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Old 21st Feb 2013, 22:27   #41
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@Siliconfanatic Sure does, quite like the new look

@Hanoken Seems they've already released one :O quick stuff indeed. Now the question of funds becomes the relevant one. For the iPad I just stretched the corners over using a heat gun, surprisingly simple, I also sadly lack access to a hairdryer to test out K.3nny's suggestion.

Small update folks. I received notice that the fittings will indeed be arriving on Sunday guaranteed, so I will be able to begin work on the main stuff on Monday

I also decided to add another carbon element. Again this is going behind a part so will be subtle enough. As much as I like the carbon finish, I don't really want to use it on everything. Makes for a great scratch cover though. Unpacked the first SSD too, the 256GB Samsung 840 Pro. Positioned it where I planned, looks nice too. Anyway here are some quick pics, not a huge amount of change, but it's something at least.

Carbon added, conceals a nasty scratch from something, wasn't the dremel so I'm not sure what.


Mmmn SSD


Mounted up.


Looks rather nice in it's place. The second one is currently in use in the rig I'm typing from, so I'll mount that up when I do the hardware swap.


So that's all for today folks, thanks for dropping by!
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Old 25th Feb 2013, 17:58   #42
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Right guys, this is it, crunch time. As expected, my fittings all arrived yesterday. Now that I have everything available, it's time to get on with the bread and butter of the mod; the water cooling installation. My plan is to have all the WC components installed and operational by tomorrow. The problem is that I'm using my current hardware in this mod, something that won't be an issue in the future thankfully. So to ensure as little down time as possible, I'll be getting everything in ASAP, and finishing details after, where a simply shutdown isn't an issue.

As a teaser, here are a couple of pics of the fittings and res clamps. I'm not fully sold on the clamps, they turned out a bit bigger than I envisioned, but they'll certainly do the job and don't look bad as such, just a bit bulky.

Will be using a lot of these fittings:


Yes quite a few of them...


I'll try to update with the loop progress later today, no promises though. I should be able to upload photos no problem from my phone, not 100% about re-sizing though.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 04:31   #43
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Couldnt resist taking the new ssd for spin, could you?
And can't wait for the *cough*prompt*cough* updates

And as for the titan; They've probably had a titan/reference/layout etc for months now. Nvidia would have been/is smart enough to forwarn its partners. It was probably putting on the finishing touches and stocking up on secretaries
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Last edited by siliconfanatic; 26th Feb 2013 at 04:36.
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Old 28th Feb 2013, 03:12   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siliconfanatic View Post
Couldnt resist taking the new ssd for spin, could you?
And can't wait for the *cough*prompt*cough* updates
You know it's funny that, I'm trying to get the damned thing to boot but the SSDs just aren't being detected, neither of them. No idea what's going on. My HDD is fine on every SATA port, and the SSDs aren't working in any. This is a confirmed working Agility 3 and a brand spanking new 840 Pro. No way would I have gotten a DoA Samsung AND have my main boot drive (which has been going strong for more than a year now) die on the same day.

Either way, I've been very busy over the last few days, building of course!

I've installed all the watercooling and done 90% of the wiring (still a pesky molex and SATA power cable to do). Must say it's looking pretty damn good already. There are, of course, a lot of things left to do though. My plan is to reprint the RAM heat spreaders, probably metallic blue or maybe glossy white, I'll see later. I will also need to start on the case window and other detailing. Sadly I can't post all the pictures now as I'm relegated to using the iPad whilst my computer fails to register the SSDs. I'll give you a worthwhile teaser though, since so many have been viewing this project, I'll cut to the chase and show a pic of the current progress. Tomorrow I'll aim to update with all the pictures I took along the way.

*spoilers*

*Snipped into the larger update*
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Last edited by Maki role; 28th Feb 2013 at 19:41.
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Old 28th Feb 2013, 19:40   #45
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Right well this is probably going to be the biggest update of the entire project log. As stated above, I commenced work on transferring all my components from my old case and WC setup, into Azure. Must say it took a lot longer than I was expecting.

I'm still a fair way from the final result I'm looking for, but it's a solid start. I was especially surprised by how similar some aspects were to the concept renders. One issue I encountered is that in the concept model, I somehow managed to misjudge the size of the graphics cards, making them roughly one inch shorter than the real ones. I think this is down to how I think I used a previous model for them, which if I recall correctly, was an HD 6950, which is a fair bit smaller. This presented a few issues in that my planned routes were no longer possible, had to freestyle a bit in that regard.

Anyway, who's ready for a picture dump?!

Draining the old system, was a pain thanks to my not planning a drain port system.


The two old coolants mixed quite nicely into this, mmn tempting.


Next level cleaning apparatus!


Removing the old heatsinks/protection


Plates off and screws out.


Heat pads on.


Shiny new backplate, much nicer than the bare PCB IMO.


Both cards given the sleek treatment.


All shiny again, still has a beautiful finish.


All mounted and pretty.


Motherboard goes into the new case.


The midplate didn't fit inittially thanks to a small amount of board overhang from the standoffs. Cut this small notch to it could slide underneath.


Had to cut away a small section of the HDD bay to make room for the tubing route.


Midplate in and fastened.


Hard mounted the SSDs with a cuple of screws, simple and looks nice.


Added in all the main cables prior to adding the midplate. Access to that part of the PSU would be very limited after that point so I decided putting them in before would be a better idea.


Added the reservoirs and tested the spacing between them and the cards. Was much tighter than I envisioned, had to design a new tubing route to make up for the lack of space.


All mounted fast, not going anywhere any time soon.


Drain system installed along with the pump fittings


Tubing heads straight from the 120mm rad to the first GPU.


To bend the tubes I heated it with a piece of wire from a mains power adapter through the middle. Prevented the tubing from collapsing and helped maintain a smooth curve.


Result of said bending, many more of these to go.


Initial plumbing in, managed to get one of the acrylic tubes to head straight up next to the motherboard.


GPUs in and plumbing done! That last tube on the front was a PITA to get right, needed three attempts.


Every water enthusiast's favourite part, leak testing! And for the first time, I actually did spot leaks The two drain ports apparently needed more O-rings so I added another two to each, stopped the leaking. Another Alphacool Y fitting was also leaking, couldn't solve it internally though, so I smeared silicon on top. Seems to be coping fine, was only a tiny dribble, if I have to undo the loop again I will replace that part.


GPU loop all up and running successfully. The tubing really makes the pastel white come through really nicely in a way that isn't picked up by these pictures.


Filled the CPU loop with the distilled water, all fine with no leaks,


Added the Mayhem's UV blue dye, love the deep colour in the reservoir.


Playing around with the integrated HUE lighting.








Added in all the cables, still need a bit more management.


Yeah this is still very work in progress. I still need to sleeve a SATA power connector and a Molex cable, once those are done I'll neaten things up here. Definitely going with full custom length wiring on my next big project, WAY too much spaghetti here for my liking.


Well that concludes this big update. My next parts are going to involve repainting the RAM and fixing up the side window. Why on earth NZXT thought that a side panel for a WATERCOOLING case would require a mesh front is beyond me. It also does that annoying thing also found in the 800D where the window extends down to the power supply. Going to have to beautify those parts accordingly.

Turrah
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Old 28th Feb 2013, 20:25   #46
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Are you going to tidy up that jungle behind the tray? : P
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Old 28th Feb 2013, 20:40   #47
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Oh definitely, it's only like that currently as I still have a couple of cables to do. Once I fully manage everything, it'll no doubt be a real challenge to access them again, so need to have everything in working order first.

Another issue I'm facing in that area is that there are simply a lot of cables rofl. Custom wiring would have made this much simpler and more effective. Problem is that would have taken way too long in this project, will do it next time though.
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Old 2nd Mar 2013, 00:23   #48
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Nice work with the tubing :P
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Old 3rd Mar 2013, 10:41   #49
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Ha *high fives*

Yeah the tubing wasn't quite as fiddly as I imagined it would be, acrylic is apparently quite forgiving to work with. Ruined a couple bits by overheating them though, no hair dryer so a heat gun is my only option ATM.

Well just RMA'd the SSDs, turns out they were stone cold dead, wouldn't even register on any system. That's going to be a couple weeks or so, in the meantime I got another HDD just to get it running, plus I'll be needing another anyway in a month or so. I'm still undecided on what colour to paint the RAM. Will probably go with metallic blue, but satin/gloss white seems different and still fitting. What do you guys think?
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 01:55   #50
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Right well took the time to whip out the ol' DSLR for some proper pictures of Azure as it stands currently. The SSDs sadly are out for RMA currently, so just rocking a spare mechanical for now. I my be able to get round to cutting the window tomorrow, Wednesday seems more likely though. As for the RAM painting, my weekend turned out to be a fair bit more hectic than planned so it's still on the tables. Although the way the red G-Skill catches the light is rather nice, beginning to have second thoughts.

Without further ado, here are the improved pics:


















The original pictures didn't really show what this mod looks like at all (a problem I'm sure many of you have faced before). These have come out much clearer, thanks in part to using a better camera I guess. My light down here is still pretty rubbish though, and causes everything white to become full on yellow. The problem is that when I adjust the white balance on the camera to incandescent, the whites outside the case become better, but everything inside turns vivid blue! (Guess the fact that the inside is a purer white than the outside throws the settings a bit).

Still need to work out the cables too, the PCI-e ones from the graphics cards look to be a bit of a mess.
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 03:24   #51
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Nice build so far! Love the attention to detail that you have!

You could always replace the mesh with Acrylic. That's what I did on Project 12, looks sexy
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 04:02   #52
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If it were american flag-themed, the g-skill would be nice as is... But as far as relevant things go i would have to support the metallic blue or just.... blue. Looks great still though!
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 13:29   #53
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I like it, but that midplate need to be leveled tho
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 14:49   #54
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@XNine Yep that's what I plan on doing today if I have the time

@Siliconfanatic Blue it is then! Just need to source the right colour now in a suitable paint, also need to wait for it to warm up a little around here. It's not really ventilated enough to paint inside, so I'm tied to the weather it seems. Hopefully I can find some that'll work with my airbrush instead, ventilation won't be as much of an issue then.

@K.3nny Hmm, looking at that I think it's lens distortion actually. I know that it's flat, may be a bit slanting but that's because I haven't made the rear support yet. If you look at the top edge of the case, that also appears warped but in the opposite direction, and I know for a fact that edge is straight as an arrow. If you did mean about the slight gradient, then yes you're 100% right, may be able to sort that today/tomorrow, thanks for the reminder
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 17:26   #55
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Would very much like to see a tutorial on how you bent those acrylic tubes

Can you do a link for youtube, and tell what components you've used?
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 18:10   #56
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lovely system! Though IMO the red RAM looks a bit out of place there
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 18:32   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myrizzle View Post
Would very much like to see a tutorial on how you bent those acrylic tubes

Can you do a link for youtube, and tell what components you've used?
Hijack:

I did a toturial on BT about it INCL all components needed

: http://forums.bit-tech.net/showpost....6&postcount=49
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Old 5th Mar 2013, 18:55   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myrizzle View Post
Would very much like to see a tutorial on how you bent those acrylic tubes

Can you do a link for youtube, and tell what components you've used?
It's surprisingly easy, just need to make sure you don't overbake the tubes if using a heat gun. A video tut seems like a good idea, I'll look into that, might be a while though before I'll be able to make it though sadly. K.3nny has a good little picture tut here which is basically what I followed, only I didn't bend around an object as that lead to the outer wall on the inside of the bend flattening.

For some more detail and pics I'd follow the link to his tut, but here's a quick overview:

1) Map the basic route using normal tubing. This is handy for gauging the length of tube required, this step also holds true naturally for other hard tubing methods like copper etc. Try to keep the route with the flexible tubing as close to the route you want to take with the hard tubing. Measure that up and cut the hard tubing to the right length, I added a bit off extra length to the hard tubing for contingency.

2) Work out your angles for the tube. This bit is really rough and if you're confident can be skipped altogether. Just use something to give an estimate of how much the tubing will have to be bent.

3) Find something to insert into the tubing to prevent it from collapsing during bending. I used a mains power lead cable that I lopped the ends off, cheap and effective. I tried finding a suitable bending spring near me but failed, although I'm sure they're available online pretty cheaply.

4) Heat the tubing. After inserting the cable, carefully, using a heat gun or hair dryer (safer than the heat gun, just slower) heat the tubing around the point where you wish the bend to be. Remember to try and keep the heat as even as possible by rotating the tubing and strafing the heat gun back and forth. I used a heat gun and generally kept the end around 8-9cm from the tube.

5) As soon as you see the tubing begin to go a little limp, stop heating and bend into the preferred angle. If you continue to heat the tube, the acrylic will bubble and the finish will be ruined. When bending the tube, you can either bend freehand or around an object to ensure an even arc size to the bend. Don't bend too fast either, this will stretch the acrylic too much causing bubbles to appear. You have around 15-25 seconds to work with the tubing, so take your time and bend it slowly.

After that it's basically cutting the ends to make sure that it's the exact length and fits. Remember to round off the ends of the tubing too. I used a few grades of sandpaper just to add a small bevel, this will help prevent damage to the O-rings in the fittings. I used Bitspower C47 Multi-Link adapter fittings, other push fittings should work also.

That's a brief-ish overview of it, should line up with the pictures in K.3nny's tut too, don't have access to my tools atm to take some pictures of my own. May be able to later though.

@AverageNinja And that's exactly why that red has got to go. In and ideal world I would have used Dominator Platinum, or Blue Ripjaws/Dominator. Sadly when I got the RAM, Platinum didn't exist and I didn't really think much about future colour schemes

EDIT: Aargh Ninja'd by the author of the tut himself. You literally posted that in between me clicking here and responding rofl.
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Old 6th Mar 2013, 05:45   #59
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The one thing I really hate about ram heatspreaders is taking them off. They make it such a PITA to do
And I must admit, you are lucky. I'm stuck with a mere two sticks of the smae ram as you got.
Its just already blue
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Old 6th Mar 2013, 17:55   #60
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Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.Maki role is definitely a rep cheat.
Got some midplate and side panel work going today. I didn't really like the way the PSU is displayed underneath the midplate, but I also didn't want to sacrifice being able to work with the cables under there. So using some more white 5mm acrylic, I made a sheath of sorts that fits under the midplate and bends towards the cable entries. I quite like the bend itself as it fits in well with the bend in the midplate under the pumps. I've thought about potentially doing the same for the 240mm rad too, but I currently don't have enough plastic, I'll think about it.

The side panel progress is slower than I'd like, ran out of suitable cutting wheels so I'm waiting for some more to arrive. I got the clear plexi replacement windows cut and polished though. There's only one issue. The panel deisgned by NZXT has that very questionable feature of dipping below the midplate to show the PSU, much like the window in the Corsair 800D. This, of course, doesn't quite line up with the bend in the PSU sheath, leaving an ugly corner. It's looking like I'll have to fill in a bottom section of the lowest window so that it lines up properly with the midplate, then repaint it all.

Pictures of progress


















I also did a mockup of what I'd like the RAM to look like, opinions?
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Finished Builds: Azure, Vesper (2013 MotY Nominee), Loramentum (MotM Sep 2014)
Work in Progress: Azure Redux
Twitter: @Maki_Role

Last edited by Maki role; 6th Mar 2013 at 18:08.
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