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  1. #1
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    First Build (and Thanks!)

    So about two months ago, my Dell XPS (a marginal machine at best) died. Sad, I know, but I went about buying another one. I had had a Falcon-NW a few years back, paid top dollar for it and it never did work right -- went back to Falcon 4 times, replaced parts 3 times and still it didn't work right (BSOD crashes which I was routinely blamed for in a nice way by the staff).

    Long story short, the more I investigated, the more I became convinced that building my own would be the way to go. Problem though... I'm 50 years old, never built a computer and am frightened by BIOS (nightmares, really). So I started reading and ended up here. The advice here was WAY too complex at first, but after reading more and watching some YouTube vids, it became more clear. I dove in.

    Without the advice and help offered here (special thanks to Chino and Zka17 who helped me sort out my shorting problem), it would not have been possible and for that I am very grateful. Here, then, are a few of my build pics and the end result, which, if I do say so myself, looks pretty badass


    Here are the parts pre-assembly. I opted to go with the Lamptron FC9 fan controller as it had 50W per channel so it could control all 8 case fans. The case is Lian Li's PC-A77F which was chosen to accommodate the EATX M5E MB as well as the Corsair H110 AIO water-cooling unit.

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    Here are the top-mounted dual 140mm fans that come with the case to accommodate the 280mm H110 radiator (and hopefully a nice push-pull configuration):


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    Ahh... the PSU "problem". That bracket that allows for "tool-less" PSU installation can short out the system (as I discovered):


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    My beautiful M5E with the 3770K and RAM installed:


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    MB and H110 installed in the case. Outside the case everything fired up perfectly, but inside, nothing... After a thorough search of the internet and a lot of help here, I discovered the PSU bracket issue (still not sure why, to be honest). It was NOT an issue with the MB mounting (no extra standoffs, inadvertent case contacts, etc. As soon as the bracket came off the PSU the system started normally).


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    The main question I had going into the build was whether or not the push-pull configuration for the H110 would clear the MB and fit... It did (barely)!


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    Pre-ignition case assembly. My cable-fu is weak, I know (and admittedly not a strong suit of this particular case). I am not sure if the power cables plugging into the upper left of the MB are even necessary...


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    Flame On! Here's my baby fired up for the first time in it's room. I used an NZXT Hue for LED lighting and added the optional windowed side panel for bling-appeal.


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    As far as software and drivers, I again followed advice found here and kept it very basic: No AI Suite or ASUS software. I went into the BIOS (version 1501, btw -- didn't update it) and installed the RAID 0 array, then followed the guide here for installing the XMP for my RAM (running at 1866). Installed Windows without a hitch and then installed the Chipset, LAN, RAID and USB 3.0 drivers and was off to the races. For monitoring software I went with AIDA64 and nothing else.

    Baseline stability is great with voltages ranging from 0.93V (1600 MHz) to 1.224V (3900 MHz). I then tried simply increasing the CPU multiplier to 43 (no other changes were made to the baseline BIOS). Under AIDA64 stress testing for 8 hours, the system did not crash. Voltage was at 1.28V and temps on the cores were 56-63 degrees average with max temps of 76 degrees (transient). The GPU under stress ran at 76 degrees as well. These numbers seem safe to me, based on what I've read here.

    I have no idea what to tweak from there. I don't want the system to run at 1.28V all the time, so I'm guessing my next move would be to enable Offset mode? I'm not sure in what general order people tweak the BIOS when overclocking, but any advice in that regard would be much appreciated.

    Many thanks again!


    TJ
    MB: Maximus VII Formula
    Processor: i7-4790K
    Cooling: Custom loop
    RAM: 32 GB Corsair Dominator Platinum/2133
    SSD: 2x 1TB Samsung 850 EVO Series
    HDD: 3TB Seagate Barracuda (SATA III/6GB/s)
    GPU: 2x EVGA GTX980 SC 4GB
    CASE: Phanteks Enthoo Primo
    PSU: Corsair AX1200i Platinum
    OS: Windows 8.1 (64 bit)

  2. #2
    iron man Array kkn's Avatar
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    looking good sir, hope you will have funn whit it for some time

  3. #3
    AntiMatter Guru ROG Array chrsplmr's Avatar
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    ROG OverLoad. Love it.c.

  4. #4
    ROG Guru: Grand Master Array HiVizMan's Avatar
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    Nice one mate.

    wish we had a thumbs up smiley face.
    To help us help you - please provide as much information about your system and the problem as possible.

  5. #5
    ROG Enthusiast Array
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    Love it look great!!

  6. #6
    ROG's resident MUPPET! Array
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    Love it!
    Your build looks very nice

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerol View Post
    Long story short, the more I investigated, the more I became convinced that building my own would be the way to go. Problem though ... I'm 50 years old, never built a computer and am frightened by BIOS (nightmares, really). So I started reading and ended up here. The advice here was WAY too complex at first, but after reading more and watching some YouTube vids, it became more clear. I dove in.
    Awesome! It is very rewarding to build one's own system. I've been doing so for 15+ years now. Asus ROG boards are the best for us enthusiasts.
    i5-3570k | V Gene | HD 4000 | Crucial M4 256GB | Fractal Design Mini | NEC 2490WUXi2

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