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PC Liquid Cooling

WavechaserWavechaser Registered User regular
edited October 2007 in Games and Technology
So, looking for some advice here. Back in the day I used to build my own computers, but I know a guy who does it as a side job and gets insanely good component deals. The only shitty thing is that he insists on building/installing as well, so I can't use him to just buy parts.

Long story short, he fucked me over real bad on a liquid cooling system that was just a POS he was trying to get rid of. Eventually (not surprisingly) the pump died, and I almost fried my vid card and processor. I've since decided to build all my own stuff again from now on.

In the meantime, he's got the computer, replacing all the liquid cooling with a fan-set. Once I get the computer back, I will start looking at options.

So onto the questions:
  • Newegg.com - This is where I used to go back in the day for components. Is this still a great place to get good deals? Is there a better site for ordering?
  • Liquid Cooling - Is it worth it if I don't overclock? The guy who built this comp. overclocked everything, but is tuning back down to factory settings for the fan-set. Since I won't be overclocking my own stuff, would liquid cooling be completely overkill?
    • If it is worth it, how good is integrated watercooling where it is all built into the case? I saw a thermaltake liquid cooling case on ebay for about 180.00.
    • Are any special tools needed for the installation of the processor/vid card cooling units that mount to the actual components?
  • If I don't go liquid cooling, I was looking at getting a case like this, it seems like a damn nice case, but if there are better ones out there, I would appreciate any information.

PierceNeck wrote: »
People still do the anal thing?
Wavechaser on

Posts

  • RookRook Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Liquid cooling is still a waste of money, even if you overclock (within reason). In fact, if you're not overclocking then pretty much everything you're thinking about is overkill. Get a nice easy to build case that looks good and is quiet (antec P180 is often recommended).

    Newewgg is far as I'm aware is still a good goto place for stuff.

    Rook on
  • WavechaserWavechaser Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Rook wrote: »
    Liquid cooling is still a waste of money, even if you overclock (within reason). In fact, if you're not overclocking then pretty much everything you're thinking about is overkill. Get a nice easy to build case that looks good and is quiet (antec P180 is often recommended).

    Newewgg is far as I'm aware is still a good goto place for stuff.

    Thanks for the heads up. Something about mixing electrical components with liquid makes me nervous, it's nice to know it's overkill

    That antec seems nice, but I worry about it fitting some of my components. My video card is a god damn monster (Nvidia 7950 GX2) so I don't know if any mid-tower would work.

    Wavechaser on
    PierceNeck wrote: »
    People still do the anal thing?
  • XanariosXanarios Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    If you're still interested in cooling options, consider some of the wondrous things that Thermalright has made (the Ultima-90, for example). They may be pricey, but if you mix it with a nice quiet fan you can get almost the best of both worlds: silence and performance.

    Xanarios on
  • WavechaserWavechaser Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Holy shit that antec P190 is 400.00!

    After watching that video though, i think i'm in love with it.

    Wavechaser on
    PierceNeck wrote: »
    People still do the anal thing?
  • KingGrahamKingGraham Registered User
    edited October 2007
    I have the antec p182 and can vouch for its quality. It wasn't "easy" to build in, but it was a joy none the less. It has a great cable management system, fan speed controls and dust filters built in. It's probably quieter than the 5 year old Dell machine I replaced it with, which seems impressive to me because it's a core2duo with an 8800GTS in it.

    Anyway, as said above, water cooling is a waste of money.

    The Antec P-series cases are pretty swank.

    These are the facts of the matter.

    KingGraham on
  • WavechaserWavechaser Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    KingGraham wrote: »
    I have the antec p182 and can vouch for its quality. It wasn't "easy" to build in, but it was a joy none the less. It has a great cable management system, fan speed controls and dust filters built in. It's probably quieter than the 5 year old Dell machine I replaced it with, which seems impressive to me because it's a core2duo with an 8800GTS in it.

    Anyway, as said above, water cooling is a waste of money.

    The Antec P-series cases are pretty swank.

    These are the facts of the matter.

    Yeah but 400.00 nice?

    The only thing I saw as overkill in the case was the two seperate power supplies, one at like 600w the other at 520? I only use one 520 for my whole pc right now and have yet to have any issues with lack of power.

    Wavechaser on
    PierceNeck wrote: »
    People still do the anal thing?
  • slacktronslacktron Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    If you're not overclocking, the only thing a watercooled system can offer is less noise. And if that's your goal, I found that putting a couple of 120mm Scythe case fans in an Antec Sonata is a nearly silent solution.

    That said, water cooling works for me.

    I picked up a Titan Robella case with an integrated system and it keeps my AMD FX-55 under 36C at 3.2 Ghz. I had to replace the rear 80mm fan with a Sythe and get a shorter-length power supply to fit in the case, but it's pretty quiet.

    As nice as that package fits together, though, it's kind of self-defeating because there's no window to see the series of tubes in the case ("look honey, there's the internet").

    If you're going to use your computer as a gaming machine, then sure, watercooling will help you overclock. I wouldn't suggest using it for a server or any other system that you plan to have on 24/7. The additional moving parts in the pump are more prone to breakdown than aircooling, and if the pump goes your CPU wouldn't have as much of a passive heatsink on it as aircooling requires, so be sure to set your mobo's autoshutoff temp to a lower level.

    Also, even though the system is sealed, trace water vapor does escape requiring you to refill the reservoir from time to time. Oh, and it's as heavy as a boat anchor. I lugged that bastard to PAX this year and it felt like I was going to snap every tendon in my neck and back.

    Overall, it's an interesting project that's given me more room to explore overclocking, but if that's not your bag, you're much better off with air. More reliable, lighter, and less hazardous.

    EDIT: no special tools were required

    slacktron on
  • ThegreatcowThegreatcow Lord of All Bacons Washington State - It's Wet up here innit? Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Yeah man liquid cooling is really not worth the money nowadays. I even had one of those all-in-one self contained units, the Exos2 and the pump apparently had bad feedback issues or something clogged up something fierce because I had the thing litterally forcefully decouple one of the output hoses from my case and spray nasty blue UV coolant everywhere and short circuit itself.

    Not exactly a cup of tea. And yeah, unless you're pushing the envelope with overclocking (and by then you're not going to be having long component life anyway) you're basically tacking on 400-600 dollars more onto your build price.

    As for your shopping spots:

    Newegg: Hella bloody awesome. Look for those combo deals when you buy a component you can save some good green on the parts.

    TigerDirect: A good alternative to newegg if you can't find what you're looking for, or if you want to compare prices, I frequently find them to have very similar prices with Tiger eking out sometimes better deals.


    Casewise:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129017

    Antec P190: Yeah it's 400 bucks and it does work fantastic, but if you're looking to save, you can snag the P180 'Gunmetal' variant. Has 2 less fans and slightly less soundproofing but my friend has one and it's fantastic. The loudest sound you can hear from it is the old DVD burner he has when it spools up.

    Thermaltake "Armor" Case Series:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811133021
    Definitely not nearly as quiet as the Antec P190 and about the same cost as the P180, but for sheer expansion capability and ability to add in cooling fans out the wazzoo basically can take care of almost any type of cooling solution you have, plus the 250mm Side Panel fan moves a decent chunk of Air without making any noise.

    CoolerMaster:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119121

    Here's a case where you want to see how many fans you can cram into a case and don't mind the noise. Lots of expansion space and tons of space for almost any type of fan you can think of.

    Hope this helps out! :D

    Thegreatcow on
  • WavechaserWavechaser Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Wow, huge help guys, thank you for all the information.

    I'm definitely between either the P180 or the Thermaltake Armor. The one thing I really love about the Antec is how god damn sturdy it looks, the inside looks like it's put together really well, and i'm a total neat freak when it comes to cable management.

    Wavechaser on
    PierceNeck wrote: »
    People still do the anal thing?
  • ShogunShogun Hair long; money long; me and broke wizards we don't get along Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    I miss shopping at Newegg. :(

    Shogun on
  • MarcoMarco Registered User
    edited October 2007
    http://www.dangerden.com/store/

    Liquid Cooled Cases

    http://www.frozencpu.com/cat/l3/g45/c259/s658/list/p1/Custom_Cases-Custom_Liquid_Cooled-Custom_Liquid_Full-Tower-Page1.html

    Newegg.com or tigerdirect are probably the best places to go for hardware. If you don't want a liquid cooled case I would go for a Coolermaster Stacker, Lian Li v2000 or an Antec 900.

    Marco on
    wMFVt.jpg
  • Lucky CynicLucky Cynic Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Liquid Cooling is for folks who have shitty cases with really stupid airflow designs.

    Lucky Cynic on
  • FaceballMcDougalFaceballMcDougal Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    I used to build fancy systems but you can order stuff online for insane prices now...
    Inspiron 531,Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (2.60GHz, 512Kx2)
    2GB DDR2 SDRAM at 667MHz
    Dell USB Keyboard
    Dell Optical USB Mouse
    Dell 19 in SE198WFP Flat PanelAnalog and Digital
    256MB NVIDIA GeForce 8600GT- DDR3
    320GB Serial ATA 2 Hard Drive (7200RPM)
    Integrated NIC card
    56K PCI Data Fax Modem
    16X DVD+/-RW Drive
    Integrated 7.1 Audio
    No Speaker Requested
    Combo TV Tuner with Remote Control

    $799... should be at my doorstep Saturday

    FaceballMcDougal on
    xbl/psn/steam: jabbertrack
  • ThegreatcowThegreatcow Lord of All Bacons Washington State - It's Wet up here innit? Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Wavechaser wrote: »
    Wow, huge help guys, thank you for all the information.

    I'm definitely between either the P180 or the Thermaltake Armor. The one thing I really love about the Antec is how god damn sturdy it looks, the inside looks like it's put together really well, and i'm a total neat freak when it comes to cable management.

    Yeah the Antec cases definitely do a better job of cable management than Thermaltake does I'll definitely say that.

    HOWEVER, big big however here, if you go with an antec case especially the P180 or P190 MAKE SURE your powersupply is of top quality and has really really long cables. They have theirs set up in a BTX format with the Powersupply down at the bottom of the case with a dedicated cooling fan, that basically means you have to snake your cables very awkwardly through it and if you have a cheapo PS or one without modular cables you will curse the high heavan when you find that your power and data cables aren't long enough. That fact alone cost me a freaking trip to Fry's just for the cable extenders alone... :x

    Thegreatcow on
  • Shorn Scrotum ManShorn Scrotum Man Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129021

    That's my current case. Keeps things plenty cool, but sounds kinda like a helicopter. I also stuck a Zalman heatsink on my processor with some Arctic Silver Thermal Compound.

    Took a machine that was constantly blue-screening due to over heating and made it so cool it hasn't crashed since.

    Shorn Scrotum Man on
    steam_sig.png
  • nopoastingnopoasting __BANNED USERS
    edited October 2007
    These really aren't the best forum for questions regarding the more advanced aspects of PC Gaming.

    For a community more in-depth with the type of things you are asking about, I highly recommend you visit these forums: http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/

    Yes, the name is silly, but they really know their stuff.

    nopoasting on
  • MarcoMarco Registered User
    edited October 2007
    Liquid Cooling is for folks who have shitty cases with really stupid airflow designs.

    Or people who need the ability to cool their hardware better than air cooling can. Unless you're running a chillbox which is not normal aircooling.

    Marco on
    wMFVt.jpg
  • AresProphetAresProphet I see a darkness in my fate I'll drive my car without the brakesRegistered User regular
    edited October 2007
    This is my case. Aside from a cheaply-made front cover that likes to not fit flush with the case, it is absolutely fantastic. Two 250mm fans that are quieter than the stock HSF on my C2D, and you can mount an extra 80 or 120mm fan on the back for exhaust. Tons of space, easily fit my 8800GTS.

    Plus, it looks like a goddamn jet engine. How can you pass that up?

    AresProphet on
    oh, gimme some time
    show me the foothold from which I can climb
    yeah, when I feel low
    you show me a signpost for where I should go
  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    The P190 is overkill pretty much. The P180 (or 182) will fit your video card easy - it fits an 8800GTX.

    tsmvengy on
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  • WavechaserWavechaser Registered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Yeah the P180 or 190 is definitely the way to go I think.

    Looking at newegg though and the P180, in half the pictures there is some awkward looking vent sticking out of the top of the case, in the other half it isn't there. What is that about?

    I don't see that protrusion on the 190 anywhere.

    Wavechaser on
    PierceNeck wrote: »
    People still do the anal thing?
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