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First time water cooling - Explanations, and guidance!

Hello all!
This is my first time considering a water cooled system.
Firstly; my current setup is:
CPU= Intel Core i5 2500k OC'd to 4.4Ghz
MOBO= Gigabyte GA-Z68XP-UD4 Motherboard
RAM= 2x 4Gb G.Skill Ripjaws @ 2133mhz
HSF= CoolerMaster Hyper 212+ CPU Cooler (With stock fan that comes with the HSF & BitFenix Spectre 120mm. These 2 fans are in a push/pull arrangement)
GPU= MSI GeForce GTX 580 Twin Frozr II Overclocked
PSU= XFX Core Edition Pro 750W
Case= Antec 1200 V3
HDD= 2x 1Tb 3.5" Disk 7200rpm (1 is samsung, 1 is seagate)
Disk Drive= Lite-On IHAS524 24x DVDRW Super AllWrite

Current uses:
- Gaming (Duh.. ). Games include: World of Warcraft, League of Legends, Call of Duty (The Series), Battlefield 3, Skyrim (Not much anymore though), Starcraft II, Diablo III (if we ever get our hands on it...
- Alot of web browsing (Facebook, eBay, Youtube, Etc..)
- Watching videos etc.
- I HAVE, but not recently done some video/image editing. (Photoshop, Aftereffects...)
- Website Development (Dreamweaver)

Its a great system for what i use it for.
Idle CPU temps are about 38-40 degrees Celsius,
and under load its about 45-50 degrees Celsius.

Im looking into water cooling, and i need a few questions answered.

#1 - Is it worth the extra cash to water cool my system? budget is ~$400.
#2 - What temperatures will i get roughly? (this one is a tricky one, due to all the factors involved).
#3 - Are the following parts compatible?
Pump= EK-DCP 4.0 12V DC Pump
Radiator= Black Ice SR1 240 Radiator
Resevoir= XSPC Acrylic Single 5.25” Bay Reservoir
CPU Waterblock= XSPC RayStorm CPU Waterblock for Intel
GPU Waterblock= EK Full Cover VGA Block EK-FC580
Tubing = Undecided, as im not sure what size i will need and havent measured my case and gotten a general idea for a length (I will however buy an extra metre than required just in case of stuff ups, and errors.)
#4 - Will my power supply handle all this? or will i need an upgrade to say 850-1000W?

- Noise isnt an issue for me.
- I like lights, so if possible, when suggesting, suggest parts that can be modded with LED's
- Budget = ~$400

Thankyou for any help you can give.
Regards, James - Gobble45
4 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about first time water cooling explanations guidance
  1. CPU load temps might drop a little, but not a lot. GPU temps would likely be in the upper 30's to mid 40's at load, depending on ambient.

    Almost all watercooling components are just depends on fitting sizes you are going to use and ID tubing.

    You do not need to consider a bigger power supply unless you are already pushing the limits now. Your pump shouldn't pull very many watts at all.

    Is your GPU reference? If so, should be easy to find a full cover block. If not, you'll probably have to go universal. I believe that is as I can see the nVidia logo by the PCI-e connector, but of course, that is just an image.

    Why not just go with the XSPC Rasa or Raystorm kits and buy your waterblock and appropriate fittings? That pump you listed is about the same quality and power as the one in the XSPC kits, maybe a bit stronger. (Why does everyone ALWAYS list a Black Ice rad for their first 'how is this?'???????)

    Rasa RS360 kit
    Rasa RX240 or 360 kit
    Rasa EX360 kit

    + GPU block of choice, with appropriate fittings. I think Rasa kit tubing is like 7/16ID, so you'd need those size barbs/fittings for your GPU block. Of course you can always go larger size all around, but you'd need to buy those as well.

    Otherwise, you are going to need to consider what you want exactly and why if you go with a custom loop. There are a lot of options to consider, but if you know what you want, it's pretty simple.

    #1 - Is it worth the extra cash to water cool my system?

    Only you can answer this question.

    - I like lights, so if possible, when suggesting, suggest parts that can be modded with LED's
    - Budget = ~$400 and cheap bling?

    Have you read the Watercooling Sticky? (linked in my sig below).
  2. Best answer
    I'll play devil's advocate and Nike's endorser - JUST DO IT.

    - Your CPU temps are amazing at 4.4Ghz with a CM Hyper 212+. (When you say "load" is it with a CPU stress test such as Prime 95 / IBT or just gaming?) I'm at 4.5Ghz with 1.32V and Prime 95 temps reach max 57-58C with water cooling (~30C idle).

    However, with a full cover GPU block, temps are amazing - my OCed GTX 570 never passes 41C.

    - rubix_1011 had earlier advised me to build a custom loop instead of picking up a kit - that was great advice. Everything for me cost a bit over $400 - many would say its a bit much for cooling. But once you do it, it'll feel like it was all worth it - you'll never want to do air-cooling every again.

    - On parts, don't forget the little pieces - fittings, distilled water, killcoil, TIM (XSPC Raystorm comes with some), and fans = can end up costing a bit if you want the good stuff.

    The XSPC Raystorm block and the bay res comes with LEDs so that's less tinkering you have to do.

    The GTX 580 waterblock you linked to is not compatible with your card. This one is:

    - From my experience, the noisiest part of the water cooling setup is the radiator fans (depending on what speed you set them at).
  3. Fans should be the only thing that you should ever hear from a watercooling kit.
  4. Best answer selected by Gobble45.
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