Hey everyone, This is my custom hardline watercooled build, that I mainly use for gaming and a little bit of editing. It started life with an EVGA 1070 FTW Hybrid, and after seeing the temps of a watercooled GPU I was in shock. This 1070 treated me very well, and it was a silicon lottery winner as well! I don't remember exactly what the memory was overclocked too, but it had a +400 offset, and the core clock was sitting at 2164mhz with about a +150 offset. All while sitting at a cool 40-45c under load. Which I regretfully sold for $350. Imagine selling that now with this whole urethra mining or w.e craze?
So how did I end up with a 1080ti and a hardline loop? Well, I sold all my H1Z1 skins and came up around $2k (Not bad for selling some in-game pixels, right?!). Seeing as I always wanted to do a custom water cooling loop, ESPECIALLY a hardline loop. I always thought they looked so sleek, and really changes how a computer looks. I know a lot of people say beginners should start off with Soft-Tubing just because it's easier to work with, it's a lot cheaper, and a lot more forgiving if you mess up. I'm actually kind of against that recommendation... Why? Because You're still gonna have to learn how to bend and assemble hardline tubing anyways!
This being my first watercooled system I literally would stay up until like 4am every night doing my research. And after doing some research I decided to pull the trigger, and order my parts. I started off by ordering an EVGA Founders Edition 1080ti, now why EVGA and why a FE card you ask? Well, mainly because I'm an EVGA fanboy, and EKWB was out of stock on waterblocks for the Strix 1080ti, not to mention I learned that EVGA doesn't void your warranty for installing a custom waterblock! Sweet!
So I found myself jumping back and forth between Performance-pcs.com, Newegg, and Amazon to buy parts. The key to this build was quality I wanted nothing but quality parts. Although, I learned the hard way that not all of the parts from EKWB screams
quality ... More on that later. Majority of the parts I ordered through performance-pc.com, like the Bitspower fittings, waterblocks, and tubing. Yeah, I probably could've gone with cheaper fittings, but I just love how Bitspower fittings look.
I knew I wanted to go with a 360 radiator in the front of the case, and go with a 240 radiator up top. However, I wasn't sure if the case would support a 360 radiator, because the specs say it only supports up-to a 280 radiator in the front. I spent hours and hours scouring the Internet and I couldn't for the life of me find anyone with a Coolermaster Master Case Pro5 that had a 360 radiator up front! Except for one person that did a whole crazy custom LeMans race car themed build, and he had a thicc 360 rad in the front with the fans configured in pull. Which wasn't going to work for me, because doing so would make the drive cage in the basement portion of the case unusable. Not to mention, I kind of wanted to setup a push configuration with the Corsair SP120 fans anyways because I kind of have a fetish over how GOOD these fans look through the grill of a case. So without knowing for sure if a 360 radiator would work in the front of my case with fans in a push config... I searched for the thinnest 360 radiator, and the EKWB's CoolStream Slim 360 radiator came up. Like the idiot I am I didn't take any measurements and just bit the bullet and ordered myself a CoolStream slim 360 radiator and a CoolStream slim 240 radiator.
One week passes by, and all my parts start coming in. Oooh, now this is exciting and if I recall my pp may or may not have gotten hard while all this was happening. So I start getting everything ready, and the first thing I test was if the radiator was going to fit with my fans in a push configuration. And I'm happy to announce that it does! BUT!! Remember when I was talking about how not all of EKWB's parts were
quality ?? Well, the 360 radiator that I got had some like weird crusty white build up on a portion of the radiator fins (I promise it wasn't me from getting excited). It almost looked like calcium build up, and inside one of the chambers there was this weird crusty blue-ish stuff that had built up. I didn't really think much of it, and just tried to rinse out as much as I could with water and vinegar. This was a HUGE mistake, and I should've just returned it. Me being impatient, and not wanting to wait for another radiator caused some major headaches once the build was complete.
Some of you may have noticed that in some of the pictures my loop is white, and in some the loop is pink. Well, when I first finished/built the loop I used XSPC's concentrate for coolant. Now to be quite fair, I'm not 100% sure if it was the crusty radiator or if it was this coolant.... Because after about 1-2 weeks the coolant would start separating, leaving me with this clear light-blue water in my loop. And every time I'd flush the system all of the separated coolant would be stuck in the bottom of the front radiator. After going through 3 bottles of XSPC's ECX Ultra-Concentrate I decided to order a new radiator, and new coolant. I figured my loop was contaminated at this point. So, I ordered Mayhem's Blitz Cooling kit, and Mayhem concentrate liquid in PINK!!! Manly, I know. I tear apart my whole loop, and take both waterblocks apart to do a thorough cleaning. I also did a full cleanse of my 240 radiator, and wasn't going to take any chances with this new EK radiator. Even though EKWB says on the box of their products that their radiators are clean, and that you don't need to rinse them... Don't trust it. Do yourself a favor and PLEASE cleanse them with at least water and vinegar if you don't have Mayhem's Blitz Cleaning kit.
So after about a week 1/2 the new coolant and radiator has been good! And no signs of any separating yet. Fingers crossed Well, hope you guys enjoyed my little story of the build! Thanks for reading!
Here are my OC/Temps:
Intel 6700k- OC: 4.8ghz 1.35v Temps: Idle 26c-30c/Load: 60c-65c
1080ti- OC: Core: +165 Offset @ 2075mhz, Memory: +400 Offset @ 5899mhz Temps: Idle: 25c-28c/Load: 35c-40c
Great CPU! Even though the 7700k is out, the Skylake CPU's are still great! Overclocks like a dream as well.
Highly recommend. Keeps my CPU Thermals in check.
If you have a Skylake processor, this is the motherboard for you! Overclocks amazing, and ASUS's UEFI BIOS is on another level, and ASUS's applications like Fan Xpert are wonderful. 10/10
I mean... It's ram from Corsair. Its good baby
Fast, and snappy! Amazing.
I always go with EVGA mainly because I'm an EVGA fanboy, but their Customer Support is miles ahead of their competitors along with their Warranty for their products as well.
Easy to build in. Looks great. Although it doesn't say it can support a 360 radiator in the front, it actually can.
Great power supply. Although mine kind of had an issue from the beginning. My computer wouldn't shut down properly. Come to find out it has something to do with the power cable. I have to have it sitting at a certain angle for it to power down. Other than that... Great PSU
Great fans. Would 100% recommend for radiators/tight places that could use the extra air. Quiet as well.