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Need to make a cooling system decision...

Last response: in Overclocking
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June 2, 2011 3:33:52 AM

Hello internets! First-time poster here with a very specific question: I've been looking around the net for a liquid cooling solution for my CPU, but haven't been able to find any comparison between the specific options that I've been considering, so I figured the collective knowledge of the tom's hardware community would be far more valuable than an additional 9-10 hours of searching the web. I've been looking at two different "breeds" of LC setup, one being the "all-in-one" design, specifically the Antec KÜHLER H2O 920, and the DIY kit that is the XSPC Rasa 750 RS360 setup. If anyone has information as to which of these two performs better, or is a better value overall, that information would be much appreciated! If anyone has another option for around $130 US, that would also be very helpful.



System details:

CPU: Intel Core i7 970 @4.0GHz (Want to try and push 5GHz, but I already know that is VERY iffy)
GPU: XFX ATI HD RADEON 6870 Black Edition (OC: Core clock: 990MHz Effective mem: 1200MHz all stable so far)
MB: Asus Sabertooth X58 ATX Motherboard
RAM: Kingston Hyper-X DDR3-1600 memory (3x4GB = 12GB total memory, running at stock settings)
HDD: Hitachi 2TB SATA HDD 6Gb/s @7200RPM
PSU: Raidmax AE-1000 kilowatt power supply
Case: Antec Nine-hundred two V3

Current cooler: Intel stock cooler (Performance mode with an extra fan tacked on for a Ghetto-looking push-pull setup; I'm well aware that this is FAR from something like a silver-arrow or a Noctua, but it's all I have at the moment, and I am intentionally not forcing peak loads on the CPU so as to avoid total system meltdown).

Thank you so much for your time everyone, and I hope someone can help me decide what the best option is for me, because I obviously require something much better than what I have in order to maintain safe temperatures at higher OC's.

Bye for now!
a c 286 K Overclocking
June 2, 2011 1:49:36 PM

Hi and welcome to Tom's forum.

The XSPC Rasa kit is very good entry cooler kit, but if you let us know your budget, we can give you another options as a custom loop.
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a c 324 K Overclocking
June 2, 2011 2:27:45 PM

This must have been moved to the water cooling forum...so you are now in the right place.

XSPC Rasa kits for anything under $150-$200 or so, unless you go with a budget custom loop. There are also some EK kits that would do well, but they are newer and lesser-known right now. They also are a little more pricey, but are good performing kits as well. They are closer to the $200+ range and you could build a really good custom loop for that.

XSPC Rasa RS240 $130

The RX series uses the RX radiators which perform better than the RS series (indicated in the kit name prior to the number).

XSPC Rasa kits on Sidewindercomputers.com

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June 2, 2011 3:20:09 PM

Thanks guys. Yeah the Rasa is a very good kit according to a lot of people, and I definitely appreciate the info on the RS vs RX thing, I genuinely did not know that. Any info on the Antec though? I know it is cheaper by a small amount and is WAY easier to install, so I was wondering what kind of performance difference I could expect to see.

That said:
Quote:
The XSPC Rasa kit is very good entry cooler kit, but if you let us know your budget, we can give you another options as a custom loop.


my budget is anywhere at or below $150 US, and I appreciate all the input on the Rasa, it is DEFINITELY a good system.
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Best solution

a c 324 K Overclocking
June 2, 2011 3:22:34 PM

At or below $150...the Rasa or a high end air cooler. The Antec cooler is OK, but for the cost and your budget, you'd be better off with a great air cooler or going the step into the Rasa kit...unless you can find the Antec for a significant bargain.
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a c 286 K Overclocking
June 2, 2011 3:47:54 PM

^Agree, for your budget the Rasa kir is the best option or something like the Thermalright Silver Arrow, Noctua NH-D14 or Zalman CNPS12X (new at computex)
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June 2, 2011 4:07:09 PM

Right on guys! I'll start lookin' for deals on the Rasa then. I've also looked into the Siver-arrow (as well as the Noctua) and generally found them to be quite large and only marginally better/worse than the Antec. Still, at less than $80, I would get way more for my money than I would get with Antec.

Yep, thanks to the potential performance differences at higher loads, I'll be going with the Rasa. To be honest, my main concern was the thing leaking on me, but after a few more rounds on the youtube I'm fairly certain that, if I just take my time with the assembly, it will be well worth all the effort to assemble and install the Rasa as opposed to taking "the easy way" out with the Antec.

Thanks again you guys!
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a b K Overclocking
June 2, 2011 6:35:27 PM

You are making a good decision! I am also going to be using the Rasa 750 RS360 kit soon, waiting for it to arrive (15 July!). If you are worried about leakage occurring, you could get some compression fittings which some people think are more safe than the standard barbs that come with the kit, however, it is up to you.
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June 2, 2011 6:41:28 PM

cromedome said:
You are making a good decision! I am also going to be using the Rasa 750 RS360 kit soon, waiting for it to arrive (15 July!). If you are worried about leakage occurring, you could get some compression fittings which some people think are more safe than the standard barbs that come with the kit, however, it is up to you.


July 15!? That's my Birthday!!! How odd and awesome!

Also, I have seen the barbs and clips that come with the kit and they look okay. I plan to use high quality tubing (which won't crimp!) and non-conducting coolant anyway. I was just worried about making a mess! =)
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a b K Overclocking
June 2, 2011 10:23:31 PM

Ah, thats cool. Be sure to do some research on the coolant you plan to use because some non-conductive coolant can stain your tubing and gunk up your blocks...

Hehe, July 15 is the day my cousin gets back from the states. I live in South Africa and the Rasa kit that I am getting is 60% cheaper in the US! And therefore, I will buy off FrozenCPU and then get it brought down here.
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June 10, 2011 12:16:03 AM

Best answer selected by Skiibs.
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