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thermoelectric cooling

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April 4, 2003 4:44:06 AM

i was wondering if anyone has ever tried this form of cooling, ive seen models swiftech has. kinda of curious

More about : thermoelectric cooling

April 4, 2003 4:47:51 AM

Ask Svol... he has had extensive use.
Its very much a high end form of cooling, with lots of risks involved... only really applicable with water or cryogenic cooling.

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April 5, 2003 7:06:32 PM

It's not very practical. Thermoelectric cooling is only good if you use a compressor, otherwise the heat added to the system by the plates overpowers the heatsink. It can also have disaterous effects if the plate isn't powerful enough to move the heat from the hot side to the cold side. If you have a 60W plate hooked up to a 70W CPU, there's 10 watts of heat that aren't going to move to the heatsink and will fry the CPU.

Trust me, it's just not worth it unless you have a compressor. It's more of a novelty on old PIIs and K7s which don't give off any heat in comparison to new chips.

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April 8, 2003 4:54:02 PM

Here, try this <A HREF="http://www.subzerotech.com/index.php?module=sz_reviews_..." target="_new">link</A>. Its a revies of that swiftech tec cooler. I personnaly think its patetic for all of the trouble you go through.

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April 9, 2003 9:15:34 PM

Is thermoelectric the same thing as a peltier?
I once thought about getting one but would you think it is all worth it in a watercooling setup?
April 10, 2003 6:25:10 AM

Even if you use water cooling, would you say that a peltier would help cool the cpu better than a cpu waterblock alone?
I plan on getting a new water cooling setup and am unsure if I should or should not get a peltier or not..
April 10, 2003 3:53:54 PM

well it is something to factor in... and definitely a pelletier element will cool you CPU better than a watercooling setup...
A watercooling setup will get your CPU to ambient temps at best, while a pelletier element can allow you to bring your CPU down to sub 0*C temperatures, and transfer all the heat to the water, which means that if you decide to put anything else into the watercooling series (GPU, Northbrige?) then you will have to factor in the slightly higher water temps

<b>people are only idiots when they don't realize - when they do it just gets funnier, like a dog chasing its own tail, or like george bush's public address(es)</b>
April 10, 2003 10:33:37 PM

Can a peltier cool your cpu below 0*C? If you can then it's almost like either going for a vapochill or Prometeia cooling system but a whole lot cheaper.

Wouldn't you need a really good watercooling setup then in order for the peltier to work effectively so it can transfer all it's heat to the water? Well even if I didn't use anything in a watercooling setup cept the waterblock on the cpu, would you think it's worthwhile to get the peltier or would you rather pay a whole lot more for a VapoChill or Prometeia setup?
Unless there is a new form of cooling that I don't know about?....
April 10, 2003 11:23:02 PM

yes a peltier can cool your cpu below 0*C, depending on the strength of the peltier and your cpu's wattage output
i'd rather go peltier than prometeia or vapochill because with a watercooling system (with a pelt on the cpu) you can cool all parts of your computer if you want to, whereas those others only cool the cpu.
and if you only want to get the cpu waterblock (as you're suggesting), the whole system with a pelt and power supply will cost less than a prometeia, though it probably won't cool as well. even a 226W peltier isn't as good as prometeia i don't think.
be warned: peltiers are a major pain in the @$$, you've got to really make sure you've protected your system well from condensation if you want it to be a 24/7 machine
you gotta keep a constant eye out for the first few weeks to make sure you've got the condensation under control

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April 11, 2003 1:21:48 AM

Okay thanks. I was thinking bout buying certain watercooling components and build it from scratch and using the Swiftech MCW5000-PT thermoelectric peltier. I don't need it to be -35ºC like what a Prometeia can do but I'm wondering if it's possible to get around at least -10 to -15ºC with tbe 226W peltier?

yeah that's the major problem I'm only scared about with a peltier, the condensation. Even though Swiftech will provide the gasket and neoprene sticker with their peltiers would you think it'll be safe from condensation occuring if you spent the time installing it carefully?

But once you get the condensation under control then you'd be free from constantly checking after right?
April 11, 2003 1:49:20 AM

yes, using a pelletier you can cool your CPU to below 0*C temperatures, and it is waayyyy cheaper than a vapo-chill or the likes... only thing is, it isn't a contained cooler like those (which are compressors).

Umm, the watercooling setup wouldn't have to be great, but it would have to be good enough to be able to dissipate the heat produced from the cpu and pelletier... especially if you're only cooling the CPU then its easy enough... you just need a second power supply (with enough wattage on the 12V rail to power the pelletier you choose), some neoprene, dielectic grease and silicone so that you can encase the entire thing and keep it out of harm's way - the surface of the cold plate (copper shim between cpu and pelletier) can get so cold that it will form ice crystal and condensation due to moisture in the air, and for that reason you have to go through certain measure to seal off the CPU socket from the air around it... same thing in a prometia or vapo-chill.

think of a pelletier element simply as a device that moves the energy from one side to the other really fast (leaving the cold side REALLY cold) ... as long as something can handle the heat on the hot side coming at it that "fast", then you're set...

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April 11, 2003 6:51:11 AM

What makes the compressor special?

I understand how the peltier works but just how risky is it when installing one? So would a vapochill and prometia be just as risky when installing?

Power isn't the main issue to me, it's just the condensation I'd be worried about. Are there special kits you can get that maybe made of better quality to insulate your cpu? Or would you have to stick with whatever the company provides you with their peltier in order for it to fit?
April 11, 2003 5:32:28 PM

well whats special about the compressor is that you can hit lower temps than with a pelletier (pelletier will only allow you to get a few degrees below 0*C), and its an all-in-one, self contained ready to use solution. Now, between the two, using a pelletier is dangerous to a certain extent, whereas if you don't properly insulate the CPU socket from condensation you can possibly damage the CPU and motherboard - while with a vapochill or prometia, some go ahead and install it directly without insulating the CPU socket, though it is recommended as well since it runs at sub 0*C temperatures.

As for fitting it, most places that will sell you a pelletier will not provide anything else with it - you need to get it yourself. That includes a copper cold plate (which will be manufactured by the same company the CPU's waterblock is made from to provide a perfect fit), the neoprene you will use (available at some modding online shops, just use a search for it), the dielectic grease to prevent corrosion and condensation within the CPU socket (which can be found at a good electronic equipment store), the silicone (Home-Hardware, home-depot, as long as it is waterproof, non-toxic silicone sealant), and lastly silicone spray (again, home-depot; used on the back of the motherboard, spray a good quantity over the socket area to cover all solder points properly). Now, like i said, you'll have to gather this stuff yourself, its the best way, and besides, like you asked, there's no kits.
Basically, you'll want to seal-off the CPU area as best you can with whatever you can, the stuff i've just mentioned is in my opinion the best way, and its pretty much the standard for installation anyways.

<b>people are only idiots when they don't realize - when they do it just gets funnier, like a dog chasing its own tail, or like george bush's public address(es)</b>
April 11, 2003 7:45:05 PM

Just figure I'd mention it, but you can get dielectric grease at most automotive supply places, in packets or tubes.

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April 12, 2003 7:01:34 AM

Even though it's an all-in-one it's fairly larger than any typical watercooling system plus you can only cool the cpu with it. What? They have to be crazy if they don't insulate when installing a vapochill or prometia because it cools even better than a peltier.
Here is what I was thinking of:
<A HREF="http://www.swiftnets.com/products/mcw5000-PT.asp" target="_new">http://www.swiftnets.com/products/mcw5000-PT.asp&lt;/A>
Doesn't that include just about everything I need to install it on my cpu?


Neoprene, dielectric grease, silicone, and silicone spray. What about foam on the back of the motherboard behind the cpu socket? I saw this: <A HREF="http://www17.tomshardware.com/howto/20021230/chip_con-0..." target="_new">http://www17.tomshardware.com/howto/20021230/chip_con-0...;/A> used with prometia and wonder if there's any possibilty of getting that block purchased seperately?.... Hmm is sub zero cooling even worthwhile in the overclocking field? I mean do you actually need your cpu to be at such a low temp in order to have the max overclock?..
April 12, 2003 5:53:33 PM

Yeah, it is bigger and can only cool the CPU, but it does a DAMN FINE JOB at it.

That MCW5000-PT is good, but you'll need to go further than just using what they provide you with thats for sure. You'd need to surround the neoprene gasket with silicone, and then the neoprene piece for the back of the motherboard would need to be encased in silicone as well. Thats why I preffer spray silicone for the back of the motherboard, because you can just spray a nice thick layer of it to the back.

As for the dielectic grease, you'll need that to prevent condensation within the CPU socket (behind the CPU) ... its non-cnductive and you basically have to fill the gap behind the CPU with this stuff, though swiftech doesn't even mention the necessity for this stuff.

If you check out the place that sells Prometia coolers you'll see that they do sell an "accessory pack" which includes those rubber gaskets, but the thing is the actual CPU mounting block of the Prometia enables the proper mounting of the gasket, though you could probably manage to glue it on, which would make no difference between neoprene and silicone
besides, you can see just how well a cpu can be overclocked in Tom's review of the prometia - he noted a 30% increase in speeds, so yeah, i would say that cooling the CPU as much as possible does indeed provide a better overlock (based on the fact that electricity, or positively and negatively charged electrons can travel on the copper and gold medium within the CPU core better at lower temperatures, because heat acts as a resistor, kinda, heh).

<b>people are only idiots when they don't realize - when they do it just gets funnier, like a dog chasing its own tail, or like george bush's public address(es)</b>
April 12, 2003 6:05:54 PM

yeah but the tricky part is finding the neoprene

<b>people are only idiots when they don't realize - when they do it just gets funnier, like a dog chasing its own tail, or like george bush's public address(es)</b>
April 14, 2003 3:45:33 PM

I've seen people just use the spray on stuff available at any hardware store. It's supoposed to be used to fill cracks and spray around pipes on your House. Problem is that it makes a god awfull mess and basically cements everything together, so replacing the CPU is alot more difficult. You have to scrape it all off and that's no easy task. They say you ca use acetone to dissolve it, but I find that that only works until it is set (or hardened).

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