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My first build

So up until now, I've just used laptops, but I finally decided to build a pc.

I just recently graduated college and got a decent job, so I have some money to work with, but I also have student loans to pay off and a wedding coming up, so I needed to keep it reasonable.

 

I really enjoy virtualization and I've wanted a fully virtualized system for a while now for several reasons, on top of that I found out about the $75 E5-2670 cpus, and I had my starting point.

 

This build will be a dual headed gaming rig for myself and fiance, a nas, and a development pipeline server for my private projects.

 

I managed to get 2 E5-2670's for $68 each after shipping, and an Intel s2600gz motherboard for $99. Got the original water coolers from the motherboard and 2 riser cards for about another $100, and 2 750 Watt redundant psus for $15 each. Finally I found a steal on 4Gb ddr3 ecc ram at $3.50 a stick, and grabbed 8 of those for now (the board has 24 slots, so I can triple my ram to 96Gb without needing more ram per stick. All of this was used on Ebay.

 

Of course, the oddly shaped (and enormous) motherboard and it's 2 power supplies aren't going to fit in a normal case, so I went down to the local lowes and homedepot, and bought an 8'x4.5"x.5" board which I had cut into 4 2" long segments, a 2'x2' sheet of birch plywood, and a ton of screws, bolts, washers, and angle brackets. I also grabbed a 2'x2' sheet of acrylic later and ordered some glass standoffs on ebay for about $1.25 each. Out of this I made a box and mounted everything inside. I cut holes for the two radiators, but I don't have a lot of tools to work with, so I just made two round holes for each one, roughly corresponding to where the fans will be on the inside.

 

I replaced the screaming 40mm server fans in the psus with 40mm noctuas, got 2 120mm noctuas for intake fans, and 2 80mm noctuas for the radiators. I'll need 2 more later, but for now this is what I've got. I managed to squeeze in an evga 1070 sc (literally and financially) along with a usb 3.0 pcie card. I'll get a second gpu, likely a gigabyte mini 1070, for my fiance probably at the beginning of next year. I already had 2 terabyte harddrives (the second one hasn't been mounted yet, so it's not pictured) and a 512 gb ssd.

 

The screws holding the motherboard are countersunk on the back of the plywood and screw into t-nuts on the motherboard side, then there's a nut and washer as standoffs, and another washer and nut on top to hold in the board.

 

Also pictured is the template I drew for the fan holes in the acrylic. I was really scared of cracking it, but it actually went super smoothly. Four small holes for mounting, and six large holes around the fan blade area for air flow.

 

Due to where the system is in the house, there's not a good way to get ethernet to it, so I actually stuffed in a router that bridges to the main router across the house. That also allows me to plug in all four nics on the motherboard. I'm passing through 3 of them to different vm's, allowing them to easily have their own mac addresses and dedicated internet lines.

 

I haven't finished optimizing everything for my windows 10 gaming vm, but it does have the 1070 passed in to it and games just fine so far. I'll put up some benchmarks once everything is set up properly. 

 

 

Software setup right now:

   host ubuntu mate system with kvm setup

   centos vm for development work

   windows 10 pro with 1070 passed through

 

 

I think I've spent about $900 on this build so far. With the second gpu installed, it'll be about $1300 for effectively 2 gaming rigs and a server. Not too bad for my first build I think :)

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Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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Nice! Are you planning on still painting the box? (or keep it wood natural)  

Also, not that it would matter too much seeing as the acrylic is lifter off the box on the edges, but do those small fan exhaust holes not limit the exhaust heavily?

CANDY MADE OF PEOPLE MADE OF CANDY~!!!!

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I'm sure they limit it some, but hopefully not too much. If it proves to be an issue, I'll just cut out a full size hole later.

I kind of like the natural look, but it probably does need some stain at least.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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Wow! That's pretty awesome man. You should name it the Millennium Falcon or something along those lines. I just hear Han saying, "She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts." Hats off to you!

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Quote

Wow! That's pretty awesome man. You should name it the Millennium Falcon or something along those lines. I just hear Han saying, "She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts." Hats off to you!

Haha, I like it :)

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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I've been pouring over as much vm optimization stuff as I can find in my down time at work. I ended up just passing through the whole usb chipset controller to get mouse and keyboard to work well, but that hurt game performance a bunch, think it's from the default interrupt setup which I'll fix tonight. I pinned the vcpus to real cpus, which helped synthetic cpu benchmarks a bunch, but again hurt gaming. Found out I had passed through the wrong cpu cores, so I had half of 6 cores on each processor instead of 3 whole cores from each, so I redid it and that gave another bump to cpu benchmarks and got rid of the gaming performance hit.

 

Things to still do for the gaming vm:

  setup big pages for ram

  create script to switch pinned cpu cores from powersave to performance frequency scaling while vm is running

  fix interrupt handling for usb controller and gpu in windows registry

 

After that I'll hopefully have the near bare metal experience I'm looking for in the vm and I'll get some benchmarks. Don't own firestrike unfortunately :/ , but I'll do some other ones.

 

 

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Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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  • 3 weeks later...

Forgot to ever update this...

Well, here goes.

 

I cleaned up the cables some, added 2 more fans, remounted the 1TB drive along with a second one and put them in raid 0.
I also got a new usb 3 pci card as the first one I got didn't work. This fixed all the interrupt issues I was having.

 

There's now one display port cable coming out from the 1070 and one hdmi cable coming from the motherboard via a vga to hdmi converter. Both of these plug into the monitor so I can switch from the kvm host and the windows vm by switching inputs.

 

There is one usb 2.0 hub that belongs to the host and one usb 3.0 hub that goes to the usb 3 card which is passed through to the vm.

 

I get smooth performance in pretty much everything, easily getting >60fps at 1440p in every game I've tried with the exception of Tera.

I was getting some artifacting at one point but re-seating the gpu fixed that.


Windows 10 vm specs:
  8 hyperthreaded cores (16 logical cores), 4 from each of the 2 E5-2670 cpus, max speed 3.3Ghz.
  EVGA 1070 SC overclocked to 2100Mhz
  12 GB ddr3 ecc ram @ 1333mhz
  60GB virtual disk on an ssd for OS
  300GB virtual disk on raid 0 array for User folders
  1TB virtual disk for programs, games, and shared media storage (will be shared between 2 windows vms once I get a second gpu)

 

Once I get the second gpu and vm setup in a few months I'll drop to 6 cores per vm which will leave 4 for the host system and a server vm.
The server will do web/media hosting, as well as being a vpn/minecraft/teamspeak/development server (may well make it multiple vms, not just one).

I've got another 32GB of ram on the way from ebay, so I've got more than enough of that to go around.


The last thing I still need to do hardware wise is mount the power button... Just haven't decided where to put it yet.

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Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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  • 1 month later...

Alright, so a little while ago I doubled my ram for another $30. Thanks ebay! So now my windows vm has 25 gb of ram and the system has a total of 64gb.

I also disabled hyperthreading to increase single core performance, so now my vm has 8 cores (all of cpu2). This doesn't hurt anything I do (I don't do rendering or anything hugely multi-threaded) and gives me a decent fps bump in cpu heavy games.

 

Also, black friday/cyber monday happened. I ordered my now wife (got married last week ;) ) a zotac 1060 6gb mini, an acer 23" 1080p ips monitor, and a 2 port usb 3.0 usb card for $325 on newegg. I'll set her up with a vm with 6 cores, 25gb of ram, and access to the 1tb drive with all the games on it. I'll update in a week or so when it's all here and put together :)

 

Hopefully by years end we'll have bought our own place, have separate desks for more space, and I'll wall mount this guy.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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  • 3 weeks later...

Great project, I bought also s2600g motherboard with DPS-750xb PSU. Did you have a problem with psu noise? I don't know how to solve this, my psu is too loud because of fan.

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1 hour ago, djokan said:

Great project, I bought also s2600g motherboard with DPS-750xb PSU. Did you have a problem with psu noise? I don't know how to solve this, my psu is too loud because of fan.

I replaced the stock psu fans with 40 mm noctua fans. Made all the difference. The only downside is that the noctua fans aren't pwm fans, so they're always on since the psu expects pwm, but that's fine since they're so much quieter.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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13 hours ago, Elerek said:

I replaced the stock psu fans with 40 mm noctua fans. Made all the difference. The only downside is that the noctua fans aren't pwm fans, so they're always on since the psu expects pwm, but that's fine since they're so much quieter.

Thanks man, i will do same thing, what model of fan did you buy and did you have a problem with PSU temperature because airflow of noctua fan is lower than delta fan i think?

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is that your power button in the last picture? Sorry if you mentioned it before but I just noticed it, I love it!

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On 12/16/2016 at 9:20 AM, djokan said:

Thanks man, i will do same thing, what model of fan did you buy and did you have a problem with PSU temperature because airflow of noctua fan is lower than delta fan i think?

NF-A4x10 FLX

No heat issues so far :)

It comes with all the hardware you'll need to splice it onto the stock fan's wire, but heads up, they have sense and power switched.

 

I wasted probably two hours trying to figure out why the fan wouldn't work before I figured it out. The colors on the stock fan cable look right, but the two middle ones are switched from a normal fan cable. So don't waste 2 hours like I did splicing wrong ;)

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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17 hours ago, Zendrith501 said:

is that your power button in the last picture? Sorry if you mentioned it before but I just noticed it, I love it!

Yes, still haven't drilled a whole for it yet... About to move though so maybe then.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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hot damn. that looks beautiful I personally like the natural look if you're keeping it that way. btw congrats to getting married mate.

 

how about dust? are they going in like mad in your build? any plans on a dust filter?(but this would kinda ruin the looks with a dust filter.

 

all in all 10/10 for me a very wonderful build.

Live your life like a dream.

 
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8 hours ago, Joshua Ondangan said:

hot damn. that looks beautiful I personally like the natural look if you're keeping it that way. btw congrats to getting married mate.

 

how about dust? are they going in like mad in your build? any plans on a dust filter?(but this would kinda ruin the looks with a dust filter.

 

all in all 10/10 for me a very wonderful build.

Right now it gets really dusty. I'm thinking after the move I'm going to wall mount it and leave the acrylic off since it seems to trap dust in more than keeping it out. I found out you can mount technic legos on motherboard screws, so I'm mounting the fans that way so they don't need the acrylic. I'm also using some legos to prevent gpu sag.

 

Also, that's my wife's new zotac gtx 1060 mini above my 1070 :)

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Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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  • 2 months later...

Sorry for interrupting again, 1 more question:

 

Did you power your GPUs from riser card power connectors ? And how did you connect them, there are only 2 2x2 connectors?

 

Thanks

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22 hours ago, djokan said:

Sorry for interrupting again, 1 more question:

 

Did you power your GPUs from riser card power connectors ? And how did you connect them, there are only 2 2x2 connectors?

 

Thanks

Those 2x2 connectors are rated for 175 watts each (plus 75 from the pcie slot itself). Took me a while to find adapters since the plug on the board is normally the input side of a atx 2x2, but here it's an output, but I just have it going to the standard 8 pin pcie power plug.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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  • 5 months later...

Hey I've just finished my build using the same board but with one gtx 1080 ti, and dual e5-2690s. Total I think was just about 1450 with 2 water coolers 4 300gb 15k hard drives 64 gigs of ram and 1 480 gb ssd. To solve the psu noise problem, I modified an frusdr file included in a bios update I accidentally found when doing driver updates. The file I modified was called s2600gz.sdr, I can provide more details about that if someone here is interested. This was also my first build. Now I just need to do cosmetic changes like replacing the cover of the machine and adding a sound card. 

 

I would love to know what your post time and boot time is for the rig, I'm getting kind of long with 3 minutes from power button press to windows. I'm also unable to see the post screens when I have the monitor plugged in to the graphics card only instead of the motherboard and the graphics card. It also does not switch by itself once windows loads, and I have to unplug the motherboard video to get videocard video. 

 

If you could also let me know your psu temperature idle that would also be good, I'm getting roughly 40 Celsius most of the time and it has never hit 55 yet which I think is acceptable temperatures but I would like to have someone to compare to. 

 

Another thing is that this computer gives off heat like no tomorrow and makes my room really hot does yours also do this or does all the heat exit through the holes directed away from you?

 

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one that wanted to maximize my bang for the buck and I really admire your work here. It's simply splendid, the custom case and noctua fans and custom rewiring is all very impressive, after doing my build I appreciate the small details in yours quite  bit. I was very lazy with cooling system power source in mine and all of my fans except the psu fans are plugged into a 10 dollar sata to 3 pin hub with a high and low voltage switch lol. 

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Finally got around to mounting the power button... Still need to replace the acrylic and drill a hole for cables to leave though. One day.

 

14 hours ago, octotriangle said:

Hey I've just finished my build using the same board but with one gtx 1080 ti, and dual e5-2690s. Total I think was just about 1450 with 2 water coolers 4 300gb 15k hard drives 64 gigs of ram and 1 480 gb ssd. To solve the psu noise problem, I modified an frusdr file included in a bios update I accidentally found when doing driver updates. The file I modified was called s2600gz.sdr, I can provide more details about that if someone here is interested. This was also my first build. Now I just need to do cosmetic changes like replacing the cover of the machine and adding a sound card. 

Nice find on the bios edit, I went the expensive hands on approach and replaced the psu fans with noctua fans that just run at 100% all the time (still pretty mush silent).

 

14 hours ago, octotriangle said:

I would love to know what your post time and boot time is for the rig, I'm getting kind of long with 3 minutes from power button press to windows. I'm also unable to see the post screens when I have the monitor plugged in to the graphics card only instead of the motherboard and the graphics card. It also does not switch by itself once windows loads, and I have to unplug the motherboard video to get videocard video. 

Hm, that post is kind of long. Mine is maybe ~2 minutes from power button to windows login, and windows is in a VM, so linux has to finish booting first before windows even starts. I don't have anything plugged directly into the motherboard io except ethernet though, so that might help. Everything is connected to usb 3.0 pci-e cards, so the bios doesn't see or try to enumerate them. I've also got hyperthreading turned off for slightly better single thread performance. 

 

As for video output, mine won't send post over gpu either, It sees the onboard video chip as primary I guess. I just leave motherboard video unplugged though and the OS uses the gpu fine. I haven't used that though in ages. I'm running ubuntu server on the system with no video output and I connect to it over ssh. The windows VMs have control of the gpus.

 

15 hours ago, octotriangle said:

If you could also let me know your psu temperature idle that would also be good, I'm getting roughly 40 Celsius most of the time and it has never hit 55 yet which I think is acceptable temperatures but I would like to have someone to compare to. 

Can't really tell you psu temp, linux doesn't seem to be able to read the sensors on them and I don't have anything to measure it manually. Normally though it doesn't even need to load share across the two power supplies unless both gpus and cpus are running 100% (so basically never). My guess at max system draw is around 600-650 watts (my 1070 is undervolted a bit), So I really doubt the power supplies are struggling with heat at all.

 

 

15 hours ago, octotriangle said:

Another thing is that this computer gives off heat like no tomorrow and makes my room really hot does yours also do this or does all the heat exit through the holes directed away from you?

You can definitely feel the heat coming out of the radiators and in my old setup it could get a little warm where I was sitting. As you can see now though the radiators dump the heat towards the wall, so I don't get the direct heat anymore. I'm sure it does add on to our ac portion of the power bill each month, but we live in an apartment sandwiched on every side by other units, so we get to benefit from having cooled space outside the walls instead of the hot summer heat of outdoors, so it's not too bad.

 

 

15 hours ago, octotriangle said:

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one that wanted to maximize my bang for the buck and I really admire your work here. It's simply splendid, the custom case and noctua fans and custom rewiring is all very impressive, after doing my build I appreciate the small details in yours quite  bit. I was very lazy with cooling system power source in mine and all of my fans except the psu fans are plugged into a 10 dollar sata to 3 pin hub with a high and low voltage switch lol.

 

Haha, thanks but I did a pretty lazy job myself! I had to make the case because I didn't have the server chassis, and I still haven't bothered to replace the broken acrylic sheet or drill a hole for cables to leave the case.

 

 

Side note:

I'm hoping to have the money to move to a threadripper build sometime after ryzen gen 2 releases and do this over but MUCH smaller. I like these power supplies though, so I'm thinking I'll keep them and get a dc-dc atx psu like this one https://smallformfactor.net/forum/threads/more-g-unique-bto-psus-are-now-available-direct-order.1983/ 

I found some connectors for the psu on ebay and made a test board for it:

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I should probably put a switch on it, but for now the sense pin is just wired to ground, so the psu will always be on. Works fine though :) I just need to get some 14 or 16 gauge wire and a 4 pin atx plug to solder onto it and I'll have a functional 750w 12v power supply to use for who-knows-what till I build my next pc.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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How are the CPUs keeping up with the 1070 ? I have the same setup and I'm thinking about buying a 1060/980Ti/1070, but I'm wondering if the 1070 will be bottle-necked by the CPU. Have you done some benchmarks that you can share ? 

CPU: 2x Xeon E5 2670 Motherboard: ASRock EP2C602-4L/D16,  RAM: 64GB of 1333 MHz mermory from Samsung (ECC),  GPU: Gigabyte GTX 1070,  Case: NZXT Switch 810, Storage: Samsug EVO 250GB and 500GB, 3x3 TB and 1x1TB  HDD  PSU: Corsair RM 850,  Mouse: Logitech MX Master 2s,  Headset: Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO black edition (80 ohm), OS: UnRaid with two VMs and Plex 
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18 hours ago, DieselWeasel said:

How are the CPUs keeping up with the 1070 ? I have the same setup and I'm thinking about buying a 1060/980Ti/1070, but I'm wondering if the 1070 will be bottle-necked by the CPU. Have you done some benchmarks that you can share ? 

In cpu heavy games the 1070 gets to relax a bit. Tera runs at a pretty low fps (~25-40 if I remember right, closer to 60 when not much is going on), other games like titanfall 2 are pretty light on cpu and can make better use of multiple cpu cores. I can max out the 1070 in those titles getting 100+ fps at 1440p max settings. Titanfall 2 stays at 144 fps in single player and can stay there about half the time in multiplayer and never goes under 100.

Tera is an outlier though, I can't think of any other game I've played that I couldn't keep over 60fps 1440p high or max settings and most get 100+ fps.

Being able to leave a bunch of stuff open in the background without games suffering because of all the ram and cpu cores I have is pretty nice. I have to close chrome sometimes, but that's because I have like 100 tabs open...

 

For the games that the cpu can't quite keep the gpu maxed I've started undervolting the gpu and dropping the frequency a bit (1911 mhz instead of 2100, 900 mV from 1075) to save on power, temps, and noise.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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1 hour ago, Elerek said:

Being able to leave a bunch of stuff open in the background without games suffering because of all the ram and cpu cores I have is pretty nice. I have to close chrome sometimes, but that's because I have like 100 tabs open...

Haha sounds just like me :D Thanks for the info. 

CPU: 2x Xeon E5 2670 Motherboard: ASRock EP2C602-4L/D16,  RAM: 64GB of 1333 MHz mermory from Samsung (ECC),  GPU: Gigabyte GTX 1070,  Case: NZXT Switch 810, Storage: Samsug EVO 250GB and 500GB, 3x3 TB and 1x1TB  HDD  PSU: Corsair RM 850,  Mouse: Logitech MX Master 2s,  Headset: Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO black edition (80 ohm), OS: UnRaid with two VMs and Plex 
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13 minutes ago, DieselWeasel said:

Haha sounds just like me :D Thanks for the info. 

Np.

I think the 1070 goes pretty well with this system at 1440p. Only reason I'd consider an 1080 is if you've got a 4k monitor. If you're only doing 1080p, 1060 is probably all you need. Each of those can do 60+ fps at their respective resolutions (well maybe not the 4k), and the e5 cpus seem to be able to keep up with that just fine.

Build: Intel S2600gz, 2x E5-2670, EVGA SC 1070, Zotac 1060 6GB mini, 48GB Micron 1333mhz ECC DDR3, 2x Intel DPS-750XB 750 watt PSU

https://pcpartpicker.com/user/elerek/saved/3T7D4D

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