MSI X399 Creation Threadripper Build - Start to Finish

Building a new computer for yourself is always fun. We had the chance to do it ourselves recently, and we decided to document the entire process on video. We use the MSI MEG X399 Creation motherboard and the MSI RTX 2080 Sea Hawk as the backbone of our system along with an AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2950X.

MSI X399 Creation Threadripper Build - Start to Finish

MSI came to us and asked to sponsor a system build video, and the timing could not have been more perfect. MSI wanted to feature its MEG X399 Creation and this is the exact motherboard I wanted to use in my new personal PC build. HardOCP has had a lot of great things to say about AMD's Ryzen Threadripper over the last year, and we wanted to get some of that Threadripper goodness into our daily workloads. Of course it is always easier to talk "intelligently" about computer hardware when you have first hand experience as well, outside of a test bench. We settled on the 2950X processor for the time being, however we will likely upgrade to a 2990WX when/if AMD and Microsoft get their core scaling issues figured out with Premiere Pro since that is what we use to edit videos.

MSI also wanted to showcase its RTX 2080 Sea Hawk X video card, which happens to have an AIO cooled GPU. The Sea Hawk X showed to do very well in our overclocking tests, hitting a stable 2070MHz even after it was heat-soaked. Given its performance there, I had no issues with replacing the Founders Edition RTX 2080 I had in my system with the Sea Hawk X.

The video below is not so much of a "how to" video as it is a documentation of how we build systems at HardOCP. It is not directed at first-time builders, but we do try to explain things as we go along as to the reasons we do things the way we do. Hopefully we can all share some of our tips and tricks we have all learned along the way when it comes to building PCs in the HardForum.

We mentioned our video on Threadripper TIM application, and you can click here to see that in detail.

While we did find a way around the Windows 10 Pro install issue that we discovered in the video, going in an editing the registry is not the easiest way to get around the issue. The issue is specific to the wireless NIC on the X399 Creation. It seems that with the 1809 update, the driver for that was missed. This post in the MSI forums will get give you links in order to slipstream the driver when you are setting up the OS install. Worth mentioning is that my X399 Creation did use the older version of the driver (v20.80.0), while some of the newer produced motherboards use v20.90.0. To slipstream the driver on install you simply put the driver on a USB flash drive, and select it when you are prompted to "Load Drivers" before you pick the drive partitions you want to install Win10 to.

Our issue with the older 860 EVO drive not working was a compatibility issue. The 860 EVO is NOT an NVMe drive, but rather a SATA attached drive, and of course our card is PCIe attache.

A special thanks goes out to Corsair for helping will all the accessories we needed to complete the build.

Worth mentioning is that all the editing done for the video here was done on the system we built in the video, and everything went very smoothly. I could not be happier with its performance. Due to some airflow issues where this system is being used, I did move to a bigger case that allowed more airflow. The Corsair 500D worked fine if it had room to breath, but in the confines under my desk, which has almost zero airflow, I moved to the ThermalTake GT 20 ($250 at Microcenter) which has worked out well as you can see in this HardForum thread.

Below is a list of components and links to purchase those.

MSI MEG X399 Creation - $579

MSI RTX 2080 Sea Hawk X - $899

AMD Threadripper 2950X - $899

Corsair Obsidian 500D Midtower Chassis - $150

Corsair Force MP500 M.2 2280 NVMe - $299

CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 32GB (4 x 8GB) 3200 - $260

Corsair RM1000X PSU - $149

Corsair H150i Pro 360mm - $170

Enermax LiqTech II TR4 240 - $149