I've been slowly assembling this build while waiting for the release of Turing. With the RTX 2080 now in my hands, it's time to shine!
At its core, my intent was to build a high end, quiet computer that will last me a long time while gaming at 1440p. I wasn't really interested in spending halo-tier money on things that offered less bang for the buck, like the 2080 Ti or all out hardline water cooling, but was still willing to spend for fancy things.
The Dark Base 700 case has a neat feature in that it is invertible. The entire case dissembles to just its shell, and can be reassembled reversed, placing the computer facing right instead of the normal left. Even with lots of technical knowledge and time, this was was a pretty patience testing experience to do solo. There are a lot of screws, wires, standoffs, and everything else to consider when going through the flipping procedure. To bequiet!'s defense, the instructions are good and it has to be an incredible engineering exercise to design a case this high quality that is also invertible. It's just not something I would recommend unless you are truly an enthusiast and have a fair amount of patience.
For example, you will see in the pictures that the gaps for running cables beneath the motherboard are not wide enough to get the EPS connector through, meaning you will be loosening the entire motherboard tray just to get the gap wide enough to get the thing through. And that's just one example of many!
Cable management was also pretty difficult, especially once I added the CableMods extenders. However, I did my best, and then employed the old school "if you can push it closed, its all good!" rule on the backside.
I will say, once done, its pretty unique and cool!
IC Graphite pad
Here is another fairly interesting thing in this build. Instead of paste, I used the IC Graphite thermal pad. The Dark Rock 3 I am using for CPU cooling is a notoriously difficult to install cooler, and it took 4+ mounting attempts to get the pad to sit squarely on the CPU IHS. That's pretty scary, as the pad itself is thermally conductive! I actually ended up using tiny dabs of AS5 in the corners to keep the pad from moving around, while installing the cooler from the bottom with the case scooted to the edge of a table.
In the end, my thermal results were identical to my results using Arctic Silver 5, so that is pretty impressive. Again, I don't recommend people use this product unless they really are an enthusiast with a lot of patience. Temps with the 8700 at 4.3ghz all core turbo in torture testing are about 79c with all the fans in silent mode.
I've been waiting for a 2080 for a long while and was lucky to get this EVGA XC at its original $750 price point before it went up. A 1080 Ti may be better bang for the buck, but I had been waiting a long time for Turing! I am especially a fan of the new EVGA backplate design. Very cool! 3dmark benchmarks show ~22k in Fire Strike and ~10k in Time Spy.
Hope yall dig it! Feel free to ask any questions you might have!
Excellent CPU, but only if you remember to get a motherboard that allows you to adjust the TDP of the CPU!
At stock settings, it will turbo up to 4.3ghz all core, but then quickly cut timing to stay under the 65w rated TDP. This will lead to very disappointing performance numbers from a CPU of this price.
By going into the motherboard settings of a board with TDP override and manually setting the TDP to 95w or higher, the CPU will turbo up to 4.3ghz and stay there, meaning it will exactly match the performance of a more expensive stock 8700K!
A very good air cooler that will outright beat many AIO water coolers on price/peformance/noise. However, mounting can be a very big headache. The instructions that come with the unit are not especially helpful, and I actually would not recommend using them.
I strongly recommend searching YouTube for a good walkthrough that shows the alternate mounting process, essentially flipping the motherboard on-top of the cooler and tightening from the back. A much easier process.
Will happily run at its advertised timings while putting on a nice blinky light show.
When using only a single kit, I was able to undervolt the ram to 1.2v and maintain both frequency and timings.
Sticks use Hynix dies.
They look purdy! Cable combs included on the cables are plastic. Just remember that they may introduce some issues with cable management in the back with their added length. Would not recommend for use with cases with transparent rear panels.
Can be quite difficult to install, as the pad is very light and has a propensity to slide around during cooler installation. As it is conductive, a bad mount could have scary results. I would only recommend using this product for use with coolers with straight forward, top mounting.
However the product will not age, degrade, or ooze, which may be especially useful for builds that will not be messed with often in their lifetime. The product is also reusable.
Temps are broadly similar to Arctic Silver 5 in my personal experience.