SmoothCreations LANShark! -
Page 3 - Box of Skulls
Devil in the Details
Before getting to the good stuff and firing her up, lets take a good look around the insides of the Shark.
The ASUS Rampage II Gene, if you are not aware of this little gem of a motherboard, is a lot like the Rampage II Extreme, only in microATX form factor. The Gene only misses some of the bling, and a few PCI and PCIe slots of its cousin. But it retains all the overclocking BIOS features of the Rampage II Extreme, which gives the LANShark a whole lot of overclocking teeth.
The Danger Den Tower 16 case doesnt have a whole lot of room, being made specifically for micro-ATX motherboards. Those wishing for some sweet SSD love will not find it here; it just doesnt make sense with only one HDD slot available, at least until newer high capacity SSDs start shipping. So, were limited to a single hard drive and a single DVD-ROM drive (WD 300GB Raptor, and a Lite-on DVD burner, respectively).
Tucked away is the 300GB VelociRaptor, and above it is the Lite-on DVD burner. I dont suppose with an HDMI output on the GTX295, a Blu-ray drive would have been my choice.
The Core i7 965 is back, mated to the Cool It Pure cooler. The ASUS Rampage II Gene microATX motherboard handles the rest, and clocked at a healthy 3.6GHz. It seems a pretty safe OC for the i7 965, but we know the i7 965 can do better with a higher-end cooling solution.
Heres the CPU waterblock of the Cool It Pure.
We can easily say the Cool It Pure is a very simple and reliable cooling solution, but not the best performing one. Since its a sealed system, theres no need for reservoirs or the added maintenance of topping off the coolant. And I might add nothing to spill in the back of your car.
As with anything water-related this close to electronics, you really dont want to deal with leaks. The Cool-it was very solid in this regard and not a trace of leaks anywhere.
Skinny tubes with anti-kink sheath, and a pump lurk under the cover.
The PSU is a Thermaltake 850W modular unit making for some very clean cabling. This is probably the best part of SC builds, they make the cabling very clean.
Despite the considerable packing, we did find three screws loose on the case, one on the top of the case and two holding the radiator to the fan.
And straight on with the also custom painted shield.
There's a whole lot more photos waiting on the next page... and the page after that! Hey, we have attachments to content, too. Next page, please.
SmoothCreations delivers another thrilling custom computer. The LANShark is small, light, and fast. While it is plenty fast, its overclocking potential is limited by its cooling, however. The aim towards durabilty may compromises its full speed, but the custom paint job totally makes up for it.
SmoothCreations Neptune Xtreme Machine
Listen up buttercup, King Neptune just mopped the floor. What I thought was going to be a custom case review turned out to a full-on bad-ass PC system to review. OK, I'm game. While it might not be the ultimate to the hardcore, SmoothCreations built an awesome machine, worthy of praise and attention.