone who has a Gigabyte board will tell you, the App Center software could use some work, but it gets by...RGB Fusion works well, integrated my CPU block into it, so that's nice.

CPU: Intel i5-8600K running at 3.6GHz and consistently see boosts up to 4.2GHz,. Idles at ~25°C and under a stress test it reaches 50°C. Enduring an average workload, it sits around 35-38°C.

Memory: Corsair Vengence LPX DDR4-3000 32GB (4x8GB). RAM is RAM I suppose. Enabling XMP in BIOS was required in order to reach 3GHz bandwidth

GPU: EVGA GTX-1080 FTW2. What more can you really say about a 1080?! Running stock at 2.025GHz core clock and 5.005GHz memory frequencies. Idles at 23°C and under a full load it tops out at 48-50°C. This card handles the most demanding loads with ease. I tinkered with overclocking and saw stable settings for core clock and memory at 2.139GHz and 5.103GHz, respectively.

Storage: Using a 250GB M.2 NVMe as a boot drive. It's lightning fast. I had Win10 previously installed on my WD Blue, and after switching to this M.2, I saw decreased boot times from ~30 seconds to 5-7 seconds, and reboot times of ~1:30 to 10-12 seconds. This pleases me. Two Samsung 850 EVOs - one as a Fedora boot drive, and the other for games. The WD Blue is now used as a backup drive.

Monitor: I purchased the Dell U3415W in the summer of 2016 for ~$720, and it has been worth every penny. Gaming on a 3440x1440 34" curved monitor, with all settings at max/epic, is absolutely unbeatable! I also managed to push it to a stable 70Hz (via NVIDIA Control Panel).

Water Cooling: This is was my first attempt at a custom loop, which proved to be very fun, and not quite as challenging as I had anticipated. I found the hardest part to be, by far, making some of the necessary bends with the PETG. If you are off by even 1-2mm things may not line up, and you can start pushing components in unwanted directions with the incorrectly bent/measured tubing - especially the GPU. Patience and accuracy with your measurements will win the day, here. Also, I could have been more diligent when cutting the tubing. The cutters left scratches on either side of the cut, when gripping the tube.


  • Fittings: Monsoon Hardline Economy V2 - Black sparkle
  • CPU block: Phanteks C350I - Satin black
  • GPU block: EKWB EK-FC1080 GTX FTW2 - Nickel
  • Radiator: Black Ice Nemesis 360 GTS
  • Reservoir: XSPC Ion (160mL) - White
  • Water pump: EKWB EK-XTOP SPC 60 PWM - Clear/plexi

Overall I am very pleased with the performance and visual appeal of this build. Thanks for checking it out.

Comments Sorted by:

PhantomHawk11 3 Builds 6 points 13 months ago

I smell a feature...

SekouSan 8 points 13 months ago


Vergere 7 Builds 5 points 13 months ago

smells nutty

WyrmWolf130 1 Build 4 points 13 months ago

Tastes like chicken

Zeromus725 5 points 13 months ago

How exactly does a build become featured?

PhantomHawk11 3 Builds 4 points 13 months ago

if it gets enough upvotes and the mods deem it worthy...

Zeromus725 2 points 13 months ago

Oh, thanks

panchalsamir40 1 point 13 months ago

this guy could make this pc in 1500bucks but he wasted 4.3k in order to improve another 5% performance and this is how it become featured

hi_im_snowman 6 points 13 months ago

Building a PC, especially for enthusiasts, is not just about squeezing as many fps out of every dollar. With that logic, not a soul on earth should be buying above-average cars, skis, bicycles, headphones, shoes, phones, furniture, etc.

OP needs to spend just as much money as OP is willing and able to. Nothing more, nothing less. It's none of our business really and I sincerely doubt admins on PCPP are selecting "Featured PCs" based solely on price tag.

And even if they did attribute more weight to price tag than other criterion, wouldn't it make sense? You don't see many Honda Civics making the front page of Top Gear these days - there's just little to be impressed about "just another average car".

Price doesn't get you featured, the net result does. It just so happens that most "enthusiast"-class builds happen to be expensive.

Zeromus725 1 point 13 months ago

I suppose that means I will never get featured.

VladQwerty 2 Builds 2 points 13 months ago

That color harmony, so lovely. <3

Skultrix 2 points 13 months ago

Epic build, I was wondering that's that keyboard. Thanks for the detailed description and many photos! +1

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 2 points 13 months ago

Thank you! It's a Logitech K840.

Zeromus725 1 point 13 months ago

Amazing photo quality so we can view this glorious project! :)

IceColdInferno 2 points 13 months ago

But can it run windows xp?

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EagleByte 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

But can it open Task Manager, Start Menu, and Calculator at the same time?

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 2 points 13 months ago

All of that, and open excel, with 2 sheets...

Lonerdo 1 point 13 months ago


LonghornAlamo2040 2 points 13 months ago

I love these builds where it's not just the PC, but the desk and the room being a full DIY job.


coachingstorm 2 points 13 months ago

You forgot the gaming chair! It doubles the fps of games and triples base clock for your cpu! Proven here: https://usa.clutchchairz.com/product/pewdiepie-edition-throttle-series/

bbogle86 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Would have loved to hear more about the woodworking! But I guess that's beyond the scope of this site :) very nice work

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 2 points 13 months ago

Thank you! I always appreciate when other folks add info/photos when renovating their desk or work area, so I figured I would do the same.

The desk is a sheet of maple glued atop of a sheet of poplar. Cut to 32"x80" and added 1"x2" maple trim. Two coats of Colonial Maple stain, and two coats of clear gloss ploy.

bbogle86 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

It came out beautifully! Top notch craftsmanship from top to bottom, well done my friend

The_Undead_Reaper 1 point 13 months ago

This deserves more upvotes

hi_im_snowman 1 point 13 months ago

100% respect for the love and dedication that clearly went into this build/reno.

Of course this is a +1 for moi.

Looks epic...! Wonderful!

Blacksm1le 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

good harmony + 1

ALIEN1X 1 point 13 months ago

How did u get your Phateks RGB frames to work that come with the case, te problem I have is that myu fans run but no RGB halos lights or any leds on the power button although the power button works?

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

So I disregarded the way those LED rings came hooked up to run off the button under the mic/headphone jack. I left each cable for the two rings connected to each other (they each have a male and female connector), then I connected one of the remaining ends (along with the cable for my cpu block) into a y-splitter, which then plugs into one of the RGB headers on the motherboard. That way my motherboard, cpu block, and front case fan rings all run on the RGB Fusion app.

ALIEN1X 1 point 13 months ago

ah so its connected to the RGB header on mobo, I thought those were for LED strips only, but I guess the fan frames are similar.

So the the fan frames are connected via daisy chain and the end gos to RGB header?

Did ou have to buy the Y spliter or did it cme with the case?

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Correct, I daisy chained the case fan LED rings, and then connected to an RGB header on the board.

The Y splitter I used actually came with the cpu water block I bought.

ALIEN1X 1 point 13 months ago

Dose your case power button have led, I was on the assumption they light up to along side others on the front case control?

RenzoMF 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Your cable management skills soothe my OCD :) Congrats for that sexy computer!

WyrmWolf130 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago


Anyansayo 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

I have an Aorus Z370 board, but I have had difficulty opening the BIOS. How did you do it?

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Once you power on your machine, you will see the large Aorus logo, which will display options for BIOS menu, boot order, etc. To enter BIOS hit the delete key.

Vergere 7 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

F1, F2, or Delete keys will work on 90% of motherboards

Anyansayo 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

For some reason, I never see that. Instead I see the Windows logo.

biggles5107 3 Builds 2 points 13 months ago

Start spamming the delete key as soon as you press the power button. That works for me. Half the time the boot logo doesn't show up for me either. I've got a Gigabyte motherboard too.

Anyansayo 1 Build 2 points 13 months ago

I have tried doing that. I have searched the web for a solution to my problem and I have found that there is something called fast boot. I am thinking that this may be my issue since windows is booting up much faster now than it did on my old Gigabyte board. Do you know how I'd disable this function?

Anyansayo 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Thanks for the help. I found out how to open BIOS. It was the fast boot. Now I have XMP enabled I will do some overclocking. And to PC3-PO; great build.

biggles5107 3 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Glad you got it working. I know I had to disable fast boot myself because it was causing some problems like my keyboard not getting detected by the boot loader (I run Linux) :/

coachingstorm 1 point 13 months ago

Then if you went with newegg to buy it, they have a great replace policy. I bought a defective gtx 1080 from there and they replaced it. Although the customer support was horible

Anyansayo 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

I didn't get it from Newegg. But the board isn't defective. All functions run. I just cannot open BIOS for some reason that I assume to be solvable.

thunder-93 1 point 13 months ago


GloriousPcMaster 2 Builds 1 point 13 months ago

Love the build - great detail. Just why no custom cables or even extensions for the GPU?

AsylumCow 1 point 13 months ago

Sweet Build Mate! Your bends are spot on!

Splatterlord 1 point 13 months ago

Custom sleeved cables for MOBO power and GPU power would be cool, in light-blue, white/grey and black.

hi_im_snowman 1 point 13 months ago

@OP LOVE pic #5, that's awesome looking! Congrats on the final build, it looks fantastic!

+1 (of course) :)

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Thank you for the kind words! Pic #5 might be my favorite bend.

elvy.e.penswick 1 point 13 months ago

why stock cables with such a nice looking build?

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Those will probably be the next purchase. I figured since the only visible cables are the ATX and VGA, I could wait on buying a new set of cables. I would rather just by a full set than deal with extensions.

Absekon 2 Builds 1 point 12 months ago

This is a Mr. Clean build! Nice and tidy! Feature material here bro! +1

Dirty_Mick603 1 point 10 months ago

Sick nasty.....and I get to use the old PC...win win

13hchen 1 Build 1 point 10 months ago

Nice build good job man

pwpartp 1 point 10 months ago

I'm presently doing a build with this case and am having the same problem you obviously had--- that a top mounted radiator won't work with that slide-out fan bracket. Your description mentioned a couple of custom brackets at the top. I may need something similar for a Swiftek 280 mm rad that I purchased. Can you elaborate on the brackets you made? Metal? 3D printed? shape?

g3rr01 1 point 8 months ago

love the new desk! have you thought about trying out a white liquid? it might be worth a try, i think it would look real nice

steezknees 1 Build 0 points 13 months ago

Crooked drain valve irks me. Beautiful job nonetheless.

Adrew24 1 Build 0 points 13 months ago

Love the build, great photos, especially photo 5. This is what a custom loop should look like. +1

Not_Intel 0 points 13 months ago

Umm the gtx 1080 uses gddr5x memory and runs a base memory speed of just over 10000Mhz I'm a bit confused why yours runs at 5Ghz? It Even says 10Ghz in the details???

PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 7 points 13 months ago

To clarify, MSI Afterburner only displays the differential command clock (the actual clock). Seeing as GDDRxx is Dual Data Rate, multiply the MSI reading by 2 (as there are two write clocks per cycle).

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PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago

Much obliged

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PC3-PO submitter 1 Build 1 point 13 months ago