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Water Cooling n00b seeking suggestions/opinions (pics)

post #1 of 12
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So I just installed my first ever water cooler. So I thought I'd post pics, ask a few questions and look for suggestions/opinions.

Having no experience I decided to buy a kit. I think the parts were good quality (Swiftech Apogee XT, MCP655-B pump, MCR220 Radiator and 1/2" ID Clearflex tubing). I think it turned out pretty good. My idle temps are a couple degrees cooler than with my Corsair H50, but my load temps are a LOT lower!




A couple thoughts:
Is my case too small? I couldn't mount the pump properly for lack of space. For now it is just kinda crammed in there. I'd rather not leave it that way. Any suggestions?




I cut the tubes a little long. As I change things up, I will probably cut them down to size a bit. Being new at this, I was worried about kinks and leakage, so I was probably a bit too cautious.

I will probably change out the coolant in the near future. I don't like the green and will probably go with either black or blue.

I am probably going to change out the reservoir for a Bay style reservoir to make more room. How big?

Finally, I only did the CPU for now. When the time comes to do the GPUs, am I going to need to upgrade the pump, reservoir and/or radiator?



Edited by toddvj - 2/24/11 at 10:32pm
    
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post #2 of 12
Reservoir size is pretty unimportant, usually just as long as you have one that's all you need. You could even do without and just use a T line but yeah size is not relevant. The pump can handle a cpu block and gpu block. However, the Apogee XT is iirc an extremely restrictive block so you might actually need a stronger pump. I actually would replace the cpu block with something like a rasa/ek supreme hf so you wouldn't have to get a different pump and you would get better temps with those blocks. You might also want to add more rad. My personal rule of thumb is 240 for a cpu block and an additional 120 for each gpu but you can definitely do a cpu and a graphics card with just a 240. It depends more on how much you're OCing them. Case size.. it's nice to have the space for it but if you can fit it in, and your airflow is okay I don't really see a reason why you shouldn't use a midtower. I'm sure someone has recommended this to you already so pardon me if I'm beating a dead horse but use colored tubing and distilled water and some PT Nuke/silver kill coil. Wouldn't want to gunk up that loop of yours.
    
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post #3 of 12
You won't need a new pump to add GPU blocks, but as intamin said the XT is a restrictive block. You will probably want another radiator and I'd add another 240 however you could get by with a 120. As for a reservoir you don't need a new one, however the single bay reservoir from XSPC is small and would do the trick.
If you are in the market for a new case that isn't too large I'd recommend the CM 690 II. It fits two 240 rads internally with room for a res and a pump.
Edited by mdatmo - 2/24/11 at 11:40pm
 
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post #4 of 12
That kit was my first water cooling kit and it was by far one of the best starter kits imo. you might want to reverse the rear fan to intake for some fresh air to get pushed into the rad.
 
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post #5 of 12
you dont need a new pump to add one GPU, there is so many people who have cpu+Gpu on a 655, what u can do is get a top for it to ease things on it, but it looks good for a first time job, definatly make the tubes smaller, so there is less distance bettwen things there for coolant gets to the rad faster
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post #6 of 12
I'm sure you made the decision after some thought but I'd think about removing the dye as that can really gunk up the system bad and just running straight distill + some anti-microbial.

If you wanted to clean up your system by (as you've mentioned) getting a bay res that also works as a pump top such as the one sold my XSPC.



http://www.frozencpu.com/products/11...tl=g30c107s152
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for some great advice so far. A couple questions:

No dye at all in the system? The water should be totally clear? The stuff I'm using is Mostly distilled water mixed with Hydrx coolant & Corrosion Inhibitor. Is that no good for the system?

When I do the graphics, there will be 2 video cards involved. I don't know if that changes anyone's advice or not?

The Apogee XT is a restrictive block? Meaning it slows down the flow of water? Is it designed that way, or is it a design flaw? Forgive the newbie questions.

As far as reversing the rear fan, do you mean taking it off and moving it to the back? Because it seems like it is already set up as intake the way it is. Granted it's right behind the exhaust from the video cards, but I just have barely enough spacing to fit all my monitor connections as it is.

Can you explain the "top" for the pump? I don't fully understand what that does.

I like the idea of the Reservoir/Pump, but is this meant to replace the existing pump, or just add more waterflow?

I can post more pictures if needed, but anyone have any ideas what to do with my pump? I'd like to get it a little more "permanent."

Thanks.
    
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post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by toddvj View Post
Thanks for some great advice so far. A couple questions:

No dye at all in the system? The water should be totally clear? The stuff I'm using is Mostly distilled water mixed with Hydrx coolant & Corrosion Inhibitor. Is that no good for the system?

When I do the graphics, there will be 2 video cards involved. I don't know if that changes anyone's advice or not?

The Apogee XT is a restrictive block? Meaning it slows down the flow of water? Is it designed that way, or is it a design flaw? Forgive the newbie questions.

As far as reversing the rear fan, do you mean taking it off and moving it to the back? Because it seems like it is already set up as intake the way it is. Granted it's right behind the exhaust from the video cards, but I just have barely enough spacing to fit all my monitor connections as it is.

Can you explain the "top" for the pump? I don't fully understand what that does.

I like the idea of the Reservoir/Pump, but is this meant to replace the existing pump, or just add more waterflow?

I can post more pictures if needed, but anyone have any ideas what to do with my pump? I'd like to get it a little more "permanent."

Thanks.
1. Yes, no dye at all in the system. Just distilled water with a silver kill coil and PT nuke.
2. Still unsure about this one so you should probably ask around but I think charliehorse once told me having the second gpu block will actually reduce restriction. As long as your flow rates are above 1 gpm, it doesnt matter.
3.Yes, the XT is a very restrictive block meaning it lowers flow rates. Generally speaking the higher the flow rate the better but after you pass 1 gpm, the gains are minimal. What you want to be looking out for head pressure in this category as that plays the most important role. It was just designed that way.
4. You just flip the fan and place it right back where it is. There should be an arrow indicating the airflow direction on the side of the fan, just make the arrow point into your case.
5. A top can increase the performance of a pump by increasing flow rates of a pump.
6. The res/pump combo replaces the other pump. The only time you should have 2 different pumps is if youre doing 2 loops or you're going for an extreme setup and are basically cooling everything with water. They would also have to be the same pump if you put them into the same loop or else their differences in power I think will cause one of them to throttle. Someone correct me if I'm wrong please haha
    
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post #9 of 12
Quote:
No dye at all in the system? The water should be totally clear? The stuff I'm using is Mostly distilled water mixed with Hydrx coolant & Corrosion Inhibitor. Is that no good for the system?

When I do the graphics, there will be 2 video cards involved. I don't know if that changes anyone's advice or not?

The Apogee XT is a restrictive block? Meaning it slows down the flow of water? Is it designed that way, or is it a design flaw? Forgive the newbie questions.

As far as reversing the rear fan, do you mean taking it off and moving it to the back? Because it seems like it is already set up as intake the way it is. Granted it's right behind the exhaust from the video cards, but I just have barely enough spacing to fit all my monitor connections as it is.

Can you explain the "top" for the pump? I don't fully understand what that does.

I like the idea of the Reservoir/Pump, but is this meant to replace the existing pump, or just add more waterflow?

I can post more pictures if needed, but anyone have any ideas what to do with my pump? I'd like to get it a little more "permanent."
I don't have any experience with the Hydrx stuff but generally speaking running anything outside straight distill with perhaps a small amount of anti-microbial (can be stuff like PT-Nuke or anti-freeze etc) will leave residue in your blocks and system and be a real pain to clean later.

If you're running two additional vid blocks in your loop you'll probably need more then a 220 rad to keep things cool. You'll need about 480 rad area or more if you want to keep your cpu temps down.

The Apogee XT is a restrictive block meaning that for a given pressure (your pump can only generate so much pressure or flow) you will get a so much flow. More resistance in your circuit means you'll be able to flow less given the same pumping power. Less flowrate means you'll be able to pull heat from the blocks and exchange heat from the rads at a lower rate. If you look at skineelabs they have the rated flow vs. pressure graph for lots of different pumps, take a look.

I think as far as the fan goes I think keeping it as intake is fine as long as temps in your case are fairly cool near the rads. Generally speaking people like fans at the bottom/front of the case as intake as it's were more cold air is generally.

A top is what shapes your flow for your pump and a more efficient top will get your more flowrate/pressure from your pump. The XSPC one that I gave as an example has the top built into the res so all you need to do is mount your pump to the res.

The purpose of the combined pump/res that I showed you is to use your existing pump (MCP655 from what it looks like in the pics) and hook it up to the res. This will give you the benefits of having a cleaner setup as well as better flow rates as the "top" or place where it connects to your pump will be more efficient and give you better flow.
Edited by renkenkyo - 2/25/11 at 10:37am
post #10 of 12
Here is some pictures to show how you would setup your current pump with that res.




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