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Long time air cooler going liquid, answer a couple of Qs for me please?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi Guys,

I'm a PC enthusiast since the first 'home' PCs and an IT man by trade. I've always been a gamer as well as an outright performance enthusiast, but never really taken a look at watercooling. What follows is boring back story, skip the next 2 paragraphs if you just want the questions...

At the beginning of 2014, like many suckers, I thought I was going to get rich mining litecoin, more fool me. I spent a ridiculous amount of money (nearly $7000) building 2 mining rigs with 4 AMD R9 290Xes in each. Needless to say after a promising start, it all went to pot, and after about 2 and a half months of mining, I decided it was time to turn them off and try to get some money back for the hardware. That proved difficult as a lot of others were also having the same thoughts, and the market was flooded with used high end graphics cards for a while (probably still is). So recently I gave up on the idea of selling the stuff off, with basically, one complete rig left, bar one of the Radeon cards (so I had 3 cards left and a motherboard with a CPU and some RAM). My wife was pushing me for a round of upgrades at the house (her own desktop was still running Vista!), so I figured, what the heck, I'll gift her my current PC (an i7 2600k and an MSI Lightning GTX680), and I'll turn the leftovers of the rig into my new gaming beast. So that's what I did. See the full specs in my sig, a few things were taken from the old rig (SSDs for example, my wife doesn't need them), and the result is what you see. Its a killer machine, but OMG those GPUs are noisy compared to my old MSI that I honestly, never ever heard, ever.

So I figured water cooling is the answer, and a really serious case. So I started looking at 'really serious' cases, and was stunned at the cost of a good Silverstone case (for example), so I sat back and thought about it... Hang on, I've been promising myself a new desk, and my wife to redesign the space in our office at home, so lets kill all birds with one stone without buying a ridiculously expensive case. I'm a relatively talented artist for an IT dude and I have some design experience, so I've designed a desk that will incorporate the pc case slung under the right half of the desk with a nice window so I can see my pride and joy all lit in UV, etc.

Here is the TL;DR...

I've decided to build the enclosure (PC Case) in a classic desktop (as opposed to 'tower', motherboard facing the sky) configuration, out of hardwood, using 1mm of anti vibration rubber between every single piece to keep pump and fan resonance and vibrations to a minimum. I will then internally soundproof the whole enclosure with soundproofing foam like you see on the walls of studios (albeit with a smaller pattern).

My loop will be... Alphacool UT60 quad (480mm) to a pair of D5 variant pumps in series, to a 250mm frozenQ liquid fusion reservoir, to the pair of 290x blocks, to the CPU block and round again to the rad.

1) I mentioned that noise is an issue, but so is cooling, and the space will be (completely) enclosed apart from an air exhaust that will have gone through several soundproofed chambers first, obviously I don't know exactly how effective the soundproofing will be yet, so I'm going to assume that I will be running the fans at around 1200-1400 rpm with 8 fans push/pull. Can someone recommend fans with good static pressure that will be effective with that rad at that speed for this loop?

2) Do I need 2 pumps for this? I am going to have 2 pumps anyway, mainly for redundancy reasons (as I don't expect to be able to hear if something has stopped, due to soundproofing), but do I 'NEED' two pumps for this loop? This is more of a curiosity question...

3) What speed should I run the pumps at?

4) Can the FrozenQ Liquid Fusion reservoirs be run laying down? I really want to use one of these as it will go well with the lighting and look I want for the interior. I guess as long as the bottom side ports are facing down (albeit at 45*) and the whole thing is above the pumps, I'll be ok...? Anyone foresee an issue there?

5) I want minimum fuss, maximum security for my fittings, and I don't know a thing about WC fittings, please can someone make a quality (but not bank-busting) recommendation in this regard?

Thanks folks, and please feel free to point out any concerns you may have for this loop, or check if I've considered everything I need to...thanks again.
Edited by Aashenfox - 10/20/14 at 5:48am
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post #2 of 7
1. Personally - i like Gentle typhoons. But they are hard to find. People have good luck using Cougars PWM's, Noiseblocker E-loops, noctua's. Now since you'll be running them around 1200 RPM - i suggest you want more rad space than your current (1) 480. Those 290x produce a lot of heat.

2. A single D5 is plenty to run that loop. If you want redundancy - go ahead. But its not needed. D5's are a workhouse.

3. If they are in enclosure with sound proofing - you can run them at 5 and noise wont matter.

4. No personal experience

5. You have a barb and compression fittings. G 1/4" is the WC standard now for fittings. Any G 1/4" fittings can fit on that hole. Tubing goes over the barb and you have a clamp or something (zip ties) to hold the tubing over the barb. Compression fittings using the collar to compress the tubing against the fitting. I have a mix of Bitspower, Barrows, Enzotech, swiftech (about 45+ fittings) that i have use through the years. I had 2 or 3 fittings leak because i put too much strain on the joint (both was a double rotary 90*). If you're looking at matt black fittings - i suggest you look into Barrow fittings. They're just as good as bitspower for a cheaper price.

If you're going to put all of that in a soundproof enclosure - your fans might be starve of fresh air. Just plan out your enclosure carefully.
Edited by Ironsmack - 10/20/14 at 8:14am
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks v much for your thoughts.

Wow, more rad? Really? I thought the 60mm 480 with push and pull would be massive overkill. I'll consider running the fans faster, as adding another rad will cause redesign of the entire enclosure. What speed would you recommend for this setup, assuming plenty of intake and exhaust capability?

Air in and out shouldn't be a problem, but I'll sketch up a quick version of how I foresee the intakes/outtakes working and post up when I'm closer to starting to get the screwdrivers out.

Lastly, is there any DISadvantage to running the pumps on 5 all the time apart from noise, vibration and current consumption? Or is more flow always better? I guess I'm asking if the water can be going round too fast?

I almost hesitate to ask this as it sounds a bit silly, but can you do a radiator club sandwich? Imagine, one row of fans pushing, then the rad, then another row of fans pulling and pushing in the middle, then another rad, then one last set of fans pulling? So like, two rads and three rows of fans in the same sandwich?
Edited by Aashenfox - 10/20/14 at 8:33am
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post #4 of 7
One pump should be just fine. I have mine cranked up to 5 when I'm putting it under stress (pair of 290x, CPU, and similar amount of rad space) but drop it down when I'm just browsing, it may be a bit overkill though.

Go ahead and spend the extra $50 bucks and get the nice Bitspower compression fittings. Peace of mind that there won't be any issues, extremely easy to use and they look fantastic.

For the res, it will be just fine as long as it's above the pump, however, filling it and bleeding air from it will be pretty tough if it's on it's side. it can be done, but it won't be easy for sure.

edit: The Rad with a push pull should actually be plenty big enough. I've got 2 290x's clocked to 1100/1420, and a 4790k I-7 in my loop with a 30mm 180x2 rad and a 45mm thick 120mm rad and the GPU's don't break 50 degrees. CPU gets hot (around 70) but I'm positive that's my fault for improperly mounting the block. I do have 2 180mm AP 182 fans turned up so I'm maximizing the full potential of the radiator space I've got, but it's still enough for my loop which is basically the same as yours.
Edited by DNMock - 10/20/14 at 10:21am
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DNMock View Post

One pump should be just fine. I have mine cranked up to 5 when I'm putting it under stress (pair of 290x, CPU, and similar amount of rad space) but drop it down when I'm just browsing, it may be a bit overkill though.

Go ahead and spend the extra $50 bucks and get the nice Bitspower compression fittings. Peace of mind that there won't be any issues, extremely easy to use and they look fantastic.

For the res, it will be just fine as long as it's above the pump, however, filling it and bleeding air from it will be pretty tough if it's on it's side. it can be done, but it won't be easy for sure

Thanks smile.gif I have a plan for that, I'll have a glass lid into a recess on th desk, no fixings, just resting on anti vibration rubber in the recessed desk surface, I can lift it out to place the reservoir upright at my convenience. smile.gif

I have another question, how long can piping be? What effect does long piping have on the system? I could do something a bit more interresting with intake/outtake and make it even more soundproof if I can be allowed a few sections of long piping...not crazy long, like a couple of 1m sections, lets say.
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Mine Kampf
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post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aashenfox View Post

Thanks smile.gif I have a plan for that, I'll have a glass lid into a recess on th desk, no fixings, just resting on anti vibration rubber in the recessed desk surface, I can lift it out to place the reservoir upright at my convenience. smile.gif

I have another question, how long can piping be? What effect does long piping have on the system? I could do something a bit more interresting with intake/outtake and make it even more soundproof if I can be allowed a few sections of long piping...not crazy long, like a couple of 1m sections, lets say.

Here is for 1 D5, since you plan on having two it's obviously gonna be a lot higher.



Basically at a setting of 5 on your pump, once you have 4 ft of tubing you will have the same flow rate/pressure as you would with the pump set to 1 as it's coming out the pump. Using guesswork and logic (not math where the real answer is, I'm too lazy to do it right now), you should be fine with two pumps going and no real issues up to about 10 feet, then you will see some performance drop. That being said, 10 ft of tubing is a hell of a lot.
Edited by DNMock - 10/20/14 at 9:47am
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the explanation of the data. Seems like there's minimal benefit running more than setting 4 in any case. Interesting.
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