Here at the MMORPG offices, we go through a lot of hardware. When it came time to refresh our main test PC, we decided to see just how powerful a system we could build, combining hardware we’d tested a couple pieces of sponsored gear and some extras we purchased just to push it over the top. In the end, we came out with a beastly gaming rig beyond what even we imagined. Ever seen a PC become sentient? Well you just might in our latest PC build.
Back in March, I built the RGB Overkill PC. That build was a lot of fun, especially because I was able to put it into production as our main AMD test bench, keeping that disco party rolling in my office long after the video was finished. It didn’t take long before I decided to do another and was already halfway there with a stockpile of gear already lining my basement shelves, kept on hand for future testing. Included in that mix was the powerhouse Intel i9-9900K, as well as the ASRock Z390 Taichi Ultimate motherboard, and some storage.
It wasn’t enough to build a whole PC. Since the system would also be rolled directly into production, stripped what I could from my current 8700K test machine and invested hundreds of my own dollars to finish out what I would need to push this PC to the next level and make it look pretty in the process. I had an idea for an “electric blue” aesthetic inside the Lian Li PC-011 Dynamic case, which was the first purchase I made toward the rebuild.
I did reach out to two colleagues on the manufacturing side for help, so big thanks to EVGA for sponsoring the power supply and Seagate for the incredible mass storage drive to supply video storage.
Here’s how it breaks down.
CPU: Intel i9-9900K ($489.99)
The current top of the line from Intel on the consumer end of things. It features 8-cores and 16-threads of performance to supply all of our gaming, streaming, video and audio editing needs.
CPU Cooler: NZXT Kraken X72 360mm AIO ($180.99)
NZXT’s Kraken line is simply one of the best out there for AIO performance. The larger radiator results in better performance overall, making this a good choice. Plus, the RGB customizable pump head adds a nice bit of flair to the center of the motherboard.
The most powerful video card on the market times two and connected with the 3-Slot NVLink Bridge. These are expensive but supply 4K gaming. They’re also being brought over from the 8700K test machine we used previously. In truth, this is overkill and the state of multi-GPU support just isn’t what it used to be. But hey, we had them, so why not throw them in.
Memory: 32GB G.Skill TridentZ Royal DDR4-3200, Silver ($229)
In the years I’ve been testing memory, G.Skill has consistently been one of the top performers. The 32GB kit we’re using isn’t the absolute fastest but strikes a good balance between price and performance. Plus, it looks absolutely phenomenal when lit up.
This is another point of clear overkill but makes for one speedy system. The OS is loaded onto the Samsung 970 Pro. The SP P34M80 and WD Blue SATA SSD are both additional game drives. Load times, we barely knew thee.
Mass Storage: Seagate BarraCuda Pro - 14TB ($536.11) *SPONSORED*
As a tech nerd, I admit to being inordinately excited when Seagate announced their 10+ TB helium-based hard drives. I reviewed the 12TB model and loved it enough to include it in the RGB Overkill PC. When I knew I was going to be building this system, I decided to reach out and see if they would sponsor storage to outfit this build with a hard drive suitable for storing mass amounts of video files.
Now, you might be thinking that 14TB for the hard drive is a bit much, especially when there are 3TB of SSD storage already included. You would be right; however, if you’re a content creator, you know the dilemma of creating videos for any length of time: the files are huge and will EAT your hard drive. This drive puts off needing to invest in a NAS system and ensures that, even recording at 4K, you’ll have enough space to last you for ages. This is an investment hard drive and is absolutely worth it if you’re a content creator.
Motherboard: ASRock Z390 Taichi Ultimate ($269.99)
The ASRock Z390 Taichi Ultimate is a fantastic motherboard. In truth, ASRock has become one of my favorite brands because of the features they deliver for the money. The value here is outstanding, the performance too, and it looks super cool with that blade (which sadly gets covered by the GPU /sadtrombone).
Power Supply: EVGA Super NOVA 1000 T2 80+ Titanium 1000W ($259.99) *SPONSORED*
Ignore the mug in the back and instead focus on the sheer powerhouse in the center of that picture. When I planned out this build, one of my biggest concerns was power; power delivery, power efficiency, and overall wattage. The fact is, once you get into overclock territory with two 2080 Tis, you need something that can deliver a lot of juice and have a stable flow. You also need something that’s not going to spike your electricity bill any more than necessary.
In all of my research, I kept coming back to EVGA. The reputation of their PSUs is without compare and the 80+ Titanium rating is simply phenomenal, especially at 1000-watts. Most users won’t need this much wattage but since we go through so much gear, there’s no telling if someday we may, and if you do, you’re also running parts that need the kind of reliability this offers.
When it comes to sponsorship, EVGA was kind enough to ask what we needed and send it right over. Big thanks to EVGA.
Case: Lian Li PC-011 Dynamic ($109.99)
Look at this case. Just look at it. There’s so much glass! That was selling point number one. Selling point number two was that it moves the power supply to the whole other side of the case, giving it a super clean look. I’m also a big fan of the white and brushed aluminum look it offers and the side mounted fans look gorgeous too. Lian Li offered to send a black one out to us but I picked this one up myself because it looks so nice.
Chassis Fans: (x6) Corsair LL120 ($189.98), (x3) NZXT Aer 120 (included with X72)
Important to note here is that the PC-011 Dynamic is designed for water cooling and uses a chimney style exhaust. That means hot air is intended to flow from the bottom up and out the vents in the top. I went with two 3-fan kits of Corsair LL120s. Three were mounted on the side, blowing cool air in. The other three were attached to the radiator on the top, blowing air out. The original three fans from NZXT were shifted to the bottom.
This isn’t the best move for static pressure and thermal efficiency but definitely looks better in the end.
Finally, because I’m cheap and cannot afford spending in the triple digits on single PSU extensions from CableMod, I picked up the white Phanteks PSU Cable Extension Kit, plus an addition CPU power cable from Silverstone. They look good, have cable combs, function perfectly, and a whole set costs as much as half an extension from the other guy.
With that out of the way, click through to page two to see how it turned out!