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The Borg Cube
by hiighcalibre
Permalink:   (95 comments)

High power gaming/development machine in new Carbide Air 540 case w/ a green borg cube inspired theme. Will dual boot Win8 & Ubuntu.

16Gb Ram & Dual Monitors for dev (w/ 1ms response for gaming).

3.5Ghz Intel & EVGA GTX 770 for gaming.

Samsung SSD to bring it all together (would not fit in hot swap bay properly so it is buried in the back).

More details to come.

Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor
CPU Clock Rate3.5GHz
CPU Temperature While Idle-
CPU Temperature Under Load-
EVGA GeForce GTX 770 2GB Superclocked ACX Video Card
GPU Core Clock Rate1.11Ghz
GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate7.01Ghz
GPU Temperature While Idle-
GPU Temperature Under Load-
When commenting on a completed build please keep your feedback polite and constructive, particularly if commenting on part choices and possible alternatives.
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Sorted by:
Zuperzone 8 points 15 months ago

Awesome build! Do you like the monitor? I'm planning to get one.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 4 points 15 months ago

So far so good, downloading BF4 now so I'll see how that goes. I also haven't calibrated them or really played with the settings.

They can go portrait which is really cool for web stuff (if I can get win8 to recognize) and they actually look cooler IRL than pictured (they have a little red bezel and some accents, etc.)

From my research they are going to be mediocre for like photo editing/hardcore design and such (looks a little flat/washed compared the MAC 27" I use at work) but amazing for gaming and refresh rate (and it's not like the color is poor by any means).

ESPM400 [1 Build] 2 points 15 months ago

Man, picked BF4 up a week ago. It's been too long since I've played PC shooters. I really suck...

Nice build though.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 15 months ago

Yeah same here, been console since I retired after lots of Counter Strike on PC back in 2003-2005ish, but I was disappointed with the new console specs and built this. Played the first 2 levels of campaign last night on Ultra, super smooth, no issues... until Direct-X crashed while browsing the web with the game in the background.

ImElkay [1 Build] 3 points 15 months ago

I also have one, there really great. Haven't tried the 3d or took advantage of the 144hz, but the colors are really good and it is smooth on my Xbox. (I know, I know, don't worry, building a PC)

keisterbunny 3 points 13 months ago

I have the same monitor and it is AWESOME. Playing BF4, Assassins Creed IV. Flawless.

elpidio [7 Builds] 4 points 15 months ago

+1 on the Name alone.

fasterblue [2 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago


hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

Thanks guys!

She had a bum PSU (or I broke it somehow?) that keep frying my mobos when I plugged in the fans (whole system would run fine until then).

Went through 3 rounds of RMAs...Probably built this machine over 4 times now. Just relieved to have it running.

xBlood_Monkey [9 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

You didn't happen to "borrow" that name from TTL who used the exact same case, did you?

CallMeVega 2 points 15 months ago

I was thinking the same thing actually.

xBlood_Monkey [9 Builds] 2 points 15 months ago

Oh sweet! Someone else who watched TTL! :D

PacificNic [2 Builds] 2 points 15 months ago

TTL is great! I love an excuse to get some cookies and milk/coffee! :)

xBlood_Monkey [9 Builds] 2 points 15 months ago

I just love being able to sit down and watch a feature-length movie about a motherboard. :p

CallMeVega 1 point 15 months ago


xBlood_Monkey [9 Builds] 2 points 15 months ago

By the way, turn on comments on your build. :p

CallMeVega 1 point 15 months ago


I wasn't finished Editing so I wanted to get it all through

CallMeVega 2 points 15 months ago

GOD DAMN, your builds are the ****!

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

Nah, independent creative process. When did he build it? This thing has been a parts list for probably almost two month now w/ all the issues and everything.

Pretty sure I looked through all the Carbide Air builds I could find at the time.

Also do you have a link I would like to see what he did?

xBlood_Monkey [9 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

The video was uploaded on October 16th, but he had the idea in mind since the case first arrived back in June.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

Wow, he took it to a whole nother level, I just bought a dirt cheap action figure on ebay and some green lights. :P

[comment deleted]
Starlana [2 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago


CallMeVega 1 point 15 months ago

Real talk, this rig be my baby, we can make baby fans together who would grow up to have their own case to cool lol

jepoyjepijep 1 point 15 months ago

How's the asus monitor? Do you like it? I'm thinking about buying the BenQ or this one? What do you think? And awesome build. My Build is like a doppleganger of yours lol +1

Mediciu5 [2 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

I gotta say I'm surprised you didn't find a way to run the cords outside the case to keep with the borg cube cobbled-together look :)

Nice build.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

lol didn't even occur to me, would look crazy, but be so much work/involve so much tape + w/ cats = dead machine and fried cat if one of the molexs or something was dangling a bit.

Mediciu5 [2 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

Yikes, that would not be good. Maybe fake cords? Recycle some old 386's? I think I still have one in the basement... :D

RyneSmith [7 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

Welcome to the Air 540 club :)

Very nice build the lights look amazing and the massive Phanteks cooler looks perfect in this case!

My only question is why did you get two of the VG248QE monitors? You can only game on one so seems like you paid the premium for another however if you end up getting 3 it's not a big deal haha

Nice build +1

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

Being able to justify two new monitors(my last desktop was an iMac and an ancient gateway monitor 18in sqaure) I wanted a matched pair....and yeah if I get another 770 down the road I might buy a 3rd (keeping my options open)...I caught them on sale (- $50 a piece IIRC) too.

RyneSmith [7 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

I understand about wanting to match! You got them for $50 each? or $50 off of each?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

$50 off. So it wound up being like a $50 difference between the 1ms VG248QE and ASUS's slower/cheaper 24"

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

I love that lighting! Makes me want to get that case, ya know? Just for aesthetics. I like the build, looks nice, seems well rounded. Was setting up the Linux-Windows dual boot easy? I am thinking about setting that up with my system.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

Honestly it's a little bright :P and the strip LEDs are on low :P

Haven't set up Linux yet, but Win8 has good partition utilities baked in, so I set that up already, and I've done dual boots before, once you get the partitions everything else is cake.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

Dual booting is actually harder than I anticipated thanks to win 8's UEFI secure boot loader. Going to be able to do it but it's significantly more work than it used to be.

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

I just have my system go straight to the bios and from there I choose if I want to boot into linux or windows. It might take a little longer than other methods but it isn't massively difficult or annoying.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

Both OSs have their boot partitions on the same SSD so that's not gonna work, unless you know something I don't.

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

Nope, unless you make your own boot manager or something, well actually Windows boot manager a few times (on a different pc of mine) has shown windows and linux as an option to boot to. I have NO idea what the requirements for that are however.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

Yeah lol I just FUBARed windows trying to use the same boot partition for Ubuntu... Time to wipe my SSD and reinstall. sigh

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

I hope you figure it out soon, it'd be a shame for such a beautiful build to go unused. Have you tried installing linux while in windows? (Using Wubi.exe)

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

Thanks I will look I to it... Might just have to disable all the fancy boot stuff... Or get another SSD for Christmas. For now windows has been reinstalled and I'm finishing moving all my media and stuff to the mechanical and trying not to suck at BF4.

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

I couldn't tell you how many times I have died on BF4 so far. I suck at FPS games.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

Finally got the hang of it, avoiding tunnel vision, using grenades, learning the classes, learning the maps, unlocking some scopes... And I realized that I still had my monitors set to 60hz. Bumped those biatches up to 144hz and wow, just wow.

Oh and it helps to play TDM/rush/dom instead of conquest and avoid the vehicular meyhem while you level.

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

Which weapon worked best on tanks for you? I tried an RPG and it did absolutely nothing.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

Pretty sure only engineers can really stand up to vehicles. They have bazookas, otherwise recon has C4 but good luck getting close enough with your head still on.

spacemyname9749 [6 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

I'll make sure to try the bazooka next time. Thanks for the tip!

malcar11 [3 Builds] 1 point 15 months ago

Clean and beautiful! Love the LEDs. Congrats!


Firecrackers [1 Build] 1 point 15 months ago

I like those monitors, but is the one on the left just a little wider? looks like it to me.

Okay 1) I love the cube, it just looks awesome. I regret having a red colored build. 2) You have that double heatsink cooler that I have a fetish for. 3) 4770k sexy is juicy.


EDIT: Can't give +6, can only resort to +1 very angry about it.

thesupergeek [3 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

Love the build, hope you dont mind I am recreating it almost identicaly, just I am using two 760's instead of 1 770. You know they say, mimicry is the greatest form of flattery

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

FYI I didn't updade the parts list but you are going to want to buy 3x 120mm fans for the front (then you can move the stock 140mms to the top).

thesupergeek [3 Builds] 1 point 14 months ago

will do, thanks. getting my parts in monday.

ArcticInferno 1 point 14 months ago

Love the build! With the exception of a few parts, it's quite similar to something I'm hoping to build in the future (sadly it's probably still a year off, so parts will change), one part I do hope to maintain/still be able to get is the case. Where did you find those lights? I had originally thought to not include any, but damn those look nice, it's one of my all time favorite colors, haha.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

http://www.frozencpu.com/cat/l1/g6/Lighting.html Lights are cheap but the shipping is not :(

Ran a strip of LEDs around the edges of the window, put two spotlight LEDs in and pointed them at the heatsink and the front fans are lighted.

The red lights are part of the board itself.

ARealSandwich 1 point 14 months ago

Oh you sexy thing. +1

PEZaddict 1 point 14 months ago

Awesome build man, I like how you have everything up on your desk. Do you remember where you got that desk? I tried finding something similar but no luck.

+1 for the build name :D

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago


mzimmerman23 1 point 14 months ago

Wish it would assimilate my computer to make it look that sick...

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 11 months ago


NeonMane [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

0_0 Great name and build. How's the airflow with the 540?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 14 months ago

If you count the PSU, video card and CPU there a total of 11 fans in this thing, so it better be fantastic.

The fan controller never really needs to go above 60% on the case from its temp readings...but I haven't tried to OC anything.

If you are going to do it get 3 120mm fans for the front, the case comes with 3 140mm fans, one is rear exhaust and the other 2 are mounted front from the factory but I moved them to the top (since I'm not radiating/water cooling) and got the 120s for the front. Having the 2 140s in the front you don't get has much air on the bottom near the HDD and vid card exhaust as you do with 3 120s.

I imagine it's better than most cases because the fans are all situated to pull air across your components and out in the same direction/up rather than sucking air out the side, and there is nothing but vital components being cooled (the CD drive, PSU and SSDs are all on the dark/warm side).

Mr.Michael 1 point 13 months ago

Hey man awesome build, I am just wondering what company you went with for the led strips and how many did you need to buy to go around the edge of the window? Also what did you get for a fan controller?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Pretty sure I just used this http://www.frozencpu.com/products/12153/lit-235/NZXT_Premium_Sleeved_Bright_LED_Kit_-1_Meter-_Green_CB-LED10-GR.html?tl=g6c77s1337

It made it all the way around the window and had a few inches extra to do the inside rear corner. It's very bright, I run it on the lowest setting.

IrishWristwatch [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Nice choice in case!

brelovix 1 point 12 months ago

This is a crazy epic build, I'm in love with it. Very awesome job. Did you get LED strips or is it the two fans making that beautiful colour display?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

The 3 fans in the front are lit (in some pics I only have two installed) and there is an led strip running around the window and into the back corner (below the VC/by the HDD) and that is set to low. There are also two spot light LEDs pointed at the cooling tower (one is mounted to the rear exhaust fan and the other on the side of center/front intake fan).

Swainey97 1 point 12 months ago

Great build

Hows the asus monitor because i was thinking of getting it for my new monitor ?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

Awesome, great response/refresh and they can tilt 90 degrees. Color depth doesn't hold up to my MAC at work though. Great for gaming, if you are a designer I would look at something else.

Otherwise my old complaint is that the supplied VGA cords are too short so if you are running two monitors expect to run to best buy.

IMANice16 1 point 12 months ago

Just me but I am not a fan of green PC builds, but hey whatever floats your boat. Looks like really nice part choice and I am jealous.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

Center tower is actually white (it's just lit green) and the mobo is red/black, remove/change the lights and this build fits other schemes. When I sleep it the mobo glows red/white.

I choose green cause I wanted to go borg themed.

lpeter [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

I love your build its amazing!, i have a question where did you ge your table from?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago


dwm88 1 point 11 months ago

Did you run into any issues with mounting that Phanteks fan with that high profile RAM?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

The RAM is fairly low profile and I did have to pass up on some cheaper DIMMs because of clearance. The Phanteks site has a list of what specific models of ram will clear. Just make sure you put the ram in before the cooler! + you may have to raise the outside fan a few centimeters relative to the inside fan (the mounts are adjustable for this reason). Also don't get caught up on cool looking RAM cause you will never see it (unless you have 4 DIMMS and are using the outside slots).

It fit the case with about 1/2 inch to spare and the hardest part is attaching the tower to it's mounts which are spring loaded and need to be turned at the same time. If you try to turn one and then the other (even 1/4 turns at a time) one will catch and the other wont, I needed to buy a comically long phillips head just for this (adjustable/ratcheting drivers and stuff wont fit between the two heatsinks).

immaman1992 [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

I did have a question for you guys of PCPartPicker and to the submitter of this build. When you decide to order your parts do you get them all in one box? Pre-built? Or do you actually separately order all the components and put them together yourself? I also wanted to know if you put those logo stickers on the bottom front corner of your case yourself too? Sorry for all the questions lol. I'm also going to be submitting a build this year of almost similar parts. Great build. _^ Only differences in my build that I think are really differences, I'm getting the i5 4670k, Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti, and MSI Z87-GD65 gaming.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

You get them all seperately and they are all warrantied seperately, etc. but I would just order everything from New Egg in one big order (the price difference on the total order will be negligible, you will get great shipping and STELLAR customer service).... but yeah you will have to assemble it yourself or pay someone a premium to do so for you (there are people who will build PCs custom for you).

...Yes I put the stickers on myself (notice how the one is a bit crooked :P) each part generally comes with a sticker/poster/door hanger or w/e.

Umm 780 :) I'm probably going to throw another 770 in this guy when Star Citizen comes out next year.

immaman1992 [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

Thank you for all the information, it makes me feel safer ordering from that site. :P I can build it myself no problem, I don't mind spending a good chunk of like 12 hours just to learn everything right then.

And yeah, I did notice the crooked sticker, that's why I asked lol. xD

And yes the GTX 780ti has like a 12% out of the box boost over the GTX Titan and Titan Black in every-single gaming application. Also comparing the price of the two there's like a $280-$500 price difference based on what custom cooler/OC you get the card with in the GTX 780ti's favor. That's why I'm getting this card later this year.....so beastly. <3 Only thing the titans would trump the GTX 780ti in are high-end rendering projects. But there are specific cards for that kind of thing so I don't get why the titan is still so expensive.

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 11 months ago

It's won't take 12 hours... The entire build process takes < an hour if you know what you are doing (after the 3rd RMA I got really good and I built this guy in about 30 minutes + another 45 for the lights and fans)...Just block 2 or 3 hours so you can take your time and do it right.

I would watch a youTube video on how to do a build (most are about 45 minutes long) and you can even find some that are specific to your case/parts. Then I would go through and re-watch as you do each step. Aside from the CPU placement/thermal paste/CPU cooler mounting(which will vary based on cooler) and connecting your case lights and stuff to the MoBo pins most everything is just thumb screws and clicking stuff together.

snuffels1999 1 point 9 months ago

URGGHHH The sticker's aren't aligned correctly ;-;

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

I tried, I tried so hard but the Damn EVGA badge(which is the coolest of all of them) won't budge (I feel like I'm gonna rip of my finger nail or at the very least ruin the thing) it's just slightly cockeyed but the other two are aligned with each other. sigh I'm gonna take a butter knife to it when I upgrade to SLI and get a spare (whenever that happens).

SuperCookie [4 Builds] 1 point 8 months ago

I love the LED's

maen 1 point 7 months ago

That IS a Borg Cube! As a TNG fan, I salute you.

Master10113 1 point 7 months ago

How u connect the monitors when there is only one DVI - D port

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 6 months ago

There are two on the video card.

Master10113 1 point 6 months ago

What?!? How come the specs say there is one DVI - D and oen DVI - I then. I decided on a AMD Sapphire tri-x r9 290 because they specifically say there are two DVI - D's. BTW, does it make a real difference whether you go with NVIDIA or AMD for the monitor or will any work fine?

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 6 months ago

There is no difference unless you plan on going G-Sync which is an Nvidea tech.

It actually may be that one is a DVI-I but I'm not gaming on the second monitor and I'm only running 1080p so it makes no difference to me.

132Franko 1 point 6 months ago

you could buy a wd black2 (hybrid) and save the money from the hdd, ssd, optical drive and os, a corsair cpu cooler, and that gives you enough money for another monitor or a gtx780 or a gtx780ti

grizzyyy [1 Build] 1 point 6 months ago


Igorzchannel [1 Build] 1 point 5 months ago


Kaito23 1 point 5 months ago

Nice green lighting, I'm planning to use a similar lighting system on my fractal node 804 build. Would you recommend this case over that one? And how did you get that lighting effect? NZXT led strip? Great build

hiighcalibre [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 4 months ago

I don't now that the 804 existed when I built my machine.

It looks like the 804 has fans on the 'dark side' which is kinda nice if your PSU/disk drives/SSDs generate a lot of heat...or if you are water cooling and want to run a radiator over to that side. Otherwise it's mini/micro ATX and the Corsair is full size and very deep on the light side (it looks like the dark side on the 804 is as wide as the light side and on the 540 the light side is roughly twice the size of the light side).

Stylistically I like the corsair which looks a little less like a mini-fridge. I'm also a fan of the corsair brand in general (this is actually my first build without Corsair RAM, just because the clearance/price didn't make sense with my cooler)

As for lighting...

The front 3 fans have LEDs in them (some of the pics where before I added the 3rd front fan), there are two 5 LED spotlights that are pointed at the cooling tower. You are correct there is an NZXT PCI LED strip (which is insanely bright so I keep it on low) that runs the parameter of the window (behind the bevel) from the PCI port the excess of which is run back down the inner back edge past it's point of origin and into the dark side.

skiskate10 1 point 4 months ago

I have that mouse pad too. I hate it :(

BaconLord 1 point 3 months ago

I love the name lol! Also nice build!

mariothetec 1 point 2 months ago

are able to get 100+ on max or high

someta [1 Build] 1 point 19 days ago
  1. Amazing build!

  2. I'm looking at the same cooler for an upgrade to my build; I also have RipjawsX RAM, and I was wondering how the cooler works with it. I've heard it doesn't work with taller RAM (as opposed to low profile RAM), but that you may be able to move the fan up to give the RAM enough space. It looks like the fan is directly above the RAM in your build. How well does it work like that? Is there enough room, and are the CPU temps acceptable with the different fan position (assuming it has to be moved up)? Thanks!

andrefoster 1 point 13 days ago

How is the Monitor as I'm thinking of getting the same one nice build! +1

[comment deleted]
Bokehjeremy [1 Build] 0 points 10 months ago

+1, wish i could give another for the case