Just because we CAN go full RGB, doesn’t mean we always have to.
We grabbed JJ from ASUS to channel our inner Matrix with this go around, and keep things a simple black and green, with a super nice Phanteks Enthoo Evolv case providing an industrial silver highlight.
Simple and elegant looking, with a serious emphasis on Skylake-X power. That’s what this ASUS/EK Emerald Evolv build is all about.
Holding It All In
The Phanteks Enthoo Evolv comes in a few different styles; we went with the silver finish and tempered glass panels so you can see all the goodies inside.
One of the things we like about this case is that even though it’s not huge, it provides a great deal of flexibility in terms of storage options, custom cooling features, and cable routing.
It’s a do everything case with a premium finish. And at $179, it's on the pricier side, but with solid slabs of aluminum, this is one seriously nice case.
For the motherboard, we chose the ASUS ROG Strix X299-E Gaming. Part of the reason why is the focus on customization, what with the three RGB headers and 3D-printing mounts.
This is a LGA 2066 socket mobo, and that means we can bust out the X-series CPUs. We went with the ten core, twenty thread i9-7900X because once we get that cooling in the case, we absolutely want to overclock.
We’re big fans of G.SKILL’s TridentZ RGB Series RAM. It’s high performance, but we also like all those lovely RGBs. It’s all part of the lighting plan, so we dropped in four 8GB sticks.
Next up: storage duty. We’re not keen on running low on space, so we popped in a 512GB Samsung 960 Pro NVMe M.2 stick for our OS. For the second 960 Pro, we utilized the M.2 heatsink underneath the ROG logo to keep it safe and cool.
1TB of M.2 goodness is awesome, but we wanted more. For extra space we stuck with Samsung, and popped in two 1TB 850 Evo SATA SSDs on the other side of the chassis. 3TB of super fast SSD storage? That should hold us for now.
For a system like this we need stable and reliable power, so we tapped an 850 watt Seasonic Flagship Prime Titanium PSU for juice duty.
Last, but super not least, is the GPU. For that though, it’s time to build the cooling loop.
The GPU we chose was the killer ASUS ROG 1080 Ti, removed from its lovely little shell and dropped into a custom Phanteks Glacier Series cooling block. This block was custom made for ASUS, so it integrates with their 12v four pin motherboard lighting software called AURA.
On CPU cooling duty is the C350I CPU water block, also made by Phanteks. Custom tubing connects both cooling blocks to a EK 240mm radiator in the front of the case, set-up with two fans in the front for intake, and a secondary exhaust fan on the back for some push/pull action.
ASUS/EK Emerald Evolv Build
Pumping the emerald green Mayhems coolant through the system is a PWM driven pump and reservoir also by EK. Once it’s fired up, the liquid looks killer against the black of the interior, and the double loop keeps everything nice and chilly so we can overclock with peace of mind.
For airflow, we added four more fans in addition to the three for the radiator. We placed three along the top of the case to work with the inlet and increase airflow, and another one on the back to help pull air out.
Altogether, we’ve got a pretty thorough cooling system going on here.
The last step is decking out the cables. To keep with our green and black vibe we went with custom green power cables from Cablemod, and nicely tucked them away behind the shrouds of the Evolv case.
Finally, near the reservoir, we dropped in a Cablemod LED strip powered by a header on the motherboard for that last little splash of green backfill lighting.
When we powered on our Phanteks/ASUS/EK Emerald Build, we were super pleased with the green and black motif. With the silver accents of the case, and especially through the tempered glass panel, the universal emerald lighting really pops. The emphasis on color lends this build a futuristic, powerful look that’s very much in line with the components contained within.
Our ASUS/EK Emerald Evolv build might be a little more restrained than some of our unicorn RGB creations, but it still looks amazing, and the simple theme is really effective.
Couple the good looks with high end components and killer cooling, and you’ve got a rig that’s going to be on gaming rotation for a long time.