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AMD Threadripper 2 2950x - 2x SLI 2080 TI FE - Fractal Design Define C SFF Mid ATX ( Fall 2018 )

by jdavid.net


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

Oct. 7, 2018

CPU Clock Rate

3.5 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.35 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

14 GHz


AMD Threadripper 2 2950x - 2x SLI 2080 TI FE - Fractal Design Define C SFF Mid ATX ( Fall 2018 )

Goal: Machine Learning / Workstation / VR / Gaming Machine

Target: 120hz @ 4k w/ Acer Predator x27 as the display

Size: <37L - Small Form Factor / SFF or Small Mid Tower

I built a top of the line Fall 2018 machine, and tried not to spare any expense but also needed to be realistic, so I spent money where it would help improve my ML research and saved money when it made sense. The machine wasn’t cheap, took a long time to receive parts (after several delays ), but I wanted to build an amazing machine that I could do bleeding edge work on. More on this later.

The hardest part was trying to fit so much power into such a small form factor. I wanted something smaller than my previous builds, and I felt like a full mid tower was just too large these days. I really wanted something that I could move around easily if I needed to. The completed the build weights 37.2 lbs, and is just under 37L @ 36.87L for a density of 1lbs/1L. As a SFF PC, it’s no Dan Case at 7.2L, or Cerberus X at 19.5, but this case was easier to work on and fit a 1500W PSU, 2 GPUs, and a crazy beefy Threadripper CPU. Between the CPUs and the GPUs there is 700W+ to dissipate, and more if I overclock any of the parts.

I think moving to a Cerberus X might be possible, but you would need blower style GPUs and you would end up thermally throttling at 260W+ each. Also, forget liquid cooling them with an AIO as the Cerberus X doesn’t have the room for AIOs.

Enter the Fractal Design Define C, it’s the perfect case for this build, it has good airflow, enough space for multiple AIOs if needed and it fit the Platinum 1500W PSU I chose. Did I mention that it’s super quiet too, with sound dampening panels through the case, and indirect air intakes.

On Oct-5th, 2018, I was able to score 11104 with 3DMark on Timespy Extreme, which placed me 19th in the Hall of Fame, but by today Oct-6th I’ve already slid to 22nd. I estimate before long I will be out of the top 100 as the professional overclockers take over. However, for now it’s a fun moment to be in the top 25.

Intel vs. AMD.

In previous builds I’ve used both AMD and Intel, and my last few have been Intel, but this time around AMD’s Threadripper seemed like an exceptional processor. I did plenty of research, and for me the deciding factor was the stability of the TR4 Socket, and the 64x PCIx lanes. Having a stable socket provides options for upgrading CPUs down the road, encourages 3rd party support and improves maintainability. Intel’s 7980xe is certainly a favorite on the 3DMark hall of fame, but it’s also 2x the cost of the AMD 2950x, and has 20 fewer PCIx lanes. As the build is today, I’m not using those lanes, but with Machine Learning, I might need a really fast set of drives, or more GPUs down the road. Having a full 64 PCIx lanes means I don’t have to replace as many parts when I need the extra bandwidth. Again it was a close call, but with AMD I got a more extensible platform and it was cheaper; win-win!

Taichi x399 ( motherboard )

As this will be a smaller ATX case the MB board was really important and I decided to go with a Taichi x399 from ASRock. The board seemed nearly identical to the ASRock Fatal1ty x399 board sans the 10x Gibit Networking card and the Killer Networking software, neither of which I need. The Taichi x399 also has 11 phase power which seemed sufficient for the TR2 and should accommodate a higher TDP if I need it later. For it's size it seemed like it was the only board that could one day support 4x SLI even though right now I'm targeting 2x SLI, and wasn’t an EATX size.

Silverstone Tek ST1500-Ti (PSU)

1500W may seem like a lot, or even overkill for a system that’s rated at 900W, but it’s really not. A smaller PSU like a 1000W or 1100W might have worked, but the largest SFX-L PSU is only 800W, and if you want any headroom for overclocking, hard drives, or additional GPUs you really need the extra wattage. Here is a list of PSUs I looked at

The Silverstone Tek ST1500-Ti was selected for its size, and Platinum efficiency rating. The Define C has a PSU depth limit of 175mm, but 180mm does fit. The extra 5mm only makes the cable area really cramped, and from what I can see the ST1500-Ti is just fine, but I’ve read that some PSU that are 180mm and have a fan grill might not work. (You might be able to push a 200mm PSU, in the Define C, but you would have to remove the drive cage, and you might not be able to mount a 3.5” HDD in the bottom fittings either.) I could have also gone for a less efficient PSU, but that would have meant higher energy bills, less usable wattage, and more heat to dissipate. With KWh in SF, CA costing between $0.12/KWh and $0.44KWh at peak. Spending a bit more on an efficient PSU can really save money in the long run or over 3 years. Tech companies assume that 1/3rd of the total cost of a PC is going to be it’s power consumption, so it’s not abnormal to consider this at all.

Machine Learning, SLI, and NVLink

In the last few years it’s become out of vogue to build an SLI machine as application and game support has been lacking. SLI was difficult to program for games, and offered little or no advantages for Applications. Some of my friends who had worked in machine learning before even built an SLI system only to find that it was hard to get libraries to support one application or model across 2 cards. SLI just wasn’t built for it.

NVLink might change all of that. On the Quadro Series of RTX cards NVLink is much more powerful with a 6x link, compared to the 2x link on the 2080 Ti cards, but a 2x link might get me what I want without the additional expense of spending $6,300, or $9,000 a card. Sure the Quadro cards might be faster or better, but I wanted to see if the 2080 Ti(s) could work first at a fraction of the price.

On the 2080 Ti(s) the NVLink has 50GB/s x2 which is substantially faster and drastically improves the scaling performance in games, and might even support applications using both GPUs as if they are 1 high performance Virtual GPU. Since the 2080 TIs have had a limited release till now only time will tell if Applications latch onto this.

As for Machine Learning, there are a few reasons to have 2 cards even if you can’t virtualize them. Running your models on one card, and an application or simulation on another card is a really good one. One of the most challenging parts of ML is getting good enough data to train your Model. NVidia used simulation data to build their DLAA / DLSS ( Deep Learning Anti-Aliasing / Deep Learning Super Sampling ), and RTX Ray Tracing Models. If you can use high quality simulated data you can feed a lot more data into your models to tune them and make them smarter. NVidia is making big claims based on the performance of their models, so i can only assume this is the future of ML.


The Threadripper CPU and the 2080 TIs are beasts and put off a ton of heat under load. I have an NXZT x62 Kraken 280mm AIO for the CPU, and the stock coolers on the Founder Edition cards. Under a light load ( like writing this ), the TR 2950x runs at 62C, and the two GPUs run at 38C & 45C. All of these will throttle up to 80-85C under heavy load. They just run hotter than I’m used to, and part of that is the fans trying to run quite. I’m also wondering if I’ll have to upgrade my cooling options. The Enermax LiqTech TR4 280 & LiqTech TR4 II 280 have a larger CPU block that covers the whole TR4 CPU plate, whereas, the x62 is a cylinder and doesn’t cover the whole plate. I also think the Enermax AIO has a higher flow rate, however, I ended up getting the x62 because it looks so much better in photos :-P. I think the Enermax would be necessary for better overclocking headroom. I’m also curious if I can fit a small blower fan over-top of the GPUs to directly vent their heat. I found a few online, but I am not sure how I would quite mount them just yet.


In general I love the new system, and I’m totally head over heels with GSYNC-4k@120hz on the desktop and in games. Everything is butter smooth on full settings. Applications feel snappy and lightweight. It might be 2-4 months before I have any deep learning work to show off, but I intend to try to replicate a few existing projects in the meantime. ( i’m open to suggestions )

I’d love to hear your comments and feedback, and I’m curious what others are doing in the 30-40L case SLI range for cooling.


I have 2 non-obvious customizations, a remote control and I upgraded the WiFi module for the Taichi X399. The remote was so that my 18mo daughter could not easily turn the computer on and off with the front panel.

Comments Sorted by:

vitexo 5 Builds 23 points 6 months ago

Your computer has more power than my car :)

LeMMingSlayeR 23 Builds 18 points 6 months ago

Cost more than my truck...

Grime720 14 points 6 months ago

OH MY...

Itz_Leaf 1 Build 8 points 6 months ago

Your computer is an actual beast like damn.... +1

xconnor 1 Build 8 points 6 months ago

literally almost spat my water all over my keyboard when i saw this. absolute god-tier status right here

Zeromus725 5 points 6 months ago

A Threadripper with RTX SLI? Talk about dream build right here.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 5 points 6 months ago

It's cheaper than getting a 2nd parking space in SF and a little red sports car. :-)

Zeromus725 4 points 6 months ago

Well... you’re not wrong.

customgtp 24 Builds 4 points 6 months ago

Time for a feature!!

Beautiful clean build... Cable management is absolutely perfect. This is the perfect build!! Congrats!

wurpy 1 Build 4 points 6 months ago

Hmmmm. You might need a better gpu

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 4 points 6 months ago

LOL, I might, know of any?

wurpy 1 Build 3 points 6 months ago


mauriciomdea 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

Titan RTX lolz

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

I bet they are going to be even more overpriced than the RTX 2080 TI

randomguybuildingacomputer 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

I think they were set to be priced at $2500.

Maximkoroch 2 points 3 months ago

this man predicted it!

TechTuberTV 1 Build 3 points 6 months ago


TechTuberTV 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

btw +1

if your cooling is bad, go for watercooling and plan a custom loop

that will be siccccccccccccccccccck

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

the cooling is totally sufficient for medium to light gaming, and low overclocking. it get good boost clock numbers all the time.

since this is a work machine I didn't really want to go any further than an AIO.

TechTuberTV 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

Oh ok, but in the future, do a custom loop with 2 2080tis!

DRogGTX 1 point 6 months ago

"medium to light gaming" said the guy playing on 2 $1200 cards at 4k 120hz.

Phildilf 3 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

What if I told you that graphics cards are meant for things other than gaming? ;)

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

that's mostly for VR development, but yeah with an 18mo, I don't get a lot of gaming in, maybe 4 hours a week, and on a good week once a month 10+ hours.

beardedmisfit 5 Builds 3 points 6 months ago

WOW. Fantastic job man. Congrats on the feature +100

Javaan 2 points 6 months ago

Good evening!

thank you for sharing your build. I am also looking for a good way to build a system with the 2950X in the Fractal Design R6 case, which turns out to be challenging, especially with custom water cooling. I have had a "hot" CPU in the Fractal Design R4 with the Kraken X62, but it's difficult in the case to get rid of the heat. For the 2950X the Kraken X72 would be my minimum. Have you considered increasing it one notch to the X72? I would like to add about 6 HDD's in the case as well, so it blocks any form of custom water cooling, but ideally it would have been in as well. So, I probably will have to take a different case, get rid of the HDD's or ditch the custom watercooling. Again, thanks.

Best regards

Javaan 2 points 6 months ago

PS: on what kind of deep learning applications are you working, if I may ask?

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 3 points 6 months ago

I'm not really sure yet. Just getting into it, but here are a list of my interests.

  • financial prediction
  • financial tool assist
  • machine vision
  • machine control
  • compression
  • AV Super-sampling
  • 3D object generation
  • AR / VR User Experience

Back in college in 2003 I predicted that GPUs would be used for AI, when I built an API for grad students to do language processing. Since then I've been working in C# and Javascript and have not had a chance to revisit AI / Machine Learning, and now I have the time to spend learning.

My Goal is to get a sense for what I don't know, and get a feel for what ML can do these days, and the maybe start a business.

I feel like right now I don't know what I don't know.

All I know right now is that ML has come along way, Tensor Cores are cool, and that RNNs are leading the way right now to deep learning.

On the long horizon I have some theories about Human AI and or ML and if Time, and compute resources permit I might try some of those things. If those theories turn out on the right track I my theory might provide insight into how personalities, preferences, etc... emerge, and possibly what makes us adept at certain tasks.

Kyojin93 2 points 6 months ago

First of all great build, it's amazing how all that hardware fits so nicely in such a compact case.

I am glad to see someone else getting into Machine Learning, this learning material is very helpful to get started:




jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

I'd like to get this running. #MarioFlow


Kyojin93 2 points 6 months ago

I see, most of the work on Deep Learning has to do with data pre-processing and this depends very much on the type of application so there isn't a specific guide for it. Taking the video as an example, the guy has used his own gameplay footage (sequence of images) as training data and gamepad inputs as target data, there are many ways you can do it but it's a matter of programming, for example you can use Numpy library for Python to export the images and convert them into a suitable format (grayscaling, rescaling, normalizing etc.) and the same for the target. He used an RNN as network, usually used for sequence prediction, and this can be built using some of the popular libraries such as Tensorflow, Pytorch etc. (Keras just uses these but simplifies the programming), the IDE is of your choice, I used Visual Studio with Anaconda, which has most of the libraries needed. I am not sure how he reprogrammed Mario Kart to implement it though. See if the guy has a link to github for that project.

My main point is start with understanding the concepts, (you might need to revise some maths) and then practice with examples. The rest is experimentation.

p.s. I am a Mechanical Engineering Graduate and I used Deep Learning to control an Active Suspesion System as my final year project.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

I don't think it's the RAD, right now I kinda have a rubber-banding effect on CPU temp. I think the CPU runs HOT, then climbs in temp under load, then the RAD Fans kick in and temps come way down. If I force the FANS high, CPU temps come down significantly. NZXT says the X62 is rated for 95W+, but I've seen folks claim it can do a lot more than that.

The X72 could fit in the Define C, but then I would loose the 3.5" drive cage ( which fits 2x drives ). Right now I only have 1 6TB drive, so I could do it.

I'm not sure why you need 6 drives in a case, especially HDD? I'd rather use a SAN device for data, and then only have local apps, swap, cache in the actual machine. If your doing Video Editing you can get a 10 GiB interface, which should be faster than 6x drives in RAID 5/6 or something. I know SANs can get pricey, so a bigger case is a cheaper way to go if you need 6x drives.

If you noticed, I have a SAN in my parts list and I sync some of the files with Resilio (used to be BitTorrent Sync).

Custom Loops increase your risk and maintenance, so you have to stay on top of it. For me I wanted low-medium risk and low-no maintenance. AIOs were risky enough (medium risk). I almost went 100% air cooled, but knew the Threadripper wouldn't reach a good boost clock without better than air cooled. In the 180W+ range it seemed like from reviews that the CPU would throttle a bit more.

Javaan 2 points 6 months ago

Frankly, good question. Originally, I had thought about building an unRAID system, will all integrated into one: several VM's, NAS, into one box. I do have a Synology NAS with ~110 TB storage, , which is located in a separate room, about 10m away. As I am (still) in an office with limited options for rebuilding, I can access the device with ~250 mbit/s. Which is "nice", but I had thought about getting a smaller, about 25 TB RAID locally, with the Synology NAS as a backup. On the system, three people should be able to work on it. UnRAID however has some disadvantages, that makes it more uninterestings, so I probably won't need it, indeed. Are you using the Netgear as your SAN solution? What kind of transfer speeds can you achieve with it? How does that specifically work?

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

The Netgear SAN I have is mostly used as a backup right now and media server for my AppleTV 4k.

I have several computers syncing files with it, mostly over 5ghz wireless, and with Resilio it's very fast.

Recently I had a hard drive corruption occur as a result of a windows install bug and so I figured with 10-20 devices at home it was worth it to finally get a SAN and do regular backups, and syncing of files.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

I also wanted to point out again

Enermax LiqTech TR4 280 & LiqTech TR4 II 280 have a larger CPU block that covers the whole TR4 CPU plate

I think it also has wider tubes and a higher flow rate, so the same size RAD might do more cooling before the fans kick in, and temperatures might not rubber-band as much.

legendarypoet 13 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

When I first built w/ the 1950X, I used the Corsair H115i since nothing else was available. It did okay when not OC'd at all, but did not boost well. Went w/ an Enermax 360 and have never had a temp problem since. I did have a pump problem where it slowed down, but they overnighted a replacement Gen 2. Used that as an excuse to upgrade to the 2950X lol. Runs great. Couldn't see using Precision Boost Overdrive w/ a circular Asetek AIO. If you start to see temps around 68C, I'd switch.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

What temps are you seeing? When I force the fans on high I still see 50+C, I just thought TR runs hot, unless you delid it?

I looked at the Corsair H115i and I was wondering if it was better than the Enermax?

legendarypoet 13 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

Around 33 idle, 58-62 under load in most cases. TR is soldered. De-lidding will likely kill it. Solder make de-lidding unnecessary. No, it is far worse. Anything that does not have a full cover cold plate will perform worse.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

OH MAN that's way better than what I'm seeing. Do you think the Enermax 360 will be about the same as a 280 RAD? Are you using the Liqtech II ?

Or do you think it's my fans on the NZXT? It looks so pretty I'd love to salvage it.

Your running 20-30C cooler than me at idle.

Garog 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

Very nice build. You must have a very lucrative professional career to be able to afford your builds, including the hardware on your desk!

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

I do ok. Some is from work, some is from being VERY good at investing, some is luck.

HellRaizrRod 2 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

+1 nice!

michaelsd28 2 points 6 months ago


ljppkgfgsc 2 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

Insane build and looks beautiful. As for heat I think your problem is you only have one quiet 120mm fan pulling out heat. Because the stock Fractal fan is not super high flow I recommend getting that thing replaced with Noctua NF-F12 industrialPPC-3000 PWM and setting it to ramp up based on case or cpu temperatures. Also add another Noctua 3000 fan on bottom pushing air up. It will be a night and day difference in temps. That being said you could also take the top off and add two fans blowing air up and out but I would still put a high airflow fan on bottom. That would probably be a bit quieter and would accomplish the same thing. You will also want to set your cpu fans aggressively to get enough fresh air through your case. +1

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

Why the industrial one? 3-phase power?

Unless I'm going for 3DMark scores, the current set up is OK. I will bookmark your suggestion on the fan in-case I need it.

I don't think much pressure builds up in the case, as there are a lot of open grates for airflow, so any excess pressure should 'leak-out' through those grates.

I'm not really a fan of bottom intake fans, or ceiling fans, for dust reasons. If the computer goes to sleep mode, fans on the top can let dust in, and I live in a city with the windows open 24/7. The bottom fan, would just suck floor dust up into the case.

However, that said, these are all good suggestions for someone else that wants to take my build and make it an overclocking dream!

ljppkgfgsc 2 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

The industrial 3000 PWM fans would just provide as much cooling as possible but would likely be overkill especially if you are trying to balance noise. The NF-P12 redux-1700 PWM is quieter and still has the RPMs to get decent flow which maybe a good replacement for the back fan.

I had Define R5 case which is similar to the Define C and had a fan on the bottom in a bedroom with moderate dust. I never noticed it building up more dust compared to the front intakes and besides it has a super convenient removable dust filter design which is easy to clean if dust really is crazy at your place. Remember the cooler your parts the longer they last.

poc88 4 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

Nice and compact is the taste and style! A lot of people are complaining about SLI performances are poor and costs too much money, but a high-end system($$$) I can careless and maybe you too. Two GPU looks better than one IMO! A Beast Machine you got there, love it.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

I'm an early adopter, so I like to fail forwards. I know SLI has been an issue, but this uses NVLINK and game/ application support might improve in the coming months for NVLINK.

I have faith it will get better than SLI.

AnonymouslyQuacked 2 points 6 months ago

No other words except YUM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

kschendel 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

I'd give it another month or three to make sure they have solved their corrosion problems, but then I think the Enermax would be a very good choice. In theory, all Liqtech TR4's are now gen II, the original version is only good for a demonstration of why material choices matter.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

I was wondering what the difference was between the Enermax Liqtech II and I was. From what I could see, it was maybe only RGB?

kschendel 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

No, the gen I had massive corrosion problems, some early gen II had leakage problems. Enermax say that both defective variants have been removed from retail channels. The currently selling gen II seems to be OK, so far. When it's working, the Liqtech TR4 is reported to be an excellent Threadripper cooler.

eraoul 1 point 2 months ago

I found a review where even some gen II Enermax are having corrosion issues. I wouldn't trust my system to them until I'm 100% sure they actually fixed their problems. Personally I'm using the Kraken X72 until someone else comes along with an AIO that actually covers the TR4 correctly and knows how to avoid corrosion and leaks.

Rii445 2 points 6 months ago

Calm it down man

kingtanky 2 points 6 months ago

Damn. +1

AhodShralpy 12 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

OH MAMA this is what I've been waiting for since the new GPUs came out. Someone gotta do it to 'em!

AnonymouslyQuacked 2 points 6 months ago

My eyes just had orgasm.

neo_explorer84 3 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

hory shet balls.

Stereotypical_Whale 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

Big man.

dkh1 2 points 6 months ago

Nice Whip Bro!!

hariseldon137 2 points 6 months ago

Hi, I am doing a 2950x build. Was there any difficulty with that RAM? Did you have to tinker to get it running, and do you know what specs it's running at?

thanks :)

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

I went with 3200 and it was tested with ASRock for that MB. I booted in the base profile, then selected the 3200 profile and it pretty much just worked.

I will say upgrading the BIOS to one that works with TR2, was troubling, but eventually got it to work with ASRocks direct USB->BIOS flash utility, which doesn't need the KVM at all to load it.

Part of that trouble was that my monitor would go to powersave too quick.

Jedifragger 2 points 6 months ago

Impressive build m8, really some good work there!! B|

SwiftSeb 6 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

REEEEEEEE, jk nice build +1

anonymousdingo2320 2 points 6 months ago

Jeez! insane build! awesome job!

yoorie016 2 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

With this set-up, i can watch all youtube vids with Ray Tracing On.

Edition1 2 points 6 months ago

That chiclet keyboard though ;-; pls treat yourself to some nice keyboard (something not gaming brand is what I recommend) and there are some nice wireless ones too if that's what you're into :D. Upvoted anyway because nice build

calabastas 1 point 5 months ago

first thing I noticed haha. Get a ducky or something man!

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

open to recommendations but did hours of research and this met my needs the closest.

Bluetooth keyboards don't work in the bios, and gaming keyboards are noisy.

I'd like something with really slim features, Logitech unified ( or similar ) and really low actuation fast keys. I also want it to look pro looking, not that gamer RGB crap.

Edition1 1 point 4 months ago

Does it have to be wireless?

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

PS. I've invested in a few kickstarter keyboards too, so far none are what i want.

Coroianu67 2 points 6 months ago

Whoaa, awesome build man..clean and nice.

xconnor 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

wow 2080ti sli! don't think i've seen that yet. great looking build, you deserve the feature. good job buddy

Zonafer 2 points 6 months ago

Love the build, but you could've squeezed more RAM into the slots if you waited for the G.SKILL stacked QDIMMS.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

Yeah i know, but this was enough, i think.

darkclow 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

What kind of machine learning project are you working on?

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

What should I work on? Just learning for now, might start a company or consulting group.

In collage (2003) I wrote an API / SDK for some graduate students to study elephant vocal patterns and to do voice ID stuff.

I'm more interested in machine vision, fintech, and VR / AR tools.

exergist 2 points 6 months ago

Sweet build! Like you I've grown tired of my "bulky" mid-tower and will be downsizing, though I'm going to go to an even smaller Mini-ITX form factor (granted I don't have as much slick hardware to pack in as you).

I like your idea about using a remote, since my 18mo son loves to press the power button on my current PC. Cheers!

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

Right, on my wireless keyboard and mouse i turn them off and let her Jam on them. I can't wait till we can game together.

Dabestneo 2 points 6 months ago

For better airflow in my Define C build, I cut out the honeycomb fan guard in the back of the case. I also replaced the Fractal fan with a Noctua case fan. Nice build though.

Archibal11305 1 Build 2 points 6 months ago

+1 only beacauseof the 3 vr headsets in the picture, but if seriosly this pc costs more than my collage fund if you want it to run cooler do watercooling the rtx series are like the old hd 7770's but a chinesse bootleg version of that ( basicly they run hot but they arent full on blown air warmers like the 7770).

Kvik 2 points 6 months ago


C.higgins23 2 points 6 months ago

I know the "but can it run Crysis" is a dead meme, but I'm honestly curious if this Pc can run Cortana at MAYBE 4 Fps?

trylaarsdam 3 Builds 2 points 6 months ago


C.higgins23 1 point 6 months ago

It definitely need a custom loop with a hefty overclock

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

HAHA, like the AI Cortana, or the hologram?

I built this machine for 4k @ 90-120 Hz, so if she has less than that many pixels/ voxels it might be much better than 4 fps.

Ixxa 2 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

Nice rig! How is the Hynix memory doing, any issues? I'm building with my 2950X as soon as the Wraith Ripper becomes available in my market and I have the same kit of memory for my old Z170 rig, but wasn't planning on re-using it because of all the horror stories about Hynix on AMD. Has the TR iteration of Ryzen+ improved said compatibility? I don't mind doing timings and subtimings by hand, if that's necessary.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

I'm not sure these are Hynix chips, I didn't take off the heat spreader and CPUz doesn't list it.

That aside the memory timing issues your talking about are Zen 1 issues, the new chips don't have the same issues.

I installed my ram, told the bios to use the 'overclock profiles' and it just worked. So far the RAM has been great!

seanshepherd 2 points 6 months ago

What size NvLink bridge did you use? I'm doing a similar build but with 2080s and I'm using 1200 watts of power instead of 1500. I was torn between a 2700x and a 9900K but realised my budget really would allow for a 2950x if I wanted to so I said why not? I had contemplated doing a single founders 2080 TI but I doubt I'll find one and third party cards are non existent and when they do pop up they are going for way over msrp.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago


I always go way over on my PSU Watts, they run more efficient and cost less to operate over the life of the PC, and it creates less heat. Here in SF electricity can be up to $.44 KWh during peak.

thebluewhale 2 points 4 months ago

amazing cable managemnt

Burro_09 2 points 4 months ago

Was the WIFI daughterboard upgrade straight forward? Any issues with bios or drivers? I would really love WAVE 2 on my next build.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

It was a bit awkward and my wifi kept dropping, but it was dropping before, and on a previous machine in that location in the home. I think it's something about that location in the house. If it wasn't for that I'd say it was straight forward.

I had to download the latest drivers from Intel and I had to know the exact chip-set numbers to do that.

I didn't see a speed boost at all over the existing gen stuff. I wonder if AX or WiFi 6 will be better.

Burro_09 2 points 4 months ago

Good to know. Thanks for the Reply! :)

TechTuberTV 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

also bigger case = sometimes better airflow

blockbuster4664 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

Ah yes, because the best is not enough

iMoonTiger 1 point 6 months ago

Feature?? Oh I’d say so

OllieManMan 15 Builds 1 point 6 months ago

simply a beats. NJ!

OllieManMan 15 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

how do you like x399? what major advantages does it offer for you personally? asking for a friend lol.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

compared to what?

x399 is pretty great, and gets better with larger EATX boards.

I really like the TR4 Socket , and the 64 PCIx lanes vs. the 7980xe 44 PCIx lanes. I'm also expecting Threadripper 3 (zen 2 7nm) to be on the TR4 socket as well.

OllieManMan 15 Builds 2 points 6 months ago

that kinda answers my questions. TY

CodeCannibal64 1 point 6 months ago

noooooooo whyd you put such an awesome looking computer in a case without a glass side panel :(

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

stealth mode.

puppy_punter 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

cries in fx6300

ethanlevine 1 point 6 months ago

All this power and beauty...the highest end specs, two, 1200 dollar cards, a threadripper, gd 2000 dollar monitor...and a 20 dollar keyboard? get yourself a nice mech, the build deserves it

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

haha. i'd love a better keyboard, but they don't make exactly what i want.

this is the closest thing i could find. I also don't like bluetooth + windows/PC the logitech unified wireless is much better and more reliable. it works just like a wired keyboard once set up.

ethanlevine 1 point 4 months ago

Check out the logitech craft for something more minimalist, the G613 for productivity, and the Gpro for a balance! The latter two are gaming keyboards, but all three are wireless with the usb receiver (which i agree is the only way to go for wireless peripherals), and all three provide great tactile feedback/a quality typing experience over what you have currently

HasNeyn 1 Build 1 point 6 months ago

Eye candy...?

trylaarsdam 3 Builds 1 point 6 months ago

Wallet has officially been emptied.

Now I wish I had money to blow like that xD

Muter 1 point 6 months ago

This build single handedly makes me want to skip the 9900k for the threadripper.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

why do the 9900k?

intel is such a mess with it's sockets

datazelle 2 Builds 1 point 6 months ago

Holy moly!

HiroNewf 1 point 6 months ago

Why the case? If I put this much money into a PC I would have one with a glass panel so I could look at it all day and admire my bad spending choices. I recommend this nice case from NZXT https://www.amazon.com/NZXT-H500-Computer-CA-H500B-B1-Black/dp/B07C3DWCDC/ref=sr_1_1?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1539984871&sr=1-1&keywords=NZXT (there a few different one that are about the same depending on the size you need ect.)

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 2 points 4 months ago

I have a small toddler and an entertainment center in the same room. I wanted something that would disappear. The one blue light encourages her to click it all the time, hence the remote control, and disabling the power switch. I might unplug the power light as it's disturbing at night when we are watching movies.

HiroNewf 1 point 4 months ago

Makes sense. Do you wish you could have a glass case?

Rosweld76 1 point 6 months ago

OP: "tried not to spare any expense but also needed to be realistic, so I spent money where it would help improve my ML research and saved money when it made sense."

me: scrolls down immediately

me: faints

$6,000. Wow. I thought my build was expensive lol. $1,500 is cheap compared to this.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

Some people rent time on AWS and use their machines, but some of the projects I might need local connections to stuff.

Rent is expensive in SF, most in the world, so I don't want to dilly dally around.

Lexkalin 2 Builds 1 point 5 months ago

Removing pci covers helped me a bit. As well as downvoting the gpu. I never liked the temps I was getting in my Define C. It’s not a good case in terms of airflow because of front panel and dust filter, unless you’re ok with raising fan curves.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

what do you mean 'raising fan curves'? do you mean fans with higher constant pressure?

Lexkalin 2 Builds 1 point 4 months ago

No, I mean increasing fan speeds controlled by fan curves in through the software.

JGFMK 1 point 4 months ago

Do you experience micro-stuttering issues with the 2 GPUs whilst gaming? I watched this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWrdIZRfom0 that mentioned this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alternate_frame_rendering - the NVLink is supposed to be a step up vs SLI - and apparently games supporting 2 way SLI will automatically work with NVLink. I also think it's a couple of generations of GPU/Displayport > 1.4 (or Thunderbolt3 cards) away from having bandwidth for high frequency/pixel counts being sustainable.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

I'm not sure most games support SLI right now. If there is one you want me to test, and I own it I'll test it and report back. Since everything is gsync a lot of those issues are cut back.

I can say that games are not 100% pre-rendered sort of smooth, it's not like Tron Legacy, the movie or anything, but it is VERY smooth. I'm rending at 4k at high or ultra settings at 80-120+ fps on most games.

As the drivers get better and NVIDIA tweeks settings in NVIDIA Experience, I expect things to get a lot better in the next 6 months. Some games are getting 20-40 FPS boost as drivers / settings update, from what I'm seeing.

plzDonateAgame 1 point 4 months ago

This thing cost more than my car lol

ooferino 1 point 4 months ago

does the kraken even cover the whole heat spreader?

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

no. :-(

now that i'm back from japan, I might start tinkering with the heat sink, but I need to start AI hacking first. :-)

ooferino 1 point 4 months ago

I love the look of the Kraken coolers, I think most people do but if you can get a hold of a Cooler Master Wraith Ripper or a water cooler that covers the whole heat spreader I'm sure it'll work out quite well.

StankyMeme 1 point 4 months ago

but can it run crysis?

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago
Crinosil 1 point 3 months ago

I’ve built your machines little brother....using the x399m, a mini C and 2 Rtx 2080s... I’m using the enermax liqtech tr4 ii 280... but still idling between 55c and 60c....which I feel is too hot...going to see if I can add fans in a push pull to bring that down... did you ever see lower temps in your build?

Rodumus 1 point 1 month ago

Great build! What’s the verdict after the initial months? Cooler keeping that 2950 icy? Looking at a very similar build and had heard some bad rumors about the NZXT and 2950 as well as some other coolers.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 1 month ago

I'm using the Enermax Liqtech TR4 II now, it's a little bit more robust, but the NZXT is prettier, and the cables are more rout-able.

I think with the Threadripper 2 CPUs, BIOSes, and Monitoring/ Overclocking Apps there is some confusion on what the different thermals are.

AMD now reports thermals for the coolest core and hottest core, and it's quite a bit different than how they reported the temperature before. The new numbers are more interesting, but I think many of the software packages report them poorly and in a confusing manner.

I was running a heavy CPU load on an app and had a number of BSODs, but then I reset my BIOS settings to default, and changed my fan settings to my new understanding of them and things seem to be better now.

I'd like the CPU to report being cooler, and to be able to use the dynamic-overclocking, but I don't think the BIOSes are well tuned to support that right now. CPU temperatures can throttle up VERY quickly but fan speeds and AIOs set to throttle up to meat demand have much more momentum behind them and don't change temp as fast.

I think if your going to overclock and use non-default settings, your going to want to pin your fans down to full speed, and remove any guess work or system momentum from the equation.

I'm also trying to work out a solution to drop my 2nd 2080 TI about 10C.

Right now though the PC runs cool and quite on most every day work loads or games.

When I start running more long term training data and I'm running my own code I'll be able to balance loads better than with the hard workload I was running a bit ago.

I'd also recommend AMD Ryzen Master over NZXT CAM, unless you need to run NZXT CAM.

I'd also manage your fan speeds in the BIOS vs. in the OS layer.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 1 month ago

I also wish the RTX 2080 TI were blower style.

OrestisKotopoulos 1 point 1 month ago

GREAT BUILD!!! i recently build my own tr4 system. my cpu is the 2950x and my gpu is the asus 2080 ti strix. I also have 2x8 gb gskill trident z rgb ram at 3000 mhz cl15. The 2 ram stick are installed in the outer left and right ram slots in the mobo because the 2nd ram slot (close to the cpu) doesnt read the ram stick. This ram config is not recommended by the mobo manual but in bios says dual channel 3000 mhz with xmp.But i have some problems with my computers performance. When playing call of duty black ops 4 blackout for example in 25460x1440p everything maxed out, v sync off i get about 58-110 fps (80 average) and my gpu usage is also low at about 45-70 percent. This happens in other games too. In pubg i get 90-135 fps (110 average with drops to 70 when looking at a city from a high position) with everything on ultra and vsync off. My gpu usage gets to 90 percent but gpu clocks are at 1850 mhz most of the time. In forza horizon 4 in 2k everything maxed out i get 65-105 fps (80-85 average) and gpu usage is 60-70%Things get worse in call of duty black ops 3 when i get 85-120 fps in zombies or multiplayer while other 2080ti systems get 200 fps or more. In fortnite i get 100- 140 fps with framedrops to 65-75 in places with many buildings. Its like my cpu is a bottlenech for my gpu. I ran a Userbenchmark and these are the results: https://www.userbenchmark.com/UserRun/15211915 Could you please tell me if your cpu bottleneck your gpus aswell and also what kind of performance you get in those games with your beast of a pc??? Because it looks like mine isnt as beastly as i would like to :( Thanks in advance and sorry for the huge comment.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 1 month ago

I don't have time to run your benchmark, but I do know that the TR2 chips are quad channel and that to obtain that 4 cpus each have a single channel to access that.

With only 2 channels active all of your cores need to burden those two CPUs for memory requests, so not only do you have half the bandwidth of the TR2 platform, but two of your cores have extra work.

What version of windows 10 do you have? 1703,1709, 1803,1809?

I recently installed 1809 and have tried to install 19H1, but have found that there are driver issues and other conflicts preventing me from updating my machine. I think a lot of software is less robustly tested on the Zen/ Threadripper CPUs.

I also noticed that I had a setting in windows 10 that was in my theme that was automatically updating my os highlight color dynamically with the background. This was causing jitter on my machine.

I'd also check that your SSD, if you have one is on PCIe lanes that are not shared with other devices.

I hope that helps.

jdavid.net submitter 1 Build 1 point 1 month ago


Here's the long version w/ pictures: https://medium.com/@jdavid.net/windows-10-1809-install-threadripper-x399-intel-9260-bsod-perfect-disaster-44c8e06ee253

So, a few weeks ago I wanted to refresh the system, clear out any possible malware, and start fresh. I didn’t remember which version of windows I had, or what was on what USB key and before I knew it — I had created a new USB Installer key over the old with Windows 10 1809, little did I know that this is where my problems and headache would begin.

When I went to install a fresh copy of Windows 10 1809, I started to run into a BSOD ( blue screen of death ) with a BUGCODE NDIS_DRIVER error.

BSOD ( blue screen of death ) with a Stop code: BUGCODE NDIS_DRIVER Then the system would restart and produce a new “Install Windows” error in a dialog box. This error reads:

"The computer restarted unexpectedly or encountered an unexpected error. Windows installation cannot proceed. To install windows, click “OK” to restart the computer, and then restart the installation. <OK>"

I must have tried 4 or 5 times to just start over, then I tried to locate a different version of the OS. The best I could find ( from Microsoft ) was an ISO of 19H1, but this was much worse as I didn’t even get the dialog.

TLDR; Eventually I found a workaround that didn’t work ( and broke windows update ) before discovering the actual solution ( on an MSI forum, https://forum-en.msi.com/index.php?topic=309637.0 ) to install the correct and updated Intel 9260 Drivers.

[comment deleted by staff]
manirelli staff 8 Builds 3 points 6 months ago

Please keep feedback polite and constructive.

[comment deleted]
FurryJackman 3 Builds 3 points 6 months ago

No, that's Steve from Gamers Nexus.


Kyojin93 3 points 6 months ago

I laughed till I cried

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