Originally Posted by DaClownie
$115 - 5.5% with code OCN55... so $108. With that being said, he could go apples to apples, get a 240mm radiator for $48, 115 for res/pump. 6 barbs for $12 (XSPC chrome g1/4), XSPC Raystorm block for $50, $10 for tubing (really only need 6ft to be safe, but 8ft to be super safe). $25 for 2 SP120 fans... $243... after discount $229 plus shipping, plus leaving him the option to go with a water block and expand later.
That being said, a custom loop here with a 240mm radiator, should perform better. The DDC3.2 will have a much higher flow rate, the SP120 fans are great for radiators, the radiator you're going to get is AT LEAST as good a the ones from a H100, and the XSPC raystorm water block should cool better as well. He can spend $30 extra for a 360mm radiator to allow himself the overhead to install a GPU block later if he so chooses. the AIO doesn't allow that flexibility.
The question of whether it's worth it is 100 percent his call because the dollars don't make sense, even for a AIO. It's just a matter of where his passions and interests reside. That's why in this unofficial Monsoon outpost, we spend so much. We're passionate about awesome aesthetic parts for our loops. We obviously perceive a great value on appearance AND performance. We're paying the premium for such luxuries, but that's because they are just that: luxuries.
First off with that XSPC res theres a reason its 108 lol, those things are terrible, the black ones are not bad but the old clear ones are known for leaking issues, they are glued together and poorly at that lol. Thats to to mention the fact that a DDC in that environment will only last a year or 2, A DDC has to have a heat sink at the very least airflow that has neither that is a terrible combo.
The Kracken I linked has a 280mm rad it has the same surface area as that 360. " The DDC3.2 will have a much higher flow rate" is irrelevant the AIOs will provide the 1gpm needed and that is all you need more than that will not improve temps really at all. We are not talking a huge restrictive loop here AIOs are designed with pumps to handle what they have with over 1gpm. The DDC pump also does not have a high flow rate its pro is pressure where in this kind of loop does not matter. I will give you that the Raystorm will surpass the AIOs CPU block even then we are talking a couple of degrees C.
" a 360mm radiator to allow himself the overhead to install a GPU block later if he so chooses. the AIO doesn't allow that flexibility." first off no.
In no world is a 360 rad enough for an overclocked CPU and a GPU even at stock, just no. At that point you would be better off Air cooling. I currently have my case torn down s I am moving things around ect. I threw my PC on a bench temporarily and have a 480 rad hooked up to 1 of my GPUs and my CPU. With my GPU stock and m,y CPU overclocked while gaming my cpu hits 60c and my GPU hits 70. You are suggesting that with a 360 ya thats not nearly enough.
However maybe you just meant expand-ability in general, There again that is not true EK makes a AIO that is expandable and is still under 200 as does swiftech, I believe there was a few more but I cannot recall them atm.
There is also the option of the predator while were on this, that's 200 dollars has a very nice rad a DDC pump, a very good rad and a better CPU block than a ray storm and is expandable (it comes with a Supremacy Evo which is the best block on the market). For 240 you can add qdcs and make the Rad a 360. That is complete with fans, much cheaper and better performing than the loop you laid out. Also while were on the subject of it coming with fans it comes with EK Vardars which are second only to Gentle Typhoons, those are 20 dollar a piece fans (the Vardars so are the GTs though).
Oh lets also not forget the fact the predator uses Compression fittings and has QDCs. I do have 1 niggle with the predator though, it implores the same no heat sink DDC idea as that reservoir, I have had my fair share of DDCs die because of those types of solutions they are a bad idea. However in the way of the EK version you can still mount a heat sink to there DDC and it will still get airflow.
Also as you suggested them, I dont say this light heartily as I own a ton of them sadly, unless you want to duct tape your rads Corsair SP120s are horrid fans do not use them for rads. the model that comes with the H100 is fine but the round ones allow a lot of air to escape and are very poorly designed. This can be overcome with a rad cover that has circle cutouts or duct tape however.
I agree that if you want aesthetics and such like we do then you have to go fully custom, however you are also going to spend alot more than 300 dollars. Also on that note look at a predator it has EK compression's, EK block, EK rad everything is the same parts we use in custom systems, it looks fantastic. However if you are trying to save money and just want good cooling and decent looks then AIOs of today will outperform anything you can build for the price and look not bad doing it.
5 years ago things were different and back then I would have agreed with you, but as of today you are wrong and a cheap loop is a waste of time and money there is AIOs much better and cheaper than what you could build on a budget.
If your building a small cheap loop these days a predator looks a whole lot better than a 300 dollar loop that wont perform as well and will be riddled with barb fittings with Zip Ties.