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1st WC build -- what parts would you use to cool a i7 3970x + GTX 690?

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February 7, 2013 10:47:31 PM

Hi all,

I'm building a gaming rig that also doubles as my home media server. This is my first watercooling build. I've read the FAQs and feel like I have a good grip on the basics of watercooling, but I was hoping some more experienced members could make some suggestions to fit my specific needs.

Specs:
Lian Li PC-A75 case
Rampage IV Extreme mobo
i7 3970x CPU
GTX 690 graphics card.

I'm sure you have many opinions about those 4 main components, but I have very specific needs which require those specific parts.

The Lian Li PC-A75 case would allow for a 140mm/280mm/420mm radiator in the front. Unfortunately that is where the hard drive cage is and I need all 10 3.5" slots (for 10 4tb drives in RAID 6) so I can't put a radiator in the front. Additionally, I need to use both 5.25" bays for optical disk drives so I can't out a pump or reservoir there.

This leaves the option for a 240mm (120mm x2) radiator on the top of the case, and perhaps an additional 120mm radiator on the rear exhaust.

I want to OC my 3970x as much as possible, but being that this will function as a server and be on 24/7, it need be very stable. Is it even worth adding my GTX 690 into the watercooling loop? I wasn't planning on overclocking it. I'm assuming that adding the GPU in the loop would affect how much I can overclock the CPU, so it doesn't seem worth it--not to mention the extra time and money involved in obtaining and installing a waterblock for the GTX 690.

If you were forced to use those four base components and only had the option of a 240mm radiator, which components would you use? The case is quite large so a thick radiator and even a push/pull configuration on a thick rad should fit fine.

Thank you for your time, and have a great day.
February 8, 2013 12:55:21 AM

After talking to a bunch of the more experienced members here I think I'm just gonna get a Thermaltake Water 2.0 Extreme. You guys really seem to love the closed-loop cooling systems, and especially anything by Thermaltake. Thanks for the advice guys!
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a c 145 K Overclocking
February 8, 2013 1:58:36 AM

With the advent of Sandy bridge, the days of water cooling providing something for the "computer user" (guy who wants to run programs) as opposed to the "computer enthusiast" (guy who wants to run benchmarks) have passed.

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

Quote:
It's almost ironic that [air] coolers like this are becoming available just as processors transition to designs that may ultimately render them unnecessary; even overclocked to 5GHz, an Intel Sandy Bridge 2600K doesn't need anywhere near this level of cooling. Still, it wouldn't hurt, and as I noted earlier, there are still CPUs out there that can benefit from it
.

These days I find my OC's curtailed by voltage limitations, never temperature.

And two 670s will get ya more fps with less temps than the 690.

I don't see 3960x in gaming / media server applications..... think you could do better with a 3570k
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/443?vs=701

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a c 176 K Overclocking
February 8, 2013 2:08:27 AM

nellie7979 said:
After talking to a bunch of the more experienced members here I think I'm just gonna get a Thermaltake Water 2.0 Extreme. You guys really seem to love the closed-loop cooling systems, and especially anything by Thermaltake. Thanks for the advice guys!


oh you troll you :p 

If you have researched well, you should have an idea of what you need and what to get. Pull together a loop that you think will be reasonable for your rig, and we will point out any flaws/issues with it.
Water-Cooling is one of the places where we wont just give out a shopping list for you to get, its much better if you understand what your doing than just following what we say.

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a b K Overclocking
February 8, 2013 2:25:24 AM

Ditch that crappy case for a TJ11 instead, you definitely have the funds so pick up a BlackIce 560 radiator, EK block nickle plexi, for the CPU, GPU and Chipset.
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a c 150 K Overclocking
February 8, 2013 2:38:17 AM

nellie7979 said:
After talking to a bunch of the more experienced members here I think I'm just gonna get a Thermaltake Water 2.0 Extreme. You guys really seem to love the closed-loop cooling systems, and especially anything by Thermaltake. Thanks for the advice guys!

HAHAHAHA
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February 8, 2013 8:52:02 AM

redeemer said:
Ditch that crappy case for a TJ11 instead, you definitely have the funds so pick up a BlackIce 560 radiator, EK block nickle plexi, for the CPU, GPU and Chipset.


I really like the Temjin TJ11 case. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't see how a 560 rad could fit in there without case modifications. IT looks to me like the biggest rad the TJ11 could fit without modifications is a 240mm, which is the same as the Lian Li PC-A75--which is also $400 cheaper. I like the Lian Li because it has great cooling for 3.5" hard drives. I have 10 4tb Ultrastars which get quite hot. I'd have to add an HDD cage to the TJ11. I'd like to know why you think the Lian Li PC-A75 is crappy. Maybe you know something that I don't.
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February 8, 2013 8:56:13 AM

JackNaylorPE said:
With the advent of Sandy bridge, the days of water cooling providing something for the "computer user" (guy who wants to run programs) as opposed to the "computer enthusiast" (guy who wants to run benchmarks) have passed.

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

Quote:
It's almost ironic that [air] coolers like this are becoming available just as processors transition to designs that may ultimately render them unnecessary; even overclocked to 5GHz, an Intel Sandy Bridge 2600K doesn't need anywhere near this level of cooling. Still, it wouldn't hurt, and as I noted earlier, there are still CPUs out there that can benefit from it
.

These days I find my OC's curtailed by voltage limitations, never temperature.

And two 670s will get ya more fps with less temps than the 690.

I don't see 3960x in gaming / media server applications..... think you could do better with a 3570k
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/443?vs=701


I'm trying to avoid SLI and go for a power efficient setup because in addition to the GPU, I'll also have a PCIe dual core RAID card and a PCIe HDTV tuner. Furthermore, in the future when the 690 becomes a less powerful, I can throw in another 690. If I had two 670s SLI'd I'd have to upgrade to a triple or quad SLI which might not be possible with the other PCIe cards I have installed.
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February 8, 2013 9:01:52 AM

manofchalk said:
oh you troll you :p 

If you have researched well, you should have an idea of what you need and what to get. Pull together a loop that you think will be reasonable for your rig, and we will point out any flaws/issues with it.
Water-Cooling is one of the places where we wont just give out a shopping list for you to get, its much better if you understand what your doing than just following what we say.


Being that I'm new to watercooling, I think I like the Swiftech H20-x20 360mm Edge HD Liquid Cooling Kit. At least I won't have to worry about forgetting to order a barb or screw with a complete kit like that. The only downside is it looks a bit overpriced for whats in the kit. I could probably get better parts but I'm not sure I'll get much better performance. There are no 120mm x3 fan spots in the cases I'm considering but it seems they include the hardware to install their Edge HD series externally, attaching to any case's rear exhaust. I think I might go with that option.
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a b K Overclocking
February 8, 2013 9:05:51 PM

nellie7979 said:
I'm trying to avoid SLI and go for a power efficient setup because in addition to the GPU, I'll also have a PCIe dual core RAID card and a PCIe HDTV tuner. Furthermore, in the future when the 690 becomes a less powerful, I can throw in another 690. If I had two 670s SLI'd I'd have to upgrade to a triple or quad SLI which might not be possible with the other PCIe cards I have installed.


From the hardware side...

The 690 doesn't make a ton of sense for several reasons.

1) It is two 680s on one PCB, but underclocked. You'd get better performance from two 680s at stock settings than a 690 at stock.

2) The primary disadvantage to SLI GPUs in an aircooled system is that you have one PCB block the fan of the other GPU, which causes temperature issues. With a watercooled system, this doesn't matter, and #1 comes into play again.

3) Buying a 690 now and a second down the road has severely diminishing returns. By the time you need a second 690 down the road, much better hardware will be available and you'd be better served buying something new rather than something old. Quad SLI also has severely diminished returns, because the effectiveness of adding another GPU (or two in this case) drops significantly after 2 GPUs are in the system. You quite possibly could waste the money that goes into a second 690, because you may not necessarily see an improvement.


The watercooling kits like the Swiftech and XSPC kits are not overpriced; they cost less than buying those parts individually and will perform better than the CLCs like the Thermaltake that you selected. Either your expectations of the ability or the price of the hardware (or both!) are not realistic.
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a b K Overclocking
February 8, 2013 9:12:26 PM

nellie7979 said:
I really like the Temjin TJ11 case. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't see how a 560 rad could fit in there without case modifications. IT looks to me like the biggest rad the TJ11 could fit without modifications is a 240mm, which is the same as the Lian Li PC-A75--which is also $400 cheaper. I like the Lian Li because it has great cooling for 3.5" hard drives. I have 10 4tb Ultrastars which get quite hot. I'd have to add an HDD cage to the TJ11. I'd like to know why you think the Lian Li PC-A75 is crappy. Maybe you know something that I don't.



Well let me inform you the 560 rad fit just fine with no modding!! Yeah the beauty of the TJ11
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a b K Overclocking
February 9, 2013 3:49:48 AM

i am making a water loop for my son with this case



i think that thay are a little tight but still big enough
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