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Water Cooling Advice

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hello fellow overclockers!

About 3 years ago, I snagged a close-out price on a Thermaltake Kandalf LCS case. It has a built in 3x120mm radiator on the outside front door with 3 fans linked to a fan controller, and the Aquabay Reservoir/P500 Pump combo (rated at 500 litres per hour).

I just had to buy a new waterblock for my CPU since the Thermaltake block cracked at one of the threads in the acrylic for the fittings. I chose the Apogee XT based on recommendations from this site, and it should be arriving tonight.

I would also like to add my new HD 6950 to the loop, but I am concerned that my current setup would be insufficient. The tubing that came with the system is 3/8" ID, 1/2" OD. However, the tubing to and from the radiator is 1/4" ID, 3/8" OD, and connects with the 3/8" ID, 1/2 OD" internal tubing using compression fittings just inside the case.

I feel this might be limiting the flow of the loop. Would I see a noticeable drop in temps by getting rid of the 1/4" ID tubing to and simply using my leftover 3/8" ID tubing straight from the radiator, or is it not really worth it? If yes, would it be ok to use my extra compression fittings from the radiator as well?

Lastly, would a single 3x120mm radiator be sufficient for CPU + GPU cooling? What about the p500 pump? Is that providing sufficient flow for such a setup? The 6950 fan is intolerably loud at full load, and the heatsink/fan solutions are almost as expensive as waterblocks for this card. I'm looking at the EK-6970 Acetal+Nickel block, in case that matters.

Looking forward to getting feedback on all this.
Thanks alot!
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
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My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
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post #2 of 13
Thermaltake WCing gear has a rather deserved awful reputation. I honestly wouldn't bother with the Thermaltake pump outright myself and replace it.
DD Boxen
(23 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Xeon E3-1230 Asus Maximus IV Gene-Z/Gen3 Powercolor 6970 2GB G. Skill 1600mHz Ripjaws 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
SpinpontF3 1TB, WD 250, and WD320 Lite-On DT Waterblocks DT5Noz Waterblock Swiftech Komodo 6900-1 Waterblock 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Swiftech MCR-220 Drive radiator Swiftech MCR-220 QP radiator 6xGentle Typhoon AP-15s Archx64 KDE4.5, Windows 7 x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Eyefinity 3-head 5265x1050 OCN Ducky!! MX Blue Switches XFX 750W Black Edition Mountain Mods H2gO 
MouseAudioAudioAudio
Razer Naga Asus Xonar Essence STX Sennheiser 595 Sony STR-DE995 A/V receiver 
OtherOther
Lian Li Card flash memory reader Asus PCE-N15 Wifi-N card 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD 1055T Gigabyte 790 Sapphire 4850x2 2x2GB 1600mHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSKeyboard
A few Yes Vista/7 Das Keyboard 
Power
Ugly 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Qualcomm Snapdragon APQ8060 1.2 GHz Something kinda small Qualcomm Adreno core 16GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
None N/A WebOS 3.0.2 9.7" XGA, multitouch 
PowerCase
6300mAh Piano Black 
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DD Boxen
(23 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Xeon E3-1230 Asus Maximus IV Gene-Z/Gen3 Powercolor 6970 2GB G. Skill 1600mHz Ripjaws 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingCooling
SpinpontF3 1TB, WD 250, and WD320 Lite-On DT Waterblocks DT5Noz Waterblock Swiftech Komodo 6900-1 Waterblock 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Swiftech MCR-220 Drive radiator Swiftech MCR-220 QP radiator 6xGentle Typhoon AP-15s Archx64 KDE4.5, Windows 7 x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Eyefinity 3-head 5265x1050 OCN Ducky!! MX Blue Switches XFX 750W Black Edition Mountain Mods H2gO 
MouseAudioAudioAudio
Razer Naga Asus Xonar Essence STX Sennheiser 595 Sony STR-DE995 A/V receiver 
OtherOther
Lian Li Card flash memory reader Asus PCE-N15 Wifi-N card 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD 1055T Gigabyte 790 Sapphire 4850x2 2x2GB 1600mHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSKeyboard
A few Yes Vista/7 Das Keyboard 
Power
Ugly 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Qualcomm Snapdragon APQ8060 1.2 GHz Something kinda small Qualcomm Adreno core 16GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
None N/A WebOS 3.0.2 9.7" XGA, multitouch 
PowerCase
6300mAh Piano Black 
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post #3 of 13
Well first the 360 should be fine for a cpu and gpu.

The pump is rated by TK to be ok so unless you have issues with it it should be ok. There are many complaints about TK WC stuff so its up to you if you have the cash get a d-5/mcp 655.

The tubing I am kinda confused about can you post a pic? The tubing should be the same throughout the whole build but your setup might work too.

The EK water-blocks are great so no change there.
Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
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Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
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post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Here are some pics of the setup.

The 1/4" ID tubing coming from the radiator:


The tubing coming down the side of the front case door and into the case through the bottom opening, sleeved:


The 1/4" ID tubing connected to the 3/8" ID tubing inside the case, which runs to the reservoir, and from the pump (connected to the reservoir) to the waterblock and back to the other 1/4" ID to the radiator using compression fittings:


I thought it was strange when I first saw it to. Like you said, usually its the same tubing throughout. But my guess is they use the 1/4" ID tubing to enable it to fit down the side of the front panel and into the case.
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 13
I wonder what they were thinking that such an odd setup. I mean it works but I would look to changing the case to something with a more normal setup but that's just me. Idealy you want res/pump > rad > cpu > gpu > res/pump so I would just stick with whatever tubing is on the cpu block to connect to the gpu block and then whatever from the gpu block to the res. The who setup is just awkward so go with the flow just make sure that the cpu to gpu tubing is the same as the barbs your are using, and that the barbs and tubing from the bottom of the gpu to the res/pump are the same.
Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
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Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
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post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Once I get some more cash on hand, I'll probably go full custom instead of this pre-configured setup. I thought it was abnormal as well. This'll have to do for now, though. I might replace the pump, as per your recommendation.

So you don't think its a good idea to replace the 1/4" tubing? I have the extra 3/8" tubing and compression fittings on hand to replace it. The only thing that I would have to modify is how the radiator is mounted. I would have to flip it so that the inlet/outlet was on the bottom, and the tubing could feed directly into the case from there without going down the side of the front door. Would this upside down mounting hinder the radiator's performance since its working against gravity?
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
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Reply
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Impugningcynic View Post
Once I get some more cash on hand, I'll probably go full custom instead of this pre-configured setup. I thought it was abnormal as well. This'll have to do for now, though. I might replace the pump, as per your recommendation.

So you don't think its a good idea to replace the 1/4" tubing? I have the extra 3/8" tubing and compression fittings on hand to replace it. The only thing that I would have to modify is how the radiator is mounted. I would have to flip it so that the inlet/outlet was on the bottom, and the tubing could feed directly into the case from there without going down the side of the front door. Would this upside down mounting hinder the radiator's performance since its working against gravity?
I would say that having to force the water up the rad would be counter intuitive how ever thermodynamics would argue that the hotter water would sit at the top thus leaving cooler water at the bottom but i think the water moves through the rad fast enough where it doesn't really matter the orientation.
Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
  hide details  
Reply
Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
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post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Just installed the Apogee XT and all I can say is WOW. My temps dropped at least 5C on the CPU at the same voltage. That Thermalcrap block must really have been failing, and I didn't even notice.

So instead of having it run cooler, I just tried seeing if I could overclock more. I have much more overclocking headroom now, as I've discovered in the last 30 minutes.

Thermalcrap:
Max stable overclock: 9x450 = 4.05 Ghz
Vcore: 1.4
Temps: ~39 (core 1), ~37C (core 2) idle; ~56, ~53C load.

Apogee XT:
Max stable overclock (so far): 9x487.5 = 4.388 Ghz
Vcore: 1.46
Temps: ~39, ~36C idle; ~57, ~55C load (after .06 more volts on the CPU)!

I seem to hit a wall at 9x500. Brought the Vcore all the way up to 1.5, and the system would post and load windows, but give me near instantaneous prime95 errors once the stress test started. I'm not sure I want to try much higher voltage.

Here's a pic of the block installed:


I'm definitely going to try mounting the radiator upside down and trading the 1/4" ID tubing for some 3/8" to match the rest of the system, and when I get a chance, I'll pick up a better pump. Judging from the performance of the CPU block, I suspect it'll be Swiftech.
Edited by Impugningcynic - 3/3/11 at 6:22pm
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
post #9 of 13
Cool cant wait to see the results. As to the TK stuff yeah they have cool cases I wouldn't touch their PSU with a 10ft pole and their water stuff with a 20 ft pole lol. I have read way to many people having issues with them.
Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
  hide details  
Reply
Gaming PC
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 930 @ 4.2 GHz Asus Rampage III Extreme ATI Radeon HD 5970 6 GB Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
32 GB OCZ SSD, 2x 150 GB WD Velociraptor 10000 rpm Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 2x Acer AL1622W Cyborg Eclipse 
PowerCaseMouse
850 W Corsair Modular Cool Master HAF 932 Logitec MX 518 
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post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
So I left Prime95 running all night, and no errors when I woke up. However, looking at temps, I see that CPU temp (Tcase) reaches 10C hotter than Core Temps (Tjunction).

I thought CPU temp was always lower than cores? It was this way with my old block...
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
C2D E8400 - 4.38 Ghz EVGA 750i SLI FTW XFX 6950 2GB @ 940/1400 G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 @ 800 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
WD Velociraptor 150GB, WD Green 1TB + WD Green 2TB Windows 7 64-bit HP 2509b @ 1920x1080 Corsair HX 850 Watt 
Case
Thermaltake Kandalf LCS 
  hide details  
Reply
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