Built without delidding or otherwise voiding warranties. External CPU TIM used is Coollaboratory Liquid Ultra.
CPU achieves 4.5GHz all cores (4.0 with AVX2, 3.8 with AVX3). Automatic frequency and voltage scaling are still enabled, this is a daily driver. CPU VID set with -0.060V offset, reaches 1.182V at max clockspeed. ~392W TDP under max AVX2 load (small FFT prime95, VID at around 1.064V). All other CPU settings left at default, RAM is running at its nominal XMP profile.
NovaBench: 4414 (https://novabench.com/view/1344426) -- not convinced this is a great benchmark tool overall, but it is a world record by over 8%. CineBench R15: 4360 cpu score
My excuse for the GPU is: It's 2 years old, from my last PC. I currently have no compelling uses for a bigger one and don't want to upgrade only 1 generation.
Update: Some minor instabilities in some instruction paths leading to bluescreens led me to make some minor tweaks to the OC profile. These occurred during tasks like benching media performance in Sandra and, of all things, the final steps of the Java Development Kit 9 installer. These BSOD were typically of type WHEA_UNCORRECTABLE_ERROR. VID offset is now -0.032V for a full load voltage of 1.211V, and AVX is now 100MHz slower (for thermal reasons). I'll stick a picture of the BIOS settings in there for reference.
Caveats! An edit to the review.
This cooler stopped working correctly after about 8 or 9 months. The pump does not seem to be moving much fluid any more; an RMA is in progress.
Regarding other issues:
I highly recommending using software like SIV64X to control the fans/pump/LEDs over the stock software, because Corsair's software is kinda major CPU-hogging junk. SIV64X also gives significantly more control options.
The biggest problem with the fans wasn't necessarily their noise level, but the fact that when they don't run at QUITE the same speed (which is always) there is a quite obnoxious high-pitched acoustic beat (look it up on wikipedia if you are confused) between their blades that is between difficult and impossible to be rid of. I now drive the device with a pair of Noctua PWM fans that are far quieter in both ways.
Original review text follows:
Corsair's drivers are unsigned, all their software is pretty janky. They are clearly a hardware company, and fortunately very good at it, because the software is 6/10.
The fans are loud at max speed, but if you look at stats they go up to almost 100CFM. You don't need to get custom fans really, just turn it down.
I haven't noticed any weird noises from the water pump.
Highly adequate motherboard. CPU VID is very stable under varying load, seems to have no issues with a respectable overclock on the single 8pin CPU power header.
Overclocking is stable but adjusting the settings is weirdly buggy. Some settings seem to persist even though a mode may no longer be activated. This can cause the CPU to be stuck at a flat 1200MHz (or even, on one boot, 700MHz). I recommend: 1. Loading default BIOS settings 2. Load XMP profile for your RAM, set any minor unrelated settings as directly as possible. 3. Save the BIOS profile in one of the user profile slots. 4. In as few changes as possible, make the desired adjustments to your CPU overclocking profile. 5. Save the config in a new slot.
If you want to change something more than a minor number tweak, like changing the core speed or voltage mode of the CPU, start by reloading the default profile from step 3 or you may end up with some weird remnant behavior.
Overall, responds well to a careful touch when overclocking and hasn't exhibited any issues. Other than the OC config weirdness, extremely straightforward device that works as well as I hoped.
Update: As time goes on I'm not seeing many people getting as good an overclock as I've managed on other, more expensive boards. This may be up to the silicon lottery on the CPU end, but I'm not about to fix what ain't broke, and this motherboard dishes out the clocks.
Update 10 months in: For a brief time there seemed to be an issue with the secondary SATA controller, the one that controls the two ports on the left edge. I run an awful lot of drives, and periodic issues with what appeared to be bizarrely dead drives were eventually cleared up when I changed to a configuration that uses neither of these ports. So, you know, be aware of that.
6/5 stars, minus one star because pcpartpicker does not correctly support UTF8 emoji in review text.
I've had this drive for so long (pre-2011 Thailand flood) that I forgot what brand it was and originally put a Seagate here. Long-lasting goodness.
HGST is fantastic. https://www.backblaze.com/blog/hard-drive-failure-stats-q2-2017/
All my previous cases have been second hand trash, lovingly hacked together into awful messes. This case was very easy to work with and turns out very neatly organized. No cable guides behind the backplate, but even with the extra long and kinda stiff AX1500i ribbon cables everything wraps around and organizes very nicely.
The dust catcher tray under the PSU does in fact rattle, as one NewEgg reviewer pointed out -- but a small square of well-placed electrical tape, or partially unseating it so it sits more snugly, is an easy fix here.
The dust filters themselves are... not great, however. I've ended up purchasing aftermarket dust filters as the ones built-in either don't really work at all (top) or work kinda-sorta, but also have tacky glue on the back and will tend to get permanently fuzzed (front). Removing the mesh and cleaning the tack off the front has been an adventure, but aftermarket dust filters are desirable if that's something you care about.
10 month update: still da bes
also i'm not even sure the fan has turned on a single time
they're good buttons, bront