I wanted a much smaller more powerful pc and the RVZ02 has made that possible. Its a super slim case that works fantastically thanks to some clever engineering. There are some caveats when working with the case but all in all it works perfectly fine running just about anything I could throw at it at 1080p (see below for benchmarks/game videos /w temp and fps overlay).
CPU: i5-6600 The CPU runs very slightly on the hot side. It was my first time applying thermal paste (stock ones come preapplied) and have a feeling that had something to do with it. Still, it sits at 30-40c at idle which isn't bad at all keeping in mind that the case has no ventilation fans.
Cooler: Cryorig C7 From what I read this cooler is just slightly better than stock and im not overclocking, so why the third party cooler? No explanation past it looks pretty awesome and fits both the GPU and RAM with the white highlights. The cooler itself seems to work as advertised, relatively easy to install and comes with its own thermal paste and tool to screw it in.
Motherboard: GA-Z170N-WIFI I got this motherboard for its skylake compatibility and dual band wireless. It also comes with a USB type C if that catches on any time soon. Why the Z170N over the H170N if I don't plan on overclocking? It was more or less the same price (~1-2gbp difference) so just pulled the trigger. I bought a copy of Windows 7 Pro edition (12GBP) to get a cheap and easy upgrade to Windows 10, what could go wrong? Well a lot apparently.
Burning the windows 7 install ISO to a USB takes ~20-40min depending on which tool you use. After plugging it into the PC the installer kicked up an error: "A required cd/dvd driver is missing". Turns out that windows 7 has some diver issues with the USB 3.0 ports. A simple solution I found online was to swap the USB to a USB 2.0 port, which the Z170N does not have.
Found a solution online by Gigabyte who was aware of this issue. They posted this video in which they use a custom utility to burn the install disk onto a USB with the much needed drivers. Problem was, the tool only recognises Windows CDs in a disk drive and not ISO files. I have not used a CD in the past 5 years and consequently my current PC, laptop and new PC all do not have disk drives. Great. My fix was to virtually mount the ISO to 'trick' the utility into thinking I had a drive with the Win7 install CD in it, which it then successfully burned onto the USB, which is now capable of installing through a USB 3.0 port. Crisis averted.
Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-2400 Not much to say here, it wasn't that much more expensive compared to the other options at the time of purchase. Still, cheaper memory is out there if you can get your hands on some.
Storage: OCZ Trion 100 240GB 2.5" / Hitachi Travelstar 1TB 2.5" I realize that the OCZ Trion is a bit of a cheapo SSD with the Samsung ones right around the corner in terms of price but this was already cheaper than the Samsungs and dropped further during a sale so I pulled the trigger on it. Works fine so far.
The Hitachi Travelstar is a godsend. The RVZ02 has only two 2.5" drives (read; no built in bays for 3.5" drives). The Travelstar is not only 2.5" but is also the cheapest 7200RPM 1TB 2.5" drive by a very large margin. I would much prefer a 2TB drive but 2.5" 2TBs are either super expensive or super slow.
GPU: Asus GeForce GTX 970 4GB I bought this card due to being relatively cheap and good looking for a reference cooler card. Traditional GPU cooling intakes a whole lot of air to cool the card and rely on influx and efflux fans to push out the hot air build up while keeping a health circulation of cool air. Reference cards on the other hand intake air and exhaust it out the back (by the HDMI/DVI ports) making them optimal for a small case that relies on passive cooling, especially one with a chambered design like the RVZ02.
The 970 Turbo is a great card, it has run everything I have thrown at it on ultra (or near ultra) 1080p (see some gameplay samples with settings, temps and frames below) with very few problems. There is a light passive whine that shows up every now and then but for the most part can be ignored (I do wear headphones). The card would be perfect if it remained silent when idle but it is a necessary sacrifice.
Some gameplay clips with cpu/gpu usage, temp and fps overlay:
Just Cause 3
Dying Light - coming soon
GTA V - coming soon
Metal Gear Solid V - coming soon
Evolve Stage 2
Rainbow 6 Siege
Case: Silverstone Raven RVZ02 This case is awesome, it is unbelievably slim and I love the way it looks. Its less than half the width of my Bitfenix Prodigy. I find it hard to believe that cases with more or less fullsize parts could be made smaller as everything is packed pretty tightly thanks to some clever construction.
Were the lighting, a deep blue or clean white and came with a 3.5" bay instead of one of the 2.5" ones it would be perfect.
PSU: Silverstone 600W SFX It doesn't come with a power cable??? I had to use the one from my old rig.