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[Build Log][First Water Build] FD Define S Black Window [Help]

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May 13, 2014
Hi all. So after a few months of asking here and there for stuff I decided to make a thread and ask for some help here and of course show you all my progress. I am starting a new build, SECOND EVER, and FIRST WATER COOL. Yup, I am just diving in. I made my first build about 4-years ago and got all my parts and ideas from people here. So THANKS FOR THAT. Anyways, I am a bit stuck and need a bit of help in the water cooling parts. What I have so far.....

CPU: Intel Core i7-6700K 4.0GHz Quad-Core Processor
Motherboard: Asus ROG MAXIMUS VIII HERO ALPHA ATX LGA1151 Motherboard
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-2666 Memory
Storage: Samsung 850 EVO-Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Drive
Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
Video Card: Zotac GeForce GTX 980 Ti 6GB AMP! Omega Edition Video Card
Case: Fractal Design Define S w/Window ATX Mid Tower Case
Power Supply: Cooler Master V850 850W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply

So far the total is: $1719.71

Now I have PETG tubing and a heat-gun and that is what I am going to use to bend the tubes. First time doing this and I am a bit nervous but I have seen plenty of tutorials and I think I can do it.

So I am stuck on the water loop parts. Plates, fittings, pump and whatever else I need is the part I got lost. So this is the help I need right now.

Does the 980 Ti need a back plate? What is a back plate for? So it needs 2 parts to water-cool it, the BLOCK and a back plate? I don't seem to understand this part. This is what I found and I have no clue what to get or not get.
I also found these links while searching but again I am a bit lost and some of this stuff might mean nothing and I am just overwhelming myself for no reason but if anyone can enlighten me that would be awesome.

This is the block I am thinking of using for the CPU unless someone has something to say about it.

Tube is PETG as you all may have read already, I hope that works fine.

Pump/reservoirs I have no clue... I was thinking this a combo from EK? If anyone has any better idea please I am all ears :) (eyes).

Radiators? No clue, anyone? Just linking what I find at EK if anything is better brand or preference to anyone let me know I want to learn some more :)

COOLING LIQUIDS? I was thinking pastel but I read a lot it clogs the system? I mean, if you take care of it then it shouldn't right?

Last are fittings, I think. I have no clue about these so I again need help :(. I think pressure fittings would be best in my opinion but ill see what people have to say.

I am sorry for the long writing and bothering but I want some help and I know here is the best place for it. Please let me know aht you think and what I may be missing or anything esle.

You're almost there! Have a read of our intro to water cooling stickies up top.

Also, have a nice look at this simple video.

Take your time. There's lots to learn. Don't be in a hurry because that's when mistakes can happen. Its fun and enjoy it.
I highly recommend the backplate. My reason for this is not for cooling (although I have read that they help sometimes, but others not), but for added rigidity. GPUs are pretty hefty pieces of PCB, and you're adding a solid block of metal to it. The backplate helps distribute the assembled cards' weight across the mounting points, taking stress off from the PCIe slot. It also looks better than bare PCB.

As far as fittings, I would grab some from the manufacturer of the PETG tubing you're using, in the same size of course. Not mixing parts as far as rigid tubing goes is the best way to make sure they fit right.

For radiators, I would go with 4x120 worth at minimum from either EK, Alphacool or Watercool. There are other quality brands as well, though.

I wouldn't use a colored liquid in a daily rig, and for your first watercooling build I'd highly recommend against it. Just distilled water with a biocide/kill coil will be best for you. A lot of people are suddenly against silver in their loops, but people have been using it for years without issue. However, since you're considering a nickel finish in your blocks, it's probably best for you to use the biocide instead of the silver.

I don't know much about that PSU, but I'd recommend an EVGA Supernova unit. I've had bad luck with CoolerMaster PSUs, though I have read on sites like JonnyGuru that some of them test very well.

It won't matter much, but I'd recommend RAM in the 3000MHz+ range, since it's DDR4 and all.

Everything else looks pretty good to me.
Thanks for the input all. I am going to get a back-plate then as mentioned it might help with the weight load.
I can't directly answer your questions but am in the middle of a build using the same case as you, check out my thread here.

You can fit a slim 420mm up in the top of this case although space is tight, and you do need to remove the rear exhaust fan.
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Interesting... I went to the link but I am a bit lost on how it works for my card. I couldn't find the name anywhere.... Any idea? @Grusgat
Should have researched what compatible GPU waterblocks are out there before purchasing a GPU. That's like purchasing a small case before planning out a big loop. It would have taken you a few minutes. Check out the cooling configurator at EK's site and hope and pray they have something in store.

Alphacool seems to offer one for your graphics card too:


Just the optic is not really great.

That is technically not a full cover WB. That's just a universal block with a bracket on it. That would be your last resort.
POST EDIT: So I just decided I will figure it out :)

First item arrived:
2016-07-07 11.17.36.jpg 2016-07-07 11.17.15.jpg
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