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Can a tri-crossfire HD6970 system be aircooled successfully without being too loud?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Would it be worth it to try to air cool such a rig, or would water cooling make more sense? I have built 3 gaming PCs in the past but never used water cooling.

I am planning on building a super high-end gaming PC this time but I don't know if I should water cool it or not. I will probably wait until November for the new AMD GPUs and Intel or AMD processors to be released, so I am just using tri-crossfire HD6970 as an example.

The type of overclocking I would like to do is like, for example, overclocking an i7 2600k to 4.5GHz <--- Basically this level of overclocking, nothing too crazy. I don't plan on overclocking the graphics cards at all. Would I just be better off using something like a Noctua NH-D14 rather than full water loop? Or would a full water loop be quieter? Or would a SilverStone RV02 case be quieter? Or would I be better off using a closed water loop just for the CPU such as the Corsair H100?

Is water cooling worth the leakage risk?

I want a completely stable system that will last me at least 3 years without failing, and I would like it to not be overly loud.

Suggestions?

Thank you very much.
Edited by Viper2 - 8/5/11 at 5:04pm
post #2 of 19
Depending on your PCIe slot spacing, it's gunna be loud no matter what, the middle and top cards will suffocate so the fans will ramp up. Water cooling is the only method for silence.
    
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post #3 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Viper2 View Post
Can a tri-crossfire HD6970 system be aircooled successfully without being too loud?
Yes, i have trifire- hd6950 unlock (hd6970), and they dont get that loud, usually i set fan speed to 65%, and temps stay around 58ºC when playing BFBC2, i can set it lower to 50% fan speed and it becomes dead silent (cant hear them over the case fans).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ttoadd.nz View Post
Depending on your PCIe slot spacing, it's gunna be loud no matter what, the middle and top cards will suffocate so the fans will ramp up. Water cooling is the only method for silence.
Sorry to disappoint you, but not true.

I have the 3 of them stacked, and it's a myth that they are gonna get really hot, and only way to cool is watercooling, i'm living proof, they stay very cool, they idle at 37ºC top card and the 2 other ones idle at 33ºC.


Got any other questions viper2?
Edited by Erick - 8/5/11 at 5:07pm
post #4 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Erick View Post
Yes, i have trifire- hd6950 unlock (hd6970), and they dont get that loud, usually i set fan speed to 65%, and temps stay around 58ºC when playing BFBC2, i can set it lower to 50% fan speed and it becomes dead silent (cant hear them over the case fans).



Sorry to disappoint you, but not true.

I have the 3 of them stacked, and it's a myth that they are gonna get really hot, and only way to cool is watercooling, i'm living proof, they stay very cool, they idle at 37ºC top card and the 2 other ones idle at 33ºC.


Got any other questions viper2?
what are their load temps
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post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Erick View Post
Yes, i have trifire- hd6950 unlock (hd6970), and they dont get that loud, usually i set fan speed to 65%, and temps stay around 58ºC when playing BFBC2, i can set it lower to 50% fan speed and it becomes dead silent (cant hear them over the case fans).



Sorry to disappoint you, but not true.

I have the 3 of them stacked, and it's a myth that they are gonna get really hot, and only way to cool is watercooling, i'm living proof, they stay very cool, they idle at 37ºC top card and the 2 other ones idle at 33ºC.


Got any other questions viper2?
Would a Coolermaster HAF-X case with all Noctua fans (including the NH-D14 CPU heatsink/fan) be best for an efficiently cooled and quiet system, or is the vertical-cooling Raven RV02 a better choice?
post #6 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by patawic View Post
what are their load temps
Depends on the fan speed and what load you mean? Gaming? I posted above. 58ºC on the hottest card, the bottom card is about 10ºC cooler, and the middle one about 52ºC.

Furmark 1.9? 100% fan speed, low 70's oc'ed to 940/1400 1.2v
post #7 of 19
The reference design cards (6950s unlocked) are extremely loud above 50% fan speed, good thing they were on water (briefly). Plus, the middle and top cards were about 10-15°c more hot than the bottom one since they weren't getting enough air even after I had two 140s pointed at them. Go with water or with aftermarket coolers, or if you have not bought your cards, get the non-reference cards with different coolers (I'm not sure if they exist though ).
post #8 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Viper2 View Post
Would a Coolermaster HAF-X case with all Noctua fans (including the NH-D14 CPU heatsink/fan) be best for an efficiently cooled and quiet system, or is the vertical-cooling Raven RV02 a better choice?
Well, i dont know which would be best, but the RV02 seems to be pretty good/nice. But if you pretend to go watercooling on the future i would go with the HAF-X, it's just huge.
post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by wermad View Post
The reference design cards (6950s unlocked) are extremely loud above 50% fan speed, good thing they were on water (briefly). Plus, the middle and top cards were about 10-15°c more hot than the bottom one since they weren't getting enough air even after I had two 140s pointed at them. Go with water or with aftermarket coolers, or if you have not bought your cards, get the non-reference cards with different coolers (I'm not sure if they exist though ).
Extremely loud at 50% fan speed? Well i think everyone has a different definition of "loud", i cant hear them over my case fans. Only if i put them to 60% i can hear them.

They reference coolers are best for multi-gpu setup, since they blow air out of the case, non-ref cooler blow air in the case making the other cards& cpu heat up more.
post #10 of 19
Yea I would say that that is definitely possible. HD 6950/70s are really cool GPUs (pun intended) and will stay cool even if right on top of each other.

I would suggest going with a reference design though. My TFIIIs vent out the side and the top picks up the bottom's exhaust. If I didn't have the GPU duct on the HAF I think they would overheat.
    
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