First solo build (56k warning, lots of pics)

EndersShadow

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So I built my computer here recently but just got around to uploading the pics of it. Thought I would share the process and perhaps get some feedback on better ways to route the cabling. This is my first solo build, I have built a total of 2 computers, the first one couple pictures are one I had a friend help me build.

My thoughts were after around 6 months with my current setup at the time that the case was allowing too much noise out and with a already noisy GPU (4870x2) and a noisy CPU cooler, I needed something more quiet. It had to stay the same size and be able to have watercooling added later without much effort. I looked at many Lian-Li and Silverstone cases, but just didn't think they had the options the case I went with did.

My old case a Thermaltake Armour+. It served its purpose but was just way to loud..So I got a bonus and decided after doing some reading up on things to do something about it

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These are just a few of the tons of parts that came out of the old case:

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and
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Stripped down to its bare bones:
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Something I did to try to make the noise less deafening is to isloate the hard drives's ghetto style. It was sooo much cheaper than the other stuff you find (HDD isolators online, etc)

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The old case is stripped and ready for sale (sold it for 80 bucks):

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And the new case, the CoolerMaster ATCS 840. The aluminum sides all the way around look sexy, its got decent cooling abilities with the fans up top and the possibility of later on doing a 360 rad up top and a 240 rad on the HDD cage.

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I purchased some noise dampening AccoustiMat and applied it just about everywhere I could. All the sides are dampened with it. FYI for those out there debating adding it to the sides measure your clearances, it is hard to attach the side behind the mobo tray after doing my attempt at cable management.

The mobo tray with noise dampening on it:

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I also purchased a less noisy CPU fan, upgrading from a Tuniq Tower to a Noctua heatsink. It has made a world of difference, both in temps and also in noise. I may replace all my fans with the Noctua ones here shortly, they are just friggin expensive!

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I decided to add some foam to the DVD and Blu-ray drive as well as at the bottom of the HDD cage because it couldnt hurt right? I also slipped the SATA cables through the cutouts for a little cable management

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I also added it below and above my three HDD's by just cutting template pieces out to fit inside the sliding trays:

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Then started the cable management part...god I love and hate it!!! :D

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I have more to post and will be uploading the rest later tonight...maybe.

Please feel free to comment and give me feedback on ways to route cables a little better/hidden. I am a little new at all this and appreciate any advice, tips, etc
 
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criccio

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Ever thought of painting the case inside black?

Looks great so far, MOAR PICS!
 

EndersShadow

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So after I got everything installed I hit a huge roadblock. My mobo refused to boot. I pulled everything back out again, tested just the board, cpu and gpu and ram...still nothing...no POST beeps or anything. After some additional testing with tech support it was determined that the board was bad :(.

I got lucky and newegg had an open box of the same board that I had. I sent the old one out to be repaired (should be back in shortly) and waited for the new one to show up.... When the repaired board shows up it will be going into my server build (which is a build with an old Pentium D I have, some IDE HDD's and a SATA HDD.)

I debated during this time possibly painting the interior of the case, but as it isn't something readily seen and most of the interior is covered with AccosticPak material, I decided it was better to just not mess with it.

If/when I go watercooling I might at that point paint the case black (or other colors), but until then I am going to leave it how it is.

The board arrived a couple days later, and after the re-install we had POST!!!!! It was beautiful! After reinstalling everything it was time for cable management again. Unfortunately I was quite pissed and ready to be done with it all so I neglected to take pics of the build again.

As you will see with the bottom mounted PSU there really inst much I can do to hide some of the power cables, but I have done the best I can with what I have. Any suggestions will be appreciated.
 

EndersShadow

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moar pics!!! what psu are you using?

Kingwin Mach 1 1000 watt PSU. Its the computer in my sig. More pics will be taken tomorrowish....

As I have a nice digital SLI camera and a background in computer graphics, I was asked to take pictures of my girlfriends grandparents 50th wedding ceremony last Friday night. They are anxious for me to get the final results to them so I have some photo editing I need to do, so taking my rig apart to take pictures of it is last on my list.... :D

I promise more pics will be coming, I am damn proud of this build and how it looks overall in my room paired with my home theater.
 

EndersShadow

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So I got some time to take a couple quick pictures of the final product. I have the system hooked up to 2 19" monitors and a 32" Samsung LCD (for blu ray). I am using two diff sets of speakers. The Logitech ones you see on the desk are for when I am working on the computer. Before you knock them, they are decent and I *might* upgrade to Swans or some other powered ones later, but for my current needs they work. The goal is in the next month to purchase mounts for the LCD's and then mount the speakers on the wall (they rotate up and the stand part becomes a wall mount).

The receiver is from a HTIAB setup that I had. I added a set of Polk Monitor 40's, a Polk CS1 Center and am using the sub from the HTIAB setup but might upgrade to a PSW110 later. I decided to save myself some trouble and just not install and rear surrounds, it is too much work with wiring and with a 11x14 foot bedroom just not worth the effort right now as we dont watch to many movies in here.

I also have a 5 disc DVD player attached to the receiver and TV in case we want to do a movie marathon (Matrix, Lord of the Rings, Toy Story, etc).

I will be uploading some more pics this weekend showing the finished cable management part of the build (which I am not great at so suggestions would be much appreciate)

shots of the full setup

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The computer with a NXZT Sentry LX installed (really like it). The antenna is for the Hauppauge 2250 that I am using to grab OTA DTV shows and record to my HDD. This is just so I can watch them and then at a point in the future delete them. I also do not have a DVR box for cable in my bedroom so this is the only way I can watch regular TV in high def currently.

IMG_0090.jpg


The Home Theater aspect:

I still need to purchase a stand for one of the speakers, but for right now it works.

005-1.jpg
 
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EndersShadow

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Cable Management Update:

I know I promised pics of the interior long long ago, but here they are. Any and all suggestions on additional cable management or overall comments are welcome

The Front stuff:

**Please note** All fans with the exception of the top 240's are being replaced next week with Noctua P12 fans. I am hoping to improve the temp on my 4870x2 and as a result lower the RPM's on the stock heatsink. I have debated looking into the Accelero cooler for this GPU but it seems there is large failure rate with the install. I also am not sure I have enough clearance for it to work in the bottom slot and I cant move it up to the other 16x slot.

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The back stuff:

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As many ATCS 840 folks have mentioned the sides are somewhat flimsy on this case. To strengthen it up and also make it quieter I added noise dampening material to both sides:

028.jpg
 

EndersShadow

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Cable Management update:

Got in 4 Noctua P12 fans this weekend and have been working on installing them in the case. I have cut down considerably on the amount of wire jungle in the bottom.

I do have a question though: Would it be a problem to run everything, fan controller, 8 fans (5 on the Fan controller) 3 SATA HDD's, DVD and blu-ray drive all off of one run of Molex connectors? Do I need to connect a secondary string and use that to power some of the items, or am I ok to run it all off one set? For reference the PSU I am using is a Kingwin Mach 1.
 

ZygoatD

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yes, hdd's use alot of juice. put them on there own then prolly the fans and dvd drives on another.

assuming they are on different rails. if they are on the same rail it probably wont make a ton of difference, but i still try to split them up anyway.
 

EndersShadow

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yes, hdd's use alot of juice. put them on there own then prolly the fans and dvd drives on another.

assuming they are on different rails. if they are on the same rail it probably wont make a ton of difference, but i still try to split them up anyway.

Damn, I was hoping to hear different. Removing those two sets of SATA cables freed up tons of space and made it look soo much better. Looks like its back to the drawing board on this puppy.

I will run the 2 of the 3 HDD's and the fan controller off the Molex controllers and the DVD blu-ray drive and other HDD (with the OS) off another. Would that be adequate?
 
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EndersShadow

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Cable management update/more parts:

As with all builds you never really are done. I decided to go ahead and purchase 2 Asaka cooling and bay adaptors from Sidewinder Computers. I can now put 2 of my 3 HDD's in the 5 1/4 bays that are not currently in use. They will also help cut down on any noise and keep them cool. This also would allow me to use one PSU SATA cable run all to power the DVD drive, blu-ray drive and 2 HDD's. All the case fans, fan controller and remaining HDD will run off a molex PSU cable.

I also decided that since I have a mostly black case the red SATA cables just were not doing it for me. I ordered 5 36 inch black 90 degree to 180 degree locking SATAII cables from Monoprice.com and one 36 inch black SATA cable (which will be connected to the cases ESATA port I hope). I should have enough room to manuever them around and hide them better than I did originally or at least that is my hope. If nothing else they will blend in a lot better.

Everything should arrive tomorrow and I hope to have all the cable management done by early Saturday.

The only real debates I have at this point is if I want to cut some holes in the motherboard tray to move the 8 pin connector closer as well as recutting the 24pin connector and adding a hole for all my SATA cables to run behind the tray.

I also am debating cutting a slot where the HDD cage meets the 5 1/4 bays to run all the SATA cables from right above where the 230mm front intake is as well as the SATA power cable, but I am not sure if that will work right.....

As always this remains a work in progress and I hope to keep updating as I progress
 

EndersShadow

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Cable Management Finito

So I got time this weekend to get everything in and put together. Overall I am quite pleased with the result. My CPU is quite cool as is my GPU. I managed to run all my cables to look much cleaner than before. Below are pics of the result:

I added another P15 to the heatsink (not that I really needed to) and ran the wires through the hole in the motherboard tray. I also routed the front audio cable through the same wire and down between the heatsink and RAM to the sound card.

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I ran the 4890x2 in both 16x slots and in the top slot the temps were way too hot. I attribute this to the heat coming off the 4550 which is passively cooled. I moved it back down to the bottom 16x slot and the temps dropped drastically. After a lot of work I finally go the bottom to look quite a bit cleaner. Through various means I managed to eliminate one of the SATA PSU connectors entirely. This allowed me to use only the bottom slots and here is the result:

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I mounted two of my three HDD's in the unused 5 1/4 bays and ran black SATA cables to them.
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Here are some pictures behind the mobo tray. It looks much cleaner now:

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I am left with only 1 HDD in the HDD cage and that will be used in a upcoming server build. At that point I might remove all the holders and just leave it all blank.

I did not take a picture of this, but I removed all the quick connects for the 5 1/4 bays. I am planning on cutting another piece of Acoustimat foam and running down the entire front side, both the 5 1/4 bays and the HDD bays. I also the optional GPU cooler for the back of the computer. It was a bitch to attach all the wires beforehand and get it running, but it has helped to drastically lower my GPU temps.

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My next item to complete is going to be stealthing both the Blu-ray and DVD drives.

Until then happy building!
 
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Elledan

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I still think that those flesh-coloured fans look hideous :eek: Otherwise it looks great, nice job! :D
 

EndersShadow

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Temp Update:
So I decided to see what difference in temps these extra fans made. I ran the Intel Burn in test 50 times overnight and my CPU never hit higher than 54 degrees Celcius. This is a HUGE improvement.

As I am using Vista 64bit I dont know what to stress test the GPU with as FurMark doesnt seem to want to work on my PC. It is idling around 66 degrees Celcius currently. This is a much improved temp as well considering I have the GPU fan itself set at 35 percent rather than the 45 percent I had it at originally. The case is about as inaudible as it is going to get for air cooling at this point.


I still think that those flesh-coloured fans look hideous :eek: Otherwise it looks great, nice job! :D

Yeah I am not a fan of the way they look, but since no one see's the inside of the case but me I am ok with it. I debated back and forth many times about using these fans or some of the Scythe S-Flex fans, but decided to go with these ones after purchasing my heatsink.

The Noctua fan it came with was inaudible at all rpms. I am purchasing S-Flex fans for a server build so perhaps if they are as quiet I might swap out at a later point.

This project is by no means over. I am debating purchasing another ATCS case and building it from the ground up the way I really want to which is watercooled with a 240 rad in front, a 360 up top and 2 4890x2's. I however have to be able to justify that to the fiancee so it might be some time before I get to do that one.
 
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Not that you ever did mention what hard drive size you have.. they look a lot like 1tb ?

Other thing I would like to mention ( which is probably different in some power supplies.. ) is I have seen many power supplies have multiple 12v rails but the wiring is all soldered to the same section on the pcb which would not make a difference?

Aside from my blabbing.. nice job so far. I might suggest that the tape won't hold for long. Try some sleeve and heat shrink ?
 

EndersShadow

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Not that you ever did mention what hard drive size you have.. they look a lot like 1tb ?

Other thing I would like to mention ( which is probably different in some power supplies.. ) is I have seen many power supplies have multiple 12v rails but the wiring is all soldered to the same section on the pcb which would not make a difference?

Aside from my blabbing.. nice job so far. I might suggest that the tape won't hold for long. Try some sleeve and heat shrink ?

I have two WD 640 blacks and a Samsung Spinpoint 1 TB HDD. As of right now the tape is holding great. I might duck tape it if nothing else. Still debating doing a total rebuild. The Corsair 800D just came out and it looks marvelous for something like this.
 
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Oh definitly, I'm glad to see with some of the pictures that someone else has shown.. they have made the door behind the motherboard much larger :D
 

drgnfang

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Damn it. Another new case to drool over (the Corsair [when did they start making cases?]). *sigh*
 

best [486]

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You may have a problem with the foam on the motherboard tray, the mosfets on the back of the mobo will need a bit of cooling, the foam just acts like an insulator.

This is assuming there is anything that would get hot on the back of the mobo...
 

EndersShadow

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best [486];1034528656 said:
You may have a problem with the foam on the motherboard tray, the mosfets on the back of the mobo will need a bit of cooling, the foam just acts like an insulator.

This is assuming there is anything that would get hot on the back of the mobo...

So far no issues with it. The pictures don't show it too well but there is still a ton of space separating the mobo tray from the mobo. The foam is very thin (I used 2 layer rather than 3) and honestly adds if anything .2mm to the thickness if anything.
 

EndersShadow

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Update: Stealthed Drives & Problems

So my friend came over last night and we "attempted" to stealth both my DVD and my blu-ray drive. I say attempted because we got the blu-ray drive to work perfect, but with the DVD drive we were not so lucky. After stealthing it it seems to be stuck. The reset button works and attempts to pull the drive in but there are some gears that are locking up for no apparent reason.

We completely disassembled the DVD drive and figured out what was jamming, but we have no idea how to fix it. There are no indications that something is broken off or bend out of place (i.e. gears, etc) but there are two moving parts that seem to just get jammed randomly and the more pressure you add to them the more often they jam. When fully assembled it is completely locked up but when taken apart seems to function decently.

I will be posting pictures and possibly a video later this weekend and hopefully someone can help me figure out how to save it. Google turned up just about nothing at all.

If I cant save it I am ok with buying another one, but would like to try and save the one I have already (I mean this this is [H]ardOCP :D) . Heck it was about the most fun I have had in a while taking it all the way apart just to see how it all works...
 

pc1x1

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That sucks, and good luck, whenever you post if I see anything, Ill chime in. Could be just a crappy motor though.
Update: Stealthed Drives & Problems

So my friend came over last night and we "attempted" to stealth both my DVD and my blu-ray drive. I say attempted because we got the blu-ray drive to work perfect, but with the DVD drive we were not so lucky. After stealthing it it seems to be stuck. The reset button works and attempts to pull the drive in but there are some gears that are locking up for no apparent reason.

We completely disassembled the DVD drive and figured out what was jamming, but we have no idea how to fix it. There are no indications that something is broken off or bend out of place (i.e. gears, etc) but there are two moving parts that seem to just get jammed randomly and the more pressure you add to them the more often they jam. When fully assembled it is completely locked up but when taken apart seems to function decently.

I will be posting pictures and possibly a video later this weekend and hopefully someone can help me figure out how to save it. Google turned up just about nothing at all.

If I cant save it I am ok with buying another one, but would like to try and save the one I have already (I mean this this is [H]ardOCP :D) . Heck it was about the most fun I have had in a while taking it all the way apart just to see how it all works...
 

EndersShadow

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That sucks, and good luck, whenever you post if I see anything, Ill chime in. Could be just a crappy motor though.

Motor works fine, their are two plastic gears that seem to catch on something (which we cannot for the life of us figure out). The motor was completely removed and it was down to the last 3 parts. The pictures will hopefully show what I am talking about but the motor is doing its job, there is just something causing either the gears to jam or to not catch right....

Switching topics, good luck on your build its quite serious compared to mine...lol...it tends to make me want to tear everything down and start from the ground up again....
 

pc1x1

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Motor works fine, their are two plastic gears that seem to catch on something (which we cannot for the life of us figure out). The motor was completely removed and it was down to the last 3 parts. The pictures will hopefully show what I am talking about but the motor is doing its job, there is just something causing either the gears to jam or to not catch right....

Switching topics, good luck on your build its quite serious compared to mine...lol...it tends to make me want to tear everything down and start from the ground up again....

Haha thanks, all builds are serious business! So yours is awesome too, plus you got alot of cred on the storage space, hopefully I can edge my way in with my Areca.

And yea I feel for ya, I had the same dilemma, I was basically done, but wasn't satisfied you know, so bam tore down the tower for one more go, heh!
 

EndersShadow

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Update:

Be looking for some pics this weekend. I have been low on cash and time working on on my next "Mod" :):

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pc1x1

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^ very nice mod, I like the colors ;)

Congrats man! Now go make offspring ;), so we can populate the world!

Let us know how that mod goes, and make sure to buy the extended warranty!
 
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