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overclocking my 8120 need cooling advice

post #1 of 46
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Hi i want to overclock my system and know that i will need to upgrade my cooler but not sure the best to get i have been looking at the zalman cnps12x but was wondering is this the right tool for the job or is there somthing better suited cause the reviews i have read about the zalman have been amazing. If anyone has any advice or input it will be much appreciated

Many thanks adam
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post #2 of 46
I'm assuming you are possibly a little new to overclocking and if not I apologize for the assumption, but anyways yeah it looks like a decent cooler, but there are also many things to keep in mind, especially if you want to overclock. When I got my 8120, I went ahead and got a cheap little closed-loop water-cooled system for about $60 (Antec H20 620), because I finally wanted to get my feet wet, so to speak. While today's air coolers are a hell of a lot more advanced than they were 5-10 years ago, they still don't dissipate heat as effectively as water cooling. It seems like most people are getting comfortable around 4.5 GHz on the 8120's, at least for a 24/7 OC. When this CPU hits about 4.3GHz+, the curve at which you have to increase voltages starts getting a little out of control (4.6-4.8GHz), and on air, people seem to be a little squirmish around these clocks, and for good reason. The typical TJmax temp on an 8120 seems to be about 70c (some are even 90c), while AMD only guarantees it to work up to 61c . My point is, the people I know that have air cooling on this cpu are already kicking themselves for not going with a watercooled system. Overclocking can be very addictive, and it would suck to hit 4.5GHz, and wonder how much higher you could have gone had you went with water cooling in the first place. My buddy's 24/7 OC on air is 4.5 at about 50c under full load. My 24/7 OC is 4.7 and just under 50c at full load. He couldn't ever go higher than 4.7 without scaring himself half to death. When I got to 4.8, it wasn't very scary at all, so of course... I had to hit 5GHz. I couldn't get it stable, but my temps were still within range at 5GHz. That's the overclocking downside to air cooling.

Another thing he didn't like is how his case is windowed, but when you look inside most of what you see is this big, bulky chunk of metal, and blocks all of the lights from his cold cathodes, plus after he heard mine, he said he couldn't even tell it was on it was so freaking quiet. In fact, when I installed my water-cooler, I was afraid it wasn't working because I couldn't 'hear' anything to prove it!

A lot of people fear water cooling because they picture a hose bursting and water going all over the place. On the 8120, it shouldn't be an issue with the TJmax being as much as 40 degrees less than some intel's who sit at 100c in some cases. My point is, unless you are going to be overclocking above your TJmax (which you should never do) today's double-oring sealed water coolers should be more than enough to handle it.

In conclusion, while the Zalman will certainly get the job done, is it what you really want?
post #3 of 46
^^^ The problem with closed loop coolers (CLCs), like Corsair H series, Antec, etc. is as follows:

Compared to highend HeatSink Fans, aka air coolers, independent objective testing has shown that CLCs are:

1. Thermally Inferior

2. Expensive

3. Noisy

4. Capable of water leaks that can destroy hundreds of dollars in PC hardware

5. AIR is used to cool the radiator in closed loop liquid systems

These are objective FACTS, not opinions regarding CLCs, from actual testing. The only current CLC that even equals a highend HSF for cooling is the Corsair H100 and it is twice as expensive as the Xigmatek Aegir SD128264 and has the very real liability of a water-leak that a HSF does not have.

http://www.anandtech.com/print/5054

As far as highend HSFs there are plenty to chose from. The CNPS12X is a upper mid-level HSF. There are others that are more effective for high thermal loads. No one could accurately state which exact model HSF is "best" as that will vary slightly with your definition of "best" and how the unit performs in your specific PC case with your PC hardware. Most any of the highend HSFs will serve people well for OC'ing.

http://www.frostytech.com/articleview.cfm?articleid=2572&page=4

As always I recommend that people technically educate themselves on the Pros and Cons of each cooler option and then pick the hardware that Makes Them Happy.

Instead of another Pissfest on air vs. liquid CPU cooling, I suggest reading the existing threads where all of the air vs. liquid cooling Pros and Cons are discussed instead of another thread that deteriorates into the same arguments.

The Air Cooling Forum has numerous threads on air vs. water cooling for review.

http://www.overclock.net/f/246/air-cooling

Not everything you read there is technically accurate however so always do your homework to determine fact from subjective opinion.
Edited by AMD4ME - 4/13/12 at 9:40am
post #4 of 46
Thread Starter 
yes you assume correct i am new to overclocking lol and also yes i want to get as much as i can out of my rig so have you or anybody else got any suggestions on which water cooler i should be aiming towards. and thanks for the reply very informative smile.gif

many thanks

ps sorry AMD4ME your post added before got to publish mine lol is a leak on a clc a high risk or is it a once in a blue moon thing
Edited by amllradam - 4/13/12 at 9:26am
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post #5 of 46
Before making a custom water loop, I was running my 8150 on an H100 with two Scythe Gentle Typhoon's. It's definitely on the pricier side compared to an air cooler. I got great cooling performance from it though.

Corsair is really good though for customer service, and every case of a leak I've heard of was taken care of quickly and all damaged hardware was replaced or refunded.
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CHILZ - Lan Rig
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post #6 of 46
If you're new to OC'ing then you'll also want to read the Bulldozer/FX Owners thread for a lot of useful information.

http://www.overclock.net/t/1139726/amd-fx-bulldozer-owners-club

P.S. As noted above the Corsair hardware does leak and who knows how many people do not report the damage? Only you can decide if it's worth the hassles if/when you have a water leak and are without your PC for weeks, shipping hardware back and forth, rebuilding your PC, etc. and for what... a few degrees cooler CPU temp. if you buy the H100 at twice the price?

I have no stake in any cooler company so I suggest people Buy What Makes Them Happy - but educate yourself so you know the FACTS before you buy.
Edited by AMD4ME - 4/13/12 at 9:31am
post #7 of 46
Yeah sorry Amllradam. If you were here looking for facts, I didn't mean to give you my opinion. I was only trying to give you advice like you asked. I've never posted on forums very much, so I didn't keep in mind how my post could have turned into a air vs water pissfest. The only reason I recommended a closed loop system, is if you might be new to water cooling like I am. I personally have never even owned any aftermarket air coolers other than a an old Thermaltake heat sink with an 80mm fan about 10 years ago. I only know that when I switched to water, all of my friends were envious. I recommended a closed loop cooler as a starter, because they don't seem as overwhelming as a full-on watercooling system. If you do have a leak, Corsair or Antec or whoever made the closed loop cooler, usually replaces the damaged parts, whereas if you have a waterblock made by one company, and pump made by another company, and you get a leak I wouldn't be surprised if each company blames the other in order to avoid replacing damaged parts. After having the an antec h20 (I don't work for any cooler comapnies either lol), and having zero problems with it, the only thing I regret about it was getting the 120 radiator and not the 240. I just ordered the XSPC DC 750 RS240 http://www.xoxide.com/xspc-rasa750rs240-watercoolingkit.html and can't wait to get it in my nzxt phantom. I would suggest shopping around and of course buying whatever you want to buy, but I would look at many different cooling types, not just air. Hell, I've even considered thermoelectric cooling, but I don't have the balls to try it on my 8120 yet.
post #8 of 46
^^^ Insults, sarcasm and a bad attitude does NOT change reality, validate your beliefs or make for good forum social conduct.

The reason I participate on OCN is to HELP people learn how to HELP themselves via the use of Objective, Scientific Test Data. The scientific and engineering communities use Objective, Scientific Test Data to separate fact from fiction because one accurate scientific test is worth more than 1,000 meritless opinions. Everyone has an opinion but it does not mean that opinion is based in reality. That is why I provide references to Objective, Scientific test data that supports the information I post here to Help people.

Objective, scientific testing is very useful for making informed technical decisions be they quantifying CPU cooler performance, RAM OC'ing performance, PSU performance, etc. Many people may be unaware of this fact because they lack sufficient technical knowledge on scientific testing or maybe they simply undervalue the benefits of such.

There are many young people in forums who are inexperienced both technically and socially. As all forum TOS's advise you should keep the discussion relevant to the subject matter and NOT make your comments personal. If you disagree with someone's post then state your views in a RESPECTFUL, impersonal manner so that the discussion can remain civil, relevant and appropriate for everyone to learn from. Forums are a good opportunity for people of all ages to learn how to have respectful discussions without insults and personal attacks - which serve no useful purpose and do not change the reality of the technical subject being discussed.

If you have no interest in Objective, Scientific Test Data for use in making an informed technical decision on performance - that is Perfectly Fine. No one is holding a gun to your head and forcing you to learn or even consider the available objective technical information. I fully understand that for some folks modding a PC is a hobby and that they do not really care about objective test data. These folks just want to "play" with component changes, etc. so I always state in my comments that People Should Buy What Makes them Happy. It's your PC and you certainly can do with it whatever makes you happy.

This forum is a community of people most of whom are here for knowledge and enjoyment. Please act respectfully without condescending, acrimonious behavior that is a detriment to the community. It's easy to mis-interpret someone's written comments, so don't go Postal if someone posts a comment that you do not like or understand. It may have nothing to do with your post at all. When in doubt, politely ask. We can all benefit from civil, friendly technical PC discussions.
Edited by AMD4ME - 4/14/12 at 2:33pm
post #9 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AMD4ME View Post

^^^ The problem with closed loop coolers (CLCs), like Corsair H series, Antec, etc. is as follows:
Compared to highend HeatSink Fans, aka air coolers, independent objective testing has shown that CLCs are:

5. AIR is used to cool the radiator in closed loop liquid systems

i hate to be the bearer of bad news but, all water cooling is 'cooled by air' and custom loops are in the 'cooled by air' category. and custom absolutely kills closed loop and air coolers
also, I AM NOT ARGUING. I AM MERELY POINTING OUT TEC, CHILLERS, PHASE CHANGE, LN2 AND THE LIKE ARE THE 'NOT COOLED BY AIR' COOLERS.

please do not take my post as an argument. i would like to know why you or anyone else would point this out. the h100 is on par with the best of the air coolers from what i read. NO PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. only what i have read.

will you explain this please ?
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post #10 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pc-illiterate View Post

i hate to be the bearer of bad news but, all water cooling is 'cooled by air' and custom loops are in the 'cooled by air' category. and custom absolutely kills closed loop and air coolers
also, I AM NOT ARGUING. I AM MERELY POINTING OUT TEC, CHILLERS, PHASE CHANGE, LN2 AND THE LIKE ARE THE 'NOT COOLED BY AIR' COOLERS.
please do not take my post as an argument. i would like to know why you or anyone else would point this out. the h100 is on par with the best of the air coolers from what i read. NO PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. only what i have read.
will you explain this please ?

I don't take your comment as an argument at all. You aren't the bearer of bad news either as it's obvious to some of us that air is used to cool H2O/CLC systems which was precisely the point. The reason I pointed this out was because some folks mistakenly state that water cooling is thermally more efficient than air, when in fact air is the cooling medium being used and water is just used to transport the heat to a radiator where you guessed it AIR must remove the heat from the water.

Chillers and LN etc. are not part of CLCs - which is what this thread is about vs. HSFs, i.e. "Air" cooling. The H100 is the only currently available CLC that I have seen that can equal the performance of a highend HSF. Therefore it is the only one I would even consider using if for some reason I could not live without a CLC. Seeing as though the H100 has all of the negatives I previously listed, i.e. it's thermally inefficient, it's expensive, it's noisy and it has the very real liability of a water leak damaging hundreds of dollars of PC hardware, it has no technical upside if a person has room for a highend HSF that is virtually equal in thermal capacity, cost 1/2 the price, is quieter and does NOT have the water-leak liability compared to the H100.

So the results are:

A highend HSF is simply better in all technical metrics typically used by PC consumers when looking to purchase a CPU cooler:

1. Thermal efficiency

2. Cost

3. Noise

4. Reliability



A CLC might offer a technical advantage over a highend HSF if you do not have sufficient PC case space for a highend HSF. Then you might be able to fit a CLC but unless you use the H100 the thermal efficiency is poor, the cost higher than a HSF and the noise louder. All CLCs also have a very real water leak liability as others have confirmed from personal experience.

So from objective, scientific testing a highend HSF is the best choice for MOST people but as always I recommend that people Buy What Makes Them Happy. I present the objective, scientific test data for people who want to make a technically informed purchasing decision. People are completely free to buy whatever makes them happy - and I recommend they do so. Why wouldn't you? wink.gif
Edited by AMD4ME - 4/14/12 at 4:03pm
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