Build Preview ‘Orange & Black Attack Stack’

The name is pending, but I figured to start with a list of parts going into this rig:

  1. I won a custom painted HAF 935 from my friends at This is an extremely customizable and expandable case. To start I’m placing a majority of the components into the Mid-Tower HAF 945 portion. The water-cooling and PSU will go in the mini-ITX 915F portion. Later I may expand with a 915R to add a removable Steam Box, so I can stream games from the main PC into any room on my network. The timing of receiving this case placed me in a position to enter into an Overclocking Competition on, though the delay in my funding being received may’ve delayed my build too long to actually win.
  2. For cooling, I was shopping for a Swiftech H220 to start a custom cooling loop. Well, it was going to be $150 for just that pump, once I added in a radiator I was already up to $350. Then I saw a deal on the CoolerMaster Clacer 240L. While the radiator is only 120×2, when I was aiming for 120×3, I realized it has the Swiftech H220 for a pump! Plus, the deal meant it was $100 for all the parts and it is all expandable, so I can still customize it, down the road. Including changing out the radiator, tubing and expanding it to include other parts.
  3. Initially I thought I had a Power Supply in place. Especially after Seasonic said that it worked fine. Yet, while it was at Seasonic my current rig started working fine, not showing the issues that were there when the Seasonic PSU was installed. So, I had to purchase a new Power Supply. After combing through deals and reviews, I landed on the eVGA Supernova 850 G2. While it’s not 80+ platinum like the Seasonic unit was, it posts figures comparable and it appears to actually be more efficient than the 80+ Gold rating requires.
  4. I’ve used Crucial and Mushkin SSDs. Recently Mushkin released an exclusive line via NewEgg. I looked over the specs and I’m more than satisfied with the idea of using this ECO2 line. Initially I will be overclocking and testing with this rig, so capacity isn’t an issue.
  5. Once I went down the line of using this case, I committed to a primarily orange and black color combo. When it comes to orange and black motherboards, you are pretty well set on a Gigabyte SOC board. This worked out in a few directions. First off, the competition I was interested in entering requires a Gigabyte board. Secondly, I was pretty set on going with the x99 chipset. Finally, they were releasing a new board the SOC Champion. The few drawbacks of this board are that it “only” has 4 RAM slots, “limiting” it to 64GB DDR4, rather than 128GB. It doesn’t have dual NIC. The m.2 socket is “limited” to 20 GB/s. These drawbacks result in higher memory performance due to less line tracing for the additional RAM slots, more CPU cycles due to handling only one NIC and less of the PCI-e bus being taken up by the m.2. Plus, I love the looks and performance of this board.
  6. For the processor, I’d debated between the 5820k and 5930k. The 5960x being far beyond my needs or budget. I settled on the 5930k, so that I could take advantage of 16x speeds in SLI, which maybe in my future.
  7. The last two items took the most research and work, the video card and the memory. On the video card part, I already have a GTX 680, which plays fine on my 1920×1200 resolution display. Though it doesn’t do so well on more demanding games on my 2560×1600 resolution display. This is mostly due to only having 2GB of on-board memory. While researching, I discovered the ASUS Platinum Poseidon gtx980. It’s pricing is about the same as buying a GTX980 and adding a water cooling block, while not adding the risk of voiding the warranty. Plus it has air-cooling, so if I am not completely ready to add it to the water-loop, I can run it without worries.
  8. Finally, there’s the memory. This was a tough one, memory support by motherboard manufacturers has been spotty at best. I was leaning towards a 3000mhz kit, but the design, overclocking and MOD monitoring of the Crucial Ballstix Elite Memory won me over.

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