Building the Test Rig

Our design philosophy is to build long-lasting machines that will work under heavy use and hard environments, thanks to superb cooling and heat management. We believe in providing our clients with power to spare for their expected use, while remaining at an affordable price. We select components that will give competitive performance for years, rather than being out of date the moment they ship. We design our computers to be easily upgradable in the future to allow clients to affordably keep up with technology developments via single component updates, rather than needing to buy an entire new system.

We do extensive testing to make sure our builds meet our high standard. Company reputation, advertising promises, and customer reviews all have their place in choosing products, but we believe that tests best reveal truth, and hard numbers are the best kind of truth. We will be sharing the numbers we obtain from our tests here on the Things Electronic blog as a useful reference for anyone wishing to learn more about the components we choose.

To do worthwhile testing we needed a control rig to provide a baseline that we could compare our test results of new components with. Fortunately, we had an existing Things Electronic build on-hand. We felt this computer still had lots of life left in it despite having some age and use. So we went down to the nuts and bolts and built it back it back up with needed upgrades to exceed the modern standard. Not only would this make it a sustainable testbed for years to come, but our testbed would provide similar performance to what we were seeing for client requirements.

As a major part of optimizing our computers is heat management, we then gave the test rig a powerful yet inexpensive cooling system by installing five quiet 120mm Thermaltake Riing 12 hydraulic bearing high static pressure radiator fans, and optimizing the case airflow with a multidirectional pull-push-push scheme. We removed the stock CPU fan, and in its place installed a CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo fan with two additional 120mm ThermalTake fans entirely dedicated to a pull-push scheme for the CPU. With a fresh coat of thermal paste, we were ready to start our baseline testing.

Our test rig ended up with the following components:
Motherboard: Gigabyte Technology Co. Ltd. GA-990FXA-UD3
CPU: Intel Core i7 6700K 4.0GHz Quad-Core
CPU Cooling Fan Array: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo with 2x Thermaltake Riing 120mm fans
GPU: 8GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080
RAM (4x): 8GB G.SKILL Ripjaws X.Series DDR3-2400
SSD Storage: 240GB Intel SSDSC2BW240A4
SATA Storage: 1TB Hitachi HGST HTS541010A7E630
System Cooling Fans (5x): Thermaltake Riing 120mm
Power Supply Unit: EVGA SuperNova P2 1600W
Case: Rosewill Nautilus

In future posts we will show the test rig’s baseline performance with this setup and how we use it with benchmark testing to choose components for the machines we build. We will provide performance data on various components, and temperature data that we use to optimize the temperature of our rigs under idle load, normal load, and max load. Some of the other testing we will discuss includes the stresses between SSD and SATA drives, and how we identify system bottlenecks. Please comment below if there is any test you’d like to see us perform!

If you are interested in having us design and build one or many machines for you or your company, please contact us at or call us at 507-369-3562 between the hours of 0900-1700 Central Standard Time.  As our computers are built based on conversations with clients so that they get the performance that best fits their needs, we do not use online ordering. Send us an email or give us a call and we can discuss crafting a build that will have you smiling.

Things Electronics LLC
Owned and Operated in Rochester Minnesota

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