YIDIY: F3NIX Mods & His PC Desk Build
We’ve seen quite a few desk PC builds in our time, we even created one ourselves with the guys from Cross Desk. So when Marco Silva of F3nix Mods got in touch about his custom creation, we knew we had found something special, and we knew we had to show you.
Marco started the project 2 years ago, working on the build during weekend and holidays, estimated time spent building? 1,000 hours. The rig is practically all custom with every part receiving the utmost care and attention, the build isn’t complete yet, and still has a while to go, but we thought we’d share the journey so far. This is all Marco’s work, we want him to tell you the story.
Hey Marco! This build looks incredible, when did you start PC modding?
This is actually my first modding project which I have started about 2 years back.
Could you give us a brief overview of your F3nix build so far?
It all started after seeing some desk builds online; from that to getting started was a matter of days which proved to be the wrong decision. Planning is an essential part of any mod but even more when we’re talking about a scratch build, I must have redone the majority of the parts at least a couple of times, initially all was to be done with the aid of manual power tools but learned to use CAD software along the way which opened a whole lot of door and enabled me to take this build to the next level, with that came some people asking to do some mods and custom parts, as a result the build kept being pushed back. The build has been going on for over two years now due to my limited free time but thankfully that has changed recently.
The main enclosure of the desk is fully made from aluminium using 25mm ALU square tubes and plastic inserts, all panelling is made from at least 3mm thick ALU sheets, all cut, filed and sanded with the use of power tools or manually. It was painted with a black metallic base and a deep red candy which really pops under sunlight, some of the internal panelling got the black base and silver marble treatment and all was finished off with a few coats of smart clear. The main enclosure will house the main PC components to the left, in the middle 2 D5 pumps, 2 250mm EK reservoirs with 2 F3nix sleeves, two fully custom holders and a 360 Admiral rad. To the right all the storage devices, again all housed in a unique holder, a 4TB HDD, a 250GB SSD and hopefully another 4 SSD’s will live there. RGB lighting will be controlled with the use of a remote or phone and two Lamptron FC9 controllers.
The pedestal is made from 25mm thick European oak with the addition of some walnut trims, the drawers were made from beech plywood to stop them from warping, shrinking or expanding. The right hand side of the pedestal will house the majority of the water cooling system or what I like to call the water engine, this consists of two D5 pumps, 2 Phobya Balancer 450 reservoirs mounted on a custom holder, 1 480 and 2 360 rads, one of them being a Alphacool Monsta, all cooled by Be Quiet! Silent Wings 2 PWM fans and controlled by Aquaero 6 XT controller.
The oak top was made from a MDF core and 3mm European oak veneers plus a few oak trims all around, it’s near impossible to see that it’s not real oak throughout, I have decided that this would be the best to do because of the same reasons warping, shrinking, and expanding reasons. It will be finished with 2K Polyx Oil, this is a extremely hard finish that should withstand even the harshest treatments. Towards the back will have a cover that will hold a memory card reader, two fans controllers to control some of the internal lighting and 4 push switches that will turn the fan leds on and off. UV leds will also be incorporated within the custom holders.
How much time have you spent on it?
I have started the build over 2 years ago but all work was done on Sundays and holiday period, if I was to estimate I’d say around a thousand hours went into it.
Could you run us through some of the biggest custom elements of the rig?
Pretty much everything is custom. Desk, fan grills, water engine, reservoir holders, pump holders, Storage device holders, headset holder, cable combs, reservoir sleeves and even GPU blocks and backplates. ;)
Are you applying any custom elements to the GPUs?
That’s going to be the pride and joy of this build. I’ve designed custom water blocks and am now working with Diamond Cooling to bring those beasts to life. Stay tuned for this one! Will be huge!!!
So far, what has been the biggest challenge during the build?
It’s difficult to pinpoint one thing in particular as I’ve come across many challenges during the build. That is the beauty of modding though; rethink, redo and overcome. The cabling will be one of the hardest things; the way I want to operate the lighting will be pretty unique and the custom length of all the cables will be a titanic task.
If you could give any piece of advice to those attempting their first custom build what would it be?
Plan, plan and plan again. Never underestimate the power of planning; it will for sure save you quite a few hours in the long run.
If there’s something that you don’t think you’re good at, practice it until you become good at it. Nothing is too much and never be scared to innovate, in fact, we should all aim for it as that’s the beauty of the game.
What’s the next step?
Final assembly has started and the cabling is now next on the list, this will be quite challenging due to all the custom length cables and unique way that I want to operate the lighting, can’t wait for the water cooling stages though. The designing of the front and lateral panels is also underway.
Is there an end in sight, how much is left to do until you can awake the beast?
I’ve given myself the end of the year as a deadline. Hope everything goes in accordance to that.
|Graphics Cards||2x GeForce GTX 980 Ti|
|CPU||Intel Core 5960X|
|Motherboard||ASUS X99 - E WS|
|Memory||Avexir 16GB DDR4|
|Storage||HDD: 4TB Western Digial Black HDD
SSD: Corsair Force GS 240GB
|Power||Lepa G1600W and Be Quiet! Power Zone 850W|
|Cooling||Pumps: 4x D5 pumps
Wi Fi led controller
Aquaero 6 XT USB controller
2x Lamptron Touch fan controllers
2x Lamptron FC9 controllers
2x Silverstone Blu Ray drives
NZXT Hue RGB led controller
Bitspower Power Station
And a few more to add. :D