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Mounting D5 Pump/Res Combo in Fractal R3

post #1 of 6
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I'm investigating water cooling the CPU and GPU on my current gaming rig, which is in a Fractal Design Define R3 case. To cool my GPU and CPU I intend to mount a 240mm rad at the top of the case and a 120mm rad at the bottom intake behind the PSU. I intend to get the XSPC Raystorm D5 EX240 Water Cooling Kit along with a separate full cover GPU block and XSPC EX120 Radiator as the XPSC kit provides much better value than purchasing all of the components separately. However, it comes with a dual bay pump/reservoir and I don't have any spare bays available for it. Could I mount combo pump/res in the hard drive rack? Would this interfere with airflow too much?

As an alternative option I'm considering removing the hard drive rack and installing a EX240 radiator at the front rather than a EX120 radiator on the bottom. This would require me to mount the pump/reservoir on the floor of the case. Would it matter that the reservoir is the low point?

Photo of my setup is shown below.

My Rig
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post #2 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by kesawi View Post

I'm investigating water cooling the CPU and GPU on my current gaming rig, which is in a Fractal Design Define R3 case. To cool my GPU and CPU I intend to mount a 240mm rad at the top of the case and a 120mm rad at the bottom intake behind the PSU. I intend to get the XSPC Raystorm D5 EX240 Water Cooling Kit along with a separate full cover GPU block and XSPC EX120 Radiator as the XPSC kit provides much better value than purchasing all of the components separately. However, it comes with a dual bay pump/reservoir and I don't have any spare bays available for it. Could I mount combo pump/res in the hard drive rack? Would this interfere with airflow too much?
As an alternative option I'm considering removing the hard drive rack and installing a EX240 radiator at the front rather than a EX120 radiator on the bottom. This would require me to mount the pump/reservoir on the floor of the case. Would it matter that the reservoir is the low point?
Photo of my setup is shown below. *Snip* (Click to show)
My Rig


First, make sure you are 100% certain that a 240mm rad will actually fit up top in your R3 and clear your particular motherboard. R3's/R4's are notoriously hard to fit top rads without modding and the such. Fractal did not move the rad mounts further towards main side of this case on these 2 like they did on a lot of their other cases. Other than that, you should be able to fit the 240 up front with a little work as far as I know. Also look at the overall wattage you are trying to water cool and make sure you have enough radiator surface to cool it within the parameters you deem acceptable. As for the pump/res, you could always just mount them between the front 240mm rad and the mobo itself. There should be enough room there for a single pump/cylindrical 150mm tube res. I would imagine putting it right in the direct path of the airflow (in the HDD area) might hinder it a bit, depending on the size of it all. The res being the low point is fine, and if you have the res/pump at the bottom like that it could help you easily set up a drain port for simple maintenance/draining of the system. Hope this helps, give a shout if you have anything else. thumb.gif


Regards,
Addiction
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post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
From the research I've done I understand it is a pain to fit a 240 Rad up the top, but that it can be done with some minor modifications (Watercooling Fractal Design R3).

My system draws around 351W at full load (GPU + CPU) when stress testing and that's with both overclocked on air. My understanding is a 240 rad dissipates 300W and a 120 rad dissipates 150W giving a combined total of 450W. Allowing for some extra overclocking with water I should fit under 450W. If I add another GPU then I’ll need another rad, but I'll deal with that if it ever happens.

I will look at the cylindrical reservoirs but it means I won’t be able to go with the XSPC kit. I am trying to keep the cost down where possible (which I think is an impossibility with water cooling) and hence why I was looking at the kit.
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post #4 of 6
You ever plan on using all those hard drive bays? That's a lot of wasted space the could be utilized.
 
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post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by kesawi View Post

From the research I've done I understand it is a pain to fit a 240 Rad up the top, but that it can be done with some minor modifications (Watercooling Fractal Design R3).
My system draws around 351W at full load (GPU + CPU) when stress testing and that's with both overclocked on air. My understanding is a 240 rad dissipates 300W and a 120 rad dissipates 150W giving a combined total of 450W. Allowing for some extra overclocking with water I should fit under 450W. If I add another GPU then I’ll need another rad, but I'll deal with that if it ever happens.
I will look at the cylindrical reservoirs but it means I won’t be able to go with the XSPC kit. I am trying to keep the cost down where possible (which I think is an impossibility with water cooling) and hence why I was looking at the kit.


You are indeed right there, it can be a tad expensive; however, the kit you are looking at is what, around 250 USD? You can do a loop with components you choose for ~150 USD more, give or take a few dollars. It would give you more flexibility with your purchasing power. As far as the overall amount of rad, indeed you should be fine there and get some decent temps if that is all your system is pulling under stress tests. If you want some help piecing together a loop from scratch, you can shoot me a PM. Alternatively, you could just post again asking for some help in the matter if you end up needing it and I'm sure someone with the knowledge will be lurking the forums (although you seem to have a firm grasp on the numbers side of things, so I imagine you might already have it all figured out-apologies in advance if you do and this comes across as belittling in any way, as it isn't meant too biggrin.gif). Either way, looks like it will be a fun and promising build. thumb.gif


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post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by deafboy View Post

You ever plan on using all those hard drive bays? That's a lot of wasted space the could be utilized.
I don't intend on installing any more hard drives as I keep all of my data on my HTPC. I've though about removing the bays to create more room and sticking a 240mm radiator up the front instead of a 120mm. I do find the cage useful to secure cabling on so that things are a bit neater (I've tidied up my cabling since the photo in the first post was taken). It also gives something solid to mount things like the pump and reservoir to. I'm considering taking out the front half of the drive bay and leaving the rear for that reason.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Addiction View Post

Quoted Post (Click to show)
You are indeed right there, it can be a tad expensive; however, the kit you are looking at is what, around 250 USD? You can do a loop with components you choose for ~150 USD more, give or take a few dollars. It would give you more flexibility with your purchasing power. As far as the overall amount of rad, indeed you should be fine there and get some decent temps if that is all your system is pulling under stress tests. If you want some help piecing together a loop from scratch, you can shoot me a PM. Alternatively, you could just post again asking for some help in the matter if you end up needing it and I'm sure someone with the knowledge will be lurking the forums (although you seem to have a firm grasp on the numbers side of things, so I imagine you might already have it all figured out-apologies in advance if you do and this comes across as belittling in any way, as it isn't meant too biggrin.gif). Either way, looks like it will be a fun and promising build. thumb.gif
Regards,
Addiction

Addiction, I greatly appreciate your offer and assistance so far. No offence is taken thumb.gif

After a little more investigation and doing the sums, it's not much more cost to put together something that is a little more specific than the kit. The kit contains a lot of things such as LEDs which I'm not interested in. I'm considering the following based on what I have available locally:

1 x PrimoChill Antimicrobial Tube Coil Silver
3m x PrimoChill PrimoFlex Pro LRT Tubing Clear 1/2ID 3/4OD
2 x Koolance QDC Extreme Flow No-Spill Female VL4N-F13-19S
2 x Koolance QDC Extreme Flow No-Spill Male VL4N-M13-19S
10 x XSPC G1/4 Chrome 1/2 Compression Fittings
1 x XSPC D5 Vario Pump with Front Cover (don't need cover but store I'm buying from doesn't have plain pump)
1 x XSPC Premium Acrylic Reservoir for Laing D5 Pumps
2 x XSPC EX240 Radiator
1 x Heatkiller GPU-X³ GTX 680 LT Water Block
1 x Heatkiller GPU GTX 680 Backplate (is this essential?)
1 x XSPC RayStorm CPU Waterblock for Intel

All up AUD568 plus AUD31 shipping.

My intention is to mount one radiator at the top and the other at the front. I'd mount the pump and reservoir over the fan mount on the base.

I would use the two existing Noctua NF-F12 PWM 120mm Fans from my Megahalems on one radiator and two of my existing Noctua NF-S12B FLX 120mm Case Fans on the other. Will the NF-S12B fans have enough static head for the radiator? I'd prefer to run them with the ultra low noise adaptors to keep things quiet. Silence is my primary goal and am prepared to sacrifice some cooling gains to achieve it. With my low thermal load vs radiator cooling capacity I assume I won't take too much of a hit?

Rather than inserting a T-piece for draining the loop I intend to use the quick connect couplings either side of the pump.

I do like the look of the Aquacomputer Aquaero 5 LT and am temped to throw in some inline temperature sensors, a flow meter, Aqualis XT reservoir and the Aquabus D5 pump but that adds another AUD353 on top. While it would be nice to have a fancy control and monitoring interface I'm not sure whether I would get any real benefit out of it.
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