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Poll Results: What would be my best option?

  • 37% (3)
    Water cool
  • 50% (4)
    Add better case fans
  • 12% (1)
    Case Side mod with 2 120 or 140MM fans to pull out the hot air
8 Total Votes  
post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hey all! Sorry if I posted in the wrong forum, but this seemed like the right place.

I've been coming here for awhile to learn more about computers, and definitely have thanks to everyone here. (And the flame wars always gave me a good laugh), but now I come for help of my own.

I have a dual SLI MSI GTX 770s (2GB TF version) and I am not liking the temps they are hitting. With one card, after replacing the thermal paste and keeping the fan at 100% I was hitting 76-77C on furmark burn in test. Obviously it will be even higher on the top graphics card.

I know my temperatures are partly due to bad case airflow in my Corsair Carbide 540 Air. (Wonderful case, horrible fans)

I've read that the fans they come with really aren't their quality 140s, they are kind of a cheap knock off. I also bought the Coolermaster 4 in1 120mm fan pack to add to my case, which have helped out a little. I plan on upgrading to 3 120s Gentle Typhoons in the front (The bottom one hits the GFX cards dead on) .

I am curious as to whether or not a case mod with 2 120s or 140s right next to the graphics cards would pull enough heat out to not have to watercool them, or should I just watercool them (I've planned on doing a custom loop for my CPU anyway)

The problem with watercooling them is that I will have to use a universal block for them and then put some extra heat spreaders on the ram, etc. It comes with a block that covers the most of the ram, etc, but I don't think even with good airflow that the plate would be enough to dissipate the heat, so I would either have to add heatsinks to that plate or ditch the plate completely.

Would those heat spreaders really be enough, with good case airflow, to justify adding water cooling blocks?

Also, while I prefer performance to looks, I didn't pay 2k+ for my setup to have it look like crap. So, I'd prefer to not to look like total crap.

I will add photos of case, graphics card pulled apart, etc, whatever you want on request when I get off work.
post #2 of 9
hello and welcome to OCN. I noticed this is your first post. please take your time to create a rig on your profile page or click the rigbuilder button on the top right of the page (above logout) to create a rig and then add it to your signature, this way it people on the forums would be able to see what kind of components you are dealing with.

I googled your case and from the pictures i noticed it is kind of unique where it is not a tall full tower. that being the case... watercooling would be an expensive solution.

Since you didnt mention your motherboard I do not know if your cards would be sandwiched together or not. but i am guessing there is at least one empty slot between both cards. that should be enough.

another solution is that you can get the EVGA precision software. through that software you are able to limit your in-game FPS (in my case i limit my FPS to 90 in all games. thats what i believe provides enough smoothness). another thing you are able to do with this software is that you can set a temperature limit on the cards and what that would do is. you can keep your fans spinning to auto and the card will automatically adjust its fan speed and also throttle the card (decreases its voltage / clock) to not make it exceed the target temp. I find that very useful.

keep inmind that furmark is a very GPU intensive program. having two cards in SLI makes them output more heat, and yet if you overclock they will heat up even more.

furmark running at 76-77c is totally fine and normal. you should be worried if a GPU is getting ~95c. other games and application will not cause your GPU to run that hot. Furmark is just a worse case scenario.

Just add good, decent fans to your system, make sure the cards getting cool air. since you mentioned that your cards are the TwinFrozer design i believe they have an open shroud design. with a closed case expect to have higher temps. dont blame the cards, just try to make them cooler by adding fans.

hope this helps and good luck
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
I have already built my rig, I guess I forgot to add it to my signature. Sorry about that. I have an MSI Z87 G45 Mobo, it has a decent distance between the cards for what it is.

I understand watercooling is very expensive, and I have a few ideas how to do it, I just have not delved into it as far as I need to. I prepared to pay around 500 for the watercooling loop.

Do you think after adding better fans to the case (all around) That it would still have to have dual 120s or 140s modded to the side of the case to pull the hot air out?


Here is my rig just in case it doesn't update after me adding it to my sig.

As for watercooling, I believe my best option would be to add casters to the PSU side of the case to allow me to put that side on the bottom, and then use a 360MM rad up front and use a push pull config for the whole loop, Adding dust filters to the top and back side and use 3 140mm fans to pull cool air into the case. The reservoir and pump I am looking at is http://www.amazon.com/Koolance-Reservoir-Pump-5-25-Drive/dp/B006JCH4N4/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_S_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=1STSJROS5QYM&coliid=IT24R9RVXLJ98

I'm not positive if this will be enough flow for the whole system, I've never built a watercooling system, and am not too terribly knowledgeable about it as of yet.

I'm trying to keep it a positive pressure system, but if I can't, that's fine. I'll just make sure to clean it periodically.

Is there anything I'm missing?
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Just wanted to add a quick update. I have just bought a H110 from a friend for around 60 bucks, a deal I couldn't really pass up on, I felt. It'll go in my streaming system/video capture system once I upgrade to a custom built loop, It'll have Corsair fans in a push pull out the top of the case with 3 Scythe Gentle Typhoon AP-15s on the front. I'll see how that does when I get all the stuff tomorrow and update this on my thoughts afterwords.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Received products today. Well, the H110 was missing the LGA115x back bracket. So I gave it back to my friend and ordered a brand new one. (Oh well) I did however do some much needed wire management and installed the Scythe GT AP-15s. ERHMERGERD the difference... I hover at 28-29C on the top card and 25C on the bottom card. These things are freaking amazing. I thought I put them in the wrong way because I was feeling airflow on the outside of the case, turns out, they were just pulling so much air over my hand that I thought it was pushing out! Not to mention those wonderful fans are freaking silent even at 100%. (Obviously not silent, definitely some quality fans though.

Overall, I'm very happy. I was only hitting 74C on Furmark with both cards running and I was hitting 80C with just one card running. I am very pleased, and have decided holding off one water cooling until my next build. (I'll be getting reference design cards next time to make my life easier for a W/C solution.

I'll report back tomorrow as I have elected for one day shipping for my cooler (Amazon Prime ftw)
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Received the new H110 today. I was slightly disappointed to see that my idle hadn't really change, not a big deal, because that doesn't really mean much. Anyways. I got it, was about to install it and couldn't find my Artic Cooler 5. So, I just had to use the crappy thermal paste that Coolermaster shipped with my 212 EVO. To my surpise, my max during BF3 went down a considering 10-15C per core. I was quite happy with that considering I've got the crappy 140MM case fans on it. I'm going to order some nice 140MM fans for it tomorrow or Friday. Hopefully that will further decrease my temps and my new Artic 5 will be here friday, I'll be installing that also. Hopefully I can see about 5-10C drop with those improvements.
post #7 of 9
You could get a better radiator fan, something with a higher static pressure (something like Gentle typhoons or Corsair SP fans), it should help lower your temps a bit more. As for the graphic cards, try improving your airflow, or if things aren't too noisy maybe in addition to that a custom fan profile could help a bit.
Edited by fil1p - 8/14/13 at 9:06pm
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
I've got three ao-15s as intakes. My problem with my rad is it is a 280MM. So I need 140MM fans. I'd rather do 120s with adaptors, buti don't have room in my case for that.

sent from a small tablet aka N2
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
*ap. Silly phone.

sent from a small tablet aka N2
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