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Watercooling noob questions...

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  • Heatsinks
  • Water Cooling
  • Build
  • Overclocking
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June 19, 2008 4:27:32 AM

It's been about 6 years since my last gaming rig build. I'm still contemplating the detailed build but it will be for high end gaming.

My biggest requirement - noise. I like to do some mild OCing and whilst I get airflow, good cabling etc. will help, I get cautious, throw in a bunch of fans and the next thing I know a jet is taking off. I also like the idea of prolonging component life and having a broader OCing window. I'm happy to invest in a quality unit that does a good job and has minimal maintenance.

What I have decided on is learning about water cooling and going for that. I've got a few questions for those with experience in home build water cooled systems:

- Any recommendations for watercooling/case combos that worked really well for you? I'm not set on the case right now, but I'll be investing good cash in a quality case, PSU and MoBo.
For example, is a case/cooler combo (such as the THERMALTAKE Armor LCS Aluminum Super Tower, w/ Built-in Liquid Cooling System) worth it or are you getting average quality compromises?

- I was thinking about an internal watercooling unit - any brands that you love?

- Any special tips around cooling the CPU, SLI GPUs and the Northbridge? Any watercoolers that come with good components?

- What about things like getting round MoBo obstacles that make placing the block onto the chips a pain? What exactly is the 'right' want to clamp that block down onto the chip? Are there MoBo makers that make better design considerations in your experience?

- Any other 'gotchas' to watch for?


At any rate, watercooling appears to have matured as a field since my last build. I'm hopeful with a bit of help from you guys that I can move from nervous to fun loving OCing adventurer!

Thanks for your help in advance.

More about : watercooling noob questions

June 19, 2008 4:38:57 AM

the best watercooling kit Swiftech H20-220.
June 19, 2008 4:51:38 AM

iluvgillgill said:
the best watercooling kit Swiftech H20-220.


Nice one. The reviews on their cooling quality look hawt. It shows how long I've been out of the building game to see the H20-220 Apex Ultra for 359$. That gets me all the blocks plus excellent quality.

Now the question is, if that's the kit, what's the MoBo? It seems that compatibility is the issue but this cooling kit seems to allow some flexibility.
Related resources
June 19, 2008 8:05:41 PM

just get the standard kit. leave the Ultra kit for now. dont spend anything more.
June 19, 2008 8:29:53 PM

I still think air is the way to go unless you live in Hawaii.
June 19, 2008 8:38:26 PM

put your whole pc in the fridge.
June 20, 2008 1:03:47 AM

First, read this set of water cooling essentials:

http://www.overclock.net/water-cooling/226970-water-coo...

You said the noise was a prime consideration. What exactly do you plan to WC? CPU? GPU (how many)? The N and S bus don't generally benefit from WC'ing any better than on air. But I guess it can look cool. How much you willing to spend on case plus WC gear?
June 20, 2008 2:18:12 AM

iluvgillgill said:
put your whole pc in the fridge.


You can buy one of those small personal refridgerators for about $100 and be set.

----- Anyone remember "that guy" with the fridge idea... what around March I think it was?

June 20, 2008 2:34:00 AM

yeah of course i remember. i rather treat myself to a ice lolly from that fridge then giving the treat chilling my CPU to be honest!lol
June 20, 2008 2:36:32 AM

Condensation is your enemy right? Fridge = moist air = bad
June 20, 2008 2:40:53 AM

water=bad for electronics(water pump are acception):p 
June 20, 2008 2:53:23 AM

Stay away from any kit using plastic connections like that swiftech unit. Your asking for problems. Find something with metal connections. Make sure your waterblocks have no plastic parts as well. Plastic to metal will leak in time. Don't use plastic or nylon hose clamps, use compression fittings or at a minimum metal hose clamps.
June 20, 2008 3:52:46 AM

Conumdrum said:
Read this post I did yesterday for someone:

http://www.dangerden.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=10529


My P-180 is similar, but I copied the Swiftech Quiet Power case, with my P-180, the swifty 350 pump, Apogee GT cpu block, (now) 3x 120 rads, and 2x 8800 GTX's sli'd and watercooled as well.

Had to mount the third 120 rad on top of the case, but everything else is inside. Did not have to move/cut the hard drive slots as your fellow did, and added a bay res for additional volume to assist in the heat load.

Q9450 @ 3.4 runs 48ish at load, and the SLI 8800 GTX's using koolance blocks are at the mid 50's at load.

I did use Silenx Xtrime 120 fans ( 14 db at 72 cfm to really get things quiet).

Lots of fun! (especially figuring out how to run the tubing)
June 20, 2008 4:33:28 AM

I Just got the Armor LCS case you are talking about. The setup was pretty straight foward and not to dificult even for my first go at water cooling. I couldnt be happier with the case.
June 20, 2008 4:41:34 AM

the swiftech 220 is the best budget WC kit out and get numerous good comment as someone has pointed out before.for starter i dont thing a full custom kit is a good idea.
a c 337 K Overclocking
June 20, 2008 8:38:31 PM

Quote:
Stay away from any kit using plastic connections like that swiftech unit. Your asking for problems. Find something with metal connections. Make sure your waterblocks have no plastic parts as well. Plastic to metal will leak in time.


Plastic/nylon to plastic/nylon - resevoir fittings, for example
metal to metal - waterblocks; use stainless barbs, if you can

Quote:
Don't use plastic or nylon hose clamps, use compression fittings or at a minimum metal hose clamps.


+1
June 22, 2008 7:56:06 PM

As kits go, the Swiftech H20 220 Apex is a VERY GOOD Kit - but it depends on what all you want to cool. It will be great for a CPU only loop, good to acceptable for a cpu and single gpu; and disappointing for anything more than that.

I use zip ties almost exclusively to clamp tubing to barbs. They are easy to get into tight places, cheap, easy to get, and work just as well as clamps. Plus you can order UV zip ties online if you desire.
!