With the Computex show right around the corner it was time to build some systems to show off some of our newly announced and released products. Among those products is our Vengeance Series C70 gaming case which comes in three colors (Military Green, Arctic White, and Gunmetal Black), I will be using the Military Green version and hopefully this build log will give you a better look at the features and design of the C70. Let’s start with the list of hardware I’ll be using.
- Motherboard: Asus Sabertooth Z77
- CPU: Ivybridge 3770K
- GPU: Nvidia 480GTX
- Case: Vengeance Series C70 (Military Green)
- CPU Cooler: Hydro Series H100
- PSU: AX Series AX850
- Memory: 16GB Vengeance DDR3 Memory (CMZ16GX3M4X1600C9G)
- SSD: Force Series 3 120GB
- Fans: 3x Air Series AF120 Quiet Edition, 2x SP120 Quiet Edition (for H100)
Let’s get started!
Above you see the inside of a brand new Vengeance C70 case. The first thing I am going to do is remove the existing fans since we will eventually be replacing them with the new Airflow Series fans from Corsair. The next step is to install the PSU, since the AX Series is fully-modular, its cables will not get in the way while we install the rest of the components, and we can attach power cables as we need them.
With the PSU installed, I went ahead and installed the rear exhaust fan (AF120 QE), I’ll hold off on installing the intake fans so that I have a little more room to work with while I install the rest of the components. The next step is to install the motherboard, but always remember one important thing before you screw the motherboard into the case, you will want to first snap in the I/O shield which should be in the motherboard box.
If you forget this step (as I have before) you will need to remove the motherboard in order to get the I/O shield installed. Now that the I/O shield is installed we can move forward with the motherboard installation. First find the box of hardware in the C70 case which contains all the motherboard screws.
In the picture above the motherboard screws are in bag on the lower left side. The C70 makes it really easy to line up the motherboard with the mounting standoffs in the case. The middle standoff has a rounded end which helps position the board correctly in the case. Line the board up with the middle standoff and the rest of them should also be aligned.
Now that the motherboard is installed, I like to hook up the main motherboard and CPU power cables (24-pin and 8-pin), as well as the front panel cables which will make our power, reset, audio and USB ports function. These cables are easiest to hook up properly when you do not have your other hardware installed, since you have much more space to work with.
Next up is the CPU. There is one locking lever on the Z77 boards which when unlocked will allow you to remove the black plastic protective cover from the CPU slot and expose the pins below which will make contact with the CPU. If you look closely at the CPU socket there is an arrow on one corner which will match up with a gold arrow on the CPU itself, this shows you what orientation to install the CPU, just make sure the arrows are both on the same corner and the CPU should effortlessly fit into the socket.
With the CPU in the socket allow the top cover of the socket to come down over the CPU and slowly bring down the locking arm of the socket so that the cover slides into the locking nut below the CPU. Push the lever down towards the board and lock it back in the downward position.
Now we will get our SSD installed. Remove one of the trays from the HDD cage and find the four screws which came with your SSD (the case also comes with screws that will work for installing an SSD).
The SSD screws in from the bottom, with four screws. Once it is mounted to the HDD tray, slide it back into the case in your desired slot.
Next we will run our data and power cables for the SSD. Slide your cables through the rubber grommets on the case and then connect them to the proper spot on the SSD. Don’t worry about how messy the cables are getting at this point, we will organizing them once we finish installing some more of our hardware.
Now it’s time to prepare the H100 for installation. In the C70 case you are able to install the fans onto the H100 before actually mounting the H100 into the case, this makes things a little easier.
Now we have come to the part of the build where we need to decide if we want the fans mounted to the H100 to be sucking in air, or exhausting air out of the case. There is no 100% right or wrong way to do this, but here is what you need to take into consideration before you decide. If you have the fans set up for exhaust then you are taking the warm air that is inside the case and pushing it through the radiator which will give you slightly higher CPU temps, but will likely drop your overall ambient case temperature since you are getting rid of this hot air more quickly. If you mount the fans as intake, then you are sucking in cooler air through the radiator from outside the case and you may see slightly lower CPU temps. When I talk about differences in temperature, we are not talking about drastic differences, maybe a few degrees at most, and in some cases the difference may be negligible, so the choice is yours.
If you look closely on one of the sides of the fans, you will see 2 arrows. One shows you which way the fan blades spin, and the other shows you which direction the air is going to be pushed. For this build I am going to install the fans on the radiator to exhaust the air within the case through the radiator.
Now that the fans are mounted to the radiator we just need to get the CPU backplate mounted to the rear of the motherboard and then secure it using the four included double sided bolts.
In the picture below you can see the four double sided bolts have been screwed into the backplate, and we are ready to mount the rest of the H100 cooler.
First I screwed in the radiator to the top of the C70 case, there will be eight screws total to mount the radiator to the case.
Remove the clear plastic piece on the bottom of the cooling unit to expose the pre-applied thermal grease, and then secure the cooling unit to the double sided bolts we just used to secure the backplate. Once the holes are lined up with the bolts, secure the H100 cooling unit using the four supplied thumbscrews.
Below is a shot from underneath, showing the installed H100, you will notice that I still have not clipped on any of the colored rings for the case fans, that will come soon.
Now that the H100 is installed, I will plug in the four memory modules. I held off on installing the memory until after the cooler was installed, so that I would have more room to work with while I installed the H100.
There are only a few more things to do before we are done, but before we continue I am going to clean up the cables on the back side of the motherboard. You will notice that this case has a lot of options for cable management, there are plenty of areas to tie down your zip ties, and there are some plastic bars on the rear side which help you neatly route your cables.
Cables are tucked away and there is plenty of clearance to get the rear side panel back on the system. The last step for me is to install the graphics card. I like to save that for last since it takes up a lot of room in the case and makes it more difficult to work around. Below you can see the system with everything installed.
Now this system is good to go functionally, but there is one more thing I wanted to add. Since the colored rings that come with our Corsair AF and SP series fans only come in a very patriotic red, white, and blue, there was not a very good match with this military green C70 case. While leaving the rings off is an option that does not look bad at all, I thought I would custom spray paint some of the rings to help accent the build a bit more. Below you can find the fully built system with my custom green rings installed.
Now the green color I used is not an exact match with the case, but it did match some of the connectors on the motherboard, and helps to add a little more contrast to the build. For anyone who is wondering, I just used some spray paint that I found at a local arts and crafts store, and sprayed them about 3 times with a light even coat, letting them dry for at least 15-20 minutes between coats.
Above is another shot from below showing a little better view of the fans with the painted rings, overall I am really happy with the way they turned out! Keep an eye out on the Corsair related news from Computex 2012 and you may catch some more shots of this system, along with many others!