So you may have seen just a couple of my budget gaming PC builds, however today we’re doing something a little bit different, meet Helium, a brand new, high end gaming PC powered by Ryzen. So big shout to AMD for hooking us up with Ryzen early. So inside this box you’ll see that we have some fun toys to play with for this build. So first of all, we have the brand new Ryzen 7 1800X processor. Now this thing is no joke. Not only does it have eight full cores that hyper-threaded, but it can run at up to four gigahertz. We also have the new MSI X370 XPower Gaming Titanium Motherboard, because of course the longer the name, the better the board.
But, this is just the beginning of what we have in store for Helium. For the case, we’re doing something just a little bit different. This is the Corsair 600C. Now from the outside it might look like any other case, but take a look at the 600C and you’ll see that it is a little bit of a different looking case. So you pop it open, and what you’ll find is that inside everything is flipped upside down, so your power supply goes up here, the motherboard goes in upside down, the graphics cards are here, and while in theory this will allow it to be a little bit more compact than a normal, large ATX case, honestly I also just think it looks really cool. Powering the Helium is a 750 watt EVGA SuperNOVA power supply. So while this might technically be just a little bit more than we actually need to run this system, I always like to have just a little bit of extra headroom, and since it’s an 80 Plus Gold supply, it means that it should be reliable and efficient for quite a while.
So since we’re using a Ryzen CPU, we have to have an AMD AM4 motherboard, which is where the XPower comes in. So in theory, this actually will support future AMD chips, however Ryzen 7 should be about as high end as it gets for a while, and this still has all the bells and whistles that we want. Also, that looks really cool. So this is my first close look at an AM4 motherboard, and for the most part everything you expect to be is right here. So the biggest difference you’ll see is the cooling is obviously going to be different to most Intel boards, but for the most part you’ll find stuff like DDR4, M.2 support, everything is here, but I’ve got to give MSI props, this is a crazy, crazy looking motherboard.
Just the idea of having that silver finish across the entire thing it looks so, so clean. I absolutely love it. None of this is going to be much without a Ryzen processor to power it. So this is the 1800X, which means that the box itself is actually going to be pretty empty. So there’s no stock cooler included here, so you will have to plan on getting something else. As you’ll see, we have something a little special in mind, but what we do have that’s the most important is the 1800X, as well as a little Ryzen sticker if you want to let everyone know how cool you are, I guess.
So to install, all we need to do is just pull the arm back to open the socket, we line our 1800X up nice and carefully until it rests into place, and then we just push the arm down and it’s going to be fully installed. For memory we have 16 gigabytes of Corsair Vengeance LPX. So not only is this DDR4, but it actually can clock up to 3,000 megahertz, so paired with our Ryzen processor this should be a pretty, pretty speedy system. For the SSD, we have a Samsung 950 PRO. Now I’m a big fan of these. They are really, really fast, and since it comes in the M.2 form factor it means that we can nicely tuck it away in the build.
Now I cheaped out and got the 256 version, but if you want to upgrade to more storage you can get this in 512 gigabytes, and of course we do have a normal hard drive to go in the system, as well. Keeping our 1800X cool is an EK Predator 240. So this is an all in one water cooler with Ryzen logo on the side, and at stock this is way overkill, but it should allow us to do some pretty decent overclocking. This is looking a little bit more like it. So what we ended up doing is putting our water cooling in the front of the case and then changing the case fans to pull air in from the bottom.
So the idea is is that air should be coming up into the graphics cards and exhausted out the back. Now the Ryzen branding might be a little bit over the top. So not only is it on the actual block itself, but there’s also a little logo here, but once we get the graphics cards in, we get cables a little bit more managed, this should be a really clean looking system. Speaking of the graphics cards, we’ve got a pair of GTX 1080s. Now yes, the 1080Ti was just announced, but I don’t have any of those, and JayzTwoCents let me borrow his 1080s, so that’s what we’re using for the build. One of the cool parts about using this system though, especially with this case, is that it actually looks pretty cool. We actually are able to show the graphics cards off pretty well. Last but not least we have a 4 terabyte Seagate Barracuda hard drive. Now this combined with the 950 PRO should give us plenty of storage space with the Helium, and with that the build is pretty much done. So let’s do a little bit of cable management and see what this guy can actually do.
Alright, so the Helium build is up and running, but before we get into the actual games, I’m curious how the Ryzen 7 processor performs. So in Cinebench on the single-thread side it’s a little bit down on something like a Kaby Lake Core i7, but most importantly when you get into the multi-thread side it absolutely kills it, and that just makes sense. Of course, we have eight cores and 16 threads here, so that is going to be a lot of power to tackle not only gaming, but things like editing or streaming. Something cool about Ryzen is that all the CPUs are going to be overclockable as long as you have a motherboard that supports it. Now on the high end that should be no surprise, but especially as more and more affordable Ryzen chips come out that’s going to be a big advantage, and they’re all capable of using the Ryzen Master Utility.
So this is a Windows based overclocking tool, and while it’s a little bit basic you still get a lot of the major things that you would expect, including being able to change the clock speed, voltage, memory clocks, that kind of stuff. However, it’s in beta right now and I’ve had a few issues with it, so I’m going to be overclocking using the BIOS. With a quick overclock we’ve got the 1800X running at 4 gigahertz across all eight cores, and we did that without needing any additional voltage. Now it’s not a huge improvement over stock, but it’s essentially free performance, and if you don’t mind throwing more voltage and you have enough cooling then there’s definitely more headroom left in it, but what I’m curious about is how Ryzen performs at stock.
With GTA V, the Helium is hardly even breaking a sweat. So playing on the LG Ultrawide monitor which is running at 3840 by 1600, even with basically everything cranked up we’re still getting over 80 frames per second across the board. While Overwatch might not be the greatest game to play on an Ultrawide monitor, this is complete overkill. Even playing on epic settings at full resolution we’re still averaging about 230 to 250 frames per second. Next, we have Ashes of the Singularity. Now this might not be the most popular game in the world, but it does a great job of not only taking advantage of DirectX 12, but also as much CPU power as you can throw at it, and here on extreme settings we’re getting a very respectable 55 frames per second. Next up, we have Battlefield 1, and this is another game that is fully supported by DirectX 12. So the nice thing here is that with those dual 1080s and our Ryzen CPU nothing is really being bottlenecked, so even with full ultra settings I’m still averaging about 80 to 90 frames per second. While Ryzen might not have a huge advantage when it comes to gaming compared to something like a Core i5 or an i7, having all those extra cores is helpful for things like editing as well as streaming, and of course it can totally handle games no problem.
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