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LIGISTX

White Lightning

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Well, this build was a long time coming, and initially it wasn't going to be a fully water cooled build as I was planning to wait to build a full on watercooled PC once I graduate college. There was no official start to this build, I had a Fractal Define XL R2 before the Corsair 350d, which housed my Asus Gryphon Z87, 4770k, CM 240l, GTX 470 with Antec Kuhler 620 and custom pre NZXT bracket, OCZ Vertex 4, TX750 V2, some harddrives, my x-fi titanium, and a gt 610 video card for my third monitor.

 

Needless to say, many things have changed, except the core has remained intact. I had an opportunity to sell my parents the XL R2, and my Vertex 4, which I replaced with my 350d and a Samsung 840 evo 128. USPS messed up my Amazon order, and after about half a week of me being patient, I told Amazon my product never showed. They promptly sent me a replacement via UPS, and what do you know, they both showed up on the same day. I told Amazon, and they let me keep both, so I was pretty stoked! RAID 0 SSD's because why not (really only cared for the increased space). After some time, my GTX 470 was starting to finally go out, I had it overclocked about 40% from I think it was 607 MHz up to 850! It was a beast, and served me very well. Unfortunately, I was idling in a game waiting for my buddy to show up, and forgot to turn my fans up! I had my Kuhler 620 mounted up of course, and got the GPU core up to 104c for a solid few minutes, and got the Kuhler way hotter than it should have ever been. I ended up messing up the Kuhler, and I decided after that it was time for a new GPU regardless of how much life was left in my GTX 470. With the help of LTT, I decided to get a HIS iPower IceQ X² OC Radeon R9 290 as it was on sale and for the price is very powerful! Unfortunately, when I got my RMA Kuhler I got the new version, the 950, which has a proprietary mounting system so my ghetto bracket wouldn't work.

 

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This is when I decided to go for gold! I told my buddy I would sell him my brand new Kuhler 950 for 30 bucks, he agreed, and I turned around and started looking into full cover blocks. I knew the HIS design wasn't reference, and no one makes a card that fits it so I figured I would have to machine it a bit to get it to fit. After hours of research trying to see how the HIS board is built compared to reference, I figured out with decent certainty that the only real difference was in the VRM area, and it looked as though the caps (capacitors) where placed a bit closer to the display output side of the PCB than standard because the VRM's were designed differently and caps were shifted to accommodate this. I figured with the help of my friend who is a manufacturing engineer, we should be able to get this done no problem! I am an Industrial Engineering student at Cal Poly SLO and we can use the labs for projects, sort of.... Well we do regardless lol.

 

I ordered the NZXT Razor for the R9 290/290x from NCIX, and hoped I didn't just waste a solid 120 bucks. I got the block in, and tried some test mounting to see how off the HIS design was from reference.

 

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This is about what I expected, although it was a little more than I anticipated, which was a little concerning as I didn't want to sacrifice the integrity of the block and have it leak!
I started taking taking the block apart and realized there was plenty of wall thickness, but there was a screw hole that potentially would be milled into which would present a point of failure for the top water channel that cools the VRM's via the black ABS like piece.

 

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I had my buddy look at it and we dimension it all out, and he created a CNC program to mill the block for us. This took a few steps, because we wanted to remove at little material as possible. Initially we tried to leave the hole with a little triangular section around it which should fit between the caps. This ended up not being enough clearance, so we went back and milled more.

Triangular design (it is a very small amount of material that makes up the triangle):

 

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We mounted it and realized there was a lot more milling to do, so my buddy wrote a new CNC program and away it went. As you can see, we got it to fit perfectly, but we removed a lot of material to do it. I was worried about the strength of the 60% screw hole, so we drilled and tapped two smaller M2 holes to the sides in order to hold the black ABS part down to the block more securely.

 

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After I was satisfied with it fitting, I ordered the rest of the parts required to make a real water cooled build, with the CM 240l at its heart. I ordered a NexXxoS UT60 280 rad, some brilliant PrimoChill white tubing, a XSPC single bay res, and two Noctua NF-P14s redux-1200 fans. I got the Redux fans because I didn't plan on keeping them the stock color, so I figured the grew color scheme didn't bother me.

At this point, I started to dissemble my PC and take parts out that I wanted to Plastidip, namely the front of the 350d, RAM heatsinks, and after I put all that back together I realized the water block could use a little Plastidip love as well.

 

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Once I was halfway through painting and plumbing the water cooling, my Dad decided he needed a larger SSD volume on his computer (he does photography and likes all of his pix on his SSD). He has RAID 0 256 Samsung 830’s, but I got him a great deal on a 1 TB Samsung Evo on a Black Friday sale, and since multiple volumes would just be more confusing than helpful, he let me have the 830’s for my rig. After this, it was just putting everything back together and figure out how to fit the SSD’s behind the motherboard try. As the pictures show, some double stick tape and fancy wiring was required.

 

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Now, it was almost finished, except the top fans needed to be color matched, and I had to mill the Corsair 350d bay drive cover down to hide the bay res and give the case the sleek sexy look that I bought it for in the first place.

 

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The finished build: White Lightning

 

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Rig: i7 8700k @5GHz 1.300v - - MSI 390-A-Pro - - EVGA RTX 2080 XC Ultra @1985 MHz Core - - 4x8GB Vengeance Pro 3000 MHz - - Samsung 950 Pro 512 NVMe - - Samsung 830 Pro 256 RAID 0 - - Corsair RM650i - - Sound BlasterX EA-5 - -  EK Supremacy Evo - - XT45 X-Flow 420 + UT60 280 rads - - EK Full Cover GPU Block - - EK XRES RGB PWM- - Fractal Define S2 - - Acer Predator X34 -- Logitech G502 - - Logitech G710+ - - Logitech Z5500 - - Schiit Lyr 3 - - Fostex TR-X00 - - Sennheiser HD 6xx - - Steel Series QcK XXL

 

Homelab/ Media Server: ESXi 6.5 - - 250 GB SSD for VM's/ESXi boot - - FreeNAS 11.2-U5 - -HPE Proliant ML10 Gen 9 backbone - - i3 6100 - - 28 GB ECC - - 10x4 TB WD Red RAID Z2 - - Corsair 750D - - Corsair RM650i - - Dell H310 6Gbps SAS HBA - - Intel RES2SC240 SAS Expander

 

White Lightning (original full watercooled build) - Homelab / Media Server - The Blue Beast (my car and other expensive hobby...) - iPhone Xs - Happy Windows 10 x64 user

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Solid build! But why is it called White Lightning if it's predominately black? :huh:  (if it's in the OP, I skimmed it)

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I will upload better pictures at some point when I am at home and can use a better camera :).


Rig: i7 8700k @5GHz 1.300v - - MSI 390-A-Pro - - EVGA RTX 2080 XC Ultra @1985 MHz Core - - 4x8GB Vengeance Pro 3000 MHz - - Samsung 950 Pro 512 NVMe - - Samsung 830 Pro 256 RAID 0 - - Corsair RM650i - - Sound BlasterX EA-5 - -  EK Supremacy Evo - - XT45 X-Flow 420 + UT60 280 rads - - EK Full Cover GPU Block - - EK XRES RGB PWM- - Fractal Define S2 - - Acer Predator X34 -- Logitech G502 - - Logitech G710+ - - Logitech Z5500 - - Schiit Lyr 3 - - Fostex TR-X00 - - Sennheiser HD 6xx - - Steel Series QcK XXL

 

Homelab/ Media Server: ESXi 6.5 - - 250 GB SSD for VM's/ESXi boot - - FreeNAS 11.2-U5 - -HPE Proliant ML10 Gen 9 backbone - - i3 6100 - - 28 GB ECC - - 10x4 TB WD Red RAID Z2 - - Corsair 750D - - Corsair RM650i - - Dell H310 6Gbps SAS HBA - - Intel RES2SC240 SAS Expander

 

White Lightning (original full watercooled build) - Homelab / Media Server - The Blue Beast (my car and other expensive hobby...) - iPhone Xs - Happy Windows 10 x64 user

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Would you be willing to put those pictures into Spoilers? It's a huge pain to scroll.


"It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out." - Carl Sagan.

"If you place a piece of bread somewhere on Earth, and another one on that point's antipodes, well you made yourself an Earth-sandwich." - Michael from Vsauce.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Solid build! But why is it called White Lightning if it's predominately black? :huh:  (if it's in the OP, I skimmed it)

Lightning doesn't light up the entire sky, just little accents of it ;)


Rig: i7 8700k @5GHz 1.300v - - MSI 390-A-Pro - - EVGA RTX 2080 XC Ultra @1985 MHz Core - - 4x8GB Vengeance Pro 3000 MHz - - Samsung 950 Pro 512 NVMe - - Samsung 830 Pro 256 RAID 0 - - Corsair RM650i - - Sound BlasterX EA-5 - -  EK Supremacy Evo - - XT45 X-Flow 420 + UT60 280 rads - - EK Full Cover GPU Block - - EK XRES RGB PWM- - Fractal Define S2 - - Acer Predator X34 -- Logitech G502 - - Logitech G710+ - - Logitech Z5500 - - Schiit Lyr 3 - - Fostex TR-X00 - - Sennheiser HD 6xx - - Steel Series QcK XXL

 

Homelab/ Media Server: ESXi 6.5 - - 250 GB SSD for VM's/ESXi boot - - FreeNAS 11.2-U5 - -HPE Proliant ML10 Gen 9 backbone - - i3 6100 - - 28 GB ECC - - 10x4 TB WD Red RAID Z2 - - Corsair 750D - - Corsair RM650i - - Dell H310 6Gbps SAS HBA - - Intel RES2SC240 SAS Expander

 

White Lightning (original full watercooled build) - Homelab / Media Server - The Blue Beast (my car and other expensive hobby...) - iPhone Xs - Happy Windows 10 x64 user

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Posted · Original PosterOP

What's the random slit in the drive bay cover for?

Water level in the res ;)


Rig: i7 8700k @5GHz 1.300v - - MSI 390-A-Pro - - EVGA RTX 2080 XC Ultra @1985 MHz Core - - 4x8GB Vengeance Pro 3000 MHz - - Samsung 950 Pro 512 NVMe - - Samsung 830 Pro 256 RAID 0 - - Corsair RM650i - - Sound BlasterX EA-5 - -  EK Supremacy Evo - - XT45 X-Flow 420 + UT60 280 rads - - EK Full Cover GPU Block - - EK XRES RGB PWM- - Fractal Define S2 - - Acer Predator X34 -- Logitech G502 - - Logitech G710+ - - Logitech Z5500 - - Schiit Lyr 3 - - Fostex TR-X00 - - Sennheiser HD 6xx - - Steel Series QcK XXL

 

Homelab/ Media Server: ESXi 6.5 - - 250 GB SSD for VM's/ESXi boot - - FreeNAS 11.2-U5 - -HPE Proliant ML10 Gen 9 backbone - - i3 6100 - - 28 GB ECC - - 10x4 TB WD Red RAID Z2 - - Corsair 750D - - Corsair RM650i - - Dell H310 6Gbps SAS HBA - - Intel RES2SC240 SAS Expander

 

White Lightning (original full watercooled build) - Homelab / Media Server - The Blue Beast (my car and other expensive hobby...) - iPhone Xs - Happy Windows 10 x64 user

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Weird, but okay. :P

I didn't want the res exposed because it totally ruins the clean look of the 350, but I also wanted you to know it was there ;)

 

As if the 280 rad up top wasn't a giveaway....... lol


Rig: i7 8700k @5GHz 1.300v - - MSI 390-A-Pro - - EVGA RTX 2080 XC Ultra @1985 MHz Core - - 4x8GB Vengeance Pro 3000 MHz - - Samsung 950 Pro 512 NVMe - - Samsung 830 Pro 256 RAID 0 - - Corsair RM650i - - Sound BlasterX EA-5 - -  EK Supremacy Evo - - XT45 X-Flow 420 + UT60 280 rads - - EK Full Cover GPU Block - - EK XRES RGB PWM- - Fractal Define S2 - - Acer Predator X34 -- Logitech G502 - - Logitech G710+ - - Logitech Z5500 - - Schiit Lyr 3 - - Fostex TR-X00 - - Sennheiser HD 6xx - - Steel Series QcK XXL

 

Homelab/ Media Server: ESXi 6.5 - - 250 GB SSD for VM's/ESXi boot - - FreeNAS 11.2-U5 - -HPE Proliant ML10 Gen 9 backbone - - i3 6100 - - 28 GB ECC - - 10x4 TB WD Red RAID Z2 - - Corsair 750D - - Corsair RM650i - - Dell H310 6Gbps SAS HBA - - Intel RES2SC240 SAS Expander

 

White Lightning (original full watercooled build) - Homelab / Media Server - The Blue Beast (my car and other expensive hobby...) - iPhone Xs - Happy Windows 10 x64 user

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I really like the black with white accent, looks great! Love how you routed parts of the watercooler to the top of the case.

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