I wanted the coolest (temperature), fastest machine with little headaches and maintenance I could assemble during the summer of 2016. I spent late May through late July planning this build, researching all components for compatibility and reliability. I use this machine for gaming, programming, production, and running Hyper-V virtual machines concurrently. Long term storage is moved over Samba to a FreeBSD NAS with WD RE's in a ZFS pool.
I replaced all case fans and radiator fans with Industrial Noctua NF-A14's. The grommets had to be removed when installing in the case in order for the screws' threading to catch. I suppose this could have been alleviated by obtaining longer screws. Nonetheless, there is no case vibration present without the grommets.
The stock BIOS on the motherboard did not support the XMP profile for my memory. Flashing the BIOS to the latest firmware (v2.4) resolved this issue.
The PCI-E SSD was originally meant to be placed into PCI_E3 but it set PCI_E1 to x8 (when it should be x16 for video card #1 in my SLI). I fixed this by moving the PCI-E SSD to PCI_E5. This didn't restrict the airflow for video card #2 sitting at PCI_E4 significantly (+1C delta). I'm not sure why this fix needed to be done, according to the motherboard manual the PCI-E SSD should have functioned in PCI_E3 slot while still allowing PCI_E1 to run at x16.
Very satisfied thus far with the build,
I plan to eventually upgrade the headphones and DAC/Amp to Sennheiser HD 800S and Creative Sound Blaster X7.
Will push the limits of overclocking due to my extreme thermal headroom. Thanks Noctua and Corsair!
- Around January 2017, I upgraded my audio stack with a new DAC, amp, and headphones. I also added a Blue Yeti USB mic. The build list has been updated accordingly.