Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Very Quiet Skylake i7-6700K Build - Project Night Owl

amp88
 Share

Hello, and welcome to my build thread for what I hope will become a very quiet and very capable new build.

 

First off - as you can see from the current thread title I don't have a name for the project yet. I'm not very good at coming up with names, so if you have a suggestion please let me know and I'll pick the best one, if any are submitted. The build is going to be very low-key on the outside and mostly black on the inside with a couple of colour highlights. As I said before, the main concept of the build is for it to be very quiet, both at idle and under load, but also pack a healthy amount of performance.

 

edit: After a flash of inspiration (related to ordering the ASUS STRIX graphics card) I've decided to name this project "Night Owl". The STRIX range of cards prominently features an owl on the box art because Strix is a genus of owl. Like the fearsome birds of prey, this build will be quiet and unassuming when it needs to be, but still able to perform when called on.

On to the specs:

 

CPU: Intel Core i7-6700K

CPU Cooler: be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 3

Motherboard: ASUS Z170-A LGA1151

Memory: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4-3200 C16

Primary Storage: 2 x Samsung 128GB SM951 M.2 SSDs in PCIe RAID 0

Secondary Storage: Western Digital Caviar Green 3TB

Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 760 2GB Twin Frozr

edit: I originally intended to keep the 760 from my current desktop, but, after persuasion from the forum, I plumped for the 970 below. Thanks, all!

Video Card: 4GB Asus GTX 970 STRIX Direct CU II

Case: Fractal Design Define R5 Titanium Windowless

Power Supply: Corsair AX760 80+ Platinum Fully Modular

Optical Drive: LG BH10LS38 Blu-ray Writer

Operating System: Windows 8.1 64-bit

Case Fan (additional): be quiet! Silent Wings 2 140mm PWM

 

edit: A quick note about the graphics card. Yes, it's a weak link in this system, but I'm not really a gamer and I'm willing to live with the slower video acceleration performance in rendering etc. I'm carrying it over from my current desktop, and may replace it at some point in the future.

 

I don't have all the parts in yet - I'm still waiting on the memory (on the way from Taiwan, hopefully here by the weekend or early next week), the SM951s + Lycom DT-120 adapter (which should arrive tomorrow) and the Silent Wings 2 (which should arrive tomorrow).

 

I've only done a quick visual inspection on the parts which have arrived so far, but I'll be doing as much preparation work as I can while waiting for the remaining parts arriving.

 

Right, so I've never attempted to do a build log before. I'm planning on trying to record the build in a number of ways. First, I'd like to do a relatively granular text log of essentially every step in the build. Second, I'll be taking a few pictures along the way, of any interesting features and shiny, shiny things. Third, I'd like to do some short videos, detailing a few steps in the process, probably things like working in the UEFI BIOS and possibly some attempts to gauge how loud the system actually is when it's completed.

 

So, why am I starting this thread before I've actually done anything? I'd like to get your input. Suggestions for the project name and any thoughts on the above. Is there anything I haven't listed that you'd like to see? Do you have any other thoughts about the build or how I should try to document it? Oh, and everyone who replies "You should have bought a 5820K and an X99 board" gets 10 free Internet points ;)

 

Anyway, thanks for reading so far. I hope you'll give me some feedback and follow along as the build gets under way...cheers! :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Upgrade the GPU first, I wish I had more power in my 760. That's why I'm upgrading to either a Fury X or GTX 980.

INTEL CORE i7 4820K | COOLER MASTER HYPER 212 EVO | GIAGBYTE X79-UP4 | CRUCIAL BALLISTIX SPORT 8GB | NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 1070 | SAMSUNG 850 EVO 500GB | WESTERN DIGITAL CAVIAR BLUE 1TB | CORSAIR CRYSTAL SERIES 570X | EVGA BQ 650W

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

sm951s in raid 0 makes 0 sense.

 

You won't even be able to get full speed because the DMI 3.0 will be saturated by then (total max at once is somewhere near 4.0 GB/s)

 

Just buy one larger one (because raid 0 really isn't a good idea honestly. too many failure points.)

 

 

Aww, you already bought it. Nevermnd but still I'd personally recommend returning them and just buying one larger one for a cheaper price.

 

Good luck.

LINK-> Kurald Galain:  The Night Eternal 

Top 5820k, 980ti SLI Build in the World*

CPU: i7-5820k // GPU: SLI MSI 980ti Gaming 6G // Cooling: Full Custom WC //  Mobo: ASUS X99 Sabertooth // Ram: 32GB Crucial Ballistic Sport // Boot SSD: Samsung 850 EVO 500GB

Mass SSD: Crucial M500 960GB  // PSU: EVGA Supernova 850G2 // Case: Fractal Design Define S Windowed // OS: Windows 10 // Mouse: Razer Naga Chroma // Keyboard: Corsair k70 Cherry MX Reds

Headset: Senn RS185 // Monitor: ASUS PG348Q // Devices: Note 10+ - Surface Book 2 15"

LINK-> Ainulindale: Music of the Ainur 

Prosumer DYI FreeNAS

CPU: Xeon E3-1231v3  // Cooling: Noctua L9x65 //  Mobo: AsRock E3C224D2I // Ram: 16GB Kingston ECC DDR3-1333

HDDs: 4x HGST Deskstar NAS 3TB  // PSU: EVGA 650GQ // Case: Fractal Design Node 304 // OS: FreeNAS

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Upgrade the GPU first, I wish I had more power in my 760. That's why I'm upgrading to either a Fury X or GTX 980.

 

I should have put that in the first post. I'm no planning on doing much gaming on the system, and I'm willing to live without fantastic video acceleration in rendering etc with the 760 for a while. I'll be carrying it over from my current desktop.

 

sm951s in raid 0 makes 0 sense.

 

You won't even be able to get full speed because the DMI 3.0 will be saturated by then (total max at once is somewhere near 4.0 GB/s)

 

Just buy one larger one (because raid 0 really isn't a good idea honestly. too many failure points.)

 

 

Aww, you already bought it. Nevermnd but still I'd personally recommend returning them and just buying one larger one for a cheaper price.

 

Good luck.

 

The way availability is in the UK for the 256GB drive the 128s actually worked out to be about the same price actually. My thinking on the RAID 0 is that I'll be able to benefit from the low queue depth performance of the 128GB model. If you look at this Tom's Hardware review, the low queue depth performance of a single 128GB model is really quite impressive, and stands up well to the 256GB model. I'm not too bothered about saturating the DMI bandwidth, as I'm interested in getting really good random access performance at lower queue depths (typical client workloads).

 

Thank you both for your input.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

I should have put that in the first post. I'm no planning on doing much gaming on the system, and I'm willing to live without fantastic video acceleration in rendering etc with the 760 for a while. I'll be carrying it over from my current desktop.

 

 

The way availability is in the UK for the 256GB drive the 128s actually worked out to be about the same price actually. My thinking on the RAID 0 is that I'll be able to benefit from the low queue depth performance of the 128GB model. If you look at this Tom's Hardware review, the low queue depth performance of a single 128GB model is really quite impressive, and stands up well to the 256GB model. I'm not too bothered about saturating the DMI bandwidth, as I'm interested in getting really good random access performance at lower queue depths (typical client workloads).

 

Thank you both for your input.

Still, such a high end build should be using a more powerful GPU, even if you're not going to utilize it all. Seems kind of weird.

INTEL CORE i7 4820K | COOLER MASTER HYPER 212 EVO | GIAGBYTE X79-UP4 | CRUCIAL BALLISTIX SPORT 8GB | NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 1070 | SAMSUNG 850 EVO 500GB | WESTERN DIGITAL CAVIAR BLUE 1TB | CORSAIR CRYSTAL SERIES 570X | EVGA BQ 650W

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple of early pictures of the bare case. So far I haven't done much: removed the 5-bay drive cage and the drive sleds I won't need from the 3-bay cage, moved the standard 140mm exhaust case fan into the front as an intake and swapped the door over onto the other side (which will be more convenient for me when it's finished).

 

med_gallery_248914_3200_242421.jpg

med_gallery_248914_3200_627782.jpg

 

First impressions of the case are really good. I was a bit surprised at the weight of the side panel (which probably bodes well for the sound deadening efficiency). Another good little touch is the way the motherboard standoffs are clearly labelled on the motherboard tray.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

You should have bought a 5820K and an X99 board...

Okay where are my points?

The Y.E.T.I. is in progress?Whaaat? (modding aproach&build log)->http://linustechtips.com/main/topic/355618-project-yeti-first-build/

[READ THE COC BEFORE POSTING][Check twice cut once][NZXT rules:D][Dremel is Love Dremel is Life][COOKIES ARE GREAT][LOGIC]

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

You should have bought a 5820K and an X99 board...

Okay where are my points?

* gives 10 Internet points *

A quick update: Nothing to report today, sadly. None of the parts I expected arrived. Boo! Worse than that, the company I ordered the SM951s from emailed me last night to let me know that they were actually out of stock, and weren't expecting any in until late August. This was a bit of a disappointment, because they were listed as in stock on the site when I ordered them. Oh, well...

Hopefully I'll get some parts in tomorrow though. My RAM has been on a nice trip so far; starting out in Taiwan it then went to Shenzhen, Bangkok and left Mumbai this morning. The expected delivery date for that is still listed as next Tuesday.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

* gives 10 Internet points *

A quick update: Nothing to report today, sadly. None of the parts I expected arrived. Boo! Worse than that, the company I ordered the SM951s from emailed me last night to let me know that they were actually out of stock, and weren't expecting any in until late August. This was a bit of a disappointment, because they were listed as in stock on the site when I ordered them. Oh, well...

Hopefully I'll get some parts in tomorrow though. My RAM has been on a nice trip so far; starting out in Taiwan it then went to Shenzhen, Bangkok and left Mumbai this morning. The expected delivery date for that is still listed as next Tuesday.

Thank you very much ;)

The Y.E.T.I. is in progress?Whaaat? (modding aproach&build log)->http://linustechtips.com/main/topic/355618-project-yeti-first-build/

[READ THE COC BEFORE POSTING][Check twice cut once][NZXT rules:D][Dremel is Love Dremel is Life][COOKIES ARE GREAT][LOGIC]

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

CPU: Intel Core i7-6700K
CPU Cooler: be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 3
Motherboard: ASUS Z170-A LGA1151
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4-3200 C16
Primary Storage: 2 x Samsung 128GB SM951 M.2 SSDs in PCIe RAID 0
Secondary Storage: Western Digital Caviar Green 3TB

-Storage setup is weird, they are out of stock atm? grab a 256gb, I know the black drive costs more but it does have a 5 year warranty vs 2 year.
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 760 2GB Twin Frozr
Case: Fractal Design Define R5 Titanium Windowless
Power Supply: Corsair AX760 80+ Platinum Fully Modular

-Grab a bronze or gold, unless power is extortionately expensive where you live, use the extra cash to put into a new gpu along with cash from selling your 760.
Optical Drive: LG BH10LS38 Blu-ray Writer

-Do you need blu-ray?
Operating System: Windows 8.1 64-bit
Case Fan (additional): be quiet! Silent Wings 2 140mm PWM

 

Keep your internet points, build looks good. I believe there is a completely passively cooled build on here somewhere, maybe you can grab some pointers from that thread?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

The build looks fine. Although, I would have personally dropped 8GB of memory and knocked that GPU up one tier (960 or AMD 380, more so the 380). Also, I would grab a 256GB M.2 SSD and only 2TB of normal hard drive space (seems to be the most cost effective). If a Windows 10 key is the same price or cheaper, I'd pick that up too.

 

I suppose if you want lots of cached video for editing, 16GB would be nice, but a better video card should go along way as well.

 

Now obviously you've purchased everything, and it looks like a great build. I'd take pictures of the parts in good lighting. You can take pictures with the parts in the boxes, out of the boxes, and fully assembled (Or any combination, but try to at the very least fully assembled).

 

You should try to get a mild overclock in. OC3D used that very same motherboard and basically pushed the 6700k to the limits. While your cooler isn't ice cold, you should be able to get a couple hundred MHz.

Intel i5 6600k~Asus Maximus VIII Hero~G.Skill Ripjaws 4 Series 8GB DDR4-3200 CL-16~Sapphire Radeon R9 Fury Tri-X~Phanteks Enthoo Pro M~Sandisk Extreme Pro 480GB~SeaSonic Snow Silent 750~BenQ XL2730Z QHD 144Hz FreeSync~Cooler Master Seidon 240M~Varmilo VA87M (Cherry MX Brown)~Corsair Vengeance M95~Oppo PM-3~Windows 10 Pro~http://pcpartpicker.com/p/ynmBnQ

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Primary Storage: 2 x Samsung 128GB SM951 M.2 SSDs in PCIe RAID 0

Secondary Storage: Western Digital Caviar Green 3TB

-Storage setup is weird, they are out of stock atm? grab a 256gb, I know the black drive costs more but it does have a 5 year warranty vs 2 year.

Power Supply: Corsair AX760 80+ Platinum Fully Modular

-Grab a bronze or gold, unless power is extortionately expensive where you live, use the extra cash to put into a new gpu along with cash from selling your 760.

Optical Drive: LG BH10LS38 Blu-ray Writer

-Do you need blu-ray?

 

Keep your internet points, build looks good. I believe there is a completely passively cooled build on here somewhere, maybe you can grab some pointers from that thread?

The two 128GB SM951 NVMe drives have arrived now, along with the Lycom DT-120 adapter. I was periodically checking availability of the 256GB NVMe version (at Scan, Flexx Memory, Google Shopping, PC Part Picker etc) and I only saw them for pre-order with wait times of a week or more, typically. Scan now shows the 256GB NVMe version with "Item due in 18th August 2015". However, I'm hoping the 128GB RAID 0 setup will provide a little bit better performance (mostly based on the low queue depth random figures from the Tom's Hardware review of the AHCI version). Time will tell, I suppose...

 

I went for a Green drive as opposed to the 2TB Seagate Barracuda I originally intended to use based on input from KamiKatze here. The shorter warranty (compared to the Black you suggested) obviously isn't ideal though.

I've already got the AX760 PSU in - I got it as a manufacturer refurb for about £85, which I thought was too good a deal to pass up. I'm now considering upgrading the GPU (see below).

Is this the completely passively cooled thread you mean? Full passive powerful workstation / gaming rig... who said it can't be done? I'll take a look, thanks.

I have a few TB of backups on Blu-ray which I would like access to with this new machine.

Thanks very much for your input.

 

The build looks fine. Although, I would have personally dropped 8GB of memory and knocked that GPU up one tier (960 or AMD 380, more so the 380). Also, I would grab a 256GB M.2 SSD and only 2TB of normal hard drive space (seems to be the most cost effective). If a Windows 10 key is the same price or cheaper, I'd pick that up too.

 

I suppose if you want lots of cached video for editing, 16GB would be nice, but a better video card should go along way as well.

 

Now obviously you've purchased everything, and it looks like a great build. I'd take pictures of the parts in good lighting. You can take pictures with the parts in the boxes, out of the boxes, and fully assembled (Or any combination, but try to at the very least fully assembled).

 

You should try to get a mild overclock in. OC3D used that very same motherboard and basically pushed the 6700k to the limits. While your cooler isn't ice cold, you should be able to get a couple hundred MHz.

I think the 3TB Green is a bit better in terms of price/capacity than the 2TB at the moment.

I don't intend to install Windows 10, but with an 8.1 license I should have that option available until July next year, if I choose to.

I'm now thinking of doing a GPU upgrade. After the earlier posts mentioning it in the thread I had a look around to see what was on offer that was reasonably priced (~£200), provided decent performance and was quiet under idle and load. The best I could see that fit in there was the 4GB Asus GTX 960 STRIX DirectCU II OC. I see you've recommended the 380 over the 960 there, but I think the nVidia card would be a better option because the CUDA cores are better utilised in common photo/video editing software, which I'm likely to benefit from. What do you think of that 960?

Thanks for the suggestions re: what kinds of pictures to take. I'll hopefully get a few in at the weekend (of the various components which have already arrived).

I'm planning to do some mild overclocking, as you suggested there, but I'm not going to be pushing things too far. Yeah, that Overclock 3D 6600K / 6700K review was actually one of the things that convinced me to go for the Z170-A, along with its feature set. If it's good enough to get a Gold from him then it should be pretty good for me too! :)

Thank you both for, very much appreciated!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry for the double post, but I've just been impulsive and ordered the 4GB Asus GTX 970 STRIX Direct CU II. Thanks to those in the thread who suggested I upgraded the graphics card from the start. I was wrong.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry for the double post, but I've just been impulsive and ordered the 4GB Asus GTX 970 STRIX Direct CU II. Thanks to those in the thread who suggested I upgraded the graphics card from the start. I was wrong.

Glad I could help, I know you'll like the extra power!

INTEL CORE i7 4820K | COOLER MASTER HYPER 212 EVO | GIAGBYTE X79-UP4 | CRUCIAL BALLISTIX SPORT 8GB | NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 1070 | SAMSUNG 850 EVO 500GB | WESTERN DIGITAL CAVIAR BLUE 1TB | CORSAIR CRYSTAL SERIES 570X | EVGA BQ 650W

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

3 deliveries today: two SM951s, Lycom DT-120 adapter and the Silent Wings 2. Almost all the parts are here now, with only the RAM (currently in Holland with an expected delivery of next Tuesday) and the graphics card, which should arrive on Monday.

Glad I could help, I know you'll like the extra power!

Yeah, and it also means I don't need to mess about with removing the 760 from my current desktop and replacing it with the 4890 I had before. Which is nice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Another quick update. The project now has a name: "Night Owl". This was inspired by the STRIX branding on the graphics card, and I think it ties in pretty well with the intentions of the build.

Yesterday I did a quick bit of 'modding' to the case, to block off a potential avenue for unfiltered intake air. As mentioned in the Overclock 3D R5 video review (around 2:40 into the video) dust could enter into the case via the unused optical bay. So, I bodged together a piece of cardboard artisanally crafted a high quality dust prevention device, and sealed it airtight with some black duct tape. I don't think blocking off this access will adversely impact on the CPU cooling (the top 140mm intake fan should hopefully still feed that OK), but I'm open to any input on that issue.

med_gallery_248914_3200_101871.jpg

A cable tie illustrating the unfiltered intake route.

med_gallery_248914_3200_210933.jpg

High quality dust prevention device ;)

med_gallery_248914_3200_841721.jpg

Situated in the case and sealed with black duct tape.

The graphics card is still on course to arrive today and the RAM should arrive tomorrow.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, this project just took a disastrous turn. I got both the graphics card and RAM delivered yesterday (UPS were a day early \o/), and mostly built the system over last night and tonight (with some cable management left to do). I had it up and running for a while, but I didn't actually get to do anything with it. I was having trouble with the SM951 RAID 0 (which I'll probably post about in the Storage Solutions section), where the board said the RAID was bootable, but it didn't appear in the Boot menu. That meant that when I tried to install Windows it didn't see the RAID. After deleting the RAID the drives both appeared in the Boot menu and the Windows installer.

After this I updated the BIOS (to version 0604), which completed successfully, but when the system attempted to reboot it got stuck in a POST failure/boot loop, displaying the red DRAM LED. I hadn't even changed any settings for the RAM yet (i.e. it was still running at 2133 MHz, no XMP). I turned the system off (with a long hold of the power button) and came back about 10-15 minutes later to see if restarting it would have changed anything.

Now the "disastrous" turn: when I pressed the power button there was a loud electrical short/buzzing sound. I pulled the power cable from the PSU as soon as I could, but I have no idea if any damage was done to other components.

I've already got in touch with the retailer I bought the PSU from to return it, but I don't know what will happen if any other components were damaged. I assume those will just be my loss. I've already spent more than I originally intended on this build, and if anything major has failed I'm going to struggle to replace it.

So, to sum it up: Balls.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

So, to sum it up: Balls.

 

Balls indeed, sorry to hear. Once had a PSU kill a GPU, its a bad feeling, you may be able to RMA any damaged parts... depending on your ethical standpoint. Do you have a spare PC lying around, a mate or family member perhaps, so you can test your GPU at least and maybe the hard drives, or even a spare PSU?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Balls indeed, sorry to hear. Once had a PSU kill a GPU, its a bad feeling, you may be able to RMA any damaged parts... depending on your ethical standpoint. Do you have a spare PC lying around, a mate or family member perhaps, so you can test your GPU at least and maybe the hard drives, or even a spare PSU?

I got a reply back from the retailer I bought it from asking if I could confirm the PSU was faulty, by testing with another one. I don't have the option to do that (without significant inconvenience), so I tried the paper clip trick instead and it appears the PSU is dead:

I got the pin layout from

.

I've contacted the retailer again with my above video, so hopefully they'll let me RMA this and get a replacement. I may test some of the components in my current desktop before I get the replacement PSU out, but I haven't decided yet. The retailer said that the warranty should cover any parts which were damaged by the PSU, so there's some good news there, at least...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Another quick update. I got the RMA confirmation for the AX760 a short while ago, so I've ordered an RM750i to replace it. I decided not to stretch to get another AX760 (remember that the original AX760 was a manufacturer refurbished model, and was approximately £50 less than a brand new model), and the RM750i seemed like a pretty good deal.

JonnyGURU scored it at 9.7 overall in his review. It may 'only' be 80+ Gold rated (compared to the 80+ Platinum for the AX760), but I'm willing to give up that small margin of efficiency to retain the hybrid fan mode and save about £30 compared to the AX760. Other benefits are the 135mm FDB fan, Corsair LINK support and the black and white colour scheme should fit a bit better in my build.

I should get the new PSU in tomorrow, so, fingers crossed, I may have the system up and running again tomorrow night. I'll definitely be trying a boot with minimal hardware installed first to see what happens. Wish me luck.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

but I'm willing to give up that small margin of efficiency to retain the hybrid fan mode and save about £30 compared to the AX760.

I should get the new PSU in tomorrow, so, fingers crossed, I may have the system up and running again tomorrow night. I'll definitely be trying a boot with minimal hardware installed first to see what happens. Wish me luck.

 

"Ay thunk eets dead" - love it

 

Woah, definitely a lot quicker than my corsair PSU RMA , awesome that you get a new one and that they 'should' [fingers crossed] cover the other components too. 

 

Looking forward to some picks, no rush take yo time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

"Ay thunk eets dead" - love it

 

Woah, definitely a lot quicker than my corsair PSU RMA , awesome that you get a new one and that they 'should' [fingers crossed] cover the other components too. 

 

Looking forward to some picks, no rush take yo time.

Yeah, I wasn't sure if I should have added subtitles ;)

When I was trying to arrange the RMA I contacted the retailer (Scan Computers) and asked them if I could get a refund for the dead AX760 (instead of a replacement) if I ordered the RM750i from them, and they said that would be OK. So that saved me a few days time.

I got the RM750i in on Friday and did some testing on Friday night/Saturday morning. When I attempted a minimal boot I got the DRAM LED warning again, and found myself in another boot/failed POST loop. I reseated the RAM (after temporarily removing the front 120mm fan from the Dark Rock Pro 3) and tried again. The DRAM LED illuminated, but on the 3rd attempt it actually worked and successfully POSTed. So, I added the graphics card and got it to POST again, then the M.2 drives (successfully) and the WD Green + Blu-ray burner (successfully). It appears I was lucky and no components were taken out by the failing PSU.

So, on to trying to get Windows installed on the M.2 RAID. Well, that has been quite a saga, and I've spent probably 7 or 8 hours over the last couple of days scratching my head and trying all the settings and combinations of different things I could. Yesterday I managed to install Windows 8.1 on the M.2 RAID (by supplying the Intel RST driver) and boot from it (by trying various combinations of CSM and Boot settings in the BIOS). However (and it's a big however!), the RAID solution appears not to be workable, for the moment. If you're interested, you can read the saga here. The TL;DR version can be condensed into this: I can't get the RAID working and stable, so for the moment I'm running Windows from a single 128GB M.2 drive. The question now is what I should do as a permanent solution. Ideally I'd return the two 128GB drives and get a single 256GB drive (yes, those who suggested that earlier appear to have been correct, with hindsight), but I don't know if I'd be able to do that. Alternatively I could just continue to run the two 128GB drives separately, and use the second drive for a few game installations.

Anyway, due to spending so much time trying to troubleshoot this RAID problem I haven't had much time for pictures or any other real progress. I hope to get some of that done in the next day or two.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

This post has taken me a bit longer than I intended it to, but I've been using the new machine for the last few days and have had no further issues, so I'm happy to call this finished (on the hardware side anyway...). I have taken some pictures of the completed build, but I'm not really happy with them, so I'll probably take more next week some time.

I've done some benchmarking on the new system, but for the moment it's running completely stock speeds (although I do intend to overclock in the future). I just wanted to get the local hot air balloon festival out of the way and get a few days of clean running first.

So, some benchmark results, compared to my previous desktop:

CPU: Intel Q9450

CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO

Motherboard: P5K-E/WIFI-AP

Memory: Kingston HyperX DDR2-PC6400 4GB

Primary Storage: Samsung 830 128GB SSD

Secondary Storage: Western Digital 150GB Velociraptor

Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 760 2GB Twin Frozr

Case: Antec P182 Gunmetal Grey

Power Supply: Corsair HX620

Optical Drive: LG BH10LS38 Blu-ray Writer

Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

First up, some real world benchmarks for tasks I do quite regularly:

gallery_248914_3200_3819.png

gallery_248914_3200_6322.png

Time taken to archive the backed up Lightroom catalog using WinRAR's 'Best' compression setting. A typical input filesize would be about 750MB and a typical output would be about 30MB.

gallery_248914_3200_3685.png

Time taken to export 43 images. The source images are ~18 megapixel Canon CR2 RAW files, approximately 21MB each. They're exported resized to 2000 pixels long edge.

gallery_248914_3200_9134.png

Time taken to export a video approximately 12 and a half minutes in length using the 1080p YouTube preset in Lightworks. The source files are 1080p, 30fps.

gallery_248914_3200_4627.png

Time taken to combine 27 separate FLAC files from a 2CD album with a running time of 2 hours and 12 minutes into a single FLAC file, with foobar2000.

gallery_248914_3200_6508.png

Time taken to combine 143 separate FLAC files from 10 single CD albums with a total running time of 10 and a half hours into 10 separate FLAC files, with foobar2000.

gallery_248914_3200_8539.png

Time taken to convert 143 separate FLAC files from 10 single CD albums with a total running time of 10 and a half hours to separate mp3 files, using the V5 (~130kbps) mp3 preset, with foobar2000.

...and some synthetics:

gallery_248914_3200_1598.png

A sample run from each: Old and new.

gallery_248914_3200_8501.png

A sample run from each: Old and new.

gallery_248914_3200_10697.png

gallery_248914_3200_4021.png

A sample run from each: Old and new.

gallery_248914_3200_2558.png

gallery_248914_3200_8544.png

As you can probably tell from these benchmarks, the new machine is very noticeably faster than the old one (which you'd expect after about 7 and a half years of development between them! :) ).

I'll try and get some decent quality pictures of the completed build up, and possibly some overclocked benchmarks, within the next week.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share


×