What's the best CPU water cooler that will be near silent at load and equal or out perform a Zalman 9900.
Budget is maxed at $200 but would prefer about $130-140.
It's to be fitted to a i7 950 currently running at 4GHz but I'd like to increase that to 4.4 or 4.5. The Zalman can run the CPU at 4.2 stable but at load it starts to get hot, and at 4.3 it's unstable.
Would a Corsair H80 with 2 aftermarket quiet fans do it? I have a HAF 922 case which allows for 'some' water cooling but it's not specifically designed for it. I think the H80 will fit.
Also, not many people talk as much about water cooling as they seemed to 2 years ago, is it going out of favour with newer CPU technology? If so should I wait till I upgrade to a lower nm CPU...
My idea is to upgrade about half my box every 12-18 months so solutions should be able to travel to a new Mobo/CPU which I think will be next. Current GPUs and ths SSD a few days ago is my first major upgrade.
My take is that liquid cooling is really air cooling; It is only different as to where the heat exchange takes place, and what is done with the heat.
Liquid coolers still have fans for the radiators, and those fans may need to have high rpm's to exchange the heat.
One problem with the all in one's is that they want the radiators installed to draw in cool outside air. That is good for cpu cooling, but not so good for case cooling and graphics cards.
Since you have a well ventilated case, I suggest using one of the best air coolers out there, the Noctua NH-D14. It will be very quiet, and will cool almost as well as the all in one's.
A quiet pc comes from using large slow turning fans in a quiet case.
You may not be able to do much about the graphics cards, but you could hide them better in a quieter case.
Look into the Silverstone fortress FT02
I see why you'd like a silent water cooling system after having a Zalman..I once used a total silent system from Zalman & its easy to get use to..After i just built my latest rig i knew it was time for a change. I also was looking for the silent CPU cooler but i was having a hard time..I was going to go with Corsair but i find there's a 50/50 chance something was going to go wrong with it plus there LOUD something i'd never get use to so i looked around and i found a CPU cooler which is silent least i cant hear it...Try looking up the Intel RTS2011 LC the way the pump works its all automatic if your idle the pump slows the flow & soon as it gets a loud it speed up so there no need to set it up or push any buttons like corsair..I'm running a 3700K and i have no issues at all http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MByfLb31kU4&feature=rela...