Writing these descriptions is always a long thing but here goes:
So my older build (4770k) was starting to feel it's age a bit in software like large SolidWorks files, Abaqus and MoldFlow and so I felt it was time to go ahead and upgrade (as I'd been itching to for a while). I kept my PSU, and GPU from my old build and went new everything from there.
A lot of people are going for Ryzen these days, unfortunately for me there were three issues with that:
1) An utter lack of decent looking ITX boards for the Ryzen Platform
2) Single Core Performance is something very dear to many of the applications I use on a day to day basis. As a result I didn't want to lose out on SCP by making the switch to Ryzen.
3) Overclockability is a big thing to me, and with Ryzen you get great bang for your buck, but with limited headroom. This 8700k is capable of 5.4Ghz @ 1.356V and I know Ryzen will never come near the performance of this system in its current iteration.
I'm an RGB monkey, and this is easily the nicest looking/feature filled clc on the market. That being said, I am not a fan of CAM in the slightest and already have firewalled the telemetry data NZXT pulls (shame on you!). Mounting was not too bad, and the finished product is gorgeous.
I'll be the first to admit I have a bit of a hatred of Asus given past interactions with them, but so far this board has been fantastic (with the exception of AI Suite which is a hot steamy pile of trash). Some of the fan header placements were pretty irksome to route (WHO PUTS A FAN HEADER LITERALLY RIGHT ABOVE THE PCI SLOT) but overall it's a sharp looking board with a nice feature set.
I fell in love with this RAM from the first day they showed it off a while back. Given my workloads 16GB was just barely cutting it so the upgrade to 32GB was a no brainer. Super sleek RAM.
I found a great deal on this 960 EVO 1tb and couldn't resist. Thankfully using Macrium Free made cloning my data from my old 500gb 840 EVO to the new 960 a breeze. It's definitely speedy, though I don't know if the speed performance boost over a standard SATA ssd is a big deal in normal usage scenarios.
I am a fan of hybrid GPUs. You spend a bit more than traditional aftermarket cards but you get cooler temperatures, quieter operation at load, and more overclocking headroom (in theory assuming your chip is capable of it). EVGA customer support blah blah blah etc. As for the lack of a 1080Ti, just didn't think it was worth it because there's a new generation around the corner.
This one is a tough one for me. Aesthetically the case is absolutely gorgerous: A (relatively) small footprint ITX case with a tempered glass side panel, built in RGB with a smart device (more on this) and support for 2 radiators. That being said, I do have some major gripes with the case.
For starters, the product photos show off this case with a Kraken x62 installed. The problem I have with that is ALL ITX motherboards of recent generations have a SINGLE USB HEADER. The Smart Device included with the H200i needs access to a USB header to operate AND it does not provide USB passthrough. This means that if you want to use the Smart Device and a Kraken, you're SOL unless you spend the extra 25 odd bucks for an NZXT USB Hub. I spoke to several NZXT reps on their Discord about trying to get them to just include a USB splitter so people can use "Smart" CLC/AIOs with the case without having to buy a USB hub or splitter of their own but no dice sadly. I figured if I was going to be forced to buy a USB hub, I may as well pick up a proper Hue+ and ditch the Smart Device (since it only has 1 RGB channel it can't control both LED strips and RGB fans).
My next big grip with this case is that the front panel cables come out right above the radiator, and the cables are only partially sleeved. I didn't include a photo of this, but it's easily visible when looking at the build that there are several colored wires hanging out above the radiator. Given how hard they worked on aesthetics with this case you'd think they'd have either full sleeved it or at least had it exit from the back panel instead of the middle of the inside of the case.
My final gripe is the fan setup. I wish they had included a second 120/140mm fan mount up top just for the sake of extra airflow. You cannot fit a radiator up top due to clearance with the motherboard, but extra fan slots for airflow would have been an easy fix to add; simply adjust the "bar" (for lack of a better term) that hides the cables so that it gave another inch of clearance or so to allow for the installation of another fan up top.
All of that being said, this is an absolutely gorgeous case. The cable management options provided on the back are a great addition and routing wasn't too bad (actually it was hard but that was more to do with me recycling my sleeved cables made originally for an H440 and having to fit the Hue+ and USB hub). The finished product (to me) looks very clean and very attractive. I would recommend the case to other people so long as they are aware of the issues mentioned earlier.
It's a little long in the tooth, and it's definitely a lot more power than this system needs, but it's a solid unit and has treated me well.
Yes...I technically have a highly negative pressure oriented setup., And no, I don't care. These fans are really pretty, like super pretty. They perform reasonably well on my setup as is (load temperature on CPU stock is about 60C in Prime95, and GPU is about the same in 3DMark). Proper overclocking numbers I'll try to include at a later date.
A nifty device, and works well. Was a little difficult to find a spot to place it in the case but I managed. IO wish that CAM had more granular control of the lighting as well as more options for system wide lighting options (outside of Spectrum Wave), but overall still pleased with it.
These are slightly older IPS panels, but I got them for 100 bucks total so I can't complain, they work nicely.
I've had this monitor for a few years now and still love it. GSYNC is a requirement for me these days (or any adaptive sync I guess) as is IPS and 120+hz.
I LOVE this mouse. Modular, customizable button layouts, lighting, ergonomic options it has it all. Highly recommend to anyone looking for a new mouse with a larger budget.
I'm a keyboard enthusiast through and through. My FC660C (for those not familiar) uses Topre switches and has been lubed by the respected (and reviled) Krelbit of Reddit's r/MK subreddit (also the owner of switchmod.net you should check him out sometime). The K-Type is one of my favorite boards to date, with custom made lubed Zilent Blacks (Cherry Silent Black stems lubed and placed inside Zealios housings with Zeal's 67g springs). Types like a dream, looks shmexy.
I may be having some new cables made at a shorter length to make the cable management in the back more manageable (and presentable).
I'm also looking into making some sort of an LED diffuser for the lighting strips as well as the motherboard to get rid of the spot lighting that LEDs are known for (I hate that aspect of them).
Going to see if the Hue+ might fit into the PSU shroud's SSD mound, might look nice and help with cable management in the back as well as hide those unsightly screw holes on the shroud.