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Newby Watercooling, need sanity-check / expert-opinion

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi OCN,

I've long been pondering on getting some proper watercooling going but so far it has been delayed because Intel keeps smearing crappy paste between chip and IHS.
But nonetheless I'll be taking the plunge in at least getting a watercooling setup going while also allowing for expansion when I do decide to upgrade.

Preface

I'm not entirely sure on what hardware I want to cool, it'll either be a i7 or i7-e with 1 or 2 near-top-end GPU's.

Current "wishlist":

CaseLabs STH10, 2x 560 rad mounts for bottom, couple of non-wc-related thingies like drive bays etc.

2x 560 Phobya rads
8x 140mm gelid silent PWM fans (for rads)
~5x 120mm gelid silent PWM fans (case/bays)

Coolance RP-452X2 Dual 5.25in Reservoir for 1-2 PMP-450/S Pumps, Rev.2.0
2x Alphacool VPP655

CPU/GPU blocks undecided (see preface)

The cooling setup in my mind: (google-docs image)

Waterflow

https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1cvbFoT1bGjKaVOceD4f7yQKFjZCn7sofakK_fz7D5P8/edit?usp=sharing

Following image:
Have bay-res slightly above highest (cpu in this case) watercooling part.
Output from res on the rightside (when looking from the top)
Straight to cpu -> gpu -> gpu.

From gpu to the right-block top-inlet. From right-block bottom inlet to the left-block bottom with a T-part to allow for easy draining.
From the top-port of the left block straight to the left-side of the res inlet port.


Airflow & fans

As per picture: Pulling (filtered) air into the right-side rad, across the "chasm" and pulling the air out of the left-side rad (no filter since output)
Now to offset the CFM loss at the filtered intake I also placed a filtered 120mm intake in the front to create positive pressure.

I also thought that (using a PWM splitter) I could have all 8 rad fans on my CPUFAN1 and use a 2nd PWm splitter to attach all the case fans (all 120mm's) to CPUFAN2 (or a pwm-capable systemfan_1, hoping that those are PWM-capable!)


Measurement & Control

I'm unsure on this topic. Only using the fans as indication of a working system seem rather dangerous.
I'd have to put in a flowmeter (either at the output port of the res/pumps or at the inlet or outlet of the CPU block) and one of those boards that translates the RPM to a signal that the CPUFAN_1 can understand (and then move all the PWM fans to CPUFAN_2).

Question is; is it worth the ~50,- investement in a flowmeter that I can plug into my motherboard to ensure working order of both pumps and fans through the BIOS ?

I also thought about temp meters but those seem kinda pointless anyway.


With all this in mind, feel free to make suggestions, or tell me if something in this setup might not work the way I thought it would.

Thanks in advance!

- Karrok
post #2 of 8
Looks pretty good. The hardware you use is up to you and your budget. You can't really go too wrong there.

For air flow on the two rads, I would think you would want outside air being pulled into both rads. If you have the same air blowing through both rads, it won't be as cool.

You don't really need a flowmeter or temp. They could be handy to have, but you really shouldn't have to have them.
BlueShift
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BlueShift
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post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
but by having both fan-rads work against each other instead of in a cross-flow wouldn't that be more counterproductive then "just" having one rad pull in the (already flowing) air from the other rad?
post #4 of 8
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Edited by dr/owned - 7/24/13 at 2:48am
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karrok View Post

but by having both fan-rads work against each other instead of in a cross-flow wouldn't that be more counterproductive then "just" having one rad pull in the (already flowing) air from the other rad?

That's called sandwiching: you're attempting to cool water with air that is already saturated with heat from going through a previous radiator. You always want to use fresh air on radiators.
post #6 of 8
Radiators work by changing the temperature of the air flowing through them. To cool dense water a much larger volume of air needs to be raised in temp. The more air volume that is raised in temperature the more cooling effect provided. Two radiators drawing in cool air effect 8 X 140mm of air. Two rads recycling air only effect the same the 4 X 140mm of air. That would be fine if radiators were not very efficient but they are and the air coming out of one is usually very close in temp to the water inside them, especially at low, quite fan speeds. The end result is using two rads to get an effect not much greater than one.

Having two radiators in a small space like that is ok if there is say, a top vent where both can exhaust but having them fight each other as intake with limited exhaust space limits the overall airflow that both can effect too.

Ideally each radiator would have access to cool intake air and a clear, easy exhaust path. eg .. one in the top and one in the bottom for a huge case like the STH10
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post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dr/owned View Post

Beyond overkill.

Wait, this is OCN right? Or is this the Fisherprice-watercooling departement? ;-)
The overkill is intended smile.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrocutor View Post

That's called sandwiching: you're attempting to cool water with air that is already saturated with heat from going through a previous radiator. You always want to use fresh air on radiators.

Ok, good point, I altered the picture from First post. Drawing in fresh air from both sides, and having a front 12mm fan that would aid in pushing the hotter air out the back (which I'd then need to get ventilated)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jakusonfire View Post

Radiators work by changing the temperature of the air flowing through them. To cool dense water a much larger volume of air needs to be raised in temp. The more air volume that is raised in temperature the more cooling effect provided. Two radiators drawing in cool air effect 8 X 140mm of air. Two rads recycling air only effect the same the 4 X 140mm of air. That would be fine if radiators were not very efficient but they are and the air coming out of one is usually very close in temp to the water inside them, especially at low, quite fan speeds. The end result is using two rads to get an effect not much greater than one.

Having two radiators in a small space like that is ok if there is say, a top vent where both can exhaust but having them fight each other as intake with limited exhaust space limits the overall airflow that both can effect too.

Ideally each radiator would have access to cool intake air and a clear, easy exhaust path. eg .. one in the top and one in the bottom for a huge case like the STH10

I kind of assumed that due to the fairly large volume and velocity of the air in the crossflow that the air wouldn't pick up _that_ much heat to impact the 2nd rad.

I also considered only having 1 rad in bottom and 1 in top but that feels like I'm wasting space. Instead I intend to have the top reserved for my main PSU and somehow get a mATX board in there (which would also eat up the 2nd psu slot there) and use that as a "nas", 2 systems 1 box.

Thanks for your input so far guys! Really awesome to get some help from the pro's smile.gif
Edited by Karrok - 7/17/13 at 11:13am
post #8 of 8
Quote:
Ok, good point, I altered the picture from First post. Drawing in fresh air from both sides, and having a front 12mm fan that would aid in pushing the hotter air out the back (which I'd then need to get ventilated)
Keep in mind that the STH10 has a removable bottom, so you could pull air in the bottom and out the sides (through radiators) (or vice versa) if you wanted too and completely seal off the bottom from the rest of the case. The castors give the bottom a good 75mm of clearance (don't know how much the feet give).
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