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Help Picking fans for my Corsair Air 540 360+240(?) loop...cost/performance/looks balancing

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
So, I’ve been planning on watercooling my Corsair Air 540 Case.
Starting point will be a XSPC D5 Raystorm kit, prob with the EX360 as I hesitate dropping in the thicker RX that could cause issues with clearance both for the top 240 rad that will probably be added, and longer than my current 670 GPU.
Using an RX also forfeits using the included dust filter adding the fans inside the shroud for push-pull, and a push-pull EX already outperforms a push RX, so…

Thus EX240+EX360 will be probably the best choice. The 240 is probably redundant atm, but I preffer adding it / planning for it now, saving headaches later.
The plan has it mounting the the pump/res combo on top of the PSU, leaving the 5,25” drive slots available.

The color scheme gravitates more towards a white / blue, matching my P9X79 Pro. Ram is Samsung with no heat spreaders, so those don’t really contribute to the looks.
EVGA 670 is “vanilla” air-cooled blower, black-shinny white stickers. I will stay with it on air, probably dropping a WC next gen GPU (or a 780 if I find it @ good price), so it is just the 3930K for now.
Tubing for the loop will thus probably be white.

The big question, are the fans. There will be quite a few of them, potentially a big chunk of money.
I know the selection is insane, but I am trying to keep it easy, focusing in 3-4 models:


* Corsair SP120 PWM Performance: probably on a Swiftech PWM splitter/Asus Qfan to keep them pooring a tad slower than max. Not sure about the color scheme: not a big fan of the corsair 120s look wise...still good performers and when bought in pairs are kinda affordable~$16/fan, around $160 for 10 pc.

* Nexus Basic 120mm - I kinda like the black body / white rotor Nexus Basic 120mm and reviews are quite favorable. ~$12/fan, around $120 for 10 pc.

* NZXT black/white base model...absolute cheapest ~$7/ fan, around $70 for 10 pc.

* Gentle Typhoons. Ok, maybe the best all-around, but price is steeper, and the gray rotor is not great looking. I don’t want to get into painting processes. Does match the 140s that came with the 540 tho… ~$18-19/fan, around $190 for 10 pc.

Ofc the more GTs the better, but been thinking that the 2nd rad will almost be "free" and overall performance better going with cheaper fans, over going with just the 360 and GT fans...

Your thoughts?
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post #2 of 5
The EX rads need a good fan, they are thin with a high fpi. I would go with the gentle typhoons if you want good performance out of those rads. Most fan controllers use voltage to change speed not pwm. Since you're going with a fan controller you could probably go with the ap-45 over the 15, they run at 2150rpm.
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post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
We are still talking push-pull in either case, so, yes, GTs will be the best choice, but...money differ significally

Loop hard cost with EX 360 + D5 Pump/res + Raystorm = $260
Push Pull (6fans) GT AP15 = $108

EX240 + fittings = $70
Push Pull (4fans) GT AP15 = $72


Total cost with GT fan combo: $510
Total cost with AP120 : $490 (insignificant)
Total cost with Nexus Basic : $450 (EX240 is practically "free")
Total cost with NZXT 120mm : $400 (EX240 + pushpull fans for it practically "free")

Since budget is an issue for me, I do think of it "360mm rad + GTs" = "600mm rad + NZXTs". Quite hard for GTs to beat that in total performance: despite their impressive results 1vs1, when budget comes in play, it stops being "1vs1".

So, should I stick with the 360 for now, and get the "better fans", or go all out with cheaper fans...the total $ with GTs and both rads is scary heh? (it is for me)...should I stick with my Silver Arrow? tongue.gif
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post #4 of 5
what about the swiftech helix fans?
http://www.sidewindercomputers.com/swhe12mmcofa.html
$8 a pop

or maybe some yate loon medium fans http://www.jab-tech.com/120mm-fans/yate-loon-120mm-case-fan-d12sm-12-direct-from-yl/
$6 a pop, or $5 if you buy 4 or more fans at once


and this isn't me trying to be a snob, but watercooling isn't cheap, and you have a pretty decent air cooler so i don't see much reason for you to get into the money pits that watercooling rigs are
Edited by somebadlemonade - 7/11/13 at 3:02pm
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post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by somebadlemonade View Post

what about the swiftech helix fans?
http://www.sidewindercomputers.com/swhe12mmcofa.html
$8 a pop

or maybe some yate loon medium fans http://www.jab-tech.com/120mm-fans/yate-loon-120mm-case-fan-d12sm-12-direct-from-yl/
$6 a pop, or $5 if you buy 4 or more fans at once

this right here. cant beat loons price/performance ratio. the helix fans are pretty much a gt copy, not quite but close enough.
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