Calen Saddler

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About Calen Saddler

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  1. The "ONYX" H500M Case Mod is Finished! Video of the Full ONYX Case Mod:
  2. Finishing Hardware & Watercooling: Now that I've got all the main work finished it's time to install all the hardware, watercooling & set everything up.
  3. Front & Custom Grills: I wanted to give all the grills a custom look so I took some of the large nickel plated grills from Watercool and cut them down to custom fit each grill found throughout the case. It's one of those small details that really :) bring it all together. Custom GPU Extension Cover: I didnt want people to see the ugly cable coming out the bottom of the GPU so I made a custom shroud out of acrylic; custom painted and made a ONYX badge to complete it. Top Of The H500M: I could have easily left the top of the Cooler Master H500M as it came stock which looked great. I decided this mod needed to be custom from not only 360 degrees but, on top as well. It took quite a while to come up with a design that didn't detract from the major features but still looked great. More small details like the Envious Mods EM logo on the power button bring it all together.
  4. Getting Hardware & Watercooling Installed: I'm fortunate enough to use the Aorus z390 waterforce Xtreme motherboard which has a full cover monoblock that really sets it out from the rest. It also gives me the opportunity to make a different looking water cooling Loop I also decided to use 2 x 100 mm Watercool reservoirs vs one larger one. It took a lot of work to figure out but it was well worth it as it gives the mod an original look. Next up I started work making the custom side of the PSU shroud! It took a lot of reworking to get it how I wanted it.
  5. The Work Begins; I started out by mocking up the GPU location using an old Gigabyte GPU I have. I ended up deciding that a 45 degree angle both looked best and worked well with the space available. Mocking Up The Front Surround: I spent a lot of time coming up with how I wanted the front panel to look. I ended up using multiple layers and some with an angle to give it a lot of dimension. Heres the 1st couple layers being mocked up. The next layers being mocked up:
  6. Hardware Arrival: The hardware, watercooling and case have arrived and I've started to unpack everything. I've wanted to use the Cooler Master H500M for quite sometime. The Aorus Z390 Xtreme Waterforce motherboard and RTX2080 Xtreme Waterforce GPU will be epic as well teamed up with a i9 9900k. The H500M Is So EPIC!
  7. I was challenged to mod the H500M in a new way that still retained the originality of the case. I took the opportunity to also display the Aorus RTX2080 by tilting it 45 degrees. It took hundreds of hours to complete but was well worth it. It also features some of the best hardware on the market: The top, both sides, front and back have all been modded by me in house. I spent a ton of time doing detail work throughout the build including parts that are not even visable in order to perfect the ONYX case mod throughout. The closer you look; the more small detail work you'll see. The Thought Behind ONYX:This mod was inspired by modern design elements that I enjoy. I also centered a lot of the ONYX mod around the custom mounted GPU that's at an angle. To accomplish this I removed almost the entire back of the case and then rebuilt a small portion to accommodate the design elements. Lots of new techniques were employed. The main shroud was built so that the hidden top LEDs would shine through the shroud to give it a really neat effect. I had about 2 months to do the case mod and I couldn't be happier with the outcome. ONYX Specs: Motherboard: Aorus Z390 Xtreme Waterforce motherboard with mono block Graphics Card: Aorus RTX2080 Xtreme Waterforce edition CPU: Intel i7 9700k Power Supply: Be Quiet Straight Power 11 (1,000watt) Custom Cables: CableMod Pro Series custom cables, USB extensions, SATA cables, aluminum cable combs, digital LEDs. Ram: Teamgroup 4 x 8 GB Delta RGB DDR4 Ram SSDs: Teamgroup Delta RGB SSDs X 2 (250GB ea) Case: Cooler Master H500M & 2 x 200mm ARGB fans Watercooling by Watercool, ModMyMods & Barrow Fittings and Tubing: Barrow chrome 12mm fittings , OLED temp sensor, chrome adaptors, chrome filter, 120mm fans, digital RGB controller Main watercooling components: Watercool 360mm radiator, 2 x 100mm reservoirs, polished stainless HTFS2 360mm grill and WCP D5 Vario pump.
  8. SyNAPSE is Completed: As many of you noticed, I had to take a break from the SyNAPSE Case Mod due to getting it and another build ready for CES 2018. This included doing the finish work, swapping out some of the hardware and prepping it to be shipped. Now that it's complete I can share the new specs and final pictures of the project. This build was a massive success at CES and I can't think Gigabyte and Aorus enough for proudly displaying it during the show. The feedback from the community and enthusiasts was better than I ever could have hoped for. Thank all of you for your constructive criticism, comments, and support! I would also like to give a massive thanks the sponsors who make these builds possible: Gigabyte - ModMyMods - Alphacool - HyperX - Cooler Master - CableMod - Aorus - Be Quiet Now let's get to the new specs! SyNAPSE Specs: • CPU: Intel Coffee Lake i7 8700k • Motherboard: Aorus Z370-Gaming 7 • GPUs: 2 X Aorus GTX1070s in SLI • PSU: Be Quiet Dark Power Pro 11 (1,000 watts) • Other: CableMod sleeved PSU cables and CableMod Fusion leds • Ram DDR4: HyperX Savage 4 sticks 16GB • Storage: HyperX Predator (240gb) M.2 SSD and HyperX Savage (240gb) SSD • Fans: Be Quiet Silent Wings 3 • Watercooling: Alphacool & ModMyMods 360mm Pro radiator, Eisblock XPX CPU block, Helix reservoir, VPP755 pump, ram waterblocks, chrome fittings
  9. Custom Vinyl Design & Install: Now that the side shrouds are perfect I went I had with finishing the design for the vinyl graphics that will go on those shrouds. On the top there's a white accent that matches the one on the bottom and then there's a couple grey gunmetal accents it just give it a lot more depth. He's were fairly simple to design and cut but due to them being larger there are always tricky to install. I was very fortunate that these came out looking excellent. New Alphacool Cap Covers: I am fortunate to get the new cap covers for my fittings that are now available from alphacool. They come in several different colors including red black blue and gray as well as some other finishes. I decided to order the gray ones for the synapse build. I really like them because the gray is just enough for people to see something's different but not enough to draw a ton of attention. For me details like this have the biggest payout overall.
  10. Custom Painted Be Quiet Silent Wings 3 Fan: I wanted to use a 120mm Be Quiet fan for the rear main because they run very quiet and look clean. However I also wanted to dress it up a bit. I've found you can paint the blades by popping them out using even pressure from the back side. You have to be real careful not to put too much pressure on one blade or you could break it. I also tape off the insert and ring magnet so that it doesn't affect the balance. I went with a darker gray on the 1st fan and a lighter grey on the 2nd one. The lighter color definitely fits in the best. Since I had to remove the Be Quiet badge to paint I decided to make a new one using a black chrome backing and white lettering. Prepping for CES 2018: The SyNAPSE case mod will get a few changes in preparation for CES 2018. It will be displayed in Gigabyte and Aorus’s booth. I've already swapped in the new Aorus Z370-Gaming 7 motherboard. Timing for this fit very well. I will continue to update the build log but, some parts of the build will be saved until it's unveiling at CES. I will also have another build displayed with two other manufacturers. You will have to wait until CES to see any progress on it though. Aorus Z370-Gaming 7: The design styling of this motherboard is dead on with my natural building style. I've actually been asked a few times if I helped design it. I love all the new features as well as the look and feel of the new Aorus motherboard. Here are a few shots of the new motherboard as well as some with it mounted. I had to redo part of the loop to accommodate the new motherboard. However I wanted to keep the long thought out run design of the hardline. I made sure that it was almost exactly the same as the previous design. The new motherboard will also use the new i7 chip from Intel.
  11. Adding the Alphacool Flow Gauge & Modding it: Usually installing a flow gauge is pretty quick and simple but on this build it took a lot more effort. I didn't want to interrupt the flow of the hardline layout or block anything in the build with the flow gauge. So I ended up finding a spot that would exactly fit the flow gauge between the two Aorus graphics cards. I tried to see what it looks like with and without the gauge to determine which way looked best. I have to say that after the mods it definitely fit in perfectly with the theme. I changed the spinner on the inside to read and added some custom vinyl work on the outside of the gauge. Making an Acrylic Hardline Support: I decided to make this piece because I really wanted to make something that was different and new. This cool little system I created helps perfectly to support the hard-line tubing and it fits the bill exact. It took quite a bit of time to hand sand and file each one of these pieces to be an exact copy of the next. It was well worth it and came out even better than I could have hoped.
  12. Cutting Acrylic For The Top Details: Before I even started on this I knew it would be rather tedious hand cutting, filing and sanding all of the acrylic needed to make this top piece. It has all come together really well though and is definitely worth the time spent. Once I had all the major pieces cut sanded and prep for paint I could start gluing them to the base piece that I had bent to match the top of the Cooler Master MasterCase 5t. To correctly place each piece of acrylic I had to draw lines on the base piece and then take detailed measurements as I glued them together. Once I had all that complete I had to paint the entire piece black. When the paint cured it was time to add The white strip to the top to complete the piece. This piece is a major part of the overall look so I wanted it to be exact. Custom GPU Backplates: I wanted to make some custom GPU backplates for this build. However I didn't want to make the typical backplate that you usually see on builds. I decided to design one that wrapped around to the front of each graphics card and followed the Contours of the front plate. This was extremely tricky to do because of all the angles they use on this graphics cards coolers. Using hard stock I managed to refine a template that perfectly fit. Now I couldn't make it out of acrylic because of the thickness would be too much for my design so I decided to make it out of metal. Bending it was rather tricky due to the thickness of the metal but I managed to get a good solid clean Bend all the way across. Once I had all that done I used several different kinds of vinyl to cover the GPU backplate and added a SyNAPSE logo to the front and in Aorus logo down the middle. These came out even better than I could have hoped.
  13. Rearranging the Basement: I could have left the basement as is in the Cooler Master MasterCase 5t because it's very functional. This build is one I didn't want to have any restraint while building and modding so I decided to make custom hand cut acrylic panels. I made templates to make sure everything cleared the inside. Once I had the templates finished it was time to figure out my passthroughs. I needed one pass through to go from the reservoir to the pump in the basement and from the pump back through another pass through to the radiator. This worked out great using the inlet and Outlet on the side of the pump. I highly recommend using a step drill to make holes big enough for pass through fittings as they don't tend to chew up metal or acrylics like most real bits will. I also decided to run the reservoir drain out the bottom far side. Later I'll be making a partial shroud which I can mount a passthrough fitting on for the drain. Running a Test Loop: I wanted to start with the most difficult part of the watercooling loop. This would be the pass through to the pumps. Due to the tight space I had to use several different fittings to connect to the pass-through. Once I have these all marked out I could drill the holes using a step drill bit. I then started planning my loop and bending tubing. I decided to freestyle bend all of the parts of this loop. I now have the vast majority of it completed but it still needs a little fine-tuning. I'm very particular with angles and length of tubing so I will go back and take a few millimeters off or add a few millimeters of tubing where it's needed in order to make it exactly what I want.
  14. Installing Some of the Alphacool Water-cooling: I decided to start out by putting the Eisblock XPX CPU Cooler together. I ordered the red color change kit from ModMyMods which will match the build perfectly. I also decided to try something different with the HyperX Savage DDR4 RAM and fully watercool it. One of the main reasons I decided to go this route was the built in water block that comes on the Aorus Z270X-Gaming 9 motherboard. The combination of the ram, CPU and motherboard blocks looks really sweet with a good layout. I still have one more HyperX ram stick to mount but I took a picture so you can get an idea of what it'll look like. Defcon 1: Radiator & Reservoir Don't Fit After the excitement of unboxing the water cooling for this build I decided to put in the radiator fans and Reservoir. As you can tell I'm using the new Helix reservoir from alphacool. Once I went to put everything in I quickly realized that the reservoir was about 14 mm to wide. This wouldn't be a problem for most people but I decided to mount the reservoir on the radiator as well as using dual SLI Aorus gpus which are beefy in their own right. I didn't want to give up my reservoir location or anything else so I was left stuck with wondering what to do. Really my only option was to get a smaller radiator or try to figure it out. After taking a handful of measurements I realize that I can start cutting on The Cooler Master 5T and make room to move the radiator or the fans were. I had to remove all of the front grills as well as cut out part of the bezel and the metal lip across the front lower portion of the case. Once I had this cut out I was able to slide the radiator in with only a little bit of space to spare. I then mounted the fans and the reservoir and to my amazement I now had about 15 mm worth of space between the graphics card and the reservoir. Being a case modder is essentially being really good at problem solving. We tend to want our cake and eat it too.