[Project] HAF Envy - Water Cooled HAF 922
As one of the first members to watercool a HAF 922 (fired up Oct 2009), I hope my efforts can help others with their designs. That is why this build log continues. I will continue to tweak my system and add to this log as I do so (and answer questions).
Jan 25, 2012: FINALLY added SLI, HX1050 and H80
Oct 13, 2011: EVGA GTX 580 Upgrade nomnom
Sep 30, 2011: SSD Stacker Time!
This project work log will document the "fun" as I work through creation of a water cooled setup in the HAF 922. I plan to do testing and benchmarks on stock air components first (to get my baseline) and then will do my modifications. After the modifications I will be implementing the water cooling and doing the exact same benchmarks again for comparison.
I will post updates to this top level item describing project status as I go. I'll try to remember to include dates for larger updates in the first few notes postings.
Posts of interest:
Post 5 - ==== MotM 2009 System Photo Shoot ====
Post 6 - Temperature Testing
Post 29 - Top Panel Overlay
Post 36 - Side Panel Window Modification
Post 40 - Side Panel Window Custom Frame Fit Tests
Post 43/44 - Powder Coating
Post 48 - Sleeving
Post 51 - 200mm Fan LED modification
Post 55 - Water Cooling Installed
Post 61 - More Water Cooling Photos
Post 88 - Spot Cooled Chipset with UV Fan
Post 90 - 3.5in Bay 4-Channel Fan Controller. See post 91 for my custom cabling for this controller setup.
Post 94 - DVD Drive Stealthing
Post 102 - UV Reactive Coolant
Post 110 - SATA Power Connector Modification
Post 175 - Top Panel Overlay Template PDF
Post 176 - Cooler Master front badge replaced with ENVY
Post 255 - SSD Stack Setup - SATA Power Cable Mod
Post 261 - EVGA GTX580 Ready for Install... soon.
Post 266 - GTX 580 Installed and new Interior Photo
Post 277 - SLI GTX 580, HX1050 & H80 Installed and new Interior Photo
End goal: HAF 922, water cooled CPU/GPU with all internal radiators
- Disassemble case for Powder Coating of everything
- Customized top panel for radiator installation
- Customized side panel with new window frame assembly
- Custom lighting scheme (not red, not blue, something else )
- Sleeving of all visible cable sections
- Modification of cables to shorten or reposition connections
1.) Disassembly and case modifications (DONE)
2.) Painting (actually Powder Coating - DONE)
3.) Reassembly, touch-ups and component installation (DONE)
4.) Water cooling configuration (DONE)
5.) Water cooled benchmarks and testing (DONE) (Results in Post 6)
6.) Drain distilled water and put in UV Acid Green Feser 1 coolant (DONE)
7.) Replace already dying Logisys UV Cathode (DONE)
8.) Additional tweaking depending on benchmark results (always doing this!)
9.) Further case modifications - ie: Finish up custom case logo (ooo logo?), research some additional lighting ideas (edge lit things - I have a crazy idea but need to get in some parts first)
Why is the project is called HAF Envy? Well that will become more apparent as the project progresses.
Easy Hint - Green - that and some people already want my case
Why so tight? The Gigabyte EX58-UD5 board has a Mosfet heat sink right at the top of the motherboard that is close to the top of the case and has enough height off the motherboard to get in the way. This is not to say you can't put a radiator up there, you just have to be a little inventive in your positioning. By moving the radiator over to the case door side, I'll be able to leave clearance to that Mosfet location. As far as memory location goes, I have enough room there and have already dry fit the radiator to be sure with 25mm fans. Use a thin radiator and go with low profile fans that should give you enough room to work up top with minimal if any modifications. Don't expect to stuff a big thick 60mm thick radiator up there without running into problems.
Here is the system in the ultimate of stock form (boring) but up and running Ignore the cabling, that was just done quickly to get the system up and running for component testing and air benchmarking.
Here is the top with the Swiftech (34mm thick) radiator and a 25mm fan - as you can see it ends up right on top of the heatsink for the Mosfet location. By moving the radiator over to the one side of the case (towards the camera), I'll have clearance there and there is enough room to clear my big tall Dominators so we should be good to go. If things aren't working well, I'll put low profile fans on the rad.
Here is another shot on an angle into the case showing the eventual position of my radiator and the clearance I will have to the mosfet location. Adding a set of water cooling blocks to the chipset/mosfets will be tight in this spot but I'm going air for now so I'll worry about that some other time.
Here is a top down view showing how the Swiftech radiator holes don't match the existing fan mount holes on the top of the case. Since I need to move it over that won't be a problem (and since I will actually be cutting the top panel and putting my own custom piece up there, even less of an issue ) You can see the Mosfet heat sink fins at the middle-left of the image - if you don't move the radiator over to the side, you will hit that unless you use low profile fans. So you can leave the top panel alone but you may need to move the radiator over a little with thin radiators.
This image is to show where I plan to put the single radiator in the bottom. There is a lot of space here and if you are really into modifications, you could easily nuke that drive cage in the bottom and put a double down there (after you cut ventilation in the bottom of the case). Obviously Triple-SLI fanatics will run out of room here very fast but a single board has lots of space and I believe even SLI will be fine. With 2 GPUs, I probably would end up taking out the bottom drive bay and putting in a bigger radiator down there.
We'll see how this all works out once I get rolling on this project. There may be delays in progress as I do have that pesky thing called life that interrupts my projects on a regular basis.
Sep 6: Well, here is the layout work for my top panel modifications. First, lets have a look at the top panel itself - as you will see, the perforation/fan section is raised so I had to think - how do I deal with this raised panel area? (You can see the radiator in the spot where I want it if you look closely)
Then the solution hit me - just make an overlay panel that follows the contour of the raised section so I can cleanly hide the newly cut opening underneath it. A benefit of this overlay design... down the road I can easily make a new overlay to move my radiator position if I need to or for new designs up top. Just cut and bolt on a new overlay without messing with the case any more . I like!
Sep 12: Here is the fabricated top panel after I finished building it (see Post #29 for an angled shot showing the countersunk screws)
Sep 18: Side panel modifications are under way... I'm building a framed window design that will allow me to bolt the 200mm fan directly to the frame so I can keep blowing air into the case right onto the memory and chipset heatsinks if I want to. Or go with a solid window - I'll have more options with this frame design. Here is where I am thus far.. see Post #36 and Post #40 for the full sequence of getting to this point.
First off as you saw above in the System Design Notes, the radiator position in the top of the case is a bit tight depending on your motherboard design. If you are doing a ton of water cooling with really thick radiators, you might want to go with the 932 instead.
The Danger Den MC-TDX water block for the CPU doesn't come with a backplate for the motherboard. They sell an acrylic backplate for this block but I opted to go with a nice solid metal EK Waterblocks plate instead (nice thick strong). I do like the CPU access hole in the back so I can change out coolers without removing the motherboard.
Two 1/2in ID - 3/4in OD Straight compression fittings do NOT fit side by side on the MC-TDX CPU water block. I have heard the HK 3.0 has the same problem. Make sure you have a couple extra fittings (45 degree ones for example) just in case the port positions are too close together.
Pump position may be in the 5.25in drive bays or not because I ultimately de-riveted the bottom drive cage for coating. Might put the pump in the bottom. I bought the replacement EK-D5 X-Top so I have more flexibility with my tubing runs.
I'm going to use all compression fittings and found some really nice TFC rotating 45 degree fittings which I'll use for some of my tighter postions. Going to have some thick tube in there - 1/2in ID 3/4in OD.
Here we go - interesting photos for you to enjoy
What the case is supposed to look like (from Cooler Master site)
And the nasty thing that was the original air cooled installation for testing my components to make sure they actually worked:
And now my customized, completely re-powdercoated and water cooled version of it... also known as the money shots...
Front view - Stealthed DVD drive and Fan Controller installed...
Rear view - seldom seen but still nice to look at...
Side offset radiator installation and custom top overlay panel design with fill port of course...
Custom side window cut out and custom frame mounting...
Full interior shot in green glory with UV coolant loaded...
Close up shot of the upper half of the case...
Lower section of the case with bottom radiator and hidden cabling...
OCT 16 UPDATE!!! I replaced that dying UV Cathode, got my camera to cooperate - let there be night shots!!
Shot of the tower with the office lights on...
Now with lights off...
Side view with the panel off, office lights on...
And of course lights off once again...
What it looks like looking through the window...
And finally a shot for the fun of it showing how the UV coolant is visible through the clear acrylic top of the CPU Water Block...
That is some yummy looking green wouldn't you say?
Instead of filling up my top level page with duplicate information, go to the Water Cooling thread where I have posted the test results I had originally put here in greater detail over there. Thread link --> HERE
This way, I can share the results in a topic area that makes more sense and will be seen by more poeple than in my build log. Also, it allows discussion about that specific set of tests in a separate thread away from the build itself.
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