X99 Build for 3D Modeling/ Rendering, Light Photo and Video Editing, and some light gaming.
The Enthoo Evolv is a beautiful case, I cannot recommend it highly enough. The Gaming 9 motherboard is technically E-ATX size (264mm wide) and literally at the limit of what will fit in the case (264mm wide max per Phanteks manual), but it fit. :)
Beware of the 2 CPU power connectors on top of the motherboard if you plan to mount a radiator and fans on top like I did (specifically in the Evolv ATX case); it was really tight with the stiff power cables that came with the Corsair power supply, but I managed to get it to fit. The issue is specifically the mounting tray/sled thing that Phanteks provides for fans/radiators at the top of the case. It slides out and is removable making installation of rads a breeze. But the rear center portion of the tray bends downward and overlaps very closely with the power connectors on top of the mobo, so I couldn't slide the tray with rads/fans mounted without re-thinking the power cable placement and routing. It was trickier than it needed to be. Another 1/4" of clearance height would solve that issue, or taking a metal snipper and removing the downward bend. :)
Update1: LED strips mounted so the build is done for now. Just need to move it to its final resting place and off the dining table lol. :)
Update2: Added the 2 WD External drives that I was using for most of my data storage since they will be attached to this new build.
Update3: moved to final resting place. Attempting to get a stable OC at 4.4ghz. Passes Aida64 stress test (full system including cpu,gpu,fpu,cache,memory) but has odd error in handbrake encode (stops early and says it's complete when clearly not- file unplayable). More updates to follow...
Update4: Success! I was able to get a stable fixed OC on the CPU at 4.4ghz at 1.18v; I'm told that's a really good result and that I won the CPU lottery etc. :) After tinkering with adaptive voltage and offsets, I now have the CPU running at .721V at 1200mhz at idle and ramps up to a max of 4.4ghz at 1.18v (using a -.010 offset). The fans spin much slower, the CPU runs several degrees cooler (45C idle at fixed setting, 35C idle at adaptive voltage setting!). Be sure to turn off the bizarre Windows 10 power saving feature where it doesn't actually shut the computer all the way down when you press the off button; it plays havoc with everything!)
Beast of a processor at a great price- overclocked to 4.2ghz in 2 minutes in BIOS. Stable and runs reasonably cool (51-55c max temps in Aida64 stress test). Update: Temps reached 65c running a large MKV encode that lasted about 3 hours. It took about 60 minutes to reach that temp, then stabilized at that peak until completion. Very impressive. Update2: CPU now OC'd to 4.4Ghz at 1.18v with adaptive voltage. Runs cool and quiet for general use with the beast safely locked in the cage until needed. :)
My first time dealing with a liquid cooler. I kept the pre-applied paste on for now. Works great and is reasonably quiet. The installation instructions made it extremely easy to get it installed.
Update: Love the performance of the cooler, but the Corsair Link software is a dog; almost ruins it. Replaced the stock fans for Noctua Industrial 2000rpm, so this opinion is not based on the stock fans which were never used.
Looks amazing, has every feature you could ever ask for, runs stable with zero issues. Flashed to latest BIOS before doing any tinkering or overclocking. I feel this is the best high-end X99 board you can buy.
Runs at rated speed using XMP profile in the MSI BIOS (verified prior to purchasing). I don't overclock RAM, so this is good enough for me.
So far so good. My first SSD and probably my last since the Intel 3D-XPoint devices will be out later this year.
Like the mobo, this card looks amazing. Out of the box overclock is good enough for me. Runs silent unless you are gaming (default setting) or you can customize the fan profile to spin the fans at low speed which helps bring the idle temps down (using MSI Afterburner software).
Update1: This puppy runs hot in Gaming Mode- gets up to 78-79C and hovers mostly at around 76C on challenging portions of Crysis 3. I wish it stayed 7-8c cooler under load, but apart from that, no complaints.
This case looks like a million bucks and is almost comically easy to build with. I hadn't built a PC in 8 or 9 years, so even a noob like me had basically no issues. Cavernous interior, just be prepared to use an external optical drive since there are zero 5 1/4" bays; the price you pay for minimalism. :)
Rock solid, looks nice, runs quiet. Stock cables are all black, which worked for my black and red themed build, but even though they aren't very thick, they aren't as flexible as I was hoping.
No issues installing OS using my LG external BD/DVD drive. We own a Windows 8 laptop which I hate , and my old laptop was Windows 7 Pro, which I love since I'm so used to it. I haven't had any issues so far with Windows 10 Pro, but I'm basically running it with most crap turned off. Annoyingly, I had to download and install a MONSTER update from Windows Update to bring it up to current form, which took 10 times as long as installing off the disk initially, hence I'm knocking a couple of stars off... :)
Used a pair of these in "PULL" configuration to replace the stock Corsair H110GTX fans. About 6db quieter than the Corsairs at equivalent speeds, and with a higher SP rating, and a higher speed ceiling for extra demanding scenarios. Cons: Expensive
Replaced the stock Phanteks case fans with these, primarily to maintain consistency (and for the all black look- the stock fans had white blades). They are quiet and can move more air than the stock fans if it becomes necessary. Cons: Expensive
Amazing screen, accurate factory calibrated SRGB color right out of the box guaranteed by Dell. Also works pretty well for light gaming- no screen tearing or other artifacts noted, so the response time must be pretty good.
Update1: This monitor is fantastic for photo editing and surprisingly great for gaming as well. Maybe my old eyes can't tell the difference, but even limited to 60Hz games look absolutely terrific. And color accuracy is great right out of the box.
It's a keyboard and it looks pretty. Clicky clicky me likey.
Already owned this for about a year. Does its job well.
This one is nearly 2 years old. This was purchased for additional storage space when my laptop's HDD ran out of space. I think I'll be reverting these to "back-up drives" by adding internal HDDs to this new build eventually.