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-   -   Project: P190 (http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/case-mods-worklog-gallery/4471-project-p190.html)

MpG February 6, 2008 12:08 PM

Project: P190
Been planning this build for awhile now, and I'm finally going to get off my butt and do it. I was holding out and hoping that the X48 chipset would be available, and that DDR3 would drop in price, and that a genuine next-gen video cards would come out, but... :censored: it.

I still haven't thought of a name for this system yet. On the other hand, by virtue of hardly anybody else using this case, "P190" is practically unique in itself. Antec probably had higher hopes for this case, but I guess that's how things go.

I've never actually done a worklog before, so we'll see how this turns out. A lot of things I'll do here could probably apply to the P180/182 cases, so at worst, this might turn into a manual on what NOT to do...

The primary goal for this case is to see how quiet I can make a high-performance system. As a baseline, the loudest components in my present system are some 1200 rpm YL fans. They're good, of course. The system is fairly quiet by most standards, much less for a quad-core/8800 system. But I'm confident that there's room for improvement, with some good components and careful design.

Ideally, I don't want to hear this system. AT ALL.

My secondary goal is to make this a system that actually looks nice enough to display on my desktop. You know, the kind of system that can actually serve as a conversation piece? That stands out, but still matches the furniture? Where even the most computer-illiterate people can tell it didn't just come from the local computer shop?

This, I suspect, will be much harder. Fortunately, it's just a secondary goal.

MpG February 6, 2008 12:08 PM

Base system specs will include:
  • Asus X38 Maximus board
  • 2 GB Mushkin XP DDR2-1066 RAM - I'll be using XP Pro for this system, and I love my Mushkins. These XP's aren't the cheapest, but I hear better things about their IC's. And at this point, I've had one big long streak of NO PROBLEMS with Mushkin RAM, so they've got my business.
  • 2 WD 500GB HDD's, to be used for a RAID 0 setup. I was really hoping for SSD's, but... maybe later. At that point, these guys will do fine for bulk data.
  • Auzentech Prelude sound card. Probably higher quality than my ears will ever be able to tell. But the price was decent.
  • Video card - not picked yet. Was hoping for a new generation card, but does look like it was meant to be. For now, just something to carry me over. I'm not convinced NVidia's new offerings will do much that my 8800 GTS doesn't do with its 40% overclock, and ATI's single cards will almost certainly be a step down. I'm leaning towards an 3870 X2 at the moment, pending the availability of a good waterblock, and gambling on future driver improvements.
Attachment 1476
Also in this photo are two things that fall under the "Let's give it a try" category.

First is Primochill's Liquid Utopia coolant additive. I won't touch non-conductive fluid, but their colours are usually much better. I've been completely unable to find any proper reviews on this stuff, so I figured I'd give it a shot. Worst case scenario, I'll have to flush my system and replace some stained tubing. Also pictured is a T-balancer. I keep hearing about these things, figured I'd give one a shot. If it work, great. If not... well, I've got other ways of making fans do what I want.

A CPU photo, just for posterity. Yes, I decided to splurge on a QX9650. My goal will be to clock this thing high enough that an 8.5 multiplier (highest to be available on normal Penryn quad processors) will be inadequate. Y'know, to somewhat justify the ridiculous price.
Attachment 1473

The base P190 case, as Antec made it. The actual case is rock-solid, which is why I chose it as the foundation. It comes with Tri-cool fans, but I junked them approximately 0.1 secs after getting the case.
Attachment 1472
Note the bottom chamber, filled to capacity with PSU cables. No, this doesn't include any of the optional modular cables that can be plugged into the second PSU. Antec's idea of a "modular" power supply system needs some serious work... and don't get me started on the power-distribution across the two supplies. For a case that can only hold 6 hard drives, Antec seems to expect otherwise on the second PSU. I came THIS close to tossing those power supplies and putting out for a 1Kw+ unit. As it is, I expect to feel no hesitation about just cutting some of those cables off entirely in the near-future.

Silence and performance are my goals, therefore much cooling is required.
Attachment 1477
Not pictured is the CROWBAR that I'll be using the get all this stuff inside the case somehow.This will be a dual-loop setup, with the chipset blocks seperated from the CPU/GPU stuff. Considering what I blew on the processor, I still cringe when I think of what I spent on those little EK blocks... and the two Thermochill rads... and the Noctua fans. God bless Swiftech and D-Tek, at least.

Future updates as they occur...

enaberif February 6, 2008 12:15 PM

You do realize how big the P190 is right? Its massive compared to the P182!

Your probably gonna wanna switch out the fans immediately for some Noctua or Scythes to reduce noise to a greater extent.

3.0charlie February 6, 2008 12:37 PM

To have seen it personally, the P190 is a monster. You'll need a massive desktop for your display / conversation piece.... which will fill the bill. Though I haven't seen one with a side window.

Cptn Vortex February 6, 2008 12:48 PM

I've made a silent P190 build. It actually housed dual 2.8GHZ Xeons quadcore and dual 8800GT cards! They key is airflow, obviously. Also, the top 2 fans are 140mm, so sourcing slow and silent replacement fans may be quite hard. If the lowest setting is too loud, maybe try a voltage mod, and provide the fans with 7V instead of 12. That way you don't need to replace them. Check out some pics here! http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum...suckers-2.html

MpG February 6, 2008 12:55 PM

Second post filled now. Yeah, this case is going to look quite a bit different by the time I finish...

3.0charlie February 6, 2008 01:32 PM

Triple 'chill, dual 'chill and single Swift all in the P190? Can't wait to see that. As fo Mushkin, I loooooove my XPs, even though they are PC5300s. But they can run at 950MHz....

low351 February 6, 2008 07:20 PM

Awesome stuf MpG. Keep em coming Pics pics pics. And if you have it how much you spent. I'd like to see how much this all costs...

SKYMTL February 7, 2008 03:14 PM

I need to clean up. I just messed myself....

Below_Cost February 7, 2008 07:33 PM


Originally Posted by SKYMTL (Post 39477)
I need to clean up. I just messed myself....

Crap Sky... I was munching on a carrot when I read that and got some lodged in my nose. Yuk.

I can't wait so see how this project comes along.

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