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Watercooling a build for tinkering with

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November 30, 2012 12:27:09 AM

Hi :hello: 
I'm thinking about going water cooled with a build that I'm going to tinker and play around with. For now ill only be watercooling the CPU, but may expand later on. For now though, I'm not worried about future proofing with a more powerful pump.
my to-be specs are
FX-8320-I know that intel would probably be better, and the money spent on watercooling could get me an i7... But I fell like supportin' the little guy, and I doubt I'll notice the difference.

For my motherboard, I chose the AsRock 990FX extreme4-seems to be a good board for the money to me, and looks like it'll hold up to overclocking fairly well

As for the case, I'm considering either the HAF X, or the HAF 932-Which one of these would be better? Or should I be looking at a different case entirely?

As for the loop, I think I'll go overkill with the radiator initially, so I chose the XSPC raystorm 750 RX360 kit-us this a good starter cooler? Us there anything it doesn't have? I know it comes with everything that I would probably need, but is there anything else I should buy separately? Thermal paste? Tubing?
And as for coolant, the general consensus seems to be to use distiller water from a supermarket. Is this correct? Just checking ;) 

And there you have it!
Thanks for the advice guys :D 
BTW I have done tons of research (at least by my standards) and read the sticky already :) 
a b K Overclocking
November 30, 2012 3:07:56 AM

HAF X is what I would do if I did not already have my 600T white.
You can get the XSPC Raystorm kit with a D5 pump and that is all the pump you will need. I just finished my loop tonight and having some angled rotary fitings helps.
8320 should be a good processor to play with. We are all spoiled with what we have available today.
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November 30, 2012 9:13:35 AM

Great! So the D5 is worth the extra ~100$ over the normal 750? It seems like a good idea if I ever wanted to expand...

And with the rotary fittings, if they're that useful, then maybe I will get some.. Which ones are good? Will any rotary/angled fitting work? And what's the most useful fitting, 45° or 90°?
Also, now that I think about it, would some type of valve to drain the watercooling loop for maintenance be useful? It seems to me that it would be a pain to drain if there wasn't some sort of part for this.
And concerning maintenance, if I'm only using distiller water and a kill coil/antibacterial chemical, would a yearly clean out be suitable?
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Related resources
a c 78 K Overclocking
November 30, 2012 10:42:16 AM

1| welcome to the dark side :D  I meant that cos once the bug bites in the a$$ you'll probably have the PSU under water too :p 
2| following up on prev comment, purposely blocking your future upgradeability path isn't the best option for a rig or any venture. I say get the D5, this should help you get a 1080 rad and a crossfire full cover block setup in the works :) 
3| case is very subjective as is what the color of a room should be...I need to get myself to do include cases in the writeup of the sticky.
4| if you've read the watercooling sticky already, you should've been at the finish line by now.
5| yearly clean out maybe pushing it, thas your hardware. But 6 months should be the least on ur maintenance amplitude.
6| as a word of caution, If you intend to use mayhems dyes/concentrates - stay away from the raystorm kits bay res.
7| there are others here who have purchase from PCCG. might want to look at the watercooling gallery thread as well the build logs thread for some inspiration/guide to cases, loop order and parts - but the sticky should've helped that already.
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November 30, 2012 6:27:56 PM

Lutfij said:
1| welcome to the dark side :D  I meant that cos once the bug bites in the a$$ you'll probably have the PSU under water too :p 

I'd read about that... ;) 
Lutfij said:
2| following up on prev comment, purposely blocking your future upgradeability path isn't the best option for a rig or any venture. I say get the D5, this should help you get a 1080 rad and a crossfire full cover block setup in the works :) 

Thanks! D5 it is then :D 
Lutfij said:
3| case is very subjective as is what the color of a room should be...I need to get myself to do include cases in the writeup of the sticky.

Ok. In that case (pun not intended) I think I'll go for the HAF X, which manofchalk seems to have, and he seems happy with it for his WC'ing. :) 
Lutfij said:
4| if you've read the watercooling sticky already, you should've been at the finish line by now.

I know, but...everyone wants to make sure there is NOTHING wrong with there setup for WC, and that includes me :p  so I, well, just wanted to make sure :D 
Lutfij said:
5| yearly clean out maybe pushing it, thas your hardware. But 6 months should be the least on ur maintenance amplitude.

^^ that's one of the things I wanted to make absolutely sure about, so I think I'll make it a regular 6 monthly clean out, one around Christmas, and around the winter (here in Australia anyway) holidays (I'm 14)
Lutfij said:
6| as a word of caution, If you intend to use mayhems dyes/concentrates - stay away from the raystorm kits bay res.

No, I don't think I'll be using dies, as per doctors instructions:p  I'll just use some regular distiller water from our local supermarket :) 
Lutfij said:
7| there are others here who have purchase from PCCG. might want to look at the watercooling gallery thread as well the build logs thread for some inspiration/guide to cases, loop order and parts - but the sticky should've helped that already.

Heh heh, I've noticed a few people who live in Australia and buy from PCCG ;)  thanks for that little tidbit, I'll go have a look at the gallery :) 

Great! Thanks for all of your advice, and sorry to be a nag, but is there anything special I should get if I want to drain the loop? And should I get some 45°/90° rotary fittings?
So many questions come popping in my head :p ...

Any way, that'll do for now, and thanks guys :D 
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a c 78 K Overclocking
November 30, 2012 7:00:48 PM

Quote:
Ok. In that case (pun not intended) I think I'll go for the HAF X, which manofchalk seems to have, and he seems happy with it for his WC'ing. :) 
just because it works for one person, doesn't mean it'll work the same for you. I mean taste/use wise.

here are a few shout outs for case recommendations:
NZXT Switch
corsair 600T
corsair carbide 300/400/500R
bitfenix shinobi XL
corsair 600D

to name a few...

erm, you sure you need angled fittings? I mean't, Is it really necessary? have you planned out your loop?
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a b K Overclocking
November 30, 2012 7:05:31 PM

For 100% safety and performance, distilled + ptnuke is the way to go.
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December 1, 2012 12:53:41 AM

Lutfij said:
Quote:
Ok. In that case (pun not intended) I think I'll go for the HAF X, which manofchalk seems to have, and he seems happy with it for his WC'ing. :) 
just because it works for one person, doesn't mean it'll work the same for you. I mean taste/use wise.

here are a few shout outs for case recommendations:
NZXT Switch
corsair 600T
corsair carbide 300/400/500R
bitfenix shinobi XL
corsair 600D

to name a few...

erm, you sure you need angled fittings? I mean't, Is it really necessary? have you planned out your loop?


Well, I've got an idea of how it would go in my head, but since I don't have the case in front of me, it's kinda hard to plan exactly. To me, it doesn't seem to complicated the way it would go, just put the radiator up top, the pump/reservoir in the drive bays and the CPU block under them.
Something like
Rad>res/pump>CPU block>rad again (obviously), there's no other way it could go, at least until/if I add a GPU block

Also, The main reason I Was thinking about angled fittings is because that guy above suggested them..should I get any, if only to have them handy just in case?
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December 1, 2012 1:05:20 AM

bigcyco1 said:
For 100% safety and performance, distilled + ptnuke is the way to go.

Where I'm buying stuff from (pccasegear), I can't seem to find anything called PTnuke. The only stuff there is liquid utopia and kill coils. Would he liquid utopia and/or the kill coil work?
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 1, 2012 1:17:34 AM

Quote:
Also, The main reason I Was thinking about angled fittings is because that guy above suggested them..should I get any, if only to have them handy just in case?
thick walled tubing can take bends nicely unless you'd want it to take 90 bend a a very sharp corner - then you're asking for trouble and a tubing popping off somewhere :) 

When I mean't planning, I mean't the sort of bends/angles you'll want to negotiate when setting up your watercooling hardware.

Google's your friend here regarding case decision.
* tip: google: "case"+watercooling - should throw out some fancy ideas.
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December 1, 2012 1:37:15 AM

Lutfij said:
Quote:
Also, The main reason I Was thinking about angled fittings is because that guy above suggested them..should I get any, if only to have them handy just in case?
thick walled tubing can take bends nicely unless you'd want it to take 90 bend a a very sharp corner - then you're asking for trouble and a tubing popping off somewhere :) 

When I mean't planning, I mean't the sort of bends/angles you'll want to negotiate when setting up your watercooling hardware.

Google's your friend here regarding case decision.
* tip: google: "case"+watercooling - should throw out some fancy ideas.


I googled "HAF X and RX360" and I found this picture in one of the links.

This seems like pretty much what I should do minus all the stuff below the CPU waterblock and res
Think if I did the stuff in that picture it would work?
EDIT: now that I look at that picture again, the fans come pretty damn close to the motherboard, maybe I should check if there anything to watch out for on my mobo..:S
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a b K Overclocking
December 1, 2012 1:54:36 AM

a silver kill coil would work as well
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 1, 2012 3:32:18 AM

well you could've also googled : HAFX watercooling :) 

Quote:
now that I look at that picture again, the fans come pretty damn close to the motherboard, maybe I should check if there anything to watch out for on my mobo..:S

you've already begun to tickle those information antennas atop your head.
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December 1, 2012 10:58:32 AM

bigcyco1 said:
a silver kill coil would work as well


Great, so a kill coil will work fine by itself? I know, I know, but I'm just checking to make sure ;) 
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December 1, 2012 10:59:44 AM

Lutfij said:
well you could've also googled : HAFX watercooling :) 

Quote:
now that I look at that picture again, the fans come pretty damn close to the motherboard, maybe I should check if there anything to watch out for on my mobo..:S

you've already begun to tickle those information antennas atop your head.


What do you mean :p 
EDIT: Double damn, I'm not so sure ill be able to use a RX anymore, the rad would cover my EPS 12V connector :( 
EDIT #2: would the EX compare favourably to the RX? Ahh whatever, it's 1 in the morning here, be back in a few hours, I need some sleep. :) 
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 1, 2012 3:50:09 PM

Mount the RX above your Pc, on the roof,
You could use the EX but they like faster fans to get near the performance of the RX at slower, quieter speeds,
I have both EX and RX on my build and the RX on my roof has never needed go above minimum fanspeed, the EX's in my radbox like to be revved up though
Moto
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December 1, 2012 9:35:25 PM

Motopsychojdn said:
Mount the RX above your Pc, on the roof,
You could use the EX but they like faster fans to get near the performance of the RX at slower, quieter speeds,
I have both EX and RX on my build and the RX on my roof has never needed go above minimum fanspeed, the EX's in my radbox like to be revved up though
Moto


I know this is a little vain of me, but I think I would prefer to have the rad in the case..too bad there's no such thing as super thin fans :p  then I could fit the rad in the case so it doesn't cover the EPS 12V connector

Anyways, I'll be back later, gotta go to a family thing right now, so I'm in a hurry
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December 2, 2012 2:34:34 AM

I had a look, maybe I could get just one of thes "slim" fans, and put it in the middle so it doesn't cover that spot. But from what I know, you need a high static pressure for rads, and those fans don't look the best for that..but the RX360 is a low FPI rad, so maybe.. What do you guys think, a RX360 with 2 normal and 1 slim, or EX360 with 3 normals?
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a c 150 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 3:28:45 AM

EX360.
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December 2, 2012 6:29:26 AM

amuffin said:
EX360.


Thanks, I'll go for the ex360 D5 then for my build :) 
Now here Is my new salvo of questions ;) 
Anything else that I might have missed before I order the parts round Christmas?
Should I get different tubing?
Should I get an aftermarket heat paste, or is the K2 stuff sufficient? (I can't seem to find anything on google strangely)

Thanks for the help guys
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a c 150 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 7:25:09 AM

Personally, I wouldn't go with a kit. :) 
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December 2, 2012 7:36:01 AM

What, so with the ~270 on the kit I should go custom?
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 8:13:42 AM

xspc kits are actually the bomb in terms of kit pricing/value. But if you went custom, it'd benefit you by helping you understand your loop much better. BTW, be very careful about your fan choice and setup. I had to learn the hard way without reading the sticky that fans look great in advertising but are a real butt pincher in reality/real world applications.

You'rr trying to make things fit inside your case and you expect the temps to remain unchanged as though the temp gradient will follow your commands(much like an X-men). Might want to re-invest in an external rad mount idea. Modo mentioned this in his sig - every watercooling setup isn't your "out of the box and boom you're up" deals, each build has it problems and each build has their own solutions.

How you solve these problems is the real learning curve.
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December 2, 2012 8:31:58 AM

Ok, so if I say, bought the RX and mounted it on the roof, I would just have to run the lines through the back? I guess my main prob with an external rad is I'm 14 (friends..nuff said) and it just looks more aesthetically pleasing to have the rad on the inside :( 
But maybe I can compromise for now, after all, I'm only cooling the CPU, if I ever add the GPU, maybe then I'll change it up.
But I have a question, would it affect temps to have the rad on the outside? If it made a descent difference, then maybe. I'm still only cooling the CPU though, and for that any 360 rad is overkill, right? :D 
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 8:43:48 AM

You can run the tubes through existing grommets the case has, or drill 19-20mm holes directly below the ports on the rad to feed the tubing through, this way helps as it keeps the tubing straight and kink-free,
You should get four silver legs in the kit, they are labelled as 80-120 adaptors iirc, use those to lift the rad off the roof, giving the fans room to breath,
If you check here,
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/page-266324_11_550....
Theres a pic of a guy who used the grommets and a pic of mine as well, you can compare the two and see which you prefer the look of, and notice the bends in his tubing, this reduces flow which is a bad thing :p 
Having the rad outside and isolated from the case flow means the temps inside the case are lower, theres less in the case building heat up and the air going through the rad is fresh cool air, not warm case air
and yes, a 360 for Cpu only is great for Oc headroom, I don't believe there is such a thing as overkill in W/c, just more a higher temp threshold :) 
**Edit, btw Muffins 14 and he mods like a god, don't think age is a restricting factor, if you can't drill holes, ask an adult to help out, theres always a way to accomplish a goal, half the work is finding that method**
Moto
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 8:59:16 AM

^ :)  +1 you could also pop by my build log threads to understand how I'll manage my tubing(in my sig).
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 9:04:20 AM

Yup, checking out other folks logs can often give you ideas for mods or solutions to problems, get used to checking other peoples work out as part of your planning process, see how they resolve problems and try to adopt a similar thought process yourself
Moto
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December 2, 2012 9:46:06 AM

Motopsychojdn said:
You can run the tubes through existing grommets the case has, or drill 19-20mm holes directly below the ports on the rad to feed the tubing through, this way helps as it keeps the tubing straight and kink-free,
You should get four silver legs in the kit, they are labelled as 80-120 adaptors iirc, use those to lift the rad off the roof, giving the fans room to breath,
If you check here,
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/page-266324_11_550....
Theres a pic of a guy who used the grommets and a pic of mine as well, you can compare the two and see which you prefer the look of, and notice the bends in his tubing, this reduces flow which is a bad thing :p 
Having the rad outside and isolated from the case flow means the temps inside the case are lower, theres less in the case building heat up and the air going through the rad is fresh cool air, not warm case air
and yes, a 360 for Cpu only is great for Oc headroom, I don't believe there is such a thing as overkill in W/c, just more a higher temp threshold :) 
**Edit, btw Muffins 14 and he mods like a god, don't think age is a restricting factor, if you can't drill holes, ask an adult to help out, theres always a way to accomplish a goal, half the work is finding that method**
Moto


Great, thanks for the help!! :) 
I think I worded that wrong, I just meant that I like the rad on the inside to make it look nicer, and I can drill holes, don't worry bout that :p  (my dad has a farm, I've already used drop saws etc to cut steel starpickets and whatnot :) ) though I'm just imagining how mum and dad (not very computer literate, especially dad :( ) will react at the sight of me drilling holes in my brand new case :p 
BTW, thanks for the extra push, I may well use this drilling method you described, instead ,of going through the HAF's grommets :D 
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December 2, 2012 9:59:45 AM

Just so you know guys, I'll be back in the morning, it's 11 o'clock her down under, so I'll respond at roughly ~2-3 PM-ish forum time :) 
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 10:09:33 AM

I'm in the UK so your about 9 hours ahead of me, no probs though as I work nightshifts and can check through the night :) 
Heres my collection of logs if you want to check out my stupidity :p 
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/forum2.php?config=t...
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/274180-11-psycho-ri...
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/272443-11-asus-6950...
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/forum2.php?config=t...
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/276566-11-fire-exti...
Any questions just ask, I'll try and help as much as I can,
and Lutfij isn't a bad person to have onboard either, we both have the same 'make it happen' attitude :) 
Moto
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 10:32:28 AM

Quote:
if you want to check out my stupidity
you mean creativity... :) 

Quote:
Lutfij isn't a bad person to have onboard either...

thanks mate, however I'd opt for Modo leading the helm anyday :D 
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:01:02 PM

Cheers man, I appreciate the compliments :) 
Toms Wc/Modding/Clocking dreamteam is currently (In no order):
4Ryan6
Rubix_1011
Lutfij
Myself
and Lowjack89 (when he's around)
between us lot theres rarely an instance that can't be overcome and even then its because a poster will not take the solution offered :) 
If we all got together irl we could rule/Mod/Watercool and overclock the world hahaa!!
Moto
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:04:51 PM

:)  watercooling team! - assssemmmmmmmbooaaaaal!!!

hmmm, I wonder where Boiler and alot of other gifted people are?
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:08:38 PM

Boiler wasn't included as he's an infrequent visitor these days and there are several other who are handy in their respective fields but for one reason or another don't quite gel the way us five seem to,
doesn't mean they aren't knowledgable or cool though :) 
but you know oncec we are all in a thread together that magic is happening :p 
Moto
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:12:49 PM

Quote:
you know oncec we are all in a thread together that magic is happening :p 
hope my better half doesn't come across this post ^ :D 
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a b K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:30:33 PM

I think one of the reasons there not a lot of watercooling members is because we want you to learn about it rather then just tell you the answers which is very nice of us and shows we are looking out for anyone wanting to watercool best interest for some reason it's not very appreciated and i have seen posters on other forums claim TH watercooling members are jerks and think to highly of them self to actually hel anyone lol what B.S.
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:38:18 PM

you'll notice the good guy is always hailed as the destroyer of happiness :D (at least in terms of profit making)
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a b K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 12:46:30 PM

The thing i find odd is anytime i ask watercooling questions nobody has acted like a jerk to me or stuck up so i can not relate to these claims.Everybody has been helpful to me just because your asked to read the sticky does not make us jerks or stuck up i look at it like this we can lead a horse to water but we cannot make it drink if your not interested enough to learn about it you have no business watercooling!
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 1:38:59 PM

+1 several there man,
Its the old 'no we won't give you a shopping list' premise,
the good members here will hold your hand and help you learn, so you can knowledgably decide for yourself what components to buy and why,
and in the long run, thats the best help we can offer,
but we won't just give you a list to go buy, because then you don't know why you bought xxx component and what difference it makes to the overall loop
Moto
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 2:29:18 PM

aye cyco - thas a good pun/analogy at the end of your post! +5 Its how this world is going these days...people looking for Simple answers, no reasoning and no understanding. Like Modo would put it, its a Zombie Apocalypse already!

I find people who only come here for instant answers, to be utterly arrogant/ignorant. Shame really, as knowledge was what built societies in the first place, right? Now its an unorthodox method to help someone learn?

back on top
I'd suggest that you look at more cases than the HAF-X. Some people have hated it for it being a big let down in the watercooling dept. Since its your first build, (including hardware and watercooling parts) I'd say get a case that fits your needs from the get-go. Plus the folks won't have to hang you when you'll want to cut up an already perfect(in your parents eyes)case nearly a year from now when you'll have everything under water.
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a b K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 3:26:28 PM

My only advice is be prepared for what your getting yourself into don't skimp on things do it the right way once you get this loop built your going to find in a few months that you want bigger at least that's what happened to me and it's not ever going to be good enough you will not be able to shake this bug it's highly addictive and oh so awesome!
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a c 190 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 5:46:41 PM

:) 
Always expanding, always improving, always learning
**Edit for capitalisation, stupid laptop shift key :p **
Moto
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December 2, 2012 6:07:30 PM

Lutfij said:
aye cyco - thas a good pun/analogy at the end of your post! +5 Its how this world is going these days...people looking for Simple answers, no reasoning and no understanding. Like Modo would put it, its a Zombie Apocalypse already!

I find people who only come here for instant answers, to be utterly arrogant/ignorant. Shame really, as knowledge was what built societies in the first place, right? Now its an unorthodox method to help someone learn?

back on top
I'd suggest that you look at more cases than the HAF-X. Some people have hated it for it being a big let down in the watercooling dept. Since its your first build, (including hardware and watercooling parts) I'd say get a case that fits your needs from the get-go. Plus the folks won't have hang you when you'll want to cut up an already perfect(in your parents eyes) nearly a year from now when you'll have everything under water.


Any recommendations? I'm running out of money here, I keep shopping up so I don't skimp on anything, though I know I'll thank myself in a year or twos time when I upgrade :) 
Anyway, gotta go to school, I'll reply when I can, shouldn't be too hard considering we use iPads instead of lappies :D 
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a c 78 K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 7:02:16 PM

you could include the Corsair Carbide 200R in that list as well. Been looking at the unboxing by NCIX.
Just FYI :) 
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December 2, 2012 10:35:31 PM

Lutfij said:
you could include the Corsair Carbide 200R in that list as well. Been looking at the unboxing by NCIX.
Just FYI :) 


I don't think I would go for that, it looks a bit small to me :??: 
I don't know which of the cases you recommended, so many cases, so much time :pt1cable: 
Thanks, and which so you think would do best, purely performance wise?
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a b K Overclocking
December 2, 2012 10:53:23 PM

The Corsair 600T is what I use and it can be cut to support a 360 inside the top.
A Phobya 200 will fit in the front without any cutting.A 240 will fit inside top without cutting and a 120 rear without cutting.
Here is mine 360 and 200 rads

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December 3, 2012 12:06:58 AM

What's the xigmatek Elysium like? It looks huge, and it seems to have plenty of space for radiators and whatnot.. What do you think? I'm looking at some reviews now, but I'm wondering what you guys think of it.
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!