Aug 07, 2019 Written by: Chris Scott Barr

An inside look at Ben Q’s brass-filled Blanco build

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Article Tags: PC Mods

When it comes time for a new computer, you have lots of options. While some people choose the simplicity of buying a pre-built machine off the shelf, enthusiasts often opt to choose every part of their PC for themselves. If you’re a master builder like Ben Q, though, that customization takes on a whole new meaning.

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Taking inspiration from his love of architecture, Ben Q set out to craft a PC that was as much a piece of art as it was a powerful gaming rig. With computers becoming such an integral part of many homes, he wanted to build something that wouldn’t merely occupy space, but add to the overall design of a room. What emerged from those ideas became a build that he dubbed Blanco.

The heart of Blanco is an ASUS ROG z390 Maximus Code and an ASUS GeForce RTX 2060. Ben Q rounded out the build with an Intel Core i7-8700K, a 1TB Samsung M.2 SSD, 32GB of TeamGroup’s Night Hawk RGB RAM, and a Seasonic 750W PSU.

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Blanco's journey from idea to finished build took more than six months. Ben Q spent the majority of that time working with custom case builder Parvum to achieve his artistic vision. Despite the amount of time it took to get the chassis just right, it wasn’t even the most challenging part of the build. As with any build that includes a custom liquid cooling loop, Ben Q had to spend a significant amount of time figuring out how to get that fluid exactly where he wanted it. 

Once you peek inside Blanco’s windowed side panel, it immediately becomes clear why Ben Q spent so much time on the cooling solution. He chose to forgo the off-the-shelf tubing elements in favor of custom gold-plated brass piping. The polished look of the brass shines as a unique centerpiece for the build. Unfortunately, it comes at a cost.

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If you’ve never worked with plated brass tubing before, you might not know how delicate it is. Any attempt to bend it is generally met with bits of the plating flaking off, ruining its beautiful shine. Ben Q spent a good deal of time creating a custom jig that allows him to delicately bend and shape the tubes as needed. The end result is an interior that shines brightly without the need for abundant RGB lighting.

Since the complex tubing takes up a majority of the available space in front of the motherboard, Ben Q carefully hid the liquid reservoir on the back of the build. He designed individual channels for the liquid in CAD software, cast them in acrylic, and placed them in the top and bottom of the case. They’re built so seamlessly into the chassis that you’ll miss them if you’re not explicitly looking for them.

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Ben Q's final touch for Blanco was a set of custom cables from Mainframe. The white and orange power cables accent the case and copper tubing while still allowing the muted beauty of the ASUS motherboard and graphics card to shine through.

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This is the first time we’ve featured one of Ben Q’s custom builds, but it’s far from his first rodeo. You can check out his other designs and keep up to date with his latest projects on his Instagram.
 

Articles: Galleries PC Mods
Article Tags: PC Mods
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