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Build

The Shadow Knows....

by ocd

33
32 Comments

Part List View full price breakdown

Details

Date Published

May 30, 2015

Date Built

May 30, 2015

CPU Clock Rate

4.7GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

31.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

60.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.44GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

8.00GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

33.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

73.0° C

Description

I could only afford to buy one or two parts a month. So I got almost all on sale. Requirements in order of importance: 1) portable 2) rugged 3) reliable 4)powerful for it's size 5)ease and simplicity of use. 6)Ego driven because a six year old could not build this. They are not allowed to use power tools. 7)professional appearance, subtle, not flashy. 8) tooless design.

The Lian Li Tu 200b requires mods to excel. Removal of hard drive cage a necessity, then a dremel cutout on motherboard tray for cpu cooler installation/uninstall. Was able to shorten Swiftech H140X upper water tube 4" and lower tube 2" for perfect fit, an impossibility with cheaper aio coolers, plus it is brass and copper, not aluminum. With the included 140 mm Helix fan working quiet and well. I did have to purchase 1 and 1/2 " #6/32 stainless machine screws and 3/16 diameter aluminum tubing cut short to replace/modify standoffs and rubber grommets from useless oem fan so front 140mm filter would fit in same way.

Installed prolimatech ultra sleek 140 on bottom of case to supply forced cool air to gpu.

I chose a pioneer brd 2209 bdxl burner to fill drive cage space, and offer maximum flexibility of optical media. Install a breeze.

Installed EVGA gtx 980 ti with optional backplate. OC results: plus 248Mhz gpu clock offset, plus 495 mem clock offset. Increased power target to 110%, but no voltage increase. Idle 33C, stress test 73C with custom fan curve (using folding at home set on full), and all I hear is rushing air if room ultra quiet.

I chose prolimatech 15mm high 140 mm fan because 25 mm hight fan would not have fit under a double slot gpu. 140x120mm grill required me to drill additional air holes which are invisible sandwiched between external filter and interior mounted fan.

Mushkin memory xmp 2400mhz cas10 latency profile rock solid stable.

4.7 Ghz stable overclock all four cores i74970k with both Aida 64 and FoldingatHome set on full. @ 80C during stress testing, 31C idle at 1.229v adaptive. Would boot to os at 4.8, but not pass stress test.

EVGA Z97 Stinger Wifi easy to use and rock solid stable BUT.... Attaching antenna pigtail leads to tiny posts on teeny tiny next generation wifi card was impossible for me. I have ruined the original and the paid-for replacement card so far, but being ocd cannot stop trying. Currently using usb wifi dongle until I try again. No other mobo requires user to connect leads, a seemingly simple 3 minute process best left to a profesional notebook technician.

I chose Seasonic x650 psu because need for fully modular high quality fan faced toward mobo, with an always on switch to serve as only system exhaust. Since case is tooless design I easily remove/install psu to work inside case, a necessity in crowded mini itx case.

There is no other case like this one, and is a near perfect mini itx build after mods, including positive pressure with all intake fans filtered.

Still need short pcie psu to gpu cables.

Part Reviews

CPU

Could not hit 4.8 Tempted to delid, but do not want to void warranty. Very stable 4.7 with aio liquid cooling inside Lian Li tu200b mini itx case.

Motherboard

Easy to use, rock solid. Only complaint is requirement to snap almost microscopic antenna leads to teeny tiny next generation wifi card. I've destroyed two cards trying so far.

Memory

Only one xmp profile 2400mhz cas 10 latency. Works so well no need to overvlock more.

Storage

Bought sandisk extreme pro 480 Gb ssd on sale $220, but does not seem as quick as a 128gb toshiba pro ssd. But, numerous power losses with no data corruption, combined with 10 year warranty makes me happy.

Video Card

Was pining for an unattainable Titan X, then my prayers answered. Needed a blower style card, upcoming AMD Fury has none, so I did not wait until E3. Also bought backplate from EVGA.

Case

Best portable mini-itx case/lan box after mods. Bar none.

Power Supply

7 year warranty, denso ace 120 mm ball bearing fan with hybrid/normal switch. Tier one Japanese parts. Fully modular. I prefer subdued color. Serves as only exhaust on Lian Li tu200b mini itx case with fan swutch set to "normal" fan always on. Enough power for overclocking and any single high end graphics card.

Optical Drive

Most versatile quality bdxl blu ray burner with included software.

Comments Sorted by:

bsweatt 1 Build 2 points 28 months ago

I love tiny but powerful PC's. Nice!

ocd submitter 1 Build 2 points 28 months ago

I'm actually looking forward to it getting scruffed up and banged around so it doesn't look poser, to use a friend's term about gear in general. The Swiftech H140X provides advantages and cooling capacity of a custom loop, but the ruggedness of a sealed AIO cooler.

Pcjulian12343 1 point 17 months ago

What would you rate the cpu cooler out of 10?

Is the rgb color scheme worth it?

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

I was restricted on space, did not have room for a custom loop, and I needed to modify length of tubing, and wanted to be able to top off coolant yearly. If my case had a window the color scheme would be nice. So yes, its one of a kind, and considering quality, a fair deal if you cannot fit a larger cooler.

Schnairph 1 Build 2 points 27 months ago

Thing's a beast! Love the Lian Li case, don't care for the handle, but portability isn't one of my goals. Looks good!

Gooberdad 7 Builds 2 points 20 months ago

Nicely done and a powerhouse. +1

linkleo 3 Builds 1 point 28 months ago

That thing is packed like a can of sardines... Crouching sardines, hidden Beast!

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 28 months ago

Cable management consisted entirely of keeping cables locked down out of the way of central airflow as much as possible, and being able to easily pop psu in and out.

smallcaps 1 Build 1 point 27 months ago

have you considered adding the gpu to your loop? the aio you are using is expandable, no? nice build and hope you are enjoying it.

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 27 months ago

I might upgrade to new gtx 980ti, then try adding gpu to loop. I wish there was a way to test before I invest in a waterblock.

Bee66 9 Builds 1 point 27 months ago

Ok this was a bit misleading, since in your description you said you have the GTX 980 Ti, but photos indicate the original GTX 980 and you say you might upgrade now.

Good Build Still +1.

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 27 months ago

My 980 ti and backplate arriving today. New pic and overclock info by tomorrow. So it had been paid for but not received. I do try to stay honest on both parts and overclocks, otherwise info worse thsn useless. But I am lazy, so will wait to change pic until I have new one installef and oced.

Bee66 9 Builds 2 points 27 months ago

No Worries! haha, its still a really good build!

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 27 months ago

Took months of saving and staying at home. I borrowed from next month for final $200. I do not want buy just to preinstall Win 7 or 8 to install Win 10, the "OS for gaming". Both Nvidia and Microsoft dropping the ball on this one, and my teeth won't stop grinding loudly. Hope it is fixed by Jun 23 when Batman releases.

skybeam 1 point 24 months ago

How it the Heat while full load

ocd submitter 1 Build 2 points 24 months ago

Full over clock on cpu and gpu during stress testing gets interior fairly hot with cpu @ 81C, gpu @ 71C, and motherboard @ 43C. Fan noise heard, but the sound of rushing air only, no coil whine or water pump noise perceived. Full load, or real world use results in warm temperatures only, and very little perceptible noise.

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

In the low 70s under load at 4.4 on all cores stable. It runs a couple degrees cooler with a side panel off as I am pushing air in through screens to maintain positive pressure for dust free interior.

Jejune 1 Build 1 point 19 months ago

I'm gonna totally copy this once pascal/vega10 come out :)

questions:

-how did you shorten the cooler tubes? Is there a guide for how to do this that you recommend?

-which dremel cutout did you use? Is there a guide for how to make these cuts for the cooler?

-what is the 3/16 diameter aluminum tubing for?

-can you put the HD bays back in if you want?

-how did you attach fan to bottom of gpu?

Thanks!

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

The rubber cooler tubes have removable clamps. I cut 4" off the top and 2" off the bottom tubes to ease install of waterblock, reclamped and refilled radiator. This left radiator tubes just long enough to slide radiator out to access screen for cleaning. An additional exterior mounted dust s screen on the front would eliminate need to clean inner screen as much. Interior does stay very clean because of positive pressure.

I made a paper pattern of back of motherboard I used in order to position cutout (by dremel, using a cutting disc) in the right position on the fixed tray, to make installation/replacement of waterblock much easier.

3/16 tubing is to reproduce standoff on factory case front fan that allows quick mount and dismount if both radiator fan combo and dust screen. Use the rubber part of quick mount standoff that comes with factory fan.

HD bays will not go back in, but two 2.5 " ssd can easily be mounted, one on the floor, and one below 3.5 " blu ray bay.

I attached a 15mm thin fan only to inside of bottom of case with screws, centered on the existing grill. A regular 25 mm fan will not work. And that was only ball bearing slim fan I could find. I had to drill two mounting holes for on side of fan, and I drilled some extra air holes to match width of 140mm fan.

Jejune 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Thanks for the answer!

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Sorry for delay. Please feel free to ask further questions as this was not an easy build. I do recommend a PSU with an always on fan facing the motherboard to serve as the only exaust fan. Also an sfx PSU (with 120mm fan) will leave more open space for cooling and cabling. And if I had a talented friend they might have done the motherboard tray cutout better than me. I left scratches.

Jejune 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

Cool. I actually ended up going with a node 304 case because the tu200b was not available anywhere for several weeks, and I pre-ordered the vive, but I may try to go smaller in the future, and I still love this case. Thanks for answering my questions!

stax 3 Builds 1 point 15 months ago

+1 for name. I can hear Orson Welles' evil laughter from here.

Ordinarily_great 1 point 4 months ago

How's the PSU performing? I think that'll be good for my upgrade

ocd submitter 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

No problems at all. Because of space constraints I needed a high quality psu that I could set fan to always on (instead of power saving), to serve as another exhaust fan, and to maintain positive pressure to keep out dust.

Ordinarily_great 1 point 4 months ago

Great! Your build is good with that swiftech! How is it performing?

ocd submitter 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

Worth every penny. Need to top it off with a few cc of water every 12 mo or so, an impossibility with a sealed all in one unit.

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 5 days ago

Perfectly. As good as s custom loop at slightly above all in one pricing.

Ninjaneuro 1 point 17 days ago

Nice that you used the swiftech h140; how's it holding up now?

ocd submitter 1 Build 1 point 5 days ago

Worth every penny. Time to add a few drops of water. If it had been a traditionsl all in one It would need replacing due to evaporation through tubing. I have to pull it out anyway to clean dust screen.