Project: Defiant

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ShortAlieN
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Ok, so I seen this new case and had to have it. I was going to save it for a build that I am planning for later in the year, but many surprising things have happened and moved to an early start on the build. Let us start at the beginning though.

Pretty much irresistible.

Not too shabby.

OK, so I got this bright white case and nothing to put in it. I have heard many reviews for the case and the black variant, mostly good reviews centered around the great air cooling abilities this case has. I had recently just finished my first liquid cooled computer recently and had a few ideas floating around in my head. After a fair bit of research, measuring, and taking much into consideration I decided to go liquid cooled again, even in probably the best air cooled case on the market. Defiant I am.

So I started to do some inquiries with BitsPower. I had used some of their products in my previous build of Xsesive and I was hoping that they could help me out with this one as well. It seems that no one makes white fittings for liquid cooling, but they were very gracious and supplied me with many of their products for this build.

I started out by stripping down the case so I can figure out where to start with the build. I have a general idea when going into this build, but my mind changes like the wind. The case was surprisingly easy to strip down with just screwdriver.

Taped off the edges to protect the nice white frame and laid out some of the parts.

With a little Dremel work I got the fill port in and started to do some mock ups.

A little more Dremel work was required to get the top radiator in place.

The fit is quite nice.

First problem I ran into is the sleeve I chose to use lets the color bleed through, so I had to order some new stuff. It's on it's way from MDPC-X now, not sure when I will see it though. Supposed to be the best stuff around, so I hope it is worth the wait.

I'm kind of at a stand still right now while I wait for parts to show up, but I hope to start seeing more parts start to show up soon. It's quite surprising how long it can take for stuff ship. A few parts will be out to paint so I will not see them for a couple of weeks. A good thing though while I await parts and supplies... I made myself a new work desk :)

My actual job is to make granite counter tops, so there were a few pieces laying around the yard that I snagged up so I could make myself the work desk. Now... just waiting for parts. The anticipation is killing me...

It's not what you do, it's how well you do it.

ShortAlieN
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WOWSERS... it's been a while since I have updated my build log. Sorry about that. Well, here's a good update. Have gotten a ton of work done. Where to begin?

Well First off, let us welcome my second sponsor ever. EK Water Blocks.

The nice gentleman over at EK was kind enough to help me out with water blocks for the motherboard, GPU and CPU.

I also did a little bartering with a friend of mine. I made him a new granite bar for the kitchen and I got some new hardware to play with :)

Unfortunately I am unable to acquire the video card for a little while, but it shall not hinder me! I have plenty of work to be done on this build before I will be in dire need of it. My new white sleeve showed up and I spent a huge amount of time sleeving the PSU up.

I made sure that I would have no bleed through with the wires this time. It took a bit of extra work and a whole bunch of extra time, but in the end it is well worth it.

I am quite pleased with the results. Unfortunately I did not get enough sleeve for the entire job, so I must order more. Worst problem is that it takes about two weeks to get here, once again though I have plenty of other work to keep me occupied while I wait to get the sleeve. My poor hands could use the break anyway. OUCH.

First thing I did was get everything out of the boxes and give them a thorough inspection.

Pleased to find nothing wrong with anything I proceeded to put a few things together and do a little bench testing to make sure that everything was working properly.

After doing some load testing, overclocking and general toying around it was time to strip it down to the bare essentials and start placing some water blocks. First thing to work on was the motherboard.

For the motherboard there are three blocks to mount. First we will start with the chipset blocks.

The blocks are attached with screws, spacers and plastic washers for insulating purposes. Easy to mount and fit perfect.

Next was the CPU block.

This block takes a bit more time and effort to install, but once in, it is not going anywhere. Good secure mounting system.

With the blocks secured in place and checked to make sure that everything was making contact to be cooled I was ready to mount the board in the Raven case. I will not have the video card for a bit, but that's not going to hold me back from a little play time. I set up a temporary loop for now so that I can have a bit of fun.

With the tubes routed and in place for now it looks a bit odd, but When I get the video card it will be changed around and cleaned up a bit.

I had some coolant from my previous build still, I like the color but I will probably be changing it later. It is always essential to leak test a system before you put any power to the motherboard, never know where a leak will sneak up on you.

And of course I found a leak right away. The EK reservoir was dripping on my paper towels. They sent me some new o-rings and the problem was fixxed right up. After leak testing for over 24 hours I was happy to find a dry computer.

My buddy is also a machinist and made me some good mounts for the reservoir. They work well, very well.

With much more work to be done and parts and supplies to wait for the build is progressing along nicely.

Now that I have some actual hardware in place I have a couple of new ideas to work with. It has been quite productive around here and the coming weeks show no sign of rest. Let me know what you think.

Edit:
A little fun with overclocking....
http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=1907156

chrisrice93
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Looks awesome so far man. I really like the green coolant and the white, they really look nice together. Are you gonna have custom paint? And why is your motherboard sideways?

ShortAlieN
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Thanks :) I do like the green and white as well, but it might be a bit much. thinking of changing either the tubing to white, or Change the coolant to something a little less distractive. As far as the paint goes there will be some painting, though custom is not really in the picture yet, pretty easy stuff. Mostly just for cosmetic purposes. The motherboard is sideways because of the design of the case. The case is actually designed for air cooling and the motherboard is rotated 90 degrees to make it easier to push hot air out out the top of the case. As far as air cooling goes this case is a top performer, but I prefer water cooling.

lali
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looks nice mate! keep up the good work.

Gentlemen.

ShortAlieN
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Thank you kind sir.

ShortAlieN
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Well the good camera is currently indisposed and tried using a.... lesser camera. Results were not good. I want to show the power supply though because I finally got it back together. So until then.

Had to make a little mod to the casing to fit the sleeved wires, also had to remove a few of the wires that were stock. Before...

After:

When I get my good camera back I will take some good pics of the finished PSU.

Tivon
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Can't wait to see the end product!

*Promoted to front page*

° º ¤ ø . ¸ . ø ¤ º ° º ¤ ø . ¸ ¸ . ø ¤ º ° º ¤ ø . ¸ . ø ¤ º ° º ¤ ø . ¸

Don't test my skills, I was trained by myself! Check out my Gaming Videos!

ShortAlieN
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And thank you again, one question though... Where's the front page?

Razear
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ShortAlieN wrote:And thank you again, one question though... Where's the front page?

The home page of the site. It's near the bottom where the news feed is.

http://www.3dgameman.com/

ShortAlieN
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I guess it's not a direct link. Thanks though :D appreciate it.

bobthenailer
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Wow nice build

ShortAlieN
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Thanks. It's far from over so keep an eye on it. If I ever get my camera back I'll be posting up some new pictures.

Johnbrianr
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Need more pics! Go knock out the guy that has your camera and get it back!

ShortAlieN
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the lens crapped out on me and had to send it in to get fixed. Didn't know that they could go bad, but they can. Could be another three weeks before I see it. Have not heard anything on it yet, so.... hurry up and wait.

ShortAlieN
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HOLY MOLY! It has been a while since I have done an update. But it's summer time... who can blame me.

OK, so I promise I have been doing something other than playing... mostly work actually :(
If it has not been on the computer, it's mostly been on the new place and of course regular work, the kind I actually get overworked and underpaid for.

The new garage has slowly been turning into a pretty good workshop, but it's a slow and expensive process. Hence the slow proceedings on this project. But no more! I need mah geek time.

Unfortunately though my stoopid camera lens is still not back, but hopefully it will be here in time for the weekend. This weekend is shaping up to be a good one, as long as everything arrives according to plan. In preparation I got the radiators and fan painted up.

I made sure to mask off the fins on the radiators so that paint does not inhibit the cooling more than I already have.

I got the NZXT power supply in, but have not gotten the rest of the cable sleeve done. One of the weekend projects.

I removed all the blocks from the motherboard when I drained the system. With the stock heatsinks back in place I can make sure to test everything when I receive it.

Well the crappy camera died and I dont really feel like buying more batteries for it. I was unable to get all the pictures taken that I wanted and am unable to show you some of the other things that I have done. If all goes according to plan, which it never does, I should have a grip of new stuff to work with by this weekend. As I type this there should be a few packages in route to me. Included in these packages are a GPU, more sleeve, hopefully a camera lens, coolant and some fresh white tube to get everything in proper working order.

It's going to be a busy weekend between all the work needed to get done on the computer I am also going to a Volbeat concert on Saturday. Sunday is pretty much dedicated to the computer though, if I'm still amongst the living

ShortAlieN
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by some sheer form of luck I got everything today. 3 packages, 3 different delivery services... endless possibilities :D

Did some testing and a couple of benchmarks on air to make sure all is well..... it was

Now I'm leak testing and doing a little sleeve work. About time for a nap.

ShortAlieN
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OK, well no good camera so I took a few shots with the crappy camera again. But I got it... "done" It will be getting a bit more work, but at least all the major parts are in under water and looking extra sexy. I'm very pleased with the progress so far. There are a few things that will be added later on, fan grills, probably some more acrylic to clean it up a bit and really need to get a SSD. I'm pretty much tapped out and tired of being broke so I will probably wait for a couple of months before I buy any more parts for this money pit. It feels good to get all the water cooled bits in place though. Its sooo quiet.

Made an acrylic mounting plate for the pump. It will get some finishing touches later on.

And of course you know this poor innocent victim.

Yay TIM...

Ready for the Ball :P

I have found that one of the hardest parts for me is always deciding on loop order. I always want it to look good, but I also want it to be as efficient as I can.

After a whole bunch of wire management, I don't recommend this if you want to get a build done in a timely manner, but it looks soooo nice.

A little work with some lights can go a long way. B)

chrisrice93
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Nice dude! This turned out great it looks so clean. Keep up the good work

hicks16
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May I ask you how you got Bitspower and EK to donate parts for your build? I am getting ready to do a i7 2600k build and would like to have Ek and Bits donate some things to help me out. I would show this build off for a magazine as well as put it up on youtube.

Do you think you can message me on who you contacted? If anyone at all? BTW sexy build :D. Im jealous, but torn on what case I should use to do my next mod....any suggestions

ShortAlieN
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This is the first time I have ever been sponsored on a build and what it really took was the drive to get what I wanted. I sent out many many emails and when I got a reply I was sure to reply promptly and made sure to answer all their questions and meet their requirements. Sponsorship is a marketing tool for companies and helps them sell their products. They didn't just give me some products, they got a service in return.

It's a lot of work and takes a great deal of time. Out of all the companies that I tried to get sponsorship from I was only able to get two that would actually talk to me about it and they were the ones that I was able to get. I never expected anyone to sponsor me, but I am truly grateful for their support. If you really want to get sponsored, start working now because it will take time.

ShortAlieN
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A few fresh photos.

I cleaned the system out really well and changed the coolant.

A couple of the PSU for your viewing pleasure.

ShortAlieN
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OK! Finally! :D

I hope everyone had a Happy and safe holiday season and New Year celebration.

After finding some things for this rig that were previously unavailable I was really happy to add to this thing. Though it was pretty nice before, it just didnt have the little Extra that I like to add in. The new radiator was the best thing that I couldn't wait for. It seemed like forever before anyone had them available, but as soon as they were I had to jump on one. Now when I first opened the box I was pretty scared that this beast was not going to tuck inside the bottom of the case, but fortunately for me... it fit perfect.

It took a little finesse and just a touch of mill work. I needed a drain port.

It turned out pretty well.

So that was the easy part... To get the radiator and fans in place in the bottom of the case I had to remove the filter boxes and do a little mod work on the hard drive cage. After trimming off two of the five drive slots I made a new aluminum plate that was a simple slip in and lock in place. I covered it with some white 3M Di-Noc, made a couple of acrylic panels and covered them with the white Di-Noc as well to give the interior a bit more a "personal" touch.

Now the painful part was having to re-do a whole bunch of my wiring. I made the top hard drive slot a Hot Swap bay so that drives can be easily changed out when needed and the other two are arranged for backup and program files. After some new sleeve and adding few new wires and removing a few old wires I was finally happy with what I had to work with behind the motherboard tray. It is not quite "perfect" but it is pretty damn good.

The thing that probably took the longest this time around was trying to figure out how to do the lighting in the case this time. I picked up some new white LED strips and placed them in some discrete locations. A little bit of sleeve finished them off, even though you dont get to see much of it.

And of course everything tucks inside and out of the way.

Sooooo... its "done" for now.

Until I cant contain myself and decide to get something else for it... or sell it and make a x79 build

3dGameMan
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Dude, that must have taken forever, but all the work shows. KICKASS :)

Rodney Reynolds,
Register: http://www.3dgameman.com/user/register

ShortAlieN
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Indeed, there has bee a lot of time and effort spent on this rig, but it has turned out really well. I really like to do extensive builds like these because I can learn so much from it, then offer it back to others. Its also great to test out new products and let others know how they work.

The main skill that I have taken from this project is the sleeve process. That alone has taken most of my time to put this rig together. Doing sleeve is now quite therapeutic and very calming for me. I do enjoy doing it.

Water cooling is probably the best part of building for me though. There are so many options available and so many different ways you can make each loop. The BitsPower fittings and adapters are very helpful to keep the loop clean and efficient, and the EK blocks are well thought out and easy to work with. They did have some issues with nickle plating in the past, but I have followed their directions for use and have not had any problems thus far. Most of all, these are great products and would recommend them to anyone.

This new radiator is probably the best thing I have in the case though. It really helped out a lot with temperatures and being able to sneak in a discreet drain port is a very welcome for me. Now I can tinker around and have easy draining when I need to, instead of the time consuming process it was before.

Thanks for checking it out :)

Renovatio_Design
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Congrats! Excellent Work!

Konfettix13
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%100 kick ass product. im extremely jealous of that that system looks so clean and powerful, wish i could do something like that but dont have the tools XD and Cash O.O

MUZZA FUZZA

k0170n
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^^^%100 kick ass indeed! Beautiful build, excellent work!! I saw your other computer, the NZXT Phantom build, great work also!! Totally looking forward to any other build or project you have in mind :)

dom4374
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looks incredible.

ShortAlieN
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Thank you everyone!

I have been bored lately, I really want to build a new system, but there really is not much out there that is enticing me enough to actually do it.

ShortAlieN
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So I built a new filter setup for my case since the radiator eliminated the original filter boxes. Added another 580 for more POWWA! Got a p67 UD7 for proper SLI capabilities. Then picked up some white RAM to make everything better :)

Covered with white Di-Noc for proper appearances.

And some sweet Teflon feets.

A little rearranging on the backside

And done.... again.