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[BUILD LOG] Watercooled Thermaltake Core G3 HTPC/VR

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New Member
Feb 17, 2017
I got an Oculus Rift over the holidays and have been looking for the perfect case to build a HTPC. I wanted the case to fit inside my IKEA BYÅS TV unit.


Most HTPC cases don't support water cooling or vent out the side or back if the case. This would be a huge issue when trying to cram the case into a TV bench. The Thermaltake Core G3 is the perfect case as it has space for a front mounted 240mm radiator. My current build is in a EVGA Hadron Hydro. I chose this case as it was one of the smallest cases I could find that could fit my GTX 980. The case was so tiny and difficult to work in. The lack of space limited my ability to be creative. Furthermore, my 4790k ran pretty hot on the loop. The CPU would idle around 35 and would push the upper 70s when under load. Since I want something that's pretty small I don't mind sacrificing temps for compactness.

I have decided to stick with my 980 GTX and 4790k. They are a powerful enough duo for VR where I can't really justify buying all new parts for Kaby Lake.

PC Hardware:
- Thermaltake Core G3 Case
- Corsair SF600 600w SFX Power Supply
- Intel 4790k
- EVGA GeForce GTX 980 4GB SC ACX 2.0
- EVGA Z97 Stinger Core 3D LGA 1150 Mini-ITX motherboard
- Kingston Technology 2400MHz DDR3 8gbx2
- Samsung 850 EVO 500GB 2.5-Inch SATA III Internal SSD
- Seagate 3TB Desktop HDD

Watercooling Parts:
- Swiftech Komodo NV- GTX9 GPU water block
- XSPC RayStorm Pro CPU WaterBlock
- XSPC 280mm Radiator
- XSPC FLX Tubing 1/2" ID, 3/4" OD, Black
- Alphacool VPP655 D5 pump
- XSPC D5 Tank Reservoir V3
- Thermaltake Riing 12 RGB LED 120mm x 3
- XSPC ECX Ultra Concentrate Coolant, black
- All sorts of Enzotech black compression fittings

Other stuff:
- Thermaltake LUMI Color 256C 3-Pack RGB Magnetic LED Strip

_+_+_+_+_+_ Day 1 Progress _+_+_+_+_+_
Items installed:
- Power Supply
- Motherboard
- Front Header Cables
- Fans
- Radiator
- LED light strips

Day 1 Notes:
The G3 case is light but well built. The case has no space behind the motherboard tray for cable management. The bottom panel is removable but is really only useful for installing CPU heat sink hardware. Luckily the GPU will cover most of the ugly cables since it installs sideways in this case. The primary color theme here is black with RGB lighting effects. The pump did not come with sleeved cables so I added my own sleeving. Next time I'll be sure to take landscape photos but at least this gives you an idea of what I finished today.

Day 2 Notes:
I've been waiting to get the CPU water block so the build has been at a standstill. Today I got all of the rest of the components in and filled the loop! I was also able to get all of the cable management done. I am having issues getting the computer to boot with Thermaltake's PCI 16x riser installed on my 980 GTX. With it installed my motherboard reports error D7. My manual states that this is an error with the GPU. The computer boots without issue are using the onboard video. I ensured that both 6-pin GPU connectors were fully seated. I even drained the loop, checked for bent COU pins, and re-seated CPU. Same issue. Looking at online reviews, it looks like many people have had issues with the same riser cable. I'll try to RMA and will post some modeling pictures once the build is complete. At least I have a working PC for now :)

Working in the Core G3 case has been a bit of a challenge. I'll touch on this more later.


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Welcome to OCF ShamefulModder! I've always wanted to do this. Looking forward to seeing how she comes out.