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andrevautour

Andre's Lian Li Build

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Hey again everyone.

 

I have always enjoyed PC hardware and doing builds for myself and others. I have done quite a few different builds in the past. My last couple builds have been documented on here. Most of my builds have been based around fairly standard mid or full tower chassis, with the exception being my personal system from last year which was based in a Silverstone SG08 cube case. 

 

I enjoyed my little Silverstone cube PC and I think the small form factor concept is interesting. 

 

I have always been intrigued by Lian Li, even when I was very young. So I decided that this time I will build a system based on a Lian Li chassis.  I looked at what they have to offer and a few of their newer cases caught my eye. The PC-Q37 tempered glass mini ITX case is appealing to me, since it combines the "cube" form factor that enjoy with "dual chamber" which I also like since it will enable some nice cable management (if anyone saw my corsair 650 you will know that I also enjoy meticulous cable management). The only thing that I don't like about the Q37 is that it only accepts SFX and SFX-L power supplies.

 

Then I started looking at the PC-08, another dual chamber glass cube but this supports ATX motherboards and PSUs. and when I looked at the dimensions it isn't actually THAT huge (about 16.8 inches tall). I also think case is even nicer looking than the Q37 in some ways because the entire front is glass and there are 3 fans that sit behind the glass at the front which I think looks really nice. and it has some LED strips and a controller. I have mixed feelings about LEDs in PC builds but I think for something like this it really is nice for lighting up what you have in there.  

 

Drawbacks of these glass cases are dust build up, fingerprints, they are breakable and heavy. and fairly expensive. Although I am prepared to pay a premium for quality in this build because I want something really nice. 

 

Then I considered a third option which would be something extremely minimal and understated with no windows, LEDs, no IO of any kind at the front. Just plain aluminum with powerful hardware inside.  I took a look at Lian Li's offerings that fit this and I found a couple products that fit.  The Q25 is a tiny mini ITX case from a few years ago thats very plain, but I decided that this was a little too small for what I wanted this time. Then I saw the M25 which is a similar layout, but for micro-ATX and it is a bit larger so it has some more room inside. Now both of these cases seem to be designed for use in NAS/server type applications because they both have a bunch of hard drive bays with hot swap bays. But I don't care about that too much because there is no window in the M25 so it doesn't matter too much what the layout is inside.  I feel I could build a really nice high end system in the M25 and the fact that it is so minimal is appealing to me. 

 

So I have not decided what case I will go with for this build yet. Any opinions are welcome. On the one hand I like the idea of being able to see all my hardware but I can also picture the thing loaded with dust and then it won't be so beautiful anymore. The minimal no window design is also appealing to me.  Any options on this are welcome. The Q37 is not available yet but I hear it will be available around Oct 24. The M25 is available but only in black, and the silver is the one I would really like, but I would go for black. 

 

This will probably serve as my main home system so I am going to put some good hardware in it.  I have one Dell P2715Q 4K monitor right now, which I got for really cheap at an auction a couple months ago, so I would like to be able to run games at a playable framerate in 4K. My 970 that I had would play all games in 4K at high detail settings but the FPS would drop pretty low in some cases. I plan to put a 1070 in this system but maybe even a 1080? 

 

Here is what I have in mind for hardware. these things may change a bit depending on the case.

 

Intel 6700K

GTX 1070 or 1080 -- I like the white cooler Asus 1070 "dual" 

16GB of 2666mhz memory (maybe 32GB later) Kingston HyperX

ASRock Z170M Extreme4 (if MicroATX) not 100% sure what I would get if ATX but I'm open to suggestions. I think the Gigabyte Z170X Designare is nice looking.

Seasonic 660W Platinum PSU

Samsung 850 EVO 500gb or 1tb

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I have also been slightly nervous about motherboards because as I was browsing it seems like a lot of 1151 motherboards have reviews sayings they have been DOA or have died shortly after etc. As well as issues with memory and various things on the boards being defective. Are there more issues than usual with 1151 motherboards?

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7 minutes ago, andrevautour said:

I have also been slightly nervous about motherboards because as I was browsing it seems like a lot of 1151 motherboards have reviews sayings they have been DOA or have died shortly after etc. As well as issues with memory and various things on the boards being defective. Are there more issues than usual with 1151 motherboards?

People complain more than they praise. For every person who got a doa board, there were countless others that got perfectly working boards. I haven't noticed any higher of a failure rate on lga 1151 boards. I wouldn't worry about it. 


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Posted · Original PosterOP

After more consideration of various moderation small cases I am now leaning more towards the PC-A41.

 

Pros

It is very basic looking (which is exactly what I want) but still seems to be well built from nice aluminum.

It checks all the boxes I'm looking for in terms of layout and cooling compatibility. All the HDD tays are removable with thumb screws, so I can remove the ones I'm not using for better airflow. It has 2X 140mm fans at the front 1X 120mm top and 1X at he bottom that is optional. the CPU mount is not blocked by the PSU, so I can install a good cooler (up to 145mm)   and it's not completely riveted together (roof is removable with screws, and the HDD trays aren't riveted like the M25, font panel also removable)

It also has some space behind the MB so I can do some better cable management vs the M25 which has no space behind MB.

And it is cheaper than the M25.

 

Cons

It is not as sleek looking as the M25 from the outside since it is not one continuous piece of aluminum on the top/font/bottom like the M25.

It has 2X optical bays which I do not want or need.

 

But it seems like the pros outweigh the cons here. 

 

 

I can install a Micro or Mini ATX board in this, so I figured I might as well go Micro and get those extra memory slots and PCI slots. 

 

I am considering 

ASRock Z170M Extreme4

GIGABYTE Z170MX-Gaming 5

 

They are both similar in price but I am leaning towards the ASRock because I have never been a fan of "gaming" branding, or the red color scheme of the Gigabyte. Not that it matters much since there are no windows.

 

I have also decided that a blower style GPU would be best since it will further help with the cooling. So I am looking at the ASUS GeForce GTX 1070 8GB Turbo Edition since it is well priced right now and the cooler is nice and minimal looking. 

 

For the CPU cooler I'm thinking about the Noctua NH-C14S this time. I used the NH-L12 in my last build and it was impressive with my i5, but since I have the space this time for something larger and I'm doing an i7 I feel it makes sense to go with the NH-C14S.

 

 

I am confident that with the Noctua cooler, blower style GPU and available case fan options in this case I will be able to produce a system that is very quiet, relatively cool, in addition to being very plain looking from the outside.

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Oy, Andre, you're still alive! Long time no see.

 

I'm quite liking the A41 to be honest. Can't say much on the rest of the hardware though, I haven't really been keeping up (still rocking my LGA1366 Xeons :D ).


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Looking forward to this. Have u considered this for grahics? http://www.evga.com/Products/Product.aspx?pn=08G-P4-6278-KR


Fractal Design Define R5 White/Window / Intel 4790K / EVGA Z97 FTW / EVGA G2 750W / Sapphire R9 390 Nitro  / Samsung 850 EVO 500GB / Corsair Force Series GT 240GB / Seagate Barracuda 2TB - HGST Ultrastar  4TB / 32GB Kingston HyperX Savage 2600Mhz DDR3 / Cryorig H7 Lumi Edt. /

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Posted · Original PosterOP
3 minutes ago, alpenwasser said:

Oy, Andre, you're still alive! Long time no see.

 

I'm quite liking the A41 to be honest. Can't say much on the rest of the hardware though, I haven't really been keeping up (still rocking my LGA1366 Xeons :D ).

 

Just now, Lystfiskern said:

Looking forward to this. Have u considered this for grahics? http://www.evga.com/Products/Product.aspx?pn=08G-P4-6278-KR

 

Hi guys!

 

I must say even though I use macs on a daily basis and I like mac OS etc. every so often I still get this strong desire to play around with hardware.  

 

I quite like the A41 too! I hope I do because I just ordered one! something about a very plain looking case with powerful hardware inside is appealing to me right now. I don't need a ton of LEDs and flashy stuff.

 

John, I'm sure that hybrid card is good but I have never really liked AIO loops that much -- You know me and my air cooling ;) Plus the Asus blower card is on sale right now and the reviews say that it is actually pretty quiet to I'm not too worried about it.

 

I don't have any pictures of the hardware yet but here's a couple of my desk including my fairly new dell 4K display. I know that shelf behind is kind of ugly but its also kind of rugged and its useful for putting computers and parts on so my entire desk is more clear. 

 

29890666026_cb60141707_h.jpg

 

29890662556_f0cc00a650_h.jpg

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41 minutes ago, Tech_Dreamer said:

Hope those are fingerprints on the tabletO.o

Maybe it's just some grease from eating and watching youtube you know :P (or some moc.buhnrop ;))


Build logs: Arctic Blue, Global Offensive Annilator (cringy name, I know),  (not quite a build log) Arcitc Blue VS Northern Bee

Reviews: Magicforce 68 key mech keyboard

Useful links: STRMfrmXMN's PSU whitelist, Magetank's Memory overclocking Guide, 'Murica vs Britannia Pricing (by me!)

 

As a wise man once said, if you think I'm wrong and have facts to back it up with (not opinions) then I'll happily accept that you're correct. Remember, the facts has to be valid and comes from a "noteworthy" source.

As another wise man once said, if you don't have anything to say then please don't say anything unless you like a big fat sausage in your buns...

As a third wise man once said, tickle other's like how you want to be...oh wait, treat I mean, not tickle...whoops :P 

 

Originally posted by @MageTank but reworded by me, back when I was considerably less mature but don't feel like editing it now. 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

hey guys

 

i got all of my hardware on thursday, except for the case which will not be here till next week because its shipping from the US.

 

but i thew it together in an old case i had in the basement just so i could set everything up and start using it right away.

 

here are some photos, nothing special, i will have more photos when i start building in the actual case!

 

of course i had to take a picture of all the boxes 

 

29418491163_90eac09df2_k.jpg

 

 

i did not get to take glamor shots of all the hardware (i will do this when i build it in the real case later) but i did get a shot of the motherboard, which i think is very attractive. the copper heatsinks look very nice in real life.

 

29418488393_e699f17efc_k.jpg

 

 

the graphics card has a nice subtle aesthetic to it and i think the glowing asus logo is a nice touch. although you can see the LEDS glowing between the PCB and the cooler shroud 

 

29418426753_c47458ebb5_k.jpg

 

 

as always the noctua NH-C14s cooler is extremely quiet and performs impressively well (more details on this later)

 

29931663772_33baf74392_k.jpg

 

 

here it is setup in a stripped down case from the 1990s, a taste of whats to come :)

 

29418485163_212d13e929_k.jpg

 

29931730822_0d61435f2a_k.jpg

 

 

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18 hours ago, andrevautour said:

i got all of my hardware on thursday, except for the case which will not be here till next week because its shipping from the US.

Mmmmmm...so you built a sleeper PC for now eh? :P 

 

On a side note, any reason you went with a blower style 1070? Since airflow shouldn't be an issue with the A41 (2 intake and one out-take should be enough no?).


Build logs: Arctic Blue, Global Offensive Annilator (cringy name, I know),  (not quite a build log) Arcitc Blue VS Northern Bee

Reviews: Magicforce 68 key mech keyboard

Useful links: STRMfrmXMN's PSU whitelist, Magetank's Memory overclocking Guide, 'Murica vs Britannia Pricing (by me!)

 

As a wise man once said, if you think I'm wrong and have facts to back it up with (not opinions) then I'll happily accept that you're correct. Remember, the facts has to be valid and comes from a "noteworthy" source.

As another wise man once said, if you don't have anything to say then please don't say anything unless you like a big fat sausage in your buns...

As a third wise man once said, tickle other's like how you want to be...oh wait, treat I mean, not tickle...whoops :P 

 

Originally posted by @MageTank but reworded by me, back when I was considerably less mature but don't feel like editing it now. 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
3 hours ago, Mr.Meerkat said:

Mmmmmm...so you built a sleeper PC for now eh? :P 

 

On a side note, any reason you went with a blower style 1070? Since airflow shouldn't be an issue with the A41 (2 intake and one out-take should be enough no?).

true, the airflow in the case should be pretty good. i have had internal exhaust style GPUs in the past and the overall temps have always been fine, but i just figured it won't hurt to have the GPU exhaust out the back. if anything it should help keep case temp lower and maybe the case fans and cpu can fan all run slower.  I'm sure either style would have been fine, though. the 1070 is not any louder than any of the cards i have had in the past though. it is quieter than my last card that i had in my cube (the mini itx size 970) 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

here are some CPU temperatures with the NH-C14s. just at stock settings no OC at the moment.  also i noticed that in windows task manager and in CPUz it shows the CPU at 4GHz but it doesn't show it turboing up to 4.2GHz? the only place it seems to show the GPU at 4.2 is in HWMonitor.

 

29952166442_6e5a1db193_o.png

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Posted · Original PosterOP

My case came in on Monday, which was early because it was estimated to be Tues or Wed. And my plans on Monday were postponed so I was able to go home that evening and put the system together.

 

First some pictures of the case.

 

The front of the case does have a very nice clean look. It does have two optical bays, but the bay covers are also made of real aluminum that matches well.  The entire front panel is made from a high quality solid piece of aluminum, as is the rest of the case. 

 

30086216566_8ab1e104d7_k.jpg

 

 

Around the side of the case is more handsome aluminum. Very minimal and clean looking. The intakes for the front fan are very nicely machined.

 

30121248295_90f52b45e3_k.jpg

 

 

The right side of the case has the USB and audio ports.  These are attached to the inside front of the case (not the part of the front that comes off) which is good, and the ports are screwed in securely so it does not flex or feel flimsy when you plug things into it.

 

30037112971_11cb7f5fd8_k.jpg

 

 

The front panel snaps off to reveal the front intake fans. They have their own filters and as you can see the fan intake area is completed open.  I remember back in the old days people would take a dremel and cut out the fan mesh area in the case for extra air flow, so it is nice to see this done from the factory here.

 

30037112191_cc4a9c1743_k.jpg

 

Around the back you can see a nice simple layout that I think is appealing. The inside is not painted which I actually like in this case for a sleeper PC.  The PSU is mounted either at the top to allow for CPU cooler up to 145mm, or it can be mounted at the middle and that allows for a 240mm AIO water loop.   There is a nice mesh plate that will cover whichever slot you do not use for the PSU, as well as some nice quality vented PCI slot covers. 

 

30037109931_3cc2ec37fa_k.jpg

 

 

At the top the nice aluminum finishing continues. the stock configuration comes with one fan installed and one of the fan holes blocked off with a nice plate that matches the finish of the case, just like the optical bay covers.  The only thing is that they do not include a second mesh cover incase you do want to mount a rad, or a second cover incase you want to block off both fan mounts...

 

30086221356_192788c686_k.jpg

 

 

The bottom of the case includes another optional fan mounting point, this one does not come with a fan, but it does come with a nice fine filter just like the front ones to decrease dust making its way in through the bottom passively. 

 

30121229955_ae723894b8_k.jpg

 

Inside at the front there are 5 very high quality HDD/SSD mounting trays that are made of aluminum just like everything else in the case, and all of them can be individually removed with thumb screws. I was wondering how sturdy they would feel since they are only attached at the back and they are all individual not part of a cage with multiple drives, but they are very strong when installed.

 

30086213616_6f8f3776ec_k.jpg

 

 

One of the only aspects of the design that I don't really like is the way the top fan is positioned.  The maximum PSU length (if you have a top fan installed is 160mm, which is fine because that is how long my PSU is, but the fan is very close to the PSU to the point where if it is a modular PSU you may have to plug in any cables you need in the top row of cables on the PSU before you put the PSU in because its so close to the fan. If you had a non modular PSU then it would be fine.  The is basically because of the space allocated to the optical bays, which I don't plan on using and dont need. But I understand if they are going to include optical bays they needed to have space for them.  

 

30037106981_addfc128fc_k.jpgDSC00754 by Andre Vautour, on Flickr

 

 

As soon as I put the MB in with the fan on the top of the NH-C14s I realized that it was not going to work with the fan in the top position on the heatsink.  The specs list max cooler height as 145mm.  the C14s is 115mm without the fan so add 25mm with the fan on the top and that comes out to 140mm. It looked like the fan was exactly flush with where to side panel would be, so I had to install the fan on the under side of the heatsink. 

 

30006666092_f237923cd2_k.jpg

 

29492538673_c2c5c2819e_k.jpg

 

 

I did not get many shots of the individual hardware when I was putting it into the temporary case, so here are a few pictures.

 

When I was picking out memory it was between the Kingston HyperX and Corsair VLP. I liked the look of the heatsink on the Kingston better so I went with that.  The Corsair was available in 3200MHz for about the same price as the Kingston at 2666MHz, but I am not too worried about that because I dont think memory speed is very important.

 

 

30086222976_fe80deb79a_k.jpg

 

The ASRock motherboard has been good so far and I think it is very nice looking. Mostly black with some copper colored heatsinks that work well with the Noctua colors. the chipset heatsink is a bit plain looking but that is okay.

 

30086209646_8ec4e9b1ab_k.jpg

 

Interesting to see power supplies are now positioning the graphics on the side and the back for fan up mounting, which is something I have been a fan of when the power supply is in the bottom of the case, but in this case it will be in the top so it doesn't matter.  I have it fan facing down in the top of the case and the seasonic logo on the back is upside down

 

30006673282_4171aba5fe_k.jpg

 

 

The back of the case is well laid out for something that is fairly small. There is only one rubber grommet for cables, but as you can see if you remove some of the HDD trays that will open up additional openings that you can use to pass cables through.  I didn't go too crazy with the cables at the back this time, but there aren't that many cables overall so it's not too wild back here. There is a good amount of space behind the motherboard I would say at least a full inch if not more.  There is a nice large opening for heatsink backplates and a large passthrough for the 8pin power cable for the motherboard. There is not any cable tie down points, but I just added a single stick on tie down point for the MB power cable just to keep it in place.  The side panel went on easily with no resistance and no forcing cables down at all.  

 

30121234025_b3c91ce8ad_k.jpg

 

 

 

 

Here it is the inside chamber. I'm really happy with how it turned out. everything looks pretty clean and I like it a lot.

 

29492982644_cfea058886_k.jpg

 

 

The power LED does shine through the optical bay covers and the side air intakes a bit, but not a big deal. It is also a very bright LED so at night when it is sleeping and the power LED is flashing it lights up the room. ASRock has a feature called goodnight mode that turns off the power LED when the computer is sleeping so that takes care of that minor problem.

 

30086153886_c3ccce1039_k.jpg

 

With all the doors on it is nice and clean and it is quiet even with the stock fans. I might replace those with noctua fans later on but the stock fans are pretty good.

 

30006773212_26a3be6b32_k.jpg

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Well... Truth be told Im not a big fan of the bare aluminium inside, but somehow this still came out pretty nice with the fan mounted under the cpu heatsink. What i would change tho is to mount the PSU fan up for a much cleaner look, oh and that barcode stcker on your HDD gotta go. I would also to something about that power LED , some sort of shield to prevent the light leak? Great build Andre. Let us know how it performs now it is in the proper case.


Fractal Design Define R5 White/Window / Intel 4790K / EVGA Z97 FTW / EVGA G2 750W / Sapphire R9 390 Nitro  / Samsung 850 EVO 500GB / Corsair Force Series GT 240GB / Seagate Barracuda 2TB - HGST Ultrastar  4TB / 32GB Kingston HyperX Savage 2600Mhz DDR3 / Cryorig H7 Lumi Edt. /

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Posted · Original PosterOP
4 minutes ago, Lystfiskern said:

Well... Truth be told Im not a big fan of the bare aluminium inside, but somehow this still came out pretty nice with the fan mounted under the cpu heatsink. What i would change tho is to mount the PSU fan up for a much cleaner look, oh and that barcode stcker on your HDD gotta go. I would also to something about that power LED , some sort of shield to prevent the light leak? Great build Andre. Let us know how it performs now it is in the proper case.

Hi John!

 

You're right I am going to flip the PSU around I'm sure it will breath fine that way since there is some space between the PSU and the ceiling of the case.  It will also solve the issue of the cables being so close to the fan  since the cables are positioned towards the non fan side of the PSU.  Ill get in there with some goo-gone and take off the HDD sticker! and Ill check out the LED situation as well!  Thanks for the input :) 

 

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I went in and flipped the power supply over. 

 

Now the "platinum" graphic is showing on the side instead of the tech info 

 

29568727643_2966bb86f7_k.jpg

 

 

This also takes care of the modular connections being so close to the fan that you cannot even plug them in or take them out without unscrewing the power supply 

 

29568722973_e86e87f0a0_k.jpg

 

 

And the Seasonic is right side up at the back now (not a big deal of course but just a note)

 29568708844_eccf1bc99d_k.jpg

 

 

And here are a couple more shots I took as I was taking the side panel off to do this. 

 

30113086201_7bce8f0aa1_k.jpg

 

 

I also took the sticker off the side of the hard drive (this picture was before I did that) 

 

30163472546_1a38370bf7_k.jpg

 

 

I have not looked into putting a little shield on the sides of the power LED so it doesn't leak out of the case but I will do that soon.

 

Thanks for the feedback, John!

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Fan splitter looks terrible. Braid it Andre !

 

Absolutely love the rest, which is why that fan splitter sticks out so badly. I would also have had that thing ripped and stripped and had the entire inside powder coated. I can't believe that Lian Li are still making cases that way.

 

Great cable management as ever :)


99% of the build logs on LTT give my mouse scroll wheel a perfect workout.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
28 minutes ago, AlienALX said:

Fan splitter looks terrible. Braid it Andre !

 

Absolutely love the rest, which is why that fan splitter sticks out so badly. I would also have had that thing ripped and stripped and had the entire inside powder coated. I can't believe that Lian Li are still making cases that way.

 

Great cable management as ever :)

Ah, I knew you guys would hate that! I just threw it in temporarily I have multiple of the braided Noctua splitters around but couldn't find one just at that moment.

Here we go

 

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30179006286_910c6b939b_k.jpg

 

 

I know a lot of people don't like the bare inside but I actually like unpainted aluminum. I would have loved to have used to Silver model of the M25 case I was looking at if the layout wasn't weird and the silver was actually available! The case I did use comes in Silver, too but they didn't have it in stock. I am happy with the black finish on the outside and silver inside though.

 

 

 

 

 

m25-001.jpg

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