It was time for me to finally upgrade my old rig, which meant building a new one from scratch. This is my first rig where I didn't hold back on price. In the past I always pushed myself to stay below $1,000.00 and with a $1,500.00 max. With that being said, I wanted to push what I considered the limits. In the past I always had plans of upgrading my rig to a dual video card set up, but never followed through.
I chose to build my computer with a Mini ITX motherboard because the idea of a compact build thoroughly intrigued me. I did some research to confirm my decision on the case and form factor as there had been a couple other people that I had seen do a Sea Hawk and a H100i v2 in the Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ITX case.
Let me start by saying this is probably one of the hardest builds I have ever done. Although the case has plenty of room for the power supply, the cable management on the back is not as tidy as I would like. and I felt like I was jamming cables in the back of the case. As for the water cooling. The H100i v2 fits fine with the radiator outlets toward the front of the case. One thing that I did differently than the other builds I had seen was I mounted the radiator for the sea hawk on the front of the case with the fan mounting bracket between the fan and the rad with the fan set up in a pull configuration. This worked perfectly with the front removable screen and allowed me to keep in the included cover over the video card.
If I had to change one thing about the computer, it would be the case. As I was skeptical when I decided on the build, it does seem to run warm with an average 30 degrees on the processor and a whopping 54 on the m.2 ssd at idle. I suspect this is due to poor static pressure not provided by the Sea hawk's fan. On another note, the RGB header one the Asus ROG Strix Z370i is not compatible with the RGB header for the case, even with Phanteks own adapter; my power light and indicator light on the front only has the ability to maintain white due to this. Otherwise, I have not hit a thermal throttle yet. Although the tiny build was challenging, the result is well worth it.