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20110908: Shotgun Watercooling Theory v2

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Old 09-08-11, 01:55 PM Thread Starter   #1
eduncan911
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Talking 20110908: Shotgun Watercooling Theory v2


Hello guys (and gals? ):

My previous build from back in 2004 was quite successful. I upgraded it over the years for chipset and GPU cooling, and it never flaunted. I was actually able to push an 800 Mhz Core2 to 1300 Mhz FSB. This time around, I have a new Dell XPS 730x case that I am a big fan of. So for longer than two years, I have been slowly planning this system show below.

I would love feedback from everyone here. [Attempt-at-Defending-Myself]But before flaming me on the decisions made, please read the detailed reasonings below where I attempted to address each and every concern that most here don't like about this kind of setup (parallel, sandwhich rads, etc). [/Attempt-at-Defending-Myself]

Objectives:
#1 Use of my awesome Dell XPS 730x case and ESA Master Control Board
#2 Dead silent operation (achieved, except for the noisy Corsair PSU, ugh).
#3 Ability to cool ~920 Watts of heat.
#4 Wanted the clean-look of the CPU in parallel to the GPUs, due to tight space restrictions.
#5 Control all devices (pumps, fans, LEDs) all via the OEM Dell MCB with software and firmware.

You can view my voltages and clock speeds on ModsRigs (give me a bump in score if ur a member).

See signature for internal components (waiting on EVGA's X79 next year).


So, here we go... This was the equivalent of stuffing a bigblock Rat motor into a 3rd Gen Camaro: it can be done, but with some significate cutting and tight tight clearences.











I wanted an "OEM, like it came from the factory" look. Didn't want to spend a lot of $$$ on items and color matching. Also, I had NO room for compression fittings in these tight spaces.

Starting off, the watercooling components are:

Dual Phobya 140.2 Rads using Koolance 2-slot SLI connectors in parallel.
^- Equal to 93% of the cooling of two 120.3 radiators!
Dual Phobya 140mm PWM Fans @ 60 CFM* (take note)
Koolance RP-401X2 w/Dual MCP35X PWM pumps in Series** (take note)
All GPUs and CPU running in 1 loop in Parallel.***

Those radiators are not big enough
Actually, after extremely diligent research on dozens of radiators, and a lot of careful planning using Martin's Liquid Labs spreadsheet, I determined that Dual 3x120 radiators will give me a DeltaT of about 16 C. That's a bit high, I know, but tollerable. My objectives is not for massive overclocking (it's not on my priority list).









Next issue is, I can't fit a single 3x120. Much less two of them in this case. I came up with the idea that 2x140 radiators actually has 91% of the surface area of 3x120 rads. When you actually factor in the dead space saved by using 2 fans instead of 3, you actually are looking at about 94%. So, to squeeze in two 2x140mm radiators, I needed to modify the case "a bit" by removing the 3.5" bays.



Not all radiators are made equal, we all know. So after careful planning with y'alls help here at ocforums, I decided on a medium density FPI radiator. The Phobya's are 12 FPI. After a lot of research (and translations from German to English), their sweet spot is from 900 to 1800 RPMs, at 0.75 GPM flow. More airflow works well too, but I considered it too loud. So that limited me to a lower FPI radiator.



To achieve this flow rate, it took a lot more planning with that spreadsheet. First, putting the GPUs in parallel achieved nearly what I was looking for. But with the radiators in parallel, that cuts the flow rate in half to each radiator.



To increate the flowrate to the target of 0.75 GPM each, that means I needed roughly 1.5 GPM flow. And how to achieve that? A single MCP35X gives me the flow rate of 1.2 GPM at full speed. But we know how loud these pumps are at full speed, which is unacceptable. With dual MCP35X pumps at 40% in series, the spreadsheet showed my target of 1.5 GPM! Now with the system running, 40% is tollerable for gaming. Most of the time (e.g. Folding or working), they are at 33% which you cannot hear. Perfect.




^- Wish I had a pipe bender...

This was most difficult part. I weighed dozens of options here, and was almost ready to cut up the bottom 5.25" bay to make room for me to run the tubing to the top of the tanks. But, I decided to use SLI connectors, 7mm shrouds, and 25mm fans to connect the tanks in parallel, and then go in and out from the top of the rear radiator.


To be continued...

The deltaT was just about dead on. I have a few problems with the temp probes, which I'll fix later and start recording data with. But until then, I have to go by the temps of the cores. As mentioned, the GPUs jump from 43C to 50C upon load. After about two hours, the calculated deltaT of 17C was just about dead on: the GPU cores rise to about 65C with 30C ambient inlet temps. I'm fine with that, for now.

I need more fans though... I was hoping the 1100rpm 59cfm Phobya PWM 140mm fans would surfice, but they just don't move enough air with the restrictions of the rads and filters to create positive case pressure - the case temps greatly heatup to well beyond acceptable. So, I'm planning a tear down for some upgrades. First, switching from PWM to standard 3-pin. I hate that idea, as the whole point of having PWM devices is to utilize Dell's Chassis ESA device (the Master Control Board). I just may have to let that go for the fans... Problem is, most 140mm fans I am finding only go to 100 CFM. Still need to investigate more. And I'll slap some 40mm and 120mm silent fans in the read to extract the case heat. It's just too high...

Thanks in advance!

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Old 09-08-11, 05:14 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eduncan911 View Post
This was most difficult part. I weighed dozens of options here, and was almost ready to cut up the bottom 5.25" bay to make room for me to run the tubing to the top of the tanks. But, I decided to use SLI connectors, 7mm shrouds, and 25mm fans to connect the tanks in parallel, and then go in and out from the top of the rear radiator.
25+7+7=39mm?

Is that a perfect fit? If you have a little wiggle room, you might consider 38mm deep fans. Arctic Cooling makes one that might just be absolutely perfect for this setup

Very nice work so far, I love the concept


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Old 09-08-11, 06:34 PM Thread Starter   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIAHALLEN View Post
25+7+7=39mm?

Is that a perfect fit? If you have a little wiggle room, you might consider 38mm deep fans. San Ace make some excellent PWM fans....they're though to get, but they'd be absolutely perfect for this setup
Great eye and yes you got it! 39mm. And that's an exact measurement because the Koolance SLI adjustable connectors came in two sizes:

* 1-slot SLI connectors that had a range up to "40mm" max, and they warned not to exceed that.

* 2-slot SLI connectors that had a range starting at 39mm minimal.

I've been looking for some 140mm PWM fans for a very long time. All I found were the Phobya's I have. I'm not able to find the 140mm version of the fans you mention (all I see are 120mm sizes in the link). Got a link to the 140mm sizes?


Quote:
Originally Posted by MIAHALLEN View Post
Very nice work so far, I love the concept
Thanks man! I was going for the OEM look. I also didn't realize how crammed everything would be, but I kind of like the compact-ness of how it turned out. Just, not the weight of it all. Doh!

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Old 09-08-11, 06:57 PM   #4
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i like the concept, and it certainly looks great. props on getting 10lbs of sh*t crammed into a 5lb bag. but the layout and parts is very logical and well thought out

how are the CPU temps? GPU temps you really shouldnt be concerned with as they can handle higher temps without issue. id be worried about the cpu temps with it being in parallel, WITH the GPUs and not much rad.

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Old 09-08-11, 08:43 PM Thread Starter   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsrcrxsi View Post
i like the concept, and it certainly looks great. props on getting 10lbs of sh*t crammed into a 5lb bag. but the layout and parts is very logical and well thought out

how are the CPU temps? GPU temps you really shouldnt be concerned with as they can handle higher temps without issue. id be worried about the cpu temps with it being in parallel, WITH the GPUs and not much rad.
Thanks man! CPU temps are O.K. at 41 C idle with everything idle. Once the water temp rises that 17C, it goes to roughly 58 C idle and up to 72C under load (remember, I am pushing 1.38V to this "C0 Stepping, that doesn't like to overclock, so it runs HOT). I didn't care much for the i7 920, so I didn't even waste my AS5 grease on it and just used the white crap that came with the Swiftech Apogee XT (Rev 2) for now.

Waiting on the EVGA Frostbite grease that comes with the Z68 FTW mobo to install on the 2600K CPU to get to, I hope, 5 Ghz.

FYI: I made a mistake in the bios earlier and set the CPu to 1.52 Volts. I actually played BFBC2 that taxed 4 cores at 3.6 Ghz around 60% each for about 3 hours. When I went looking at my logs when I was done, the CPU actually hovered around 89C. Oops... It surived.

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Old 09-08-11, 10:54 PM   #6
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those are pretty high temps indeed. have you done any stability testing?

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Old 09-08-11, 11:10 PM   #7
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Just a heads up, but stacking your radiators like that is no good. In most cases your temps would be the same as if you were running just one radiator.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:49 AM   #8
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Very nicely done, love the case.
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Old 09-09-11, 08:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [AK]Zip View Post
Just a heads up, but stacking your radiators like that is no good. In most cases your temps would be the same as if you were running just one radiator.
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/...ndwich-testing

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Old 09-09-11, 04:20 PM Thread Starter   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saer. View Post
Very nicely done, love the case.
Thanks! It is just too much mof a work of art to go with anything else. I've built system swith Antecs, SilverStone, and Liam and other high end cases. None of them compare to the quality of this case, cable routing, theater lighting, and the built-in ESA Master Control Board.

Quote:
Originally Posted by m0r7if3r View Post
Thanks for the link. yeah, I was trying to avoid that type of blanket "stacked radiators don't work" discussion here.

NOTE: My radiators operate different than that link though. That link does tests with all radiators in series. Mine are in parallel, which effectly creates basically a "dual-row" radiator, just like race cars have. I just happened to have a fan inbetween the rows, instead of in front/in the back of them.

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Old 09-09-11, 04:29 PM Thread Starter   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsrcrxsi View Post
those are pretty high temps indeed. have you done any stability testing?
Yep, that's how I rated those temps (except the overvolted temps, oops).


Update: I taped off the rear vents with some aluminum tape and installed one of the Dell high speed 6000 RPM 1.5A (yeah, 1.5A) fans in the rear, connected to the MCB's "Rear CPU Fan" PWM output that I wasn't using.

I set it to a "can't hear" 15% at 1500rpms, and this has resolved all of my case temp issues! While the water still heats up (need to get the temp probes working again), along with the cores, the case temps don't exceed 39C now while folding.

Under stress testing all 3 cards (EVGA's utility in SLI), I have to bump the rear fan to 25% to extract all of that heat. And that's fine.

And actually, the cards don't seem to be running as hot with the extraction of the heat from the case. We're down about -6C while folding for a few hours. Sweet!

I'll upgrade the rad fans to some higher speed ones in a month or two, when I get the mobo and cpu upgrades. That should alieve the rest of the heat issues.

To recap, I calculated a 17C deltaT with these radiators and those 60 CFM fans. Turns out to be right on the money. While a higher deltaT than most will like, I thought it would be livable - and it is. But, I'll still ugprade the rad fans during the next tear down (have to tear down the system for any component change, booo...).

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Old 09-09-11, 04:50 PM   #12
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Have you thought about getting something like panaflos or san aces that are 38mm thick so that you have the static pressure to move a bit more air though without any increased noise?

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Old 09-09-11, 05:09 PM   #13
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Looks great thus far; it was no small feat to fit that stuff inside that case. Good job.

+1 to this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by m0r7if3r View Post
Have you thought about getting something like panaflos or san aces that are 38mm thick so that you have the static pressure to move a bit more air though without any increased noise?

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Old 09-09-11, 09:16 PM Thread Starter   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m0r7if3r View Post
Have you thought about getting something like panaflos or san aces that are 38mm thick so that you have the static pressure to move a bit more air though without any increased noise?
Yep, that's what Miah suggested earlier. Problem is, there are no PWM fans. I mentioned it in the first thread that I may just have to give up on the PWM dream due to limitations that there are no 140mm fans PWM, except the 1 that I have (seriously, just 1).

Quote:
Originally Posted by hokiealumnus View Post
Looks great thus far; it was no small feat to fit that stuff inside that case. Good job.

+1 to this:
Thanks man! Yeah, you have no idea how many times I measured each nook and cranny and looked for size specifications in German on dozens of radiators (most won't fit due to the tank design). I really lucked out with the Phobya's.

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Old 09-11-11, 08:12 PM   #15
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140mm fans really limits the options

San Ace does make some very nice fans with great performance specs:
http://db.sanyodenki.co.jp/product_d...master_id=2515
But, they're non-LED, non-PWM, and hard to find

Similar story on this Delta unit, except that it is PWM
http://www.delta.com.tw/product/cp/d...0x140x50.8.pdf
Unfortunately, it's 24V, 51mm deep, and also would be very tough to find.

The best option IMO would be these Scythe fans...they are actually PWM versions with only 3 wires attached.
Then get some adaptors to use them in your 140mm location
http://www.performance-pcs.com/catal...ducts_id=25703


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Thanks!
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Old 09-14-11, 07:36 AM Thread Starter   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIAHALLEN View Post
140mm fans really limits the options

-snip-
Thanks Miah. Most "slim" adapters I've found in the past are 15mm though, which exceeds the tight spacing I have to fit an E-ATX mobo when using two of them in the "sandwhich" (e.g. Upgrading soon). Yeah, it's that tight that 15mm is too much when using two of them. No, I can't stack the rads and place the fans elsewhere, cause i would loose the sli connectors I am using now to run the tanks in parallel and I don't have room in the top to connect them. Very very tight fit.

I found some Yates in another thread that sound good. 140x25, 140 CFM, 2800rpms

http://www.yateloon.com/detail/38839/38839.html

Even though the static pressure isn't as high as the San Ace (yes, I was on the verge of buying those $70 fans), they are more than twice what i have now.

I also found a PWM-to-3-pin converter that allows me to control the speed of 3-wire analog fans via a PWM signal. 10 euros from UK. Not bad, just have to wait for them.

http://www.paqt.co.uk/store/index.ph...od&productId=5 (see documentation on the site for more detail)

And as a final note, it turns out that the ESA board that comes with the Dell case doesn't use standard 10k ohm temp probes. So, all of my inline water probes didn't work with it. I ordered one of those Silverstone ESA control boards since it has 4 temp inputs (along with five 3-wire fan controls!). Let's just hope the Nvidia System Tools is compatible with two ESA boards connected at the same time ,before I start planning to use those 3-wire fan controls.

Why am I pushing so hard for ESA? Because I have written software to monitor, log, and control all these devices. E.g. Water temp increases? Spin up the radiator fans automatically. Internal temps too warm? Spin up the rear case PWM fan to exhaust it automatically. CPU temps over threshold? Increase the PWM pumps speeds. Everything on curves. Still in the discovery phase of the Nvidia API as the default System Tools does an half-ass job at it already so I haven't jumped completely on it.

It's nice to have all monitoring, logging, controls and rules in one application.

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Old 09-18-11, 09:11 PM   #17
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just thought i would give my official stamp of coolness here

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Old 09-18-11, 10:24 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eduncan911 View Post

I also found a PWM-to-3-pin converter that allows me to control the speed of 3-wire analog fans via a PWM signal. 10 euros from UK. Not bad, just have to wait for them.

http://www.paqt.co.uk/store/index.ph...od&productId=5 (see documentation on the site for more detail)
Visited the site and there is no detail what this converter capable of.

Does it have any documentation on the specification ? Like the max current and voltage range starting at minimum to max speed at certain voltage, also from that small photo, looks like it has some pot for adjustment isn't it ?

Please post the close up photo if its not troubling you too much, tia.

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Old 09-19-11, 08:09 AM Thread Starter   #19
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Visited the site and there is no detail what this converter capable of.

Does it have any documentation on the specification ? Like the max current and voltage range starting at minimum to max speed at certain voltage, also from that small photo, looks like it has some pot for adjustment isn't it ?

Please post the close up photo if its not troubling you too much, tia.
Now now, I said "see documentation on their site" next to that link. :P

http://www.paqt.co.uk/docs/PaQ_PWM.pdf

Pics and information you seek is there.

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Old 09-19-11, 08:10 AM Thread Starter   #20
eduncan911
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Originally Posted by thorilan View Post
just thought i would give my official stamp of coolness here


(insert pic of the Stamp of Coolness by Thorilan)

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:: Dell XPS 730X Modified H2C TEC Hybrid Chassis
:: ASRock Fatal1ty X79 w/3930k C2, Mushkin 16 GB 2133 Mhz, 2x OCZ Vertex 3 240 GB in RAID 0
:: 3x EVGA GTX 670 4GB SC + EVGA GTX 460 EE 1GB PhysX
:: 3x Planar SA2311W 120 Hz 3D Vision w/Ergotech Tri-Monitor Stand (6000x1080 bezel corrected)
:: Previous build: Shotgun Watercooling Theory v2 Build - Dead silent



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Overclockers Forums > Hardware > Cooling > Water Cooling
Water Cooling Discussion devoted to blocks, pumps, radiators, reservoirs, tubing, and everything else to get you running smooth on a water loop
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