Ye olde P180 - major system upgrade (new: cabling pics)
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Author:  mexell [ Sun Aug 10, 2008 8:39 am ]
Post subject:  Ye olde P180 - major system upgrade (new: cabling pics)

Well, my wife went to her mother over the weekend and took the kids with her. I also borrowed a Dell 22" at work (we don't need it at the moment), so it was System Upgrade time!

Browsing the Gigabyte webpage, I found out that my old mainboard, a Gigabyte 965P-DS3, would support a Q9300, the current bang-for-buck champion, but only "unofficially" and with the current bios. So I flashed the bios and took a chance - and it worked!

Here's what I did:

- replaced E6420 with Q9300, works flawlessly so far
- replaced Ninja Rev. B (anyone interested, btw?) with Xigmatek HDT-S1283
- replaced passive MSI 8600GTS with Club3D Radeon 4850.
- replaced active stock cooler with Accelero S1 (a pain to work with, but charming results). I removed the ugly plastics from the S1.
- replaced Xigmatek stock fan ("replaced" maybe the wrong word, never used it) with Scythe S-Flex 1200, controlled by the mainboard
- zip-tied Scythe S-Flex 500 to Accelero S1. That happend purely for my good conscience.
- replaced mixture of HDDs with two Samsung HD250HJ (some time ago)
- replaced Antec NeoHE (which died) with Seasonic S12II (btw Antec sent a complete new retail package in exchange for the naked unit I sent them even without buying receipt)

And the results are great:

1) Way quieter than before - I didn't believe that the HDDs have such an impact.
2) The graphics card shows me four temperatures, GPU and three sensors. All these stay below 55°C. As Mike told in his review, the Accelero is great and with even the slightest breeze it's even greater.
3) The CPU never went over 45°C so far. The CPU fan never exceeds 700rpm in times in which I would care about it.
4) The GPU does a GROMACS WU in just under 2h. :D
5) I can now play Crysis on "high"@1680x1050 :D :D
6) I have to buy a 22" as soon as I have to give the borrowed Dell back :(

Thats what it looks like:


Thanks to the push-pins on both the old and the new cooler, I was able to mount everything without taking the mainboard out. In fact, it was easier to mount the Xigmatek than to unmount the Ninja. The CPU is also way cooler than the old one was before - and cooling will improve, as soon as the AS5 has cured! It's incredible just how much smaller the Xigmatek is compared to the Ninja.

The white fans are, by the way, Fander FX120, which I'm very happy with. They come with their own small speed adjustment knob, they are very, very quiet (at least at min speed, which is enough for me), and I got them for free.

The old P180 was hacked in many places to allow P182-like cable routing behind the mobo some time ago. The PATA hard drives were also dropped for two Samsung HD250HJ about that time, so there's a clear improvement visible regarding the cleanliness of that build. It still doesn't come close to what others here accomplish, but I like it.

What do you think?

Author:  seba84_2005 [ Sun Aug 10, 2008 10:33 am ]
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very neatly :D but the correct the of cables management from the power supply and discs :wink: it will be beautifully :D

Author:  thejamppa [ Sun Aug 10, 2008 11:31 am ]
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Very sweet system! Gablekami is very sweet knwing you have original P180. White fans look very refreshing, I like them. BTW, did you put heatsinks on HD 4850's VRM's?

Author:  mexell [ Sun Aug 10, 2008 12:25 pm ]
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Well, I originally wanted to route the main power cable behind the mainboard tray - but it wasn't possible due to the fact that it was too thick. I think Antec moved the mainboard tray further inward when they made the P182.

I didn't put heatsinks on the GPU's VRMs - because I had none in the right size and I used all eight I had for the RAM. If I should face issues due to that (actually I'm not, Crysis is just sometimes producing hickups due to Windows rot), then I'll just hack away the portion with the round pins from the original heatsink and screw it back in place.

Thanks for your appreciation! This was maybe the most effective 400€ upgrade so far - and the last one on this platform.

Author:  mexell [ Sun Aug 10, 2008 12:26 pm ]
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Maybe tomorrow I'll spare some time for my fellow geeks' admiration for cablegami... I have to use the time in which I'm not obliged to do the dishwasher or the garden :) :)

Author:  kenratboy [ Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:56 am ]
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My system should be very similar when I am done in terms of cooling, looks great!

Author:  xev [ Fri Sep 05, 2008 7:44 pm ]
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any time away from the dishes? i would like to see the cables

Author:  that Linux guy [ Sat Sep 06, 2008 4:14 am ]
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Mexell, I really like your rig. I love how the heatsink tops match. It'd be perfect if you had northbridge cooler with a similar design.

Was it hard getting the plastics off the Accelero?

And your cables don't look very bad I might say. I've seen much worse, but I've seen a lot better too :) Don't rush, it's a nice rig.

Author:  mexell [ Mon Sep 08, 2008 11:26 pm ]
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@xev: I've totally forgotten about that, I have to admit. I hope that I can find some time today (when the kids sleep).

@Linux guy: It wasn't very hard to get the plastics off. Just some prying. I have to say, I really like the technical look.

About the cables: I took a dremel clone and pretty much worked my P180 to be a P182 - only ghetto style 8)

Thanks for your nice words, I really have to get these pictures made.

Author:  mexell [ Tue Sep 09, 2008 11:08 am ]
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For my fellow geeks:


What I've done is marked up in green :D :

Holes I've made:

- data for optical drives
- power for optical drives
- SATA cables and front panel coming from the mainboard
- ATX12V and fan power (top hole)
- made a gap in the bar which supports the right side panel to route power and SATA from/to lower chamber (notice: cables have removed from gap, have to fix it :oops: )

All this was done with a very cheap dremel clone sold at Tchibo for 9€ some time ago.

Author:  mexell [ Tue Sep 09, 2008 11:27 am ]
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I didn't overly care about optics or über-silence - I just wanted to have stuff out of the way and look fairly ok. I think I've archieved what I intended - a rocket fast system that isn't loud at all and wasn't too expensive or lots of work.

Author:  driftscreen [ Thu Sep 11, 2008 3:57 am ]
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Nice rig - I'll post so I can stick up my little solo rig too

Author:  mexell [ Thu Sep 11, 2008 11:45 pm ]
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driftscreen wrote:
Nice rig - I'll post so I can stick up my little solo rig too

Just in case no one else said this:

Welcome to SPCR!

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