Customer Self-Help

Top 5 Build Mistakes

  1. Thermally Constrained Case
    • Beware: Most cases are bad, cook your components to a crisp and will cause crashing.
    • Don’t consider cases that don’t have an open mesh front panel.
    • If it looks thermally constrained, it is.
    • If you’re stuck with a thermally constrained case like almost any NZXT, I can modify your front panel and get your thermals in check, just submit a ticket or text.
    • The Phanteks P300A is an excellent choice for around $50
    • The Corsair 4000D High Airflow is an excellent choice for around $70
  2. Inadequate CPU Cooler
    • Gone are the days that the included heatsink is adequate. Don’t even plan to use it.
    • Don’t consider CPU air coolers. Due to increasingly hot neighboring components, even the best ones struggle and heat soak the rest of your components.
    • Budget $100-$150 for a good AIO.
    • An excellent value is the Arctic Liquid Freezer series.
    • An excellent value with RGB is the Corsair Capellix series.
  3. Inadequate Case Fans
    • Included case fan(s) are not sufficient for gaming rigs.
    • Beware: RGB fans average about 50% or less airflow than their non-RGB versions, and should be avoided entirely.
      • The only high performance RGB fans on the market are the ones that come included on the Corsair RGB AIOs and NZXT AER RGB 2 fans.
        • The NZXT are black-bladed and the RGB effect is a little dull whereas corsair are frosted so the RGB effect looks a lot cooler when the fan is lit up. I would only get NZXT if you have a Kraken AIO.
    • Budget $80-100 for intake and exhaust fans, or $40-50 for exhaust fans if buying an AIO, as that will serve for your intake fans, reducing your fan budget.
    • The Corsair ML Pro series are an excellent choice, with 75CFM on the 120MM version and nearly 100CFM on the 140MM version, and magnetic levitation bearing tech.
      • Avoid the ML PRO RGB variants as they have only half the airflow.
  4. Improperly Wired GPU
    • Your power supply includes at least two PCIE power cables.
    • Use one entire cable for each power connector on your GPU.
    • Do not use the pigtail connector on each PCIE power cable.
  5. Improperly Installed M.2 SSD
    • Your motherboard includes the standoffs and screws needed to fasten your M.2 style SSD(s) to the board in the original box. The standoffs and/or screws usually do not come affixed to the board.
    • Don’t remove the SSD stand-off and use it as a way to fasten it to the board. This is the #1 mistake I’ve seen this past year and can cause the board, SSD, or both to short out.
    • The SSD must also have a heatsink attached! If your board didn’t include one then buy one.
(4) Do NOT use the pigtail connector on PCI-E power connections.
(5) Do NOT install nVMe SSD with the standoff above the SSD as pictured. It’s supposed to be screwed into the standoff, not the standoff used as a screw.
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