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Old 12th Nov 2016, 13:33   #21
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I am with block. Was a bit of a nightmare though ! when it arrived it was filthy inside. So I took it apart and it was full of orange dust that looked like rust lol. God knows what the last user was using for fittings and a rad ! Any way after being completely taken apart, cleaned, vinegared, etc it now looks like this.



There are a couple of small chips on the EK badge but I can live with that.

The back side was plain awful. Absolutely black. So I hit that with T-cut metallic and polished it to a shine



I will get it mounted later. Thank goodness it came with the correct mounting stuff for X79.
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Old 13th Nov 2016, 17:00   #22
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OK so I wrapped the repaired floor panel (twice, thin vinyl)



And rebuilt it.



That is now back in the rig and I wrapped the front part of the cable trunks with black brushed vinyl. Looks really clean, will get some pics of that tomorrow
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Old 14th Nov 2016, 11:27   #23
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So my Chinese SC600 pump came in today. The first thing I did (obs) was take it all apart.



I was very pleased to find that it does actually have a ceramic bearing and shaft. Pretty neat for less than 10 !

Next step was a ghetto loop.



At first I thought the pump was broken, because nothing was happening. So I primed it by myself (I always was a bit of a sucker ) and it started pumping water but the flow rate was tragic. So I tipped the pump around a bit and it made some gurgling sounds and then wham !



We're in business

So today I will make the mount for it.

Oh yeah, in other news I can not fit the block because he has sent me the fixings for the newer model. I might be able to mod some M4 bolts though and make it work, so will do that later also
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Old 14th Nov 2016, 13:14   #24
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Pump fitted.

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Old 15th Nov 2016, 12:02   #25
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Organised chaos...





OK so what's been done..

Fitted repaired/recovered floor.
Fitting 80% of water kit, then realised I had the sodding pump on the wrong hole of the res bay. So I had to strip it all back down to nothing and sodding start again.
Refitted water cooling to 95%. All of the major plumbing is done now.
Fitted pump holder Rev 3 (Rev 1 was as it was in the last pic, Rev 2 was gusseted and covered, Rev 3 was it modded so I could move it over.
Re-shrunk one of the USB cables as the braid pulled out of the shrink.
Fitted block.
Fitted motherboard.
Cut plans for front bay holder that will hold the temp gauge.



And the volt meter (hasn't arrived yet)



OK so left to do.

Fit internal fan controller (not here yet) But will be one of these.



A T Balancer. This is just to control the GPU fans. The rad fans are 600 RPM and silent but I need to be able to ramp up the fans on the Fury X when I game on it (I will be using it for Vulkan games, where it beheads my Titan X).

Once that is done I can fill it up and get it all up and running

Actually no, I still need to make an IO cover and a SATA port/cable cover
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Old 16th Nov 2016, 11:34   #26
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Postman came



Red LED for res, fan controller, hose clamp, EK badges. I've also been busy designing and cutting cut templates and the final decals



Still no volt meter though.
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Old 16th Nov 2016, 11:45   #27
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Old 16th Nov 2016, 12:59   #28
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So today I cut and made the IO cover and the SATA port cover. Both cut from 3mm acryl, then covered in brushed black before adding a brushed silver decal.





As you can see the sun is playing silly buggers today. I also made the front panel

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Old 16th Nov 2016, 13:38   #29
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Wait, hang on, was that actually the sun I just saw? I will never recover from the flash burn !

Joking aside though I did manage to get a pic. It's not quite a potato, more a perfectly cooked jacket potato. No cheese though.



OK so what's been done since the last time I posted a pic? The EK badge is fitted. The IO cover is fitted. The hose clamp has been put in. You can now actually see the brushed black pump housing in all its glory, and, my now perfectly straight sticky uppy hose thing.

Oh yeah, the panel fits like a glove too.



So I didn't fit the SATA cover because the trunking is not straight. I am going to have to make a platform that sticks to the SATA ports, then sticks to the cover similar to how I did it with ROTT.

It's getting there though. Very slowly, but yeah, getting there.
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Old 17th Nov 2016, 14:18   #30
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Got the volt meter in today so I could finally start doing some wiring. First I braided and tested the temp sensor and volt meter, both work OK.



Then I braided some more (red) and added in the LEDs that will go in the back of the res.



I've got the volt meter to keep an eye on my 12v line. It does something pretty cool when you shut down the PSU, so I recorded it



Now I can begin putting them into the panel I made
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Old 17th Nov 2016, 15:38   #31
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OK so the next thing to do now that all of the connectors and wiring are done was to map out the holes for the two meters. I drew it up in Photoshop, then took it to the plotter.



I then cut the holes and put on some brushed vinyl.



EK badge.



And finally, what it actually looks like. This never, ever happens when I take pics of LEDs etc.



I will get that in tomorrow, then I start on the T balancer.
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Old 19th Nov 2016, 15:15   #32
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Just leak testing now, though it should be OK.
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Old 21st Nov 2016, 12:09   #33
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Update. So basically I was doing really well with the build until yesterday morning. That's when everything started to go wrong.

I fitted the GPU (and had to completely remove the pump stand because it hit the radiator) but thankfully the pump seems to like where it is and wants to stay there under the pressure of the two hoses so that's cool. It was also vibrating on the pump stand so I spent ages sorting that out, only to have to remove it.

Then it all went wrong. Now when I rebuilt the rig before for my wife (from broken to working) I wasn't sure about the front panel header wires. So I spent ages buzzing them with a battery to find the LEDs and so on and it all worked. However, when I reconnected them for some unknown reason (even now, ten hours of labour later) the power button ceased working. So I ended up having to remove the entire HDD cover panel (15 screws) roof (12 screws) front panel (8 screws) and finally the entire switch housing assembly. I then removed the power button PCB and traced all of the correct wires using the PCB itself. OK, so now the power button was working (with a complete rewire also, I did not trust the wires now, talk about paranoid !) and ten hours later (it's still in bits) the power button worked and the rig switched on. Any one else would have just fitted a new power button somewhere else and had done, but no, I wanted the correct one working.

OK so I fired up the rig and it did what it does if you remove all of the hardware and put it all back in again (says the bios is corrupt and is restoring from position 2) so I figure I will let it do that then go into bios and set it up. Nope ! every time I tried to enter bios it hard locked at the Gigabyte logo. No matter how long I waited or what I tried I could not get into bios.

So I removed most of the hardware, then all of a sudden like a ray of light it hit me (right around midnight) that in order to enter the bios with this Xeon you must remove the GPU, remove the board battery, boot it, do what you gotta do then save out and boot the rig. If you don't do it in that order you can not enter bios at all. I don't know what causes that but I would probably hedge my bets toward the ES Xeon.

So at around 12:30 the rig is booted, udpated and I finally got to actually do some stuff on it. Then I press the alien head and the nightmares continue

The face panel goes up, gets right to the very end then makes a clicking sound and goes back down again. Now this shouldn't happen because I tested it immediately after fitting the res (because it has stick out bolt heads) and it was fine. Yet, for some reason known only to it it now decided it wanted to jam every time it went up, refuse to stay there and then wind itself back down.

So I had to unbolt the res and the display panel, drill new holes and then put it all back together again. Only it is still refusing to work. Another hour of sodding around and it now does what it should (though again, no reason or rhyme). I finally got to try Doom in Vulkan around 2am, but by 2:30 I was absolutely knackered. I also managed to upset my wife, so had to do some grovelling (as you can imagine I wasn't in the best of moods).

There's no point in any pics now, the rig looks less built than the last time I took any pics of it. However, instead of repeating yesterday's events today I am going to take some time out. Yesterday I ended up annoyed and when that happens I pretty much drop everything. That makes me even more angry and I end up exploding.

So yeah, everything is functioning apart from the Tbalancer (well it is, it just isn't connected up as I need to make a cable*) so for today I am just going to leave it.

* I bought a USB3-USB2 internal but it is not long enough. Gareth sent me a lovely USB 2 internal cable which is far too long. So instead of just connecting them together I am going to cut Gareth's one, solder it to mine and then braid it with some red stuff I have that I removed from a red SATA cable. It's nice braid too and I would rather it look right.
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Old 21st Nov 2016, 13:58   #34
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Sun decided to grace me with its presence so I responded in kind and took some photos. Firstly my nice tidy desk.



Some one has some tidying to do... Note : PC is very messy inside having been built and rebuilt about ten times last night.

Roof back on.



In this pic you can see lots of hard drives. However, look around them. There is a black/transparent piece that covers the entire side. It clips in, has lots of wires hidden under it (including the front panel ones I was trying to get to !) and is a complete sod to get off and back on again.



The pump, finally behaving itself ( I had to literally fill the res up to the limit to stop it spitting and bubbling, though that's the res's fault really)



The front. You will notice the chrome res bolts are gone and I replaced with black button hex bolts instead.



And a quick side profile shot, though again everything is about as messy as it can be right now. I got a refund on an Ebay con so when it hits the account I think I am going to order some 16 hole combs and fit them. IIRC the pins come out of the Bitfenix Alchemy quite well?

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Old 23rd Nov 2016, 16:06   #35
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Afternoon all. For the past couple of days Gareth and I have been trying to get the T-balancer to connect up to the PC so I can take control of the fans. Sadly for some reason it seems to hate the motherboard and no matter how you connect it up it does funny stuff. For example when you plug it in internally it corrupts Windows and stops the rig booting. If I connect it up using the external USB B socket it shuts down the PC. All very odd but I suspect it may be a UEFI thing going on ? no idea. Suffice to say I am just going to have to leave the rig as it is. It's quiet, but not as quiet as I wanted it but compared to other servers I've seen it sounds like a silent fart.

Any way, moving onward and upward I have only a few small jobs left to do. The GPU cables looked sort of OK until I removed the cable tie (which looked cack) and then they just sprouted everywhere. I thought about how best to sort them out and decided on these.



I have ordered six, three per cable. I wanted 16 hole combs but a certain company wanted me to buy ten of them otherwise "It's not worth it".

So I will get those fitted when they arrive, IIRC Alchemys come apart quite easily requiring little force they will definitely look better. I will clean them too (with a damp cloth) as they are pretty filthy. I mean I have had them for about three years.

Moving on, one of the main jobs left to do is sort out the main cover. I don't want it to go back in as it is because it's kinda transparent and won't match anything. So I am going to attempt to cover it which will be quite difficult as it has a battery compartment that usually houses two rechargeable batteries to operate all of the internal lights that come on when you open it and the lights on the back panel IO which you press a button to light. Thing is it was getting in the way and the case does all of that when plugged into the mains any way. So I removed the batteries and the carrier etc.

I also got some logos through from a couple of companies so I would like to take the chance to actually put a design on the cover.

We shall see

The rig is working very well now though and I have been on it as much as I can because the CPU draws an absolute maximum of 60w under load. So yeah, won't save me a fortune but it's helping
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Old 19th Dec 2016, 14:26   #36
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Finished this a while back. Pics..









Take a seat at the table Mr Tamson...





Update ! so I have been using this rig as my daily beater. Mostly because it's the quietest rig I have (600 RPM fans on the CPU rad for example and only two) and secondly because I just love this rig so much. It's built like a brick out house, has features that just rock (like a button on the back that lights up the entire back outside so you can see what you are doing).

Well the other day I thought I would take a look around to see what I could find in the CPU department. I firstly considered getting a 3930k or something but I was certain that it would be wasted in this board (X79 UD3) as it has pants phases and you can only get about 3.6 ghz or so before it craps its pants.

I was certain also that I had the Rev 1.0 board which is even worse than the 1.1.

Any way after a lot of research (and nearly making a terrible mistake !*) I found one of these on Ebay (note I drew this using the actual CPU to take everything from)



OK so this is where it all gets a bit weird. It's called a QE5F. If you look around using that as a search word it brings you to a Xeon E5 2680 V2. However, the E5 2680 V2 is actually a ten core CPU, not 8 core. But this thing is called the exact same name and even has the 25mb of cache that comes on the 10 core model, but still only has 8 cores

Very strange. Any way, on Sunday (two days after I had ordered the CPU) I found out that it does not work on Rev 1.0 boards. On Gigabyte's site it says 2680 but if you look over to the right it says N/A. In other words it does not work. Why Gigabyte did this instead of just not listing the CPU god only knows.

So I was kinda worried that it would not work. I decided to get out my torch (flashlight) and have a poke around and I noticed it said Rev 1.1. I quickly went back to Gigabyte's support list and....



PHEW. So this made me happy. The CPU came today and I fitted it and... Well it works

So I ran some benchmarks.

Before - 2ghz boost on all 8 cores, Ivy EP.



Cinebench.



After, 3.1 ghz boost on all 8 cores. Ivy EP 25mb cache.





It's about 100 points short of a stock 5960x. Well, one that boosts to 3.3ghz. For 100 it's incredible..

Couple more benchmarks.

3DMFS regular (not Extreme)



3DM12 Time Spy



So this rig has now become my daily rig. Just need 8gb more RAM when I am not so skint and it's not so blood suckingly expensive and I will be all set

*I thought I had a V1 board and did not read the chart correctly. Doh.
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Old 19th Dec 2016, 14:40   #37
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Nice processor for the money! Physics scores will benefit from the extra cores - it's a workload that scales out quite nicely. Decent amount of cache too.
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Old 5th Apr 2017, 10:35   #38
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Riff Tamson is back, sorta kinda.

The time has arrived to finally cool the Fury X on a separate loop. The Watercool HTFS2 is not man enough to cope with a GPU and the highly threaded CPU, so I started doing some scouting for parts.

Firstly let me say, this build is by no means going to be flattering. It is what it is. An old design with no cable management and nowhere to hide. It's not going to set the world alight it's more of a case of me forcing the case to do something it was never designed for. That is never going to be very pretty.

Any way, here is my bounty after a week of scouring everywhere there is to scour for parts.



Which look like this.





I then bought one of these used with the pump.





One of these.



Which will cover both reservoirs. Top will show CPU coolant (red) bottom will show GPU coolant (green). I got eight of these.



One of these.



This.



(11/8mm) This.



This.



And finally (he said in his best optimistic voice, knowing that WC is never truly done...)



Two of those. Current spend is about 113 all in.

So yeah, the idea is to basically cram two completely separate loops into a case never designed for one. My aim is to fit the GPU res below the CPU res and use a double face cover to show levels for both.
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Old 5th Apr 2017, 11:21   #39
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it's really an impressive case, my favourite of the 3 Alienware, even if what you've done with "rise of the triad" was amazing, the design of this ALX is absolutely crazy...im following
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Old 5th Apr 2017, 11:45   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kim View Post
it's really an impressive case, my favourite of the 3 Alienware, even if what you've done with "rise of the triad" was amazing, the design of this ALX is absolutely crazy...im following
TBH Kim I think it's my favourite too. Even though it's terribly designed inside the features it has and the overall quality of this case is unmatched. I use this as my daily rig Every time I see the vents flare and open at boot I smile.

I just got the fittings about twenty minutes ago. They're very nice, but I still can't see how they are worth what they cost new (about 19 each). Still, 1.99 was much easier to swallow

For some unknown reason I really fancied a flow indicator on the GPU loop. Given my back is out working on it for now is out also, so I did some digging and came up with this.



For 4.20. Problem is you then need more fittings, but thankfully PC Modders (AKA Specialtech) had these for 2.42 each.



It would have been rude not to really.
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