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Liquid Cooling - Recommendations?

ransimransim Registered User regular
I've been putting this off, but I think I finally want to take the dive and try out liquid cooling on my machine along with getting a second video card for SLI.

Current Specs:
Core i7 920
Intel DX58SO Mobo
6 GB DDR3 PC3-12800 (Patriot Viper)
EVGA 260 GTX 896MB Core 216
Zalman 750W SLI PSU
Case: NZXT Alpha

The machine is amazing as it is, but, what can I say I'm a sucker for moar, and I really want to try SLI. I'm just worried about heat. And I'll admit I'm a noob when it comes to Liquid cooling for the most part.

What I'm looking for is something that is relatively low maintenance, preferably a factory sealed system. I'm most interested in getting liquid cooling onto the CPU, but if its possible to do it on the GPU(s) as well that would be awesome. Though I'm not sure there are any factory sealed type system that would do both the CPU and the GPUs.

I'm looking for some personal experiences and recommendations. I'm fairly savvy with computer bits/pieces and building, so don't worry you probably won't scare me. I can also snag some pictures later if anyone is interesting/wants to see the inside of my case.

ransim on
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Posts

  • PaladinPaladin Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    factory sealed, I think there's only the corsair hydro



    Other than that, you're better off making your own for performance


    You do not want an expensive cooling system unless you know exactly how each part of it works

    Marty: The future, it's where you're going?
    Doc: That's right, twenty five years into the future. I've always dreamed on seeing the future, looking beyond my years, seeing the progress of mankind. I'll also be able to see who wins the next twenty-five world series.
  • ransimransim Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Paladin wrote: »
    factory sealed, I think there's only the corsair hydro



    Other than that, you're better off making your own for performance


    You do not want an expensive cooling system unless you know exactly how each part of it works

    Well I'm fairly familiar with the basics of a liquid cooling system. Its a pump, radiator, reservoir, water blocks, and of course the tubing. I looked into it several years ago but didn't really see a need at the time.

    Looking at the H50 its CPU only. I've seen a few other factory sealed ones, but they're all CPU only. That was really more of a pipe dream then anything else. And I guess I should just assume I'm not going to get some nice easy lazy part. :P

    What can I say I like moar but I try for lazy when I can.

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  • PaladinPaladin Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Yeah, it would be a major headache to get a factory premade CPU, Ram and (other) cooler because all motherboards are just different enough to cause severe hardware incompatibility. If you're really interested, do a whole lot of research, because you're going to have to cut pipes and seal gaskets or whatever

    Marty: The future, it's where you're going?
    Doc: That's right, twenty five years into the future. I've always dreamed on seeing the future, looking beyond my years, seeing the progress of mankind. I'll also be able to see who wins the next twenty-five world series.
  • ransimransim Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Paladin wrote: »
    Yeah, it would be a major headache to get a factory premade CPU, Ram and (other) cooler because all motherboards are just different enough to cause severe hardware incompatibility. If you're really interested, do a whole lot of research, because you're going to have to cut pipes and seal gaskets or whatever

    I guess I should clarify. I am a noob when it comes to liquid cooling systems in a PC. I do have experience with them in relation to liquid cooling in a car. So I am familiar with the concept, what I'm really not as familiar with is the specific brands/kits and set ups available on a PC.

    I do know I want something that won't require a ridiculous amount of maintenance, yearly/bi-yearly is fine. I also don't want something horribly complicated since I will most likely be doing it on a second machine once my other half starts drooling over my SLi set up (his machine is identical).

    I don't think I have much of a choice though if I want to do SLi, I really don't see air cooling doing it once I have two of those video cards in there.

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  • General_WinGeneral_Win Registered User
    edited May 2010
    Well I'm fairly familiar with the basics of a liquid cooling system. Its a pump, radiator, reservoir, water blocks, and of course the tubing. I looked into it several years ago but didn't really see a need at the time.

    Looking at the H50 its CPU only. I've seen a few other factory sealed ones, but they're all CPU only. That was really more of a pipe dream then anything else. And I guess I should just assume I'm not going to get some nice easy lazy part. :P

    What can I say I like moar but I try for lazy when I can.

    Its even less needed now.

    tf2_sig.png
  • ransimransim Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Well I'm fairly familiar with the basics of a liquid cooling system. Its a pump, radiator, reservoir, water blocks, and of course the tubing. I looked into it several years ago but didn't really see a need at the time.

    Looking at the H50 its CPU only. I've seen a few other factory sealed ones, but they're all CPU only. That was really more of a pipe dream then anything else. And I guess I should just assume I'm not going to get some nice easy lazy part. :P

    What can I say I like moar but I try for lazy when I can.

    Its even less needed now.

    o_O Thank you for a non-answer.

    Apparently not the place to ask this question. I'm going to check out a few other forums that are a bit more focused on liquid cooling for some recommendations. I like PA though so I figured I would check here first.

    Mod: Feel free to close this thread.

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  • Dead ComputerDead Computer __BANNED USERS
    edited May 2010
    ransim wrote: »
    Well I'm fairly familiar with the basics of a liquid cooling system. Its a pump, radiator, reservoir, water blocks, and of course the tubing. I looked into it several years ago but didn't really see a need at the time.

    Looking at the H50 its CPU only. I've seen a few other factory sealed ones, but they're all CPU only. That was really more of a pipe dream then anything else. And I guess I should just assume I'm not going to get some nice easy lazy part. :P

    What can I say I like moar but I try for lazy when I can.

    Its even less needed now.

    o_O Thank you for a non-answer.

    Apparently not the place to ask this question. I'm going to check out a few other forums that are a bit more focused on liquid cooling for some recommendations. I like PA though so I figured I would check here first.

    Mod: Feel free to close this thread.


    What's he's saying is that super hot CPUs that need liquid coolings are a thing of the past.

    With the manufacturing process getting so much smaller in scale, and CPU's becoming more efficient by adding more cores instead of just gigahertz, they are becoming a lot cooler to run. Also, today's heatsinks have large fans up to 120mm or more in size which make no noise due to the fact they have to rotate less to move the same amount of air.

    Even overclocked computers don't need liquid coolants anymore.

  • 1ddqd1ddqd Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    If you're still interested/checking, here's my setup (2 years old, filled twice ever)

    DangerDen TDX CPU Block
    DangerDen 8800GTX GPU Block
    DangerDen BlackIce Single 120mm Radiator
    DangerDen BlackIce Single 120mm Radiator
    DangerDen (basic) Pump
    4 feet of Tygon Anti-kink Tubing
    2 Fill Ports

    Case: Silverstone TJ-08

    I have some pictures at home, I'll link them when I get back, but the set up is pretty simple. I did a test fit by installing the CPU block on the motherboard, the GPU block on the video card, then the radiators in the case (I have one on the front, one on the back). With these in place, I planned the loop and cut the tubing to length with scissors. Then I figured in a couple of Y joins so that my fill port in the top of the case could be used for filling and the one in the bottom of the case could be used for draining.

    To test it without risking danger to the hardware, I filled the loop, messed with tilting the case until all the air bubbles were out, then only connected the PSU and the Green and Blank wires on the motherboard's wire loom (paper clip). Turning on the PSU let the pump get power, but nothing else was plugged in. No leaks 24 hours later and I was in business.

  • ransimransim Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    1ddqd wrote: »
    If you're still interested/checking, here's my setup (2 years old, filled twice ever)

    DangerDen TDX CPU Block
    DangerDen 8800GTX GPU Block
    DangerDen BlackIce Single 120mm Radiator
    DangerDen BlackIce Single 120mm Radiator
    DangerDen (basic) Pump
    4 feet of Tygon Anti-kink Tubing
    2 Fill Ports

    Case: Silverstone TJ-08

    I have some pictures at home, I'll link them when I get back, but the set up is pretty simple. I did a test fit by installing the CPU block on the motherboard, the GPU block on the video card, then the radiators in the case (I have one on the front, one on the back). With these in place, I planned the loop and cut the tubing to length with scissors. Then I figured in a couple of Y joins so that my fill port in the top of the case could be used for filling and the one in the bottom of the case could be used for draining.

    To test it without risking danger to the hardware, I filled the loop, messed with tilting the case until all the air bubbles were out, then only connected the PSU and the Green and Blank wires on the motherboard's wire loom (paper clip). Turning on the PSU let the pump get power, but nothing else was plugged in. No leaks 24 hours later and I was in business.

    I've done a bit of reading and from what I've found it seems like two loops are recommending on a SLi build. So I may be able to do a modified version of that.

    CPU Loop
    Res --> Pump --> Radiator --> CPU block --> Back to res

    GPU's
    Res --> Pump --> Rad --> GPUs --> Res

    Optionally I could run the NB/VReg through the second loop too:
    Res --> Pump --> Rad --> GPUs --> Chipset --> Vreg --> Res

    I was looking at DangerDen and Swifttek actually. If you've had good luck for two years now with DangerDen thats a positive mark for it me.

    What sort of fittings did you use? And what size tubing?

    Thanks, I do appreciate it, this is exactly the sort of things I was looking for. :mrgreen:
    What's he's saying is that super hot CPUs that need liquid coolings are a thing of the past.

    With the manufacturing process getting so much smaller in scale, and CPU's becoming more efficient by adding more cores instead of just gigahertz, they are becoming a lot cooler to run. Also, today's heatsinks have large fans up to 120mm or more in size which make no noise due to the fact they have to rotate less to move the same amount of air.

    Even overclocked computers don't need liquid coolants anymore.

    Yes, but if you read my post I'm talking about the CPU AND two GPUs. Right now my machine is running with the CPU and a single GPU on air cooling. But it gets hot, especially if I'm gaming a lot and pushing the video card. The moment I add a second video card in there its going to get even hotter, sure I could buy heavy end after market fans. But I kinda like the idea of water cooling at this point. Especially if I want to try and overclock my CPU too.

    But trust me, I ran a 805d OC'd to 4 Ghz for three years on my old machine with just air cooling and no issue. However that machine also only had a GeForce 5700, which heatwise is NOTHING compared to what my GTX 260 puts off.

    And really if I'm going to water cool my GPUs it just seems a bit silly to not go ahead and go the CPU and maybe even chipset too.

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  • Dead ComputerDead Computer __BANNED USERS
    edited May 2010
    Even today's GPUs run cooler than you'd expect even on their stock fans.
    A couple 120mm aftermarket gpu fans and you will never have to worry about noise or heat.

    Beware, running everything in the same loop is going to be incredibly tough to keep cool.
    And really, at some point your going to need fans anyway to cool off the water, there's no way you can passive cool that rig effectively without massive radiators. You're going to need fans anyway.

    It's just a waste, heatsink and fan technology is superior for most applications.

  • 1ddqd1ddqd Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    When I set up my look (Q66000 into a Rad, then the 8800GTX) I was extremely worried about the temp, that the radiator in the middle wouldn't make a dent in the temps and that my loop would eventually equalize around 60C. That isn't the case - there's at least a 15-20C difference between my CPU and GPU with just a single 120mm radiator between them.

    I would recommend keeping your CPU/NB/anything else on a loop with 1 120mm radiator (or a dual 120mm, whatever your case will allow). The video cards could run off two single 120mms or, alternatively, 1 dual/triple 120mm radiator, again, depending on the room your case allows for.

    I don't run a resevoir, either. My fill port in the top acts as an indicator tube - when it gets near the Y join, I fill it up (usually 4oz of distilled water). In the 2 years it's been running, I've only ever used distilled water and it remains clear to this day.

  • GothicLargoGothicLargo Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    ransim wrote: »
    I've been putting this off, but I think I finally want to take the dive and try out liquid cooling on my machine along with getting a second video card for SLI.

    Advice: Don't. Avoid it completely. Use heatsinks, clean them regularly, use fans, clean them regularly. Heat issues with air cooling don't come from air cooling being that much worse but rather because people neglect maintenance.

    atfc.jpg
  • PaladinPaladin Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    If you're going to do genuine water cooling right, you do your research, and a lot of it. With air, the most you have to worry about is intake-exhaust CFM matching.

    Marty: The future, it's where you're going?
    Doc: That's right, twenty five years into the future. I've always dreamed on seeing the future, looking beyond my years, seeing the progress of mankind. I'll also be able to see who wins the next twenty-five world series.
  • webguy20webguy20 Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    yea unless you are seriously overclocking your rig don't bother with water. As neat as it is its kind of a headache.

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    Origin ID: Discgolfer27
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