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Thinking about jumping back into watercooling... been awhile

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deathman20

High Speed Premium Senior
Joined
Aug 5, 2002
Alright I'm thinking about making the jump back into some nice cool water cooling.

The Quick Run Down

Why?
- Looking at a nice sized case (Fractal Design Define R6 TG or Phanteks Enthoo Evolve TG) TBD probably 1/2 months
- Want more cooling power but quieter for CPU
- To go with the one above, cooling the GPU as well! If anything its the nosiest item in the case
- Cool factor... its water cooling, just looks cool especially with a nice big window.

When?
Could be next month, could be a few months down the road, maybe when Intel launches their next gen CPU's? I might just hold off till I get a new board/cpu which now that they've come out with 6-core CPU's.... I might just jump from my quad to 6 or who knows 8 core with HT and enjoy it for some years to come.

What to get?
Ok lost on this one. Really I've been out of the loop, I know there is options on this. I want to cool both my CPU and GPU effectively. Would I be looking at 1 or 2 rads at sizes of 240, 280, 360, 420, 480 to properly cool them? Are some of the "kits" for the higher end manufactures better to purchase and add in say a GPU block / extra rad to it? I've tried looking into stuff but guess I just need a good kick in the right direction and can continue doing research.


Longer Story
So for a while I've been contemplating at upgrading my computer case. Actually a couple years now. That being said now that I'm looking at actually moving forward with it in the next month or two, I'm looking at what else can be done to make the PC look nice. I've had my CPU cooler for years... yup years and its treated me very well and has done a fine job keeping my CPU's cool over the years, think dating back to the i7 920. Though its not much of a looker, its big, bulky, and in the past I thought of downsizing the PC in area's but the issue I've always run into was the heat sink size. So while water cooling might not be small it has just something about it that I did enjoy back some years ago, more on that in a bit. So when I've been assisting someone else with a PC build it got me interested into looking into it more deeply again. Now he's looking at keeping it simple with a quick to setup kit, I'm thinking little more custom/expandable. Now with getting the case, I've seen the new lighting setups people have done with their rigs and interested getting a setup like that. In the near future I'll upgrade my Mobo/CPU for a next gen mobel unit with RGB board lighting options as well. Get some lighting strips for the case and hook it all up together and show off that new case with hopefully a nice water cooling setup.

While the last time I did it I had a bad experience/failure with a MB that shorted / caused a mini fire in my PC case. Probably have some thread on here about that as I was getting voltage strangely on my block and just before leaving for work it shorted the mobo, put a nice sized hole in it and arc'ed to the back of the case and was still running. Thankfully shut it all down and got it fixed that day by doing a quick run to a store 90miles away. Though my previous time before that I had a small mid size case (was very small) that I put a small rad in and cooled my CPU and actually transported it around where I went. Home for the weekend or out gaming with friends. Guess what I'm saying is I have done it, would like to do it again and guess soon would be the best time to do it especially if I'm considering swapping out mobo/cpu. Plan on keeping my 1080ti for a while so if I'm going to block it might as well get some use from it.


... and if nothing made sense above, kept getting phone calls writing this so kept loosing my train of thought, hopefully cleaned it up to make sense :D
 

Blaylock

"That Backfired" Senior Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2013
Location
Go Blue!
I believe the old adage of 120mm rad per 100W still applies but as you know there are many variables. Since you're looking for silence you'll want lower fin density rads so you can run lower SP fans(i.e. quieter). You will probably want to be more aggressive on the rad space to compensate though.

I've read good things about some of the EK kits but personally will avoid the newer all aluminum kits as they are geared towards the cheaper market share (no thanks). Their other (Supremacy) kits however do have quality parts in them with plenty of room to expand. Something to keep a close eye on with EK is there was recently a change of leadership at the CEO and CTO level so you never really know what will come from this (sauce). Sometimes change is good, but with a highly respected company it can also be unsettling.
 
OP
deathman20

deathman20

High Speed Premium Senior
Joined
Aug 5, 2002
100W per 120mm give or take a little check. So i'd be looking at probably a 240&360 then most likely for the combo of both CPU and GPU. Maybe 2x 360's then.
I'm really curious on what the difference between a say 240 vs 280 is in cooling power. Might have to look that one up and post back but if someone beats me to it well yay ;)

Edit: Least the difference I can see is 1-3C typically between the 120 to 140mm fan solutions. That being said is it really worth the extra trouble?

As for the EK thing, yeah saw the link on a few threads back about it. Actually heard it mentioned in one of the case reviews I was looking at and it didn't really cross my mind till I was on EK's website and linked to the other gear and was scratching my head for a bit till I stumbled across your the article about staff leaving and the launch of the "budget" water cooling line.

As for cooling the rads. Light up fans and strips would be sweet, RGB ones to time with the rest of the case. That being said are there specific brands that work good that work from the motherboard controller / stand alone controllers? Reason I say that is right now, my mobo doesn't do anything, future one will but if I get some fans ahead of time to "play around" and help spread the cost around a little I'd like to have some fun before hopefully linking it to the motherboard. Might be wrong area but figured I'd ask. I know NZXT, Thermaltake, Corsair... im sure there is more just curious what has been used/works well not only for cooling but function.

Edit: At least fan wise the ones I mentioned, really don't connect at all do the motherboards for a all in one solution to control lighting. Though seems like the Corsair has the best solution/software/fan performance itself. NZXT seems to have that lovely software issue with CAM I've been hearing about constantly, and Thermaltake seems good, software is there but could be better and light updates are a little... slow like the NZXT.
 
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OP
deathman20

deathman20

High Speed Premium Senior
Joined
Aug 5, 2002
Also was looking at another option for fans. I know EK-Vardars are really nice ones for rad cooling but pretty basic (no lighting). As well pretty decent is the Corsair HD line or even the ML line but with lighting. Then saw these... Phantek Halos as well their Lux Line which basically can use any fan and then these attach over them or attach directly to the radiator/case.

They look pretty new curious if anyone has had experience with them?
 

maxfly

Member
Joined
May 7, 2005
sorry i cant help with the rgb fans other than what ive heard. thermaltake, corsair and phanteks are all highly touted rgb fans.
as far as rads go keep in mind that the thickness can make a BIG difference in performance. im sure there are articles or reviews about it but im going off of personal experience. i try to stick with 40-60mm rads 60mm if at all possible so i can get the best cooling with the lowest rpms.
 
OP
deathman20

deathman20

High Speed Premium Senior
Joined
Aug 5, 2002
sorry i cant help with the rgb fans other than what ive heard. thermaltake, corsair and phanteks are all highly touted rgb fans.
as far as rads go keep in mind that the thickness can make a BIG difference in performance. im sure there are articles or reviews about it but im going off of personal experience. i try to stick with 40-60mm rads 60mm if at all possible so i can get the best cooling with the lowest rpms.

Yeah been doing a lot of looking at fans recently. Looking heavily into the Corair 'LL series just because of the lighting possibilities and then the Varder fans with the Phantek Halo attachments. Downside there right now is got to wait for an RGB board to run it properly with the Phantek add-ons or if I get a kit it might come with fans that I really don't need.

Now as for the cooling part. Might wait a little bit to see what Nvidia does with the next gen release and might just get a card with the block on it already. So right now might jump right away to a CPU block at least. That being said I've been looking, got to look at more results but 20 or 40mm might be the route I go. I want cooling power but i dont want it too thick. Looking at both a 2 and 3 fan setup with either 120/140 for 1 or both rads. Just one of those things thinking in my head still. Most likely just do flex tubing for now and when upgrading mobo/CPU for next gen look at headlining it.... maybe.

Been a little quiet on this in general since I've bee n doing a lot of looking around and sadly might be waiting for the case I want for a other 30 days potentially unless I decide to go black vs gunmetal as I've decided on just going R6 for the expansion options and less likely to have issues with a rad on top from interfering with the mobo and doing some custom case mod. Though cooling/fans might get ordered soon just to have and split the costs a little before the case comes up and to make sure I got all I need.
 
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deathman20

deathman20

High Speed Premium Senior
Joined
Aug 5, 2002
Ok I've made some decisions as I just got to put my foot down on at least something otherwise it will never happen. Course I do have a few more questions below.
I will be getting the Define R6 case right now, just need to wait till early next month when they get the pre-orders in stock. Looking at the Gun Metal TG case.

Edit:
Water cooling portion maybe jumping ahead of myself on this, wrote something else and posted but editing it now. Double guessing myself if I really want to make a Open Loop system, doing a AIO, or just stay air.
I know water cooling isn't for everyone though right now I've been running my PC 24/7 and I want at least reliability associated with it, yet still want cool / clean look. Course might be pricing myself really high with a few other expenses that just popped up and still wanting/needed a new case to do "future" options.
 
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maxfly

Member
Joined
May 7, 2005
thats a nice sleek looking case.
being that youve gone water in the past you know the benefits of them all. it may be best to run the cooling you have right now and make the choice later on once youve had more time to research all the gear youll need etc...
 

||Console||

Member
Joined
Jul 26, 2004
Ok I've made some decisions as I just got to put my foot down on at least something otherwise it will never happen. Course I do have a few more questions below.
I will be getting the Define R6 case right now, just need to wait till early next month when they get the pre-orders in stock. Looking at the Gun Metal TG case.

Edit:
Water cooling portion maybe jumping ahead of myself on this, wrote something else and posted but editing it now. Double guessing myself if I really want to make a Open Loop system, doing a AIO, or just stay air.
I know water cooling isn't for everyone though right now I've been running my PC 24/7 and I want at least reliability associated with it, yet still want cool / clean look. Course might be pricing myself really high with a few other expenses that just popped up and still wanting/needed a new case to do "future" options.

I like the R6 and the meshy c.
On reliability my D5 pump is 13+ years old now @ this point running 24/7 . For "best" results maintenance every few months is recommended but my system has seen 2+ years before with no maintenance .
 
OP
deathman20

deathman20

High Speed Premium Senior
Joined
Aug 5, 2002
I like the R6 and the meshy c.
On reliability my D5 pump is 13+ years old now @ this point running 24/7 . For "best" results maintenance every few months is recommended but my system has seen 2+ years before with no maintenance .

Looked at Mesh C as well. Originally the main reason going R6 was still having the 5 1/4" Drive Bay. Though I just nabbed a external/portable CD/DVD/Blu-Ray burner. Problem solved on this side for a new case not needing that now.
As for reliability. That is fantastic news! Yeah figured I'd do a flush every 6+ months on the rig if going water, but 24/7 is really nice to know that pumps can last a really long time.

thats a nice sleek looking case.
being that youve gone water in the past you know the benefits of them all. it may be best to run the cooling you have right now and make the choice later on once youve had more time to research all the gear youll need etc...
Yeah looking into it more... so probably not an instant purchase on the gear as its been so long since I've actually bought a case let alone know how all the stuff can or can't fit in it.
 

GTXJackBauer

Water Cooling Senior Member, #TEAMH20HNO
Joined
May 22, 2011
Location
USA
Grab some good quality clear premix fluid and just do annual drain and refills. It's that simple, assuming you've cleaned all your gear before installation and nothing is found flowing around. I would maybe do tear down check ups the first few years or when you're changing liquids or gear/metals but after that, you're pretty much set sailing. I would also only do tear downs if I saw flow deteriorate via flow meter.