One of the biggest reasons I’ve been neglecting my blog is the recent influx of computer building adventures

I present my sister’s new gaming machine: Mystique

Processor: Intel E8500 @ 3.17 GHz

Video: EVGA 9800GTX+

RAM: Corsair XMS 2x1GB (CAS latency 4)

Storage: WD 640GB SATA

The unboxing:

Update: Note that I initially used the stock heatsink, but we quickly decided to upgrade it to the tried and true Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 which, as always, brought peace of mind that the CPU was in good hands.

Ignore the dazed looking fool in this pic…

Bottom cage out to accommodate the gargantuan proportions of the 9800GTX+

Behind the door: two quick-access covers for the intake filters.

Note the required removal of the bottom hard drive cage. This actually worked out well for two reasons. First, the 9800GTX+ is massive, and wouldn’t have fit with the cage installed; also, use of the additional front intake fan forces the “sacrifice” of a cage so it worked out quite well!

9800GTX wants all your PCI-E powers!

Final setup, wiring complete.

All your base belong…

Here are the 3DMark06 Scores:

SMS2.0 — 6513

CPU — 2992

SMS3.0 — 6409

Return to Proxycon — 54.19 fps

Firefly Forest — 54.35 fps

CPU1 — 0.94 fps

CPU2 — 1.52 fps

Canyon Flight — 62.26

Deep Freeze — 65.92

3DMark06 Composite Score — 13759