Description

Hello, everyone!

This is my first build; I finished it two weeks ago, and I am using it for general tasks such as media consumption, web-browsing, word processing, spreadsheets, etc...

I had originally planned a price cap of around $1000, but after deciding on aesthetics, the price slowly crept up to $1200, $1500, and then to $1750. I may get more parts in the future- a liquid cooler, and perhaps an optical drive. I had the mouse and keyboard before I built the system, so I did not factor them into the final cost of the computer. Video card was bought as "New, other" and the motherboard was bought as "Used - Like New".

I chose the parts with aesthetics prominently in mind, and as such, the case and video card became the most needlessly-excessive components.

Working with the large case (as a size comparison, the monitor is 27") and the many cables inside it was a little difficult, but I managed in the end! Everything is detected and works, but I have not run any diagnostic or stress tests on it yet.

Here are the costs of each of the components (including tax, shipping, rebates; excluding cash back):

Intel i5-3570K: $189.99

ASUS P8Z77-V: $127.58

G.Skill Ripjaws X Series DDR3 1600, CAS 9: $85.79

Samsung 830 128GB: $69.99

Western Digital Red 3TB: $160.86

EVGA GTX 670 4GB Superclocked: $322.60

ASUS Xonar DX: $46.30

NZXT Phantom 820: $273.11

NZXT HALE90 1000W: $109.25

Achieva Shimian QH270-IPSBS 2560x1440 sIPS: $329.00

Logitech C260: $0.00

Total: $1714.47

Comments

  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

beautiful build. YOu did a great job on cable management. Did you need an extender to route the top 8pin connector behind the motherboard? I saw the parts list first and instantly had a ton of critiques until I read this "I chose the parts with aesthetics prominently in mind" which kind of makes the parts choices make some what sense and makes any criticism I may have had pointless. Though I'm happy to see the headphones that would actually benefit from that audio card. :D Surprised you didn't throw a i7 in the build ;)

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! The case included an extender, but I found that if I used the second-to-bottom opening instead of the bottom opening for the power cables, I was barely able to reach it. I just wish that the cables were black/white instead of red and yellow. If you'd still like to criticize the components, go right ahead; I can probably learn a few things for my next build! I was very, very close to getting the i7 when TigerDirect had it for $249.99, but I decided that I don't need the extra performance or hyperthreading. Next time!

  • 84 months ago
  • 3 points

you could always pick up some bitfenix alchemy colored extenders (blue): 24-pin and PCI-E 8pin, and PCI-E 6pin, last but not least 8Pin EPS MB cable These might match that color scheme you got going on.

The critique would have been: unless you plan on running 3 monitors the 2GB 670 would have been perfect. Also that harddrive is good but it seems a little expensive for a 3GB HDD. The PSU 1000W isn't needed unless you plan to do 4way SLI, which you can't do with that MB. 750W would have been more than pleanty for even future upgrade adding another GPU for 2 card SLI. Though those changes aren't game breakers, just money savers to achieve the same result without wasting resources or utility. All of which goes out the window when referenced with the prices you paid.. Great deals you got there on the GPU and PSU. I'd actually love to find myself those deals ;)

So let me get this straight, your case came with an extender, but you didn't need it even in a full tower case. (I'm emphasizing this to prove that if you can do it in a full tower case like this, there is no reason it can't be done in a smaller mid tower case.) I really do appreciate you sharing this on the interwebs for us to geek over.

One last thing I noted. Do you put this case on carpet? If not I'd suggest flipping the PSU so that it brings cool fresh air from the bottom of the case and exhausts it out the back. Though its not a bad thing to have it the way you do, you will be drawing in hot air from within your case this way, into an already hot PSU. Heat = bad mojo for electronics. Plus if you can flip it like I suggest you'll get even more length on those cables, if anyones taking note :P

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point
  • Thanks for suggestion, and for linking me directly to the items; they look great! I have a question; would it be alright to attach another 24-pin to the PSU? Unfortunately, it is not fully modular. Edit: ah, I did not read that they were extenders. That works out just fine, then!

  • My original plan was to get the 2GB GTX 670, but at the time, it was the cheapest "New other" EVGA GTX 670 (that has the white strip) on eBay that still had retail packaging. I put in many last-second bids for the GTX 670 on eBay before I finally got one.

  • Yeah, the WD Red is quite costly, and was seriously on the fence between that and the WD Green, which I could have purchased for little more than $100. I heard about problems about the Green, and I knew how to solve the software problems, but in the end, I went with the Red since I wanted to reduce the chances of something failing; I figured that my data/time was worth $60. I saw a deal on the Red at TigerDirect for $140 (also no tax in CA, unlike Amazon). Oh well, I was getting impatient.

  • The PSU was another cost thing. First, was the choice between the PC Power & Cooling Silencer MK III PPCMK3S600. At the time, the least expensive ones after rebate were $70. I was on the fence on PSU as well, but for $100 (before tax), the NZXT was hard to pass up. It also helped that the NZXT had more connections; I was unsure of how many cables I needed, and I did not know if case fans needed separate power connections to the PSU. It was the least-expensive NZXT Hale90 PSU around the time of purchase. I really like how the NZXT engravings match the ones on the hard drive bays on the Phantom 820... which is also partly why the PSU is faced-up.

  • Yes, the case came with an extender that was, and still is, attached behind the motherboard tray. It is zip-tied just below the square opening that is in the left side of case, near the top. Haha, I see. Yes, I was able to route the 8-pin motherboard cables from the PSU to the motherboard in a full tower case even with the PSU flipped faced-up.

  • I can take a picture of the back of the case, but that's a little embarrassing. Everything fits, and I can get the door on easily, but it is still messy. I have not tied down anything in case I wanted to move things around and/or add/remove parts.

  • The case stays on the table that is pictured. I really liked the look of the fan grills, and having a little more black in that area in the case, but I did think about the whole drawing hot air thing of the PSU. I watched TinyTomLogan's review of the Corsair GS600 (another one I was considering), and decided to stick with my original, faced-up plan. With it faced-up, I was not able to get the cables to reach the top at first, and I was kind of bummed; that's when I tried the second-to-bottom opening, and found that it worked out (I about forgot the obvious extender at the time).

  • Edit: Wow, is there a way to do paragraph breaks?

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Awesome. I really appreciate the response. Those extenders I linked you are what you would connect to the existing cables and just tuck them behind the motherboard and route the extender out to show off its pretty colors. Maybe I don't understand your question about the attaching another 24-pin? I may have to look on ebay ;) thanks once again for sharing.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Nono, I did not read "extenders" at the time, but now that I have, I like the idea.

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  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

which is why I said this "All of which goes out the window when referenced with the prices you paid" Completely agree that the prices paid made nearly all criticism pointless.

  • 84 months ago
  • 0 points

Regardless, I appreciate the criticism!

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  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

This is probably the MOST BEAUTIFUL BUILD EVER.

You should get some blue alchemy cable extensions to finish off the look! :)

Nice job, though!

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! I guess that these cables must be popular if so many people know about them. I just might get them.

  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

actually you dont need sound cards, the motherboard have an integrated audio, and 8 gb of ram is enough, but it is your build , so its personal choice of course

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

I realized this, but I figured I could spend a little on a better sound processor since I did buy $80 headphones. Additionally, I can use this in future builds if needed. I am by no means an audiophile, but I can still tell a difference between the onboard sound and the sound card's sound.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

looks really sleek!

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

That's what made me stick with the Phantom 820, and not get another case.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Awesome cable management!

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! I've seen many clean, uncluttered cases, and wanted to try to at least somewhat match what I saw.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

I like that case, but it's a little expensive. I wish it was in the $175 range.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Me too but the switch 810 is that range, and its really nice too.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

It is indeed expensive, and the price tag certainly dampened my excitement over the case. I deliberated for several days before pre-ordering. Since July, I had known that there was going to be a new Phantom before the end of 2012, so I decided to wait on building my computer.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Wow, great build, I really wish someone made white colored motherboards, one would look amazing in this build!

Also, do you have any plans on putting in an aftermarket cooler? I would suggest the new NZXT Kraken x60.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! I do have plans for an aftermarket cooler. I was, and still am a bit, inexperienced with building computers. After putting the stock cooler on the processor, I decided to remove it to reposition it because I did not quite like the positioning of the fan cable. Bad move... Well, the processor is currently at 40°C, which I don't think is too bad, but I definitely want to replace that, and if I replace it, I might as well go with liquid coolers, and if I go with them, I might as well buy NZXT's for the integrated HUE in the pump cap. I think that the x60 will look better in my build than the x40, so I am tentatively deciding on the x60 for now. I almost purchased the Corsair H70 for $45 at TigerDirect, but I am deciding to go all-in with aesthetics.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Well if you do choose to go with the x60, it will not only look better, but also perform better than any other closed-loop cpu cooler on the market due to its massive radiator, which is a huge benefit if you decide to overclock, which I don't see why you wouldn't.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

I suppose that I would start to overclock if/after I got the x60 (and maybe install an additional two 140mm fans). Well, I can't wait to read the reviews on it!

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

First build I seen with the Phantom 820 (Although it has been only out a month, but price range I can see why.)

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah, the price made me consider the Cooler Master Cosmos II or fall back on the Corsair 600T White.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

i love that white theme it looks amazing!!! im planning on getting that psu exept the 750w version and do a black and white theme.

  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks! If you are comfortable with buying parts from eBay (I don't know how NZXT treats purchases from unauthorized 3rd-party resellers), then there are some here.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

If you made a video of your cable management, and post it on youtube. it will be removed for ****.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

I am wondering if I should move the video card power cable and the front panel audio cable to come out from the openings from the bottom.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

I never used that sound card? how is it? Good quality sounds?

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

The card sounds great! I am able to hear more details in the music than I was able to before.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey SolunaKitty, I figure if you hadn't seen me offer in other posts I'd like to let you know that I do computer build consultation and if you ever wanted to come talk shop, discuss your build, show it off to other builders that hang out on my facebook page or what not, feel free. Everyone is welcome to stop by: IamApropos come look around see what you think.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Now that I think about it, I do have one question. My general perception, from what I have read, is to use the top-most available/compatible PCI port (the motherboard manual may have mentioned this; I know it mentioned which RAM slots to use). My cables would be neater if I moved my sound card to a lower PCIE port. I do not think that it is advisable to do it, but what do you think?

  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

After reviewing your MB manual myself and taking a look at the board I can tell you that the only slot wired for 16X is the top which is why the MB manual recommends putting one card setup there. The second PCI-E 3 slot is wired 8X. I've noticed a lot of buidlings wanting to move it down, which some MBs allow for but most on the mid range boards do not.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

Right now, the sound card is connected through a PCIe 2.0 x1 slot.

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  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

could anyone explain to me how he went about the lighting? the blue/green/red/purple/yellow was highly gangster

  • 84 months ago
  • 2 points

It's the HUE lighting that came built into the case. It mixes RGB lights to get the colors you see.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

does this come with the nzxt switch?

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

It does not, but you can buy a separate HUE unit that has more controls from NZXT. The one that comes with the Phantom 820 only has the "mode" control.

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  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

classified is always awesome. you should pick up some white sleeved cables.

  • 84 months ago
  • 1 point

fricking love the case

  • 78 months ago
  • 1 point

I just want to say VERY VERY nice build, and what to add that, you made me confirm for sure about getting the NZXT PHANTOM 820, It's very clean in cable management, and then....I seen the lighting effects....I just drooled over my keyboard, it looked sick, I mean just WOW, it was beautiful, I can't wait to start building with this case.

  • 76 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! I really like the case, and I like that it also allows for lots and lots of airflow. Hope you enjoy yours!