The Build and Finished Product
Those of you reading this that are regulars to TweakTown are most likely wondering why the Storage Product Editor is reviewing the Xigmatek Elysium and not Chad Sebring, our case and cooling reviewer. I'm starting to get back into PC gaming after taking a couple of years to relax a bit and raise my family. Both of my boys are now playing the fun stuff and it's time for dad to show them whose the top fragger in this house. For my build I choose the ultra cool EVGA SR-2 motherboard that I picked up at Newegg and a pair of six-core Xeon processors provided by AVADirect. For many years I would build a new dual socket system to game on every year, and it's time to get back into the action.
There are many trick components to this build, but one of the most over the top was sent to me from G.Skill. G.Skill released a very special memory kit for the SR-2 based on the Trident heat spreader design. This kit was only available in 48GB and 24GB capacity sizes and had an official rating of 2,000 MHz with 9-8-9-24 timings. That didn't stop me from starting out at 2K MHz and 7-7-7-20 timings. That's good enough for this old timer. When the system gets settled in I'll make some forum posts on this very fast memory. A big thank you goes out to all of the companies who thought it was time for me to get back into kicking virtual ass.
My build started out simple enough. The Xigmatek Elysium comes with enough motherboard stand offs to install the EVGA SR-2. What's even more impressive is the amount of usable cable push thru locations left even after putting in this massive board. We still have two at the top, two at the bottom and four on the drive bay side that can use utilized.
The back side will allow me to quickly install a water cooling kit when I start feeling the urge to overclock the six-core Xeons. The system is starting to come together and I found a way to route the USB 3.0 cables. At first I didn't think these were long enough to reach the rear USB 3.0 ports on the motherboard, but they made it with enough slack to not be concerned about. This is also one of the things I didn't really like about the Elysium and something I hope Xigmatek changes in future versions. New motherboards are shipping with internal USB 3.0 headers, but the case doesn't come with adapters to switch from external connectors and the new USB 3.0 headers. This was brought up with Xigmatek and they are taking it under consideration.
Go big or go home baby! Three way SLI with dual Xigmatek Hammers cooled by 120mm fans that match the included rear and HDD bay fans. In the future I'll need to brush up on my cable management skills or just force Chad to do it when he comes to visit.
At this point my build has been put on hold, but the review needs to go live today. The Xigmatek Elysium has the ability to hold eight 3.5" HDDs in its two included drive cages that are cooled by 120mm fans. Each position has rubber grommets to eliminate HDD vibration so it doesn't resonate through the chassis. The cause for the pause has to do with the 3.5" HDD part. The Elysium can't hold 2.5" drives, the most common form factor for SSDs. I simply don't have enough 2.5" to 3.5" adapter brackets to hold my 2TB, 8 drive array of Crucial RealSSD C300 256GB drives. This will be an all SSD system, so I can load into Battlefield 2 and get the plane or helicopter before you even get past the 10% map loading point. The cables are run, but I need brackets! I'm sure you are all crying for me :)
A few days ago I posted a picture with a fairly clean cable job (at least clean when the side panel is installed). With a little work the final build will look even better than this, since Xigmatek included so many places to hide cables.
I actually prefer cases without a window, so no one has to see my poor cable routing skills. If you tend to get a little lazy with the setup and just want to play games, Xigmatek offers the Elysium in the lazy mans version as well.