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Old September 4, 2014, 05:50 PM
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Sorry, no pics on the first post - haven't had time to unbox any parts and clear a space to photograph. Just a wall of text for now as my free time seems to becoming less and less.

Finally picked up a case that I will be building my next workstation into. My current "build" is a bunch of parts thrown into an Midi R2 that hasn't had its top or sides on for quite some time. It's more of a benchstation than anything right now.

I've decided to make it into a Hackintosh for no good reason. I know there is a lot of Apple hate around here, and though I tried OSX back in Snow Leopard days and didn't like it too much due to lack of customizability, I've decided to give it another go.

Components:
Fractal Define R4 Black - no window. I dislike windows on cases.
i7 4790K
ASUS Z87-Deluxe
4 x 8 GB Hynix MFR
2 x Radeon 7970
Samsung 830 256 GB
EVGA 1000P2
2 x 2560x1440 Korean 27" LCD
Apogee ONE (re-using this old thing!) for audio recording


Cooling:
Swiftech Apogee XT rev 1
2 x Swiftech Komodo 7970
Swiftech MCP35x
Swiftech MCR220
Thermochill PA120.2 old spacing
Clear Primochill LRT 7/16 or 3/8. Whatever I have leftover in my bin.
Cougar CF-V12HP fans
EK tube res, I think it's a 250 I have spare.


Configuration:
MCR220 up to, exhausting out
PA120.2 rad in front, pulling in (hoping it'll fit)
Tube res feeding pump on case floor near front


To be determined:
Front rad- If the Thermochill doesn't fit, I'll probably end up with a thick Darkside 240.
CPU block- May purchase the EK-Supremacy - Plexi Copper (Model 2012), or Acetal version, mainly for lower restriction and possibly naked precision mount.
Video card- If Yosemite comes out soon with full 290X support, I might opt to go dual 290X with EK full covers.


Software
OSX 10.9.4
Clover bootloader
Adobe Lightroom, Premiere (OpenCL acceleration)
MSR patched


Currently have Mavericks 10.9.4 running with working BT4.0 and Wireless AC.
Already have my chip clocked up to 4.5 @ 1.23-ish volts on a H220, RAM I have to work on.
I've been waffling over the GPU selection for a while, and think the 7970s may stay since they aren't really worth selling (TBH neither are my 290X) and it matches up with the current MacPro dual D700 configuration so I won't have to worry. It's unlikely that 290X will be fully supported as even the old 5770/5870 had issues last time it was supposed to be 'fully supported'.
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Old September 13, 2014, 09:36 PM
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The Define R4 seems almost identical to the Arc Midi R2 which I already own. The main difference in layout being the roof exhaust mounts and door.

Below is a quick cellphone pic I snapped before calling it a night.
Had been pondering how to mount the pump and which pump to use.

Stock D5, MCP35x with Koolance top, or dual MCP350 in the dual Swiftech housing.

Prefer the 35x for pwm but want to keep it for my future Ncase M1 build.



Had the Thermochill barbs down for access to the bleed screw but ultimatey flipped it for better tube routing.

Will post some more detailed pics once I get Light room on my laptop.
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Old September 13, 2014, 10:03 PM
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Nice to see someone using such an 'old' water block.
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Old September 14, 2014, 04:25 AM
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Looks good. How do you find those cases? I have been thinking about getting a midi r2...maybe a Christmas gift. I won't be going custom water, probably stick with air or maybe AIO at some point.
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Old September 14, 2014, 09:21 AM
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Haha thanks lowfat, I thought about buying a new one for a while, but figured 2C isn't worth $50. I'd get better results de-lidding.

Cleaning the gunk out of this old block (previously used on my A05NB 2600K).
Old Sonicare toothbrush head + ketchup... A "good enough" job. I got rid of most of the crap, and cleaning out all of the micropins will take forever (ran out of white vinegar).

The Apogee XT top is losing its plating. One of the reasons I hate Swiftech blocks. The Apogee GTX was a piece of and looks like they didn't do much better on this XT. At least it's copper underneath this time arond.





Bond007, The Midi R2 is a very good case, but I hate the window. I feel like it is actually a better design as the top fan vents are not directly exposed - there is a filter on top that hides it with a pleasant looking grille.
The Midi also has the front fan mounts built into the front bezel, whereas the Define R4 has a flimy plastic fan tray that "clips" into the metal case. I've popped the plastic tray out a few times when sizing up some tubing runs and pushing it against the rad.

Define R4 vs Arc Midi R2:



(top filter was taken off)




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Old September 14, 2014, 11:49 AM
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Here is the case deciding process.

The 840 is too massive, R4 is nice and I don't think I'll ever use ODD on a Mac so the door is fine, and I decided $80 would be better spent on the R4 than $250 on a Maximus VII Gene, plus money for an MiniPCI-E wireless/BT card, plus who knows what else I'd throw in.

I was shocked to see that the R4 is not much larger vs 350D. I'm happy with my choice for now, but the single slot Komodo blocks I feel are 'wasted' in this big case.

Other cases I considered:
Arc Midi R2 (housed this rig before this build log)
TJ07 (sitting in my basement at the moment)

The Midi R2 will be repurposed for my Windows gaming/workstation rig.
The plan for that will be very similar to this build, except it'll have 2 x 290X and my Z87X-OC.
I didn't do enough research and found out the Midi R2 is almost identical after looking at them side by side. Knowing this I probably would have stuck with the Midi R2.

ATCS840, Define R4, 350D





PSU deciding process:
I wanted 1KW and highest efficiency. Also wanted the fan pointing downwards so it can get fresh air and not be at risk of water drippings from any leaks.


The vent was designed for short PSU :( Sorry it's a bit shaky. Took it handheld because I was too lazy to get my tripod from downstairs and don't have Photoshop to align the photos on my laptop.



My 1000G2 is missing a warranty sticker! I just noticed this. It has never been tampered with. I hope this doesn't cause issues down the line.

Ultimately decided on the platinum for highest efficiency and the ECO fanless switch. Note how it also partially blocks the rubber grommet.


I've also decided on the XFX 1000W Plat w/fanless switch for my gaming computer.

Here is a silly picture I took before I figured the above animated GIF would be a better illustration.
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Old September 14, 2014, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Old Sonicare toothbrush head + ketchup... A "good enough" job. I got rid of most of the crap, and cleaning out all of the micropins will take forever (ran out of white vinegar).
I never knew that I have a few old blocks kicking around which are not in the best shape I was thinking of sanding down the out side of then to smooth them out but then I noticed how dirty there are inside so I didn't bother lol.
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Old September 14, 2014, 05:30 PM
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Thanks for the info. Nice job on repurposing what you can. You have more PC components in these pictures than I have owned. The xfx psu looks like it would have been a good match for your vents.

If you don't mind more questions, why don't you like the midi r2 window? Also, how do you like the 350d compared to it?
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Old September 14, 2014, 05:49 PM
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I am currious how do you install OSX and get it working on a PC I am thinking of trying it on my old DFI p35 system which has a q6600 and a Nvid 260 card
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Old September 14, 2014, 06:58 PM
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The XFX fan would be blocked off by about 1" as well (it's basically the same build as the Seasonic X1050 but with a different fan).

I hate windows in general because of light leakage, and I'm not delicate/careful enough when cleaning so I always end up introducing a billion microscratches. The smoked acrylic on the R2 isn't terrible, but still not my cup of tea. The layout is definitely much more roomy than the 350D. Given that it's only an inch and change taller, I'll gladly go with the R4.

350D cons IMO:
Ugly grill up to (R4 has the same problem, R2 fixes it like I mentioned earlier)
Ugly drive bay - if you install a drive or anything, the clean lines of the front is ruined. There are no stealth covers either.
Previously had issues with a Maximus V Gene and its Mini PCI-e riser hitting the rear 120mm exhaust fan.
SSD drive cage is a POS and difficult to wire unless you make a custom power harness.

350D plus:
5 expansion slots so you can have an overhanging GPU on the bottom.
Front looks great if you don't add any drives
Sturdy feet design. I like it better than cylinders on the Fractals.
Really sturdy front fan mounts.
Not really that compact of a MicroATX case.

Honestly can't stress how ugly the top fan grille looks.

In terms of MicroATX case, the Lian-Li A05 is still my favourite of all time

@Shadowmeph, I cut my Mac teeth on the P35 platform - it should be mostly compatible. Easiest way is to get an existing Mac, download Mavericks from the appstore, and use tonymacx86 Unibeast to create an installer USB stick. From there you can use Multibeast to install the bootloader and driver kexts.


Some more build pics:

Fans. Picked up a bunch on sale:




The Rosewill had some good reviews, but it has some weird bearing chatter at low speeds. The Cougar one does as well but it is more smooth.



The Rosewill fan is a bit too thick and the Swiftech rad screws wouldn't catch on the rad. Cougar fans were the same, but at least I can pull out the rubber dampers to reduce the thickness:


For the top rad, if I have the fans pulling out, the motherboard heatsink interferes with the mounting. Note the hole alignment.


Had to reconfigure into push mode and deal with these ugly screws for now:


This is how the front rad mounts. Onto a flimsy piece of plastic. Only one fan can be screwed in due to the classic Thermochill spacing.


Glamour shot. Mainly to show that I had to use two short barbs to link the video cards. I had an oldschool Danger Den SLI fitting but due to the interesting design choice of Swiftech on these Komodo blocks, the distance is too short for the 2 slot spacer. The gray on the bottom is the PSU.
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Last edited by zoob; September 14, 2014 at 07:08 PM.
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