Description

This build was first completed in January 2016 with an i7-6700K and Radeon R9 390X. Sadly, one of the card's fans died within a couple of months, but it was also opportunistic as the store I bought the card from no longer stocked it, so they allowed me to choose something else: I went with a liquid-cooled GeForce GTX 980 Ti.

When I brought the card home, I discovered the hard way that the H80i v2 and GPU radiator did not fit along the front panel of the Air 240. Alongside that, the tubing on both were incredibly stiff. However, I was determined to make it work, so I spent hours trying all possible arrangements of fans and radiators, and eventually settled on the H80i v2 attached to the front panel, and the GPU radiator attached to the top panel with just enough clearance between the RAM sticks and tubing. I then attached all of the remaining fans and finished up with:

  • 2 x purple SP120 fans as front intakes;
  • 1 x purple AF120 fan as a side intake;
  • 1 x GPU fan and 1 x purple AF120 fan as top exhausts; and
  • 2 x Noctua NF-R8 Redux as rear exhausts.

I was mindful of the H80i v2 only having one fan, but at stock clock rates and in an ambient room temperature of 28 °C, this build achieves the following:

  • CPU temperature of 27 °C (idle) to 55 °C (under load);
  • GPU temperature of 28 °C (idle) to 57 °C (under load); and
  • Fire Strike score of 16,044.

My goal was to build a powerful VR-ready gaming machine that was quiet, compact, and aesthetically pleasing, and I feel that this ticks all the boxes. Pretty happy with the overall result.

Comments

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Nicely done. I haven't seen the Gigabyte Water Force after that whole Astek fiasco. +1

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks.

Did Asetek get anywhere with that? The cards are clearly still available.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Not that I know of.

Astek has a tendency to go sue happy.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Great build!

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Solid build dude. 32GB of RAM is a little bit overkill, but suit yourself I suppose. I like the 6700K + 980TI combo, definitely ready for next-gen games. Maybe would have gone with a maximus VIII hero or something. Good job and +1!

  • 46 months ago
  • 2 points

Not just a bit overkill. At least hell be able to run two desktops with 16gb if he used vmware? It would be good for playing games with friends I guess. (Playing games with friends in real life? Is that a thing? jk)

  • 46 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks. I'm loving this combo as well!

I was waiting for someone to make a comment about the RAM. For the work that I do, I often run a couple of VMs and Photoshop in parallel. Yes, 16 GB probably would have been enough, but 32 GB means I don't even need to think about it.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Dang, dude. Well that kind of justifies the 32gb of RAM :D

I was wondering if you played GTA V because I was wondering what sort of frames you'd get in it. If you do, could you give me a rough estimate of the FPS you get in GTA? Thanks!

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Sorry, I wish I could give you an estimate, but I played it to death on console before it ever came out on PC and haven't touched it since!

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

OK so first off great build! +1 Secondly kudos for the epic GPU upgrade! Now on to the real meat .... what was the name of that store again? LOL

  • 46 months ago
  • 2 points

Thanks. My Fire Strike score jumped around 5K with the upgrade!

I know the store owner and he really went above and beyond to look after me. I don't want others to go in with certain expectations, so I'll refrain from naming them this time around!

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

The local pc shop here totally sucks. The owner is a pure T jerk off. Since Tiger direct closed this place is the only walk -in place around and they take full advantage of it by jacking the prices thru the roof for the normal joes. I'm trying to start a petition to get a micro center here. As it stands right now I'm 4.5 hours to the closest one north of me & 8 hours from the closest south. So Newegg ends up getting all my money...LOL

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Hey great build!!! How long is the gigabyte waterforce card becuase I want to build a computer with 2 of those in sli.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

It's 269 mm (L) x 121 mm (W) x 43 mm (H). What case will you be putting them in?

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

I am looking at the Phanteks Enthoo Evolv

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

I actually meant the length of the tubing of that card.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

It's around 30 cm.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

do you think its engough for two of those to go in the phanteks enthoo evlov tower? I want to just make sure that I donot have issues fitting them in the case where both the rads get enough fresh and cool air.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

There are different versions of that case.

If it's the mATX you're referring to, the height is 450 mm and it looks like the GPUs sit around three-quarters of the way down from the top, so if you plan on attaching both radiators to the top panel, you'd need anywhere between 225-337 mm, meaning the top card should be fine, but the bottom card may be a struggle.

An alternative is to go with one radiator on the top and the other on the front/back, or skip the top panel altogether and go with both radiators on the front/back. Either should work, but consider how you'd like to set them up (intakes vs. exhausts) and whether or not that aligns with your ideal airflow pattern.

Also, don't forget to factor in the CPU cooler.

Bottom line, on paper, I think you could make it work, but trying it is the only way to eliminate any doubt.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Beautiful build in a small package. I adore! +1

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

I am so happy you posted about this card fitting in this case. From your experience do you think there is any other model of CPU AIO rad that would fit next to the graphics one on the front intakes? And would the 980ti's rad fit nicely on the lower-front intake right next to it.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

I did try the stacked fan-radiator and radiator-fan order on the front and it doesn't fit. I'm of the mind that any CPU AIO (including the H75) won't fit in that arrangement as the GPU radiator that Gigabyte uses is just too tall.

Corsair's HG10/H75 configuration is interesting. If I was willing to start from scratch, I'd probably try that.

  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

http://www.corsair.com/en-us/blog/2014/november/dennis_build_log any experimenting on doing opposite order on the front rads? May give you the extra inch.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

Same case (corsair 240 air) same CPU Cooler (H80i v2) same problem (figuring out how the cpu cooler would fit best). Not convinced about the H80 airflow blowing towards the GPU but since yours is liquid cooled gpu i guess it's not that much of a problem. Yes the tubing are stiff.

  • 44 months ago
  • 1 point

It's been a couple of months, and I've had no issues with GPU temperature.

Are you using the same GPU?

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  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Don't start this. You know where a positive/negative argument will go. It is his choice for positive vs negative vs neutral

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

On paper, there's actually slight positive pressure (which I prefer), as the Noctua fans and GPU fan aren't on par with the SP120 and AF120. But in practice, I realise it could go either way when factoring in fan placement, filters, obstructions, etc.

For what it's worth, I ran a similar fan setup when I had the Radeon R9 390X and never had dust problems after two months.

[comment deleted by staff]
  • 46 months ago
  • 1 point

Loudness is subjective.

Admittedly, it's not dead silent, but I wasn't expecting it to be. I intentionally picked some reasonable fans, and they're quiet enough that it doesn't bother me when idle or under load.