Description

To be entirely honest 2018 has brought some rather disappointing hardware, and I wish this build could come in a better climate, but an upgrade has been needed for a while. I'm hoping that the investment in the rather pricey 9900k and 2080ti is worth it in the long run, as I'm hoping this build can last me for many years to come.

My flat is as much black and white as I can get it, it only makes sense that my pride and joy follow my favourite colourscheme! The name "The Pale King" is a Hollow Knight reference, as well as fitting quite well for the white-themed case and LEDs.

Use cases
Primary use case: Gaming
Secondary use case: 3D/Game development

CPU - i9-9900k
I took a long time choosing between high end Ryzen or high end Core i7/i9, in the end I let my Intel bias win over (sue me). Potential for 5GHz overclock was just too sweet to pass up; combine this with 16 threads and it should be more than capable of handling any gaming, 3D, development or file zipping I need (I so a surprising amount of this).
Price is a little hard to swallow, but I want to be able to breeze through everything I need for years to come without needing to upgrade.

CPU Cooler - Deepcool Captain 360 EX
360mm rad to fit the case, white. Only AIO to meet these criteria, also looks good.
Swapped out the default fans for white LED Riing fans you can see in the pictures. An interesting side effect is that as these fans are not PWM, they vary in brightness as they vary in speed. This means I can judge the temperature of the CPU by the brightness of the rings.

GPU - RTX 2080Ti
I was waiting for an 11-series launch to upgrade, and the 20 series was what we got. Took me this long since the launch to come round to accepting that if I want to buy a top end card it's 20 series or nothing. Hopefully good for gaming and any 3D work I do in future.
Chose the Gigabyte version as it's the only clean looking monotone 2080ti I could find with a decent cooler. I like the minimal look, and the back-plate that (I believe) is actually functional as a heat spreader.
I plan to paint the shroud white soon.

RAM - 32GB G.Skill Trident Z
I hate RGB with a passion. Unfortunately, if I want trustworthy LED memory that looks good I don't have much of a choice. 32GB is overkill for gaming only, but I often leave work open on one desktop while I switch back to the other for gaming. This would sometimes fill up the 16GB kit in my previous build, hence the upgrade here.
3000MHz because it's all that was available at the time of purchasing. Would have preferred a little higher but not a huge issue.

Motherboard - Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Pro
Gigabyte's Aorus lineup is the only current gen Z390 lineup with good VRMs. I'm planning to learn how to overclock with this build (never done it before) and want to get as much out of it as I can.
The Pro was only slightly more expensive than the Elite at the time, so why not. Higher tier versions had a large price increase for features not super useful to a beginner overclocker with simply an AIO, so not worth the extra.

Storage
250GB NVME boot drive for Windows + program installations. No files go here. I don't understand how some people require 500GB boot drives, I never even nearly fill up 250GB.
250GB NVME drive for games. This is it's only purpose, loading screens are a waste of my time!

Two 1TB hard drives in RAID configuration for storing most of my files and pictures etc. RAID for redundancy as I don't want to have to download everything from backup if a drive fails. Pulled these drives from the previous build.

Case - Thermaltake Core P3
I live alone and keep my flat very clean, so figured I'd be safe with an open case. I love how it looks, and it makes building so much easier when you don't have to squeeze everything into a small box. Putting everything into (onto??) this case was a breeze, and much easier than fitting it all into a chassis. Hopefully dust buildup isn't too extreme, we'll have to see.

PSU - 750W Gold
Have used this gold rated PSU for a year or two, so moved it over to the new build. 750W is overkill but when I initially purchased it I was expecting at the time to upgrade to two 980s. As it turns out I didn't, but the 9900k and 2080ti are both power hungry, so a little extra headroom doesn't hurt here.

Some sleeved cable extensions off Amazon make a huge difference, both to aesthetics and ease of building. It's so much easier to plug the extension into the component whilst not attached to the PSU, then attach it in the back of the case afterwards. I always hated how fiddly cable management can be, and I like my cables tidy. Using extensions made this so much easier, especially when combined with the open nature of the case.

Monitor - X34P
It is beautiful! I've been an ultrawide fan for a long time and am never going back, but this is a huge step up from the small 1080p ultrawide I used previously. Needs some tweaking to get the colours looking good, Hardware Unboxed have a video showing some good settings. I based my calibration off these settings, and then adjusted a bit to values I thought looked a bit better in my setup. Love how good my games look now!

GSync is great for reducing tearing or stuttering with fluctuating framerate. 120Hz is silky smooth for gaming and unfortunately it's kind of ruined 60Hz for me. Not that I need to play at 60 any more!

The monitor is pretty huge. I used to have a triple monitor setup, but my desk doesn't have space with this one on it so have stepped down to only two. With a panel of this size, curvature really does make sense to allow you to see the sides more easily and with less distortion.

Wholeheartedly recommend this monitor, however it does come at rather a premium so if you're on a budget you could probably find some that are close but for a lot less.

3DMark scores
These scores are with my current stable overclocks.

Comments

  • 10 months ago
  • 2 points

There's nothing wrong with rgb parts if you aren't running them in the rainbow mode. Having rgb parts is awesome because you can run them at any color you want in static mode.

  • 10 months ago
  • 1 point

I somewhat disagree, RGB software and compatibility is such a mess. I had to buy RGB ram because white LED RAM isn't available at a decent price. When I launch my PC up the ram goes into rainbow unicorn vomit mode until I boot into Windows and start RGB fusion. Half the time RGB fusion doesn't start automatically for goodness knows what reason, meaning I need to launch it myself to get rid of the hideous look. It then decides that it needs over 300MB of memory to just sit in the background and keep my RAM on a static white colour. Even when its working it tabs me out of my games just to pop the normal application window up on my screen for no good reason. And I haven't been able to fix the LEDs flashing off and on again every time I unplug or replug a USB device, who knows why.

RGB LED control is meant to be available in the motherboard, but the option doesn't exist, even after reflashing a few different versions. Given that I can now only control the LEDs in Windows software, I can't use Linux without having to put up with ugly colours shining everywhere.

This is just one RGB software, imagine if I had mixed parts from different RGB ecosystems, I'd have 3x the problems. RGB has put the market in the situation where you have to choose between buying the parts you want, and buying the parts that have RGB compatibility with your other parts. Either way you are going to be unhappy with your build in one way or another.

For these reasons I feel there is a lot wrong with RGB. The concept is fine, the execution has ruined it.

Edit: formatting/spelling

  • 10 months ago
  • 2 points

Definitely. I hear you. The execution from all the companies wanting to use their own damn software control is really annoying. I have Thermaltake fans, and they sell this little adapter called the TT sync. Basically makes it so the Asus aura software takes over. So all my fans, my radiator, cpu Cooler, memory, GPU, all go through Asus aura. Yes though you are correct I had to make sure this all matched. Then when I needed a new mouse and keyboard? Yup I got Asus ones so they are all compatible lol.

I simply thought you meant you just don't like rgb in general for the rainbow effects. I just love how I can pick any static color I want and everything matches. Back in the good ol days there was basically just red lights, or blue lights. Things looked off to me when they didn't match. So I went heavy in the rgb but never once have the rainbow on.

  • 10 months ago
  • 2 points

Just curious, what did you use the plastidip for? Motherboard? The only reason I ask if because I am planning a white/blue build and thinking about painting my motherboard and case. Wondering, if you did paint the motherboard or even if you used it for something else, why did you chose plastidip over normal spray paint?

  • 10 months ago
  • 2 points

Plastidip will be for the GPU, and maybe some other parts. I wanted as much white as possible, but unfortunately it's hard to find white parts without making sacrifices in other areas, hence the paint. I'm not confident in my ability to paint the motherboard without damaging it, and painting fans can throw off the balance, so that leaves only the GPU and possibly the PSU and M.2 slot covers.

I haven't actually painted anything yet as I need to do it outside. I work during the week so need to find a weekend with good weather where I'm not already busy! Haven't had one of those yet since purchasing.

The reason for using plastidip over normal paint is because I am a novice, I've never done this before. Plastidip can peel back off once it's dried, so mistakes can be somewhat correctible. If I make a mistake with regular spray paint, then I can't fix it!

Edit: formatting

  • 10 months ago
  • 2 points

Yea I feel the same way. I am most likely going to paint my motherboard because I am doing a white/blue PC build. I'm thinking I am going to take the heat sink things on the motherboard off and paint those blue (avoiding the RGB light) and then paint the rest of the motherboard white. I was looking into some videos and it will require painters tape to cover any of the ports but as long as the paint isn't conductive, it should be fine. (from what I read)

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Very class !!! Amazing work with best setup !! In my top 10 good job :) !!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Sweet! Never expected to get in anybody's top 10!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

7/10 - not enough sawblades

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Maybe I should sharpen the GPU fans?

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Very clean looking, good job! I might go this route in the near future. As you use it, and play with it, update the comments to let us know pros/cons, and what you would change. Be my test subject essentially.

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

I'll try to remember! Do you think comments about specific parts would be best inline with the initial description, or in a new section at the top?

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

I thought of the Daniel Craig James Bond movies when I saw "The Pale King"

Very nice build!

  • 11 months ago
  • 2 points

Actually a Hollow Knight reference! Didn't know this was also the name of a bond villain. I'd have liked to have gone all-white with the components, but finding white parts is really rather tricky. I'm going to paint the GPU white after a settling-in period (need to make sure it works perfectly, don't want to paint it then have to RMA!). I don't feel comfortable or confident painting the rest of the parts though, so it's not as white as I'd like.

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

I haven't been sure about painting some of my parts either. I know you can paint motherboards but uhhhh no. I'm not sure about taking my GPU apart but I'm sure I'll figure it out.

It is really annoying that white parts aren't more available. Oh well

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Wow, all the components fit so well together! Except the cooler. Investing in something like an nzxt kraken would do good.

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

I did consider getting one of the NZXT coolers, but decided against it for a few reasons.

First, I had the old gen Kraken coolers in my previous build. Whilst the coolers are good, I have grown to hate their CAM software. It installs spyware with it, always wants me to log in, and half the time it gets stuck loading and I need to reboot the machine. Half the time the colour setting just wouldn't work.

Then there's the fact that it needs software in the first place. I love that the Deepcool Captain doesn't need any software to control it, it just plugs into the motherboard ports and uses CPU fan speed setting for pump control.

Also it's white!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

IT INSTALLS SPYWARE?!!! Man is that even legal

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

"Spyware" may be a bit of an exaggeration, but they collect lots of data about your machine and send it off to their cloud. No opt-out aside from blocking the IP addresses used, there's some info in this reddit thead. Depends how much you care about this sort of thing as to how much it affects your purchase decision.

Edit: NZXT founder posted this reddit thread with information about what they collect (or at least what they say they do...). Comments from users add some additional perspective from privacy policies etc, and some users have reported CAM as using an excessively high amount of bandwidth, so maybe take this with a grain of salt?

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

damn you really learn something everyday.

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Ok, clear explenation

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

Krakens are cool, but heck they're so expensive!

  • 11 months ago
  • 1 point

I know.

  • 10 months ago
  • 1 point

What do you play, Fortnite?