Description

Megahertz is my current set-up for CAD, Solidworks, lite gaming (from time to time), thermal simulations, electronics simulations etc.

Working as a thermal engineer I reconfigured the case in the optimal at least to my knowledge way. I have two 240 mm radiators cooling the processor and graphics card connected in series. Initially I had the front as intake and the top as exhaust however the thermal performance was poor (a.k.a. not good enough...) because of the design of the top cover. There is a small clearance between the top of the case and the cover leading to huge air turbulence, reduction of exhaust air velocity and thus overall increase in internal case temperature to above typical water cooling readings. I solved the problem by using the top radiator as intake similarly to the the one in front. And I had to flip the plastic air guide brackets on the bottom side of the cover because I wanted to take air from the front of the case and block the intake from back of the case. This minimises the chances of airflow feedback i.e. sucking part of the hot exhaust airflow through the original top cover configuration. Having 4xEK Vardar 120mm fans as intake you might wonder WHY? Well, I run them at very low RPM at idle which given their excellent static pressure performance gives me decent airflow at next to inaudible noise. As exhaust I configured a rather painfully expensive Noctua 3000RPM 140mm fan. It also runs at as low RPM as I managed to optimise it (25% PWM) before temperature threshold transitions start to occur from sudden power spikes. Having fans capable of 3000RPM does not mean that you need to run them at full speed! In fact I am quite happy audibly, the loudest component you could hear is pump noise and believe me that D5 is very VERY quiet pump. Anyway when ultimate Megahertz overclocking is required yes they all run at 3000RPM.

The CPU clock is optimised to a sensible 4.0 GHz and is undervolted down to adaptive 1.075V+0.05V. The input voltage is increased to to 2V. This configuration allows me to get stable 4.0GHz at lower overall thermal output compared to the conservative voltage stock settings. Your mileage may very every die is slightly different.

The memory is set to XMP3200. This is the default XMP profile. However the difference compared to factory settings is minimal in real world applications. It is important to note that DDR4 runs at stock voltage 1.2V, up until 2666MHz. This is important if you have trouble cooling down your CPU. The XMP profile above 2666MHz will affect the CPU memory controller power output not just the DIMMs.

I decided to opt for a GTX 1070 EVGA FTW. In my personal experience EVGA have always been correct with immaculate customer service. I am not a supporter of all the ridiculous FTW accusations against them. In fact I had a personal conversation with representative of their engineering team and I think they handled the mass hysteria perfectly. Overall it is very easy to believe what the media tells you about a certain product if you do not fully understand the problem. Anyway, I replaced all thermal gap pads with the best Fujipoly pads. I made a thermal relieve across the whole surface area on the back of the PCB effectively turning the back plate into a large passive heat spreader. This is conveniently blown across by the top push pull fans of the front intake radiator. The EK FTW water block is excellent. I was thinking of manufacturing my own block because I bought the GPU before the EK release date. However I kept the card on air for couple of weeks and focused on other interesting high voltage valve projects.

I have been through several PSU failures from reputable manufacturers over the last few months. Thus I decided to finally invest into a proper platinum Corsair HX series. This is slight overkill for my current setup but gives me the flexibility to add second GPU if I decide to do so later on. In fact 750W is the perfect spot for my system because at typical gaming, rendering under load my total power consumption is between 350 and 400W thus the HX750 runs at pretty much maximum efficiency >90%. The data logging tool with the Corsair Link software is also a pretty useful tool for me.

The SSD in the system was recycled from my previous build. It is an OEM nvme drive Samsung SM951. It is not the top player anymore but hey 2.2GB reads and 1.5GB writes are not too bad. Being thermally obsessed obviously I installed two DIP28 package heat sinks on it just in case it spontaneously decides to throttle at me.

I made a nice custom side panel for my case. This is not the more expensive ATX tempered glass version, just the mid of the range MicroATX variant. The case has very convenient quick release clips all over the place so I used 4 of them and taped M2 holes into a handmade acrylic sheet. The M2 round head screw fit perfectly in the quick release clips resulting in a very clean side panel mounting. Also now I can see all LEDs right?! :)

Don't ask me why is the reservoir like that. I experimented... liked the looks that is why. Yes it is a pain to bleed out the air but I enjoy spending time on my water cooling loop.

Finally the price tag at the bottom of the page looks pretty horrible but please note that this includes all the hardware, all the tools I needed, the complete water loop, the monitor, the audio and other useless peripherals. These were accrued over time as result of a gradual system upgrades and a lot of hard work to earn the gold. I did not spend 2.5K on a fancy block of aluminium straight ahead.

If you have any questions feel free to ask! Cheers!

Part Reviews

CPU

Very reliable CPU so far. I keep it cool underwater and it runs undervolted at 4.0GHz 24/7 at adaptive 1.080V + 0.02V. Can reach 4.7GHz @ 1.4V Can reach 4.8GHz @ 1.4V, increased BCLK and reduced memory clocks.

Thermal Compound

Not quite as good as Prolimatech PK1 but dominates all other compounds at this price range. Comes with an applicator - USE IT please, don't rely on the force applied by the heat spreader to distribute the paste. You will NOT get trapped air.

Motherboard

This is best X99 micro atx board right next to the Asus WS. I managed to blow one of the MOSFETs driving the CPU OPT fan but I got a brand new replacement from EVGA.

Case

It is the perfect case so far. However if you are water cooling it please read the description of my build...

Power Supply

Excellent, very reliable power supply so far! It comes with a mini USB cable for the digital data acquisition software of Corsair. Reaches peak efficiency of <93% at 350-400W load.

Case Fan

Expensive but amazing! I run it at 20-25% PWM at idle and never ever allow it to go above 50% it goes into server level sound range. If the compressor of your vacuum cleaner gives up, don't worry just put an NF-A14 in it you will not see the difference!

Case Fan

The best performing 120mm fans I have ever worked with. I am very satisfied with the airflow at low RPM.

Keyboard

Cheap combo both the mouse and the keyboard broke twice each... after the 2nd RMA I disposed the mouse and bought a Razer.

Mouse

For gaming this is good mouse. Takes a bit of time to get use to it. However there is room for improvement specifically in the grip and the scroll.

Comments

  • 36 months ago
  • 3 points

Nice! I was planning on doing the exact same thing with the side panel on my Evolv mATX, I have a sheet of polycarbonate ready to go. How did you get such a clean cut on the acrylic? Did you design the profile in SolidWorks and then use a CNC laser cutter or something?

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

I could but it is a rather simple shape so I did it by hand with a saw, dremel, round file and sandpaper :) Polycarbonate will be more difficult to work with by hand. Otherwise don't bother with a CNC the laser will do it much quicker. I am making my wedding invitations based on exactly the same principle with a touch sensor and white ultra bright diodes.

  • 34 months ago
  • 1 point

I agree with s.a.wood, the acrylic side panel looks fantastic! I have also been thinking about doing something similar with my Evolv, I would love to get it done with tempered glass but that definitely would cost a fortune. I might have to investigate acrylic further now! Great job!

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

$0.00 isn't horrible :). Nice clean build! +1

  • 36 months ago
  • 3 points

What do you mean 0$ ? Is it not showing up with the USD equivalent to GBP? I know the GBP lost value the last few months but common 0$ ...I wish :D

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

Ha ha! Nope it's showing $0 for me as the total.

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  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points
Very nice!

$0.00

...And now the E.U. can say, "We told you so!"

Just kidding, great build. +1 for mods and description!

I need to start shopping in London.

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

No no no please you do not want to shop in London! Stick to $ it is better! Being a foreigner from a small EU country in the UK myself I also ask the same question "WHY?" without getting an answer which makes sense. :/ Thanks anyway!

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

Sure!

No no no please you do not want to shop in London!

But... The Dollar to Pound ratio.. it calls... =D

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

You engineered the **** out of the loop :D

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

Not quite mate, but yeah some thought went into it!

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

Have u tried the processor on @4.5GHz?

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

Yep it goes up to 4.7GHz at 1.4V. That is without tweaking the base clock. I goes up to 4.8GHz with BCLK changes but this messes up with all other devices on the board. Thus if I tweak the BCLK the XMP profile on the DDR4 becomes useless, and the NVME SSD is pain to setup. So yeah going above 4.7 is involved and it requires excessive voltage. I did benchmark it but for everyday use 4.0 undervolted is the perfect spot for me.

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

I love clear liquid cooling, i think it gives it a nice shine +1

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

It makes it look light and clean right :) Thanks!

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

Haha your girlfriend has the fun part!

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

Beautiful and creative!! +1

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

Cheers mate!

  • 36 months ago
  • 2 points

rofl one of the best names ive seen in a while +1

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

How did you pull off the teal trim on the side panel?

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

It is just diffraction of LED light inside the acrylic material. When you illuminate it the clear part stays transparent, while every scratch, sanded side and imperfection will light up in the LED color. All you need to do is to sand the edge. With the same principle you could engrave text/shapes in the sheet and they will light up as well.

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

That's awesome.

  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

dem tubes doe. :DDDDDDDD im so excited

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Extremely nice build and looking closely at your build. I am doing my first custom watercooling and i want to use this case. How did you create the side panel was it easy? Also is it possible to take photos of the fans and plastic air guide brackets on the bottom side of the cover

  • 35 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi, thanks for the appreciation. This is extremely easy case to work with in terms of water cooling. Just be careful with the airflow... there is a photo of the ducts on the third tab of the slideshow. Both plastic pieces come with the case. One of them blocks air and the second one passes air through. If you arrange them as I explained you will get the optimal results. The side panel can be laser cut or CNC routed from acrylic however I made it with basic manual tools. It is relatively easy job but takes time and effort. If you live the the UK, the whole PC with the water cooling gear is for sale so contact me if interested.

  • 33 months ago
  • 1 point

Good stuff man! I have a question regarding your radiator setup. Are u able to fit the push pull configuration on the front side without altering the chassis?

  • 33 months ago
  • 1 point

Hi mate, no not really. I had to cut two small pieces from the chassis. The steel sheet panel which separates the PSU compartment from the main compartment has a cutout presumably for a pump mount however the clearance is not enough for installing even a 240mm radiator. This was one of the weak point about this case... I don't see the point in making a cutout there if you are not going to properly allow support for large front mounted radiators. Anyway it is only 0.5mm thick steel sheet so it cuts through like butter. Just remember to file the rough edges and to clean up the mess because the debris are electrically conductive and could short circuits on your mobo/PSU/GPUs etc. Good luck!

  • 33 months ago
  • 1 point

thank you for the great advice! looking forward to see more from your builds soon =)

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  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

"Overclock until it Megahertz" is the even more original slogan!

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  • 36 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks!

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