Five “roll your won” waterblocks vie for top dog — Joe
SUMMARY: A “roll your own” contest – four interesting waterblock designs.
Ben was instrumental in getting some watercooling DIYs to send me waterblocks they made for testing – a friendly competition.
I thought readers would like to see what these guys did in designing and fabricating their own waterblocks.
Ben adapted a Thermaltake heatsink for watercooling. The base
is very smooth – a nice lapping job. This design makes Socket 370/A mounting a snap, although care must be used with this one. This is the only aluminum base block.
Brook sent in two blocks. This is the larger one:
This mounting plate is set for Socket A use. The base
is silver – looks like a silver coin was used. Brook did the same thing in a smaller version:
The pipes are 5/8″. The base uses a smaller silver coin:
Both of these required a lot of lapping to smooth it out.
Jonathon’s block uses a plastic top bolted onto a copper base.
The base has a little maze cut into it:
The idea is to use the channels to increase turbulence inside the block. The base
is flat and smooth – the mottling is due to coloration differences and should not impact performance.
The smallest and lightest of the blocks – reminds me of the Union ship Monitor.
Pudge sent a picture of what he crafted inside:
Looks like a nice pattern to keep things hopping! The base is very smooth – a very nice lapping job.
To test the blocks, I used the same waterpump, fan and radiator and only changed waterblocks. I used the Die Simulator. The first thing I found was that Brook’s large waterblock developed a leak after about 15 minutes into the test while on the test stand. I was out of the room and came back to a flood!
The bright side is it forced me to clean up my work area – it hasn’t been this clean since I built it!
Anyhow, Brook’s large block did not make the cut. Jonathan’s block showed a very small leak at the base of one nipple; some further tightening should clear it up – not enough to warrant aborting the test.
Jonathon’s maze waterblock was a clear winner. As a sanity check, I ran Jonathan’s and Pudge’s blocks on an Iwill KK266+ that has been modified to read AMD’s diode, with the following results:
CPU Die Temp
CPU Back Temp
¹In-socket thermistor per MBM: 31
C/W = Delta / CPU Watts
Interpreting C/W: For every watt (CPUw) that the CPU
consumes, the HSF will limit the CPU’s temperature rise to (C/W x CPUw)
plus the temperature at the HSF’s fan inlet. For example, at an ambient temp of 25 C, a C/W of 0.25 with a CPU radiating 50 watts means that CPU temp will increase 50 x 0.25 = 12.5 C over ambient temp, or 37.5 C. The lower the C/W, the better.
Motherboard testing confirms that Jonathon’s design works quite well. Great job!
An interesting range of designs from intrepid DIYers. With a bit of effort, it’s possible to “roll your own” and develop a very good waterblock.