Staff project NZXSPC. The finished build
All the work put into Project NZXSPC is starting to pay off as the build reaches it's completion. For those of you who've taken the opportunity to migrate over to the forums area and in particular the Project logs section you'll have seen the various stages we've been through with the project, and hopefully taken the time to look not just at this project but also the many others which are under way. From scratch builds to just simple upgrades, you'll find it all in the forums, along with a great community with fellow enthusiasts always happy to help.
Case, NZXT Phantom 410 "Gunmetal" Special edition - custom window
Motherboard, MSI Z77A GD55
Processor, Intel 2500K
Graphics, NVidia GTX570
SSD, SanDisk Extreme 120GB
HDD, WD Green 2TB
RAM, 16GB Mushkin Blackline
PSU, NZXT HALE82
Additional Cabling, NZXT Premium cables Starter kit
Radiators, 2 XSPC EX 240 Radiators
Reservoir, XSPC X20 750 bay reservoir with integral pump
CPU Block, XSPC Raystorm - custom white LED's
GPU Block, XSPC Razor - Custom painted black & gunmetal grey
Fans, 5 x Scythe Gentle Typhoon 1850rpm.
lets kick things off with a quick look at the exterior of the case. It was never our intention to alter the external looks of the Phantom 410 to any great degree as it's such a great looker, but we did feel the mesh area beneath the window had to go, replaced with a single large sheet of clear3mm acrylic.
Moving to the interior, you already have a good idea of what's in here, but just to re-cap, we've taken out the front 3.5" bays and cut away a little of the 5.25" bays to make room for the front XSPC EX240 radiator, the other being safely stowed away in the roof of the case. We've also made use of the NZXT pre sleeved cable extension pack to add a bit of class to the cabling. As we wanted to go for a mature sleek look we also changed the appearance of the blue highlights on the MSI motherboard, giving it an all over matt black look. And even though it will never be seen, we wouldn't be OC3D if we didn't make sure the cabling at the rear of the motherboard was also sorted out.
GPU and Cooling loop
Before we come to the CPU cooling, lets first take a look at the GPU cooling and loop in general. We took the Copper and Brushed Aluminium Waterblock, a thing of beauty it has to be said, and after a bit of a false start decided that this would look much better if modded to suit the theme of the case. We also chose to swap out the supplied XSPC fittings for a Bitspower Shiny silver fittings, they're not cheap, but they're worth every penny. Our chosen loop order reflects the desire to keep the inside of the case clean and simple, and as we all know the only thing to be gained from going back and forth between components and radiators is a case interior that looks like a vipers nest.
The excellent XSPC Raystorm CPU Waterblock comes with 2x3mm LEDs to light up the acrylic area of the block, however, as this blue would not be in keeping with the theme of the build we chose to wire in some white LEDs in their place. I think you'll agree the crisp clean white light they give makes the effort worthwhile.
Combined with the NZXT 200mm LED lighting strip, again in white and chosen for its quality as well as the ability to be able to vary the intensity of the light. We're able to really set off the interior of the case.
There is of course much more to this project than the highlights presented here. So if you want to get the full flavour, in true OC3D fashion, make yourself a brew and wander over to the Project Logs area of the Forums. In due course we'll be benchmarking the system as well as conducting a full system review, we'll also of course giving our thoughts on the build and the components used.
Without wishing to cause embarrassment as he's a very modest chap i'd like to pass my most sincere thanks to Tom, not only for making this project happen, but for offering constructive criticism and guidance where it was needed. Without him this build wouldn't have happened, and without his input, it wouldn't have look as good as it does.
So with the rig complete and raring to go it's time to see what Project NZXSPC is capable of. Many thanks to all who have followed this build and others on the forums, and for all the feedback received. And remember even though this projects finished, there's still loads going on over in the forums. Why not take the Bull by the bits and see what you can do.
Now, I'm off to have a bit of fun.... Keep track of everything in the NZXSPC build log here.