Description

A client asked me to build a workstation that needed to be silent, stable and have enough power to run multiple VM's plus occasionally play a game.

Theme: I chose a black/white/grey theme as this would suit the professional use of this workstation. No attention-drawing RGB-blingbling but rather a subtle (I hope) use of white LED lighting.

Case: Since long I wanted to build a system into the Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ATX. The case does not disappoint at all, it is beautifully built and easy to build into. I first chose the tempered glass (TG) edition but quickly swapped it out for the non-tempered glass one as the TG edition has glass on both sides, inluding the backside of the motherboard where all the cables would show - ruining the clean look of the build.

CPU: As budget was less of an issue and stability and compatibility were key, we opted for the core i9. The 10-core i9-7900X was the CPU with the highest core count available at the time so we went with that. Edit: At a time where Ryzen/threadripper is all the rage it seems bizarre to opt for an expensive Intel i-9 CPU. Compatibility issues with older Linux kernels were at the basis of this decision - as the client needs to run Linux VM's with possibly older kernels.

RAM: 32 GB of Corsair Dominator Platinum - this agreed very well with the color of the case.

GPU: GTX 1060, ASUS because of Aura Sync compatibility. The video card sagged some, so I lifted it up somewhat using some black tie wraps (see photos). These are practically invisible when the case is closed.

Fans: The stock fans were replaced with 3 Corsair ML120 intake and 1 ML120 outtake, thus ensuring positive air pressure so dust would have no way of getting into the case without passing by the dust filters. Note: the fans in the parts list are actually 2-packs.

Display: The Samsung 49 (!) inch display has only been announced but is not available yet. I'll update the build when it arrives.

Overall the build looks like intended, is super quiet and has no issue running VMWare Workstation with 25 virtual machines each sporting 2 vCPUs. Very happy with this build :-)

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Comments

  • 31 months ago
  • 3 points

Oh... Okay... WHAT DO I DO WITH THIS SCREEN REALESTATE

  • 31 months ago
  • 2 points

That's a beautiful build, just gorgeous.

  • 31 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks!

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Was going to say "In before WHY DID YOU BUY INTEL VS THREADRIPPER OMG BUILD IS RUINED NOW STUPID HOBBIT" but it appears I am too late.

This is a very nice build, very clean and concise. I was curious about the single strangely placed RGB strand until I saw the rest of the build and how it acted like underglow for the front panel. +1

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Nice work!!

  • 31 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks :-)

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

I rather like this build. I can understand the hate towards intel, and the perks of thread ripper over i9. But at the end of the day intel cpus are rock solid (usually. There are always some that are DOA from both teams). My question is; why you decided to go with a gtx 1060 on a 3840x1080 monitor at 144hz? (I'm not criticizing, I'm actually curious.)

  • 31 months ago
  • 3 points

Thank you for your comment. The client only occasionally will play games, and doesn't mind playing at resolutions well below 4K. The large screen's main purpose is to have a lot of windows open side-by-side (think financial market data), gaming at its native res would indeed require a beefier GPU or SLI setup.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

1060 is not the best choice for older kernels unless your client is going to not use Nouveau and use the Nvidia proprietary drivers.

FWIW, The RX cards on Linux have amazing open source driver support.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

You're right, but that would be no issue as with VMWare Workstation the VM would only 'see' the VMWare software-defined SVGA adapter. We were not planning on using passthrough or vGPU.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

great build did u consider 1070 or 1080?

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Yes, but gaming is not the primary use for this build. So a 1060 was sufficient for the occasional 1080p game.

  • 30 months ago
  • 1 point

I expected 49" to be a bit bigger ;) +1

  • 29 months ago
  • 1 point

do those ram leds come on the board

  • 29 months ago
  • 1 point

No those are specific to the Dominator Platinum RAM sticks

  • 29 months ago
  • 1 point

thx

  • 23 months ago
  • 1 point

I'm a fan of the zip tie GPU support

  • 31 months ago
  • 0 points

Why a GTX 1060 when you're throwing 4.6k at this machine?

  • 31 months ago
  • 3 points

Because the primary use of this VM is CPU-intensive workstation use, not gaming.

  • 31 months ago
  • -2 points

If I had $5k to throw at a machine I'd still get a better card

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  • 30 months ago
  • 0 points

Overkill

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  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Actually they were 27 Euro for a two-pack. Don't know where PCPP got that price, I'll see if I can correct that.

  • 31 months ago
  • 1 point

Corrected : deleted 2 of the ML120 entries in the parts list. Too bad that the parts list does not show clearly that each entry contains two fans.

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