Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question
Closed

Air vs. water cooling

Last response: in Overclocking
Share
February 2, 2012 9:44:01 PM

I'm needing an aftermarket CPU cooler, not sure if I should get a closed water cooling system or an air cooler. i was thinking about getting one of the corsair HXX series water coolers, are those any good or could i get a better air cooler for the money.
I'm leaning towards a water cooler because they take up less room in the case and they wont block the ram slots.
I've heard that Cool Master is coming out with a vapor chamber cooler in about a month, but i'm not sure what kind of performance that will have or the physical size of it.
I would prefer to spend under$100 but I can go a little over if i really have to
Do you recommend recomend water of air and what cooler?
Thanks

CPU-Intel i7 950
Motherboard-Asus Sabertooth X58
Graphics Card-MSI Twin Frozer II GTX 560 Ti*
RAM-6 GB Corsair Dominator 1600**
PSU-Corsair TX750
HDD-Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB
SSD-Intel 320 80 GB
Case-NZXT Phantom Black full ATX

*Possibly adding a second graphics card in sli
**I'm about to replace this with a 12GB (3x4GB) G.Skill ripjaws 1600 and possibly a second set of these later.

More about : air water cooling

Best solution

a b K Overclocking
February 3, 2012 5:04:18 PM

The thing you have to consider with the low-cost liquid coolers (LCLCs) like the Hxx by Corsair is the real-estate they use around what would be your exhaust ports. Essentially, you give up real-estate one place or another because the radiators on the LCLCs are pretty thick. With two fans on them, they can occupy anywhere up to four inches of space off the back or top exhaust port on your case.

I guess the question you need to ask yourself is whether you mind giving up the dominator RAM's heatsinks for the air cooler or not.

And just to caution you, some of the reviews out there give unrealistic results for the LCLCs. They are good, but not any better than the best air coolers out there. If you want superior results, you need to get into true water cooling with the maintenance and all.

Because of your budget, though, you might take a look at the Antec Kuhler H20 920. This way, you won't have to buy new RAM. On the other hand, if you don't think you'll be overclocking anything, you might just pick up a Hyper 212+. This is a smaller size air cooler (of the big air coolers) that won't cover your RAM slots on the 1366 motherboard and based on my personal experience is as effective at cooling as the previous gen H50 and H70 offerings. If you go with air and your OC'ing the processor, the ripjaws RAM may put you in a better position for using the Noctua NH-D14 or a Thermalright Silver Arrow. These are among the best air coolers. If you're not big into changing out RAM much, it shouldn't be a problem.
Share
Related resources
a b K Overclocking
February 3, 2012 5:39:31 PM

the tuniqu 120 extreme is the on the top 5 intel and top 5 amd air heatsinks. it is also one of the quietest and performs as well as watercooling system. This is because todays processors do not take the large amount of cooling they did some years ago. i think that watercooling should only be used on systems that are already maxed out. the tunique 120 extreme will allow you to overclock any modern CPU 20-35% quicker comfortably and keep it cool.
Score
0
February 3, 2012 5:57:06 PM

Do you over clock? What temp is your CPU running at?
Score
0
February 3, 2012 7:54:56 PM

Thanks for the replies
I know I am getting the RAM because I want the extra memory.
My case has 4 holes in the back for water cooling, but the uses 2 200mm fans so I am not sure I could fit the H100 heatsink there.
I haven't overclocked it any yet, but I plan to at some point in the near future; right now, just browsing the web it is around 40-42C, under load (battlefield bad co. 2 max 1080) its about 84C.
About how much would it cost to get a real water cooling system, for the CPU and GPU, and add another water cooled GPU in the future?
Score
0
February 3, 2012 9:42:12 PM

302stephen said:
Thanks for the replies
I know I am getting the RAM because I want the extra memory.
My case has 4 holes in the back for water cooling, but the uses 2 200mm fans so I am not sure I could fit the H100 heatsink there.
I haven't overclocked it any yet, but I plan to at some point in the near future; right now, just browsing the web it is around 40-42C, under load (battlefield bad co. 2 max 1080) its about 84C.
About how much would it cost to get a real water cooling system, for the CPU and GPU, and add another water cooled GPU in the future?

$200+ is where you want to start. I wouldn't go with skimpy WC because they don't have as many advantages as a full WC kit. BTW you might need a better case, too. I love the CM Storm Trooper but if you want to go all out I would go for a Caselabs M8.
Score
0
February 3, 2012 10:16:15 PM

ubercake said:
The thing you have to consider with the low-cost liquid coolers (LCLCs) like the Hxx by Corsair is the real-estate they use around what would be your exhaust ports. Essentially, you give up real-estate one place or another because the radiators on the LCLCs are pretty thick. With two fans on them, they can occupy anywhere up to four inches of space off the back or top exhaust port on your case.

I guess the question you need to ask yourself is whether you mind giving up the dominator RAM's heatsinks for the air cooler or not.

And just to caution you, some of the reviews out there give unrealistic results for the LCLCs. They are good, but not any better than the best air coolers out there. If you want superior results, you need to get into true water cooling with the maintenance and all.

Because of your budget, though, you might take a look at the Antec Kuhler H20 920. This way, you won't have to buy new RAM. On the other hand, if you don't think you'll be overclocking anything, you might just pick up a Hyper 212+. This is a smaller size air cooler (of the big air coolers) that won't cover your RAM slots on the 1366 motherboard and based on my personal experience is as effective at cooling as the previous gen H50 and H70 offerings. If you go with air and your OC'ing the processor, the ripjaws RAM may put you in a better position for using the Noctua NH-D14 or a Thermalright Silver Arrow. These are among the best air coolers. If you're not big into changing out RAM much, it shouldn't be a problem.


+1 Everything this guy says here I couldn't have said better myself. For simplicity and compatability I would suggest an h60-h80. You want a REAL liquid cooler it makes for a nice hobby putting one together, and the temps will not even be on the same playing field with anything we're listing out of the box.

I have an nhd-14 in a machine and while it fits great with my ripjaws like uber says, they won't with the dominators. Real powerful air cooler though, but huge. I call it the lunchbox cooler. Phantom has the space for the height of it.
Score
0
February 3, 2012 11:26:42 PM

200+ and a new case is to much for this build, i didn't really plan for true water cooling when i was planing, so i'll just wait till my next build for that.
so will the NH-D14 and silver arrow type coolers out perform the H80 or H100 (i looked it up and it should fit under the top 200mm fans) and how dose the noise compare to the stock cooler.
also dose anyone know about cool masters new vapor chamber cooler coming out next month and where it will fit in with those
http://www.slashgear.com/cooler-master-unveils-new-vapo...
Score
0
February 4, 2012 1:57:13 AM

Thanks for the links, very helpful
I think I'm going to go with the H100, I can pick it up at fry's tomorrow for 99.99
Score
0
February 4, 2012 1:57:52 AM

Best answer selected by 302stephen.
Score
0
!