Project: OverMOD

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“Create a QUIET and POWERFUL rig that is based on the BEST REVIEWED hardware at reasonable prices” – Chris Hardy

Many thanks to Overclockers.com for hosting many quality user reviews and insider info. I have been a dedicated reader for over two years.

Keeping true to the ‘Overclockers.com’ name … I thought this would be the perfect place to publish my ‘Project: OverMOD’. This has been an ongoing project that has had its’ share of successes and failures.

I’d like to begin by describing my goals for this project.
Number one reason for this project was to create a QUIET and POWERFUL rig that is based on the BEST REVIEWED hardware at reasonable prices.
To me, there is nothing more annoying than the sound of a case full of fans at high speed. Besides the obvious fact that even poor water cooling is better than air cooling, 99% of the time.

The System:

  • ABIT NF7-S v2.0
  • AMD XP2500 Mobile (1.86 Ghz, stock speed @ 1.45V)
  • Corsair 2 x256 MB PC3200LL (2-3-2-11)
  • OCZ DDR Booster @ 3.4V
  • PNY 6800GT 256 DDR3
  • 2 x 120 GB Maxtor SATA DiamondMAX 10 (RAID 0)
  • 815 Watt Dual PSU
  • Hercules Game Theater XP 7.1
  • 21″ CRT monitor
  • 7″ TFT LCD screen
  • Pioneer DVD-RW 16X

The Benchmarks

System Testing Specs:

  • 2.7 Ghz (13.5 x 200)
  • 6800GT @ 449/1300
  • DDR Booster @ 3.4V

Sisoft Sandra 2005 V1.10.37

CPU

Multi-Media

Memory

File Storage

Dhrystone: 11,504

Integer: 25,076

Int: 3,449

89 MB/s

Whetstone 4,503

Floating-Point: 26,803

Float: 3,238

 

  • Aquamark3   : 62,354
  • 3DMark 2003: 13,031
  • 3DMark 2005: 6,212

*NVidia Forceware 75.90 beta drivers used

The MODS

CPU Waterblock

WB

This is my THIRD custom made CPU waterblock. The design is basically simple: water enters the center of the block and is channeled outwards to FOUR outlets. These are then equalized in a final chamber before exiting to the radiator. Running at the maximum voltage of 2.3V, my LOAD temps never get past 50ºC.

GPU/DDR3 Waterblock

WB

Similar in design to the CPU waterblock, only this time each of the outlets becomes the inputs for other cooling blocks. Stock 6800GT speed is 350/1000 – the maximum I can benchmark is 449/1300. The MAX LOAD temp is 46ºC.

OCZ DDR Booster

WB

When I referred to the provided compatibility chart, it said it was compatible with the NF7-S. This had to be modified to fit in the NF7-S if I wanted to use Dual Channel mode. Unfortunately, Dual Channel compatibility was UNDOCUMENTED.

Hard Drive Waterblocks

WB

Using the stock “Ultimate Hard Drive Coolers” was great until the fans at the front began a long, loud, slow death. Because of the design of these anodized aluminum blocks, they were simply BEGGING to be modified. It was one of my easier mods.
{mospagebreak}

815 Watt Dual PSU

WB

Since I was determined to use peltiers, I had to provide MORE POWER. I merged an Enermax 465P-VE with a 350W AOpen PSU. I used a relay to allow one PSU to turn on the second. I now had a dedicated PSU for the CPU/MOBO/VIDEO and one for the peripherals.

The Cooling Loop

WB

Using a bar fridge as a reservoir, I used TWO pumps to elevate the water 12′ to my office. Once the coolant has reached the system, it splits into two loops, one dedicated for the CPU and one for the GPU, which outlets to everything else. One amazing feature is that MY SYSTEM WILL NOT LEAK. It will only suck air INTO the loop. This is because gravity pulls the water back downstairs at a greater rate than the head pressure.

Conclusions

WB

Unfortunately, this Wall-Mounted RIG doesn’t have any more to give me. I doubt I could get 5% more out of it. Not bad, considering the CPU and Motherboard are two years old. I can still keep up with the BIG BOYS!

In the process of this project, I have gone through a few hardware components (some died) to find the best ones. The ones that died were due to extreme overclock using TECs (Peltiers), a volt modded NF7-S V2.0 and a modded 5900XT.

Beware of TEC¹s! TECs are VERY powerful, compact devices, which can be easily underestimated. Do not attempt to use one without a temperature controller and AMPLE cooling for the HOT side.

¹Thermo-Electric Coolers

Chris Hardy

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