Ok .... I've had my latest build up and running for a while and now I'm interesting in watercooling it so that I can take it up a notch in terms of oc'ing. The system pretty much rocks now at a 3DMark06 score of a little over 10k. But would like to end the noise of all the fans blowing and perhaps up the oc'ing a little. I'm thinking of using Koolance products, but thought I would get some input from you guys!. Here's my current set-up:
Monitor Dell 24" 2407
Case Thermaltake Tai-Chi
Motherboard P5N32-SLI SE Deluxe
Video Cards ASUS EN7900GTX 512M x 2 in SLI
PSU GameXStream OCZ700GXSSLI ATX 12V 700W
CPU Core 2 Duo X6800
Soundcard X-Fi XtremeMusic
Hard Drives WD Raptor 150 gig 10K x 2 in Raid 0
Memory CORSAIR DDR2-800
Mouse Logitech G5
Let me know where you would start if you were me! Thanks.
Oh, it was somewhere in the $4500 range. Some of the components are becoming cheaper by the day though. The CPU is definitely coming down in price, still not cheap, but cheaper than what I paid for it. Only thing that seems to be getting more expensive is the memory.
You spend over $4K on the rig, so I assume you have the cash. Do you plan to hardcore OC? Any target overclock? Give phasechange a thought?
I do plan to OC, not sure how hardcore it will be for now, certainly don't want to fry a $1k processor just yet. But as time goes by and it's value drops, I'll probably keep pushing it until I get a new processor either because I just want one or I've pushed it too far
I haven't looked at phasechange, are they considered a high-end chiller type of product? I'll have to google them. I just don't want to buy junk.
Water cooling has alot of benefits, the greatest of which is the ability it gives you to overclock above and beyond what any kind of air cooling you do - as long as you have the right components.
The first thing you need to decide is what it is you wish to water cool - CPU? GPU? NB Chipset? HDD?
There are so many ways to impliment water cooling. So, you need to decide. Once you've decided what your ultimate goal is, then you need to determine a budget. I'll say this from experience, though, if you have premium computer components and wish to properly water cool them - say the CPU and GPU - then, to truly have the best parts, it would be to your advantage to go the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) route as it will allow you to mix and match the best parts from the various companies. This, however, will also increase the cost somewhat. For a good CPU/GPU setup (with a strong pump, good rad, coolant and parts) it could end up costing you in the neighborhood of around $300. The benefit of taking this route, though, is that the kit can travel with you as you upgrade and will serve you for many years - chaning only when you wish to add or redesign the loop itself.
I wouldn't recommend phase change, though. I am not denying its results but, hase change is not very practical. It is highly selective and, to date, has only shown the capability of cooling the CPU and the GPU (at tremendous expense). It cannot cool any other components. Watercooling is the most felxible and least expensive and can even allow you to integrate TEC cooling (which is what I use for my CPU).
So, for now, decide on what you want to cool and what budget you have in mind.
Thanks for the feedback everyone. I guess I'm leaning towards the watercooling and that's why I was sort of leaning towards the Koolance system. I like the fact that I can cool the CPU, GPU, Memory, HDD, etc.... it's such an open system that if there is a need to cool it, some sort of cooler will be devised for it.
I'll probably be doing this soon as the two GPU's in SLI are already causing over-heating in the box after they've run for a fair amount of time. I was playing Oblivion and starting seeing defects in the video and had to shut down for a while. So ... this will probably go up in terms of priority for me.
The bottleneck for OCing here would be your motherboard. Idk how far your mobo will let you OC but surely it wont be that far that the cooling will become a problem. Even that the unlocked multipliers of the X6800 might help.
A Scythe Ninja or Infinity paired a high RPM (<1600) count would serve you well.
Look, with the equipment you've got, I'd recommend something a little bit less restrictive than a Koolance kit. Sure it has alot of bling and multiple water blocks but it uses a small ID tubing (1/4 or 3/8) and the pump in the unit is relatively weakish. Do yourself a favor and look into Do-It-Yourself (DIY - as in building it yourself) and 1/2 ID equipment - especially if you are going SLI. You'll need as much high water flow as you can get.