This is my first home PC build, completed in the middle of March 2016. Phanteks' Enthoo Evolv ITX windowed chassis is a very sexy looking mini-ITX case. It's not too small yet not too big. It has plenty of room for both tall custom graphics cards and CPU coolers. It also has some very nice features found in more expensive cases being very well made and looks fantastic. I decided to improve case airflow out of the box by adding a rear 140mm exhaust fan and replaced the stock 200mm intake fan with dual 140mm fans. I was worried the front panel might have to be modified with extra air vents, but found it wasn't an issue for me at all.
I like an air-cooled system using a large performance CPU heatsink cooler that doesn't block tall RAM modules. Thermalright's Silver Arrow ITX was a perfect fit in this regard. Its universal mounting system allows for 3-5mm of horizontal wiggle room next to installed RAM. It's also been ASUS ROG certified, originally designed for their premium Maximus Impact series of ITX motherboards. I had no issues mounting this to my beautiful ASUS Z170i Pro Gaming motherboard, although it's a shame the cooler hides most of it, except for the pretty heat spreader fins of my stylish G.Skill TridentZ DDR4 memory modules rising up tall and proud.
By request Thermalright sent me their new LGA1151 CPU Support Spacer (and 4 Special Mounting Nut Washers) free of charge. They're being proactive after reports of Intel's thinner Skylake processor PCB bending at the corners due to cooler mounting pressure. Thermalright recommends their support spacer for its coolers weighing over 500g. Their beefy Silver Arrow ITX cooler weighs in at 700g and includes a red 'ROG' style TY-149 fan weighing 170g.
Product case badges are cool but I didn't want to use them as normal stickers on my case. Instead I came up with the idea to make movable magnetic case badges. A roll of 1" wide magnetic tape cut to size did the trick. Right now they occupy the rather empty space next to the rubber cable grommets. I also removed the unused mid-plate Phanteks logo (gently peeled away using a plastic bread bag clip) and made a magnetic case badge out of it too!
To avoid heavy GPU sag, I planned ahead and made a DIY standoff by cutting down a stiff 2.1mm power connector strain relief cone. I inserted it through one of the PSU shroud holes where acts as a sturdy support column between the PSU and GPU. My massive EVGA GeForce 980 Ti Classified graphics card sits perfectly level and will never sag.
I'll be using my new PC for FPS gaming, multimedia, and productivity purposes. I manually XMP overclocked my i7-6700K to 4.5 GHz at 1.28V, Core/Cache Limit Max to 255.50, Min/Max Cache Ratios to 41, LLC to Level 5, and enabled Core Voltage Adaptive Mode. The XMP profile in the ASUS Z170i UEFI BIOS clocked my G.Skill DDR4 TridentZ memory to its rated 3200 MHz speed. After much Maxon CineBench benchmarking and ASUS RealBench stress testing, the 12% CPU performance increase is a good 24/7 overclock using adaptive voltage so I'm happy with it.
The ASUS Z170-based Pro Gaming series motherboards are really great and could be thought of as a 'Pseudo-ROG' (Republic of Gamers) board due to it's high end feature set, overclocking performance, and beautiful styling - but at a much lower cost. Their Z170i Pro Gaming version doesn't disappoint with its 4-Phase power delivery and VRM heatsinks, making it great for overclocking.
To finish I added some PC lighting bling with a BitFenix Alchemy 2.0 Red Magnetic LED Strip. It really sets it off and looks better in person than in my photographs.
Oh and want to cut down on dust sticking to the inside of your case window? Wipe it off with some Monster ScreenClean! It's a great safe non-alcohol display LCD cleaner you can find online or wherever big screen TV's are sold.
Your comments and questions are welcome.
ASUS RealBench Benchmark scores: Image Editing: 198532 Time: 25.628, Encoding: 180939 Time: 52.99, OpenCL: 100032 KSamples/sec: 2612, Heavy Multitasking: 184933 Time: 52.884, System Score: 146102 (CPUID HWMonitor: 4.5 GHz @ 1.28V, 88.43W, 71c Max Load)
CineBench CPU score: 997cb
ASUS RealBench 15min StressTest: Passed (CPUID HWMonitor: 4.5 GHz @ 1.28V, 83.73W, 79c Max Load)
3DMark Fire Strike: 16,723 - http://www.3dmark.com/3dm/12429780
3DMark 11: 20809 - http://www.3dmark.com/3dm11/11321018