I was thinking about getting the gtx 480, however its a little over my budget, I dont mind buying it if it is really THAT good, but I was wondering if there are any others that are as good , or even for a cheaper price?
Sure. But some things are stupid. Instead of putting so much money into a radiator, why not put it to something that is going to really yield more enjoyment down the line.
I dont know what system you are building this loop for, but if its for your existing setup, you certainly dont need such a large rad.
If you are building it for a mystical Tri-Fire or Tri-SLI system with the hottest quad-core out there (130W, maybe?), a chipset block and hard drive blocks, you could still probably go with a triple-120.
Larger rads simply allow you to use slower fans than you would probably need with a smaller radiator.
Also, don't expect "wicked" temps just by slapping a big radiator onto something. The bottom line is that you cant cool less than ambient temperature. Where water usually beats air cooling is in the change in temperature between idle and load ("delta T").
Still, I would be hard pressed (e-peen aside) where a 480 is truly warranted. Sure, it may help, but at the end of the day, could you have spent the cash on something more worthwhile? Probably.
full cover; so what would you recommend, because Im never going to sli ( dont have that kind of money), and I would Like to reach ambient, cuz right now im running pretty hot and I love to oc to the max.
In all reality, you will reach hardware barriers (or expertise barriers) before needing a 4x120mm radiator. Just because your system is cool doesn't mean you have unlimited OC'ing potential.
If you are looking for something down the road like a quad core (100W OC'd) + 1 GPU (250W OC'd), a nice triple-rad will get you as far as you wanna go.
Use the rest for small ramsinks, nice fans, a solid pump, and little odds and ends that will likely give you more bang for your buck.
i used to HAVE your exact system. Except I had a X1900XT instead of the 8600. I had it water cooled with a 2x120mm rad and I was fine. I had my system at 3.8Ghz and used a FC block on my GPU to really ramp up the speed.
It doesn't seem like you know enough to be dialing up the throttle on your hardware quite yet. And if you have a Dell system, it's pretty much impossible to pump up anything BUT your GPU. So...you might be bringing a TANK (480 Rad) where you only need a Pistol.
The gtx480 is a very high restriction rad. So you will need high cfm fans to cool it effectively. (70cfm +) If noise is an issue I would stay away from this. I prefer a low restriction loop. I use MCR220's as they are very low restriction, meaning water can flow relatively easily through them. It really just depends on the water blocks you want to buy and the pump you are getting for the type of rad you should get. Hope this helps.
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