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Custom Watercool Loop for my Main PC

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JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
I'm really, kind-of, almost thinking about maybe doing a custom loop for my main PC.

I'm looking to you guys for help!

The stock cooler on my Titan X Pascal is...well...pretty loud. (NVIDIA should be embarrassed to put this short of thing on a $1200 card). If I run the card at stock speeds, the cooler is sort-of silent. But, you don't by a $1200 card to have it run at stock speeds! :D Right now, I can get a sustained GPU boost on the card of 1950 MHz. However, at the penalty of 85 C GPU core temp and the fan running at 100% (pretty loud).

So - my main reason is to quiet this thing down. However, my brain is all over the place.

My first step is going to be a new case with better air flow (settled on a Corsair Air 740...will but will wait until it comes into stock on Amazon...as I'm not paying $25+ shipping from Corsair.)

My next step is going to water cool the card...somehow:

Option 1: AIO Kit for Titan X Pascal
---> I have an EVGA 980 Ti Hybrid. This is also a 250 W card, and runs mid 50 C GPU temperature with 28 C ambient. Not too shabby, but not great. However, it's quiet.
---> EVGA is supposed to be coming out with a hybrid kit for the Titan X P...but no date...and I can't wait forever (the thing is loud).
---> Many folks have used the EVGA 1080/1070 hybrid kit, with a few mods to the kit, and had it work well.
------> EVGA is currently out of stock...this is the ONLY reason I have started to think about custom loop cooling.
---> If I go this route, I have to get a smaller AIO for my CPU to fit 3 radiators (CPU, 980 Ti, and Titan X P) into one case.
------> The 280 mm radiator I have for my H110i is too much for the CPU anyway...from reviews, I think I can get away with a thick 120 mm, in push/pull fans (trash the stock Corsair ones).

Total cash outlay: $347, maintenance: very little (clean dust out of rads)
---> Hybrid kit: $140 shipped
---> New CPU AIO: $95
---> 4 ML120 Maglev Fans: $112 (2 for CPU AIO, 2 for Titan AIO)


Option 2: EK Predator 360, with GPU Block
---> I think this will fit in the front of the new 740 Air
---> Pre-filled, would order pre-filled GPU block
---> My usual usage of the PC is folding and gaming...neither of which max out my CPU usage.
---> Titan pulls about 275 W, and CPU pulls under 100 W...so 375W
---> A bit much for 360 mm of radiator, but GPU temps should be better than AIO.

Total cash outlay: $505 + EK shipping
---> EK Predator 360: $220 + shipping
---> EK Titan Block (prefilled, with QD): $166 + shipping
---> EK Titan Backplate: $35 + shipping
---> 3 ML120 Maglev Fans: $84


Option 3: Full Custom Loop
---> Go for broke...5 x 120 mm of rad...more than enough to cool 375 W.
---> Should be able to run the fans on low.
---> 360 mm radiator as intake, 240 mm radiator as exhaust above CPU
---> 980 Ti Hybrid as exhaust on back of case
------> Is this configuration OK????

Total cash outlay: $942 + EK shipping (holy freaking fittings cost batman!!!)
---> 360 mm (Hardware Labs Black Ice Nemesis 360 GTS): $68
---> 240 mm (Hardware Labs Black Ice Nemesis 240 GTS): $64
---> CPU Block (EK-Supremacy EVO RED): $82 + shipping
---> EK Titan Block: $136 + shipping
---> EK Titan Backplate: $35 + shipping
---> Res/Pump (EK-XRES 140 DDC 3.2 PWM Elite): $150 + shipping
---> Pump Mounting Bracket: $14 + shipping
---> Compression fittings (EK-ACF series): $100 + shipping
---> Angle adapters / extenders / plugs(EK-AF series): $125 + shipping
---> Tubing (PrimoChill Primoflex Advanced LRT 15.9/9.5mm, 3m, red): $28
---> 5 ML120 Maglev Fans: $140

I have read many horror stories about custom loops. But it seems that you only hear the idiots on Google searches and not the good of things.

The plumbing looks simple - especially if you use compression fittings and flexible tubing. The only real pain-in-the-butt appears to be the initial radiator cleaning.

The next thing that worries me about a custom loop is what to add to the water. My internet research has shown differing opinions on just about every aspect. What I do know is that:

1. Algae growth is bad.
---> Silver kill coil or additive to the loop?

2. Corrosion is bad.
---> De-ionized water will eventually become ionized...and different metals will do what they do and be a battery...and cause metal A to be removed and deposited on metal B.
---> What do you add to the coolant to prevent corrosion?
---> How often to flush?

3. How does my parts list look for the custom loop?
 
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OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Why can't you fit an H110i and two 120mm rads in the 740?

Sorry - forgot to put that in.

They will fit just fine...that's not the issue.

As the AIOs are all, basically, separate loops...having one AIO as input and others as output tends to heat things up for the output AIO.

The exhaust air on the 980 Ti AIO is pretty warm. I ran an experiment running this as input into the case, and the coolant temperatures on the 280 mm H110 jumped to 50 C...pretty warm...makes sense...a 250 W space heater feeding the case.

So, I would want to avoid having the AIOs be "input" air into the case. That means, one rad as exhaust in back of case (up to 140 mm), and 2 rads as exhaust up top (up to 280 mm).

Having an exhaust out of the bottom of the case doesn't make sense.

Hope that made sense.
 

GTXJackBauer

Water Cooling Senior Member, #TEAMH20HNO
Joined
May 22, 2011
Location
USA
I'd go the custom route but you'd have to deal with maintenance and gets you more involved. A AIO will be set and forget and never worry about maintenance.

As for custom cooling, I used to use distilled water and silver kill coils but all the reputed companies warn you of using it because it will eventually start corrosion. I got sick and tired of oxidization on my CPU block and so I decided to go with pre-mix clear fluid that has all the additives for corrosion and algae and not worry about it. I just have to renew the fluid once a year as some other fluids can go higher than that.
 

ATMINSIDE

Sim Racing Aficionado Co-Owner
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Sorry - forgot to put that in.

They will fit just fine...that's not the issue.

As the AIOs are all, basically, separate loops...having one AIO as input and others as output tends to heat things up for the output AIO.

The exhaust air on the 980 Ti AIO is pretty warm. I ran an experiment running this as input into the case, and the coolant temperatures on the 280 mm H110 jumped to 50 C...pretty warm...makes sense...a 250 W space heater feeding the case.

So, I would want to avoid having the AIOs be "input" air into the case. That means, one rad as exhaust in back of case (up to 140 mm), and 2 rads as exhaust up top (up to 280 mm).

Having an exhaust out of the bottom of the case doesn't make sense.

Hope that made sense.

It's not a big deal to have the AIO's as an inlet air source to the case.
Mount the two for the GPU's at the front as inlet, mount the CPU at the top as exhaust.
You might raise the CPU temp by 2-3°C... big whoop. Your CPU is safe in the 90°C range.
 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Thanks for feedback!!!

@GTX: I was leaning towards trusting the companies and going with the "additive to distilled water" route.

@ATM: If I end up going that route, I'll definitely give it a shot, experiment, and see what I get. I agree in the trade-off of lower GPU temp for higher CPU temp. However, the heat from the "input" AIOs will raise the ambient inside of the case too...which will raise the ambient temp of the air being draw into the CPU AIO...which will add 1 for 1 to the final CPU temp. The experiments I ran earlier say the AIO coolant temperature rise from a typical 36 C-ish to 50 C. That will equate to more than 2 or 3 C increase in CPU temperature...but worth a shot. Also, the default Corsair profiles cause the fans to ramp up to 100% when the AIO temp gets over 40 C. I'm not sure what is magical about the 40 C number, and I can't find anything saying what the maximum should be. I just have them running at a fixed speed currently.


Assuming I go the custom loop route, how does the parts list look?

- I chose the Hardware Lab radiator over the EK radiator as this review (http://www.xtremerigs.net/2015/02/11/radiator-round-2015/) showed it to be superior of the "thin" radiator classes...and even better than the "middle thickness" EK PE series radiator.
- I chose a pump/res combo as this appears to be easier plumbing and mounting-wise (only need one set of tubes and mounting holes)
- PrimoChill Primoflex Advanced LRT was on the EK website...so I assume this is good stuff?

I'm probably a bit overboard on compression fittings and adapters...but my philosophy is to always have a few more...in case you get a great idea! :thup:

On a final note...has anybody ever used an LED in the EK-Supremacy EVO CPU block? It says it has a spot for an LED, but I couldn't find any instructions for mounting the LED within the block!
 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
The EVGA 1080 Hybrid kit just came into stock...ordered the parts listed above for option 1 last night...Going to give option 1 a shot.

I'll post a few pictures here of the mods I make to get the 1080 AIO cooler to fit on the Titan X Pascal.

If this doesn't work out well, I'll go full customer water! (Heck, I may even do it later just for the fun of it.)
 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Got the H80i installed. Replaced the stock fans with ML120 mag lev fans. It's a thick 120 mm radiator.

It runs pretty quiet.

Also, on initial testing, it seems to cool as well as my 280mm H110i did. Corsair calls it "rev 2"...the CPU water block is definitely different.


 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Not too exciting yet...I'll post pics when I mod my Titan X P cooler!


 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Ordered the AIO kit that I am going to mod onto my Titan X P! Did 2 day shipping that is apparently going to take 9 days...grrr.

Settled on the new Corsair 740 Air case...will order as soon as they have stock.

QUESTION:
- On a custom water loop, is there any disadvantage (other than cost) to having too much radiator????

The reason for this: if I go a custom loop (would be November time frame) I would always stay custom water for this PC. So, I would want to put in enough radiator up front to handle a second GPU (1 X 360 and 2 X 240). At first it would only cool my CPU and Titan X P (400 W TDP), but would eventually cool another 250 W TDP GPU.

Thanks!


 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
The loop restriction from 2 GPU blocks and a CPU block would be more than from an extra radiator...correct?
 

Conumdrum

Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2007
Location
Small town Emlenton, PA
Yes. A rad of all types except some crazy engineer type will be low restriction. Someone will post a silly example of a restrictive rad with no data and say, " You are rong rong."
 

Conumdrum

Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2007
Location
Small town Emlenton, PA
One reason, besides my spirited input I have not posted a lot. Ohh umm and not WC in a few years. Don't need it anymore folks. Looks pretty though.

Main reason I'm not here much.
 

GTXJackBauer

Water Cooling Senior Member, #TEAMH20HNO
Joined
May 22, 2011
Location
USA
One reason, besides my spirited input I have not posted a lot. Ohh umm and not WC in a few years. Don't need it anymore folks. Looks pretty though.

Main reason I'm not here much.

I started getting a bit watercooling fatigue with the whole tear down annual when I've seen others not do so and run with pre-mixed clear fluid and not have any issues, especially with oxidization and nickel plating that mfgers keep warning about when using distilled. I've jumped ship to make life easier. Just hope the parts last another 5 years. :D You're missing out but something else obviously filled in the void once you departed from H20.
 
OP
JrClocker

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
I have spent some time over the past few days doing some research on restrictions of GPU blocks, CPU blocks, and various radiators.

Below is a P-Q curve I assembled for the following setups:
- EK D5 Pump
- EK DDC Pump
- Worst Case 1: 2 x GPU blocks, 1 x CPU block, 3 x 360 Nemesis GTS Radiator - 29.6 mm thick (Hardware Labs)
- Worst Case 2: 2 x GPU blocks, 1 x CPU block, 3 x 360 CoolStream SE - 26 mm thick (EKWB)
- Worst Case 3: 2 x GPU blocks, 1 x CPU block, 3 x 360 CoolStream PE - 38 mm thick (EKWB)

EDIT: Assumes
- GPU blocks, CPU block, and radiator are connected in series
- No restriction from tubing, tubing bends, and angle fittings (still looking for data on this)

** Date pulled from www.xtremerigs.net and ekwb website


Custom Loop PQ.jpg


With the flow goal of 1 gpm of coolant within the loop:
- Worst case 1: won't make it...even with the DDC pump running 100% full speed
- Worst case 2: will work only for DDC pump...running at 90% full speed
- Worst case 3: will just barely work for D5 pump 100% full speed, will work for DDC pump running at 75% full speed

The interesting thing is that the thicker radiators have less restriction than the thinner ones.

To reach my "build 1 system for expandability" idea in the future:
- I can go with worst case 3 above...at the cost of 15 W of pump power consumption (will have to get a heat sink probably)
- I can run 2 loops (1 for CPU, 1 for 2 x GPU)
- Find a lower restriction radiator

Thoughts?
 
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