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Discussion Starter #1
Im looking into watercooling options and I know an open loop is the best in terms of performance and noise. However I want something hassle free out of the box and I'm a lazy ass when it comes to maintenance, so an AIO seems more suited. However I want to be able to have both GPU and CPU in one loop so a CPU AIO and a GPU hybrid kit are out. This lead me to modular AIOs like the Eiswolf/baer or EKWBs Phoenix. The EKWB is much more expensive to a point where I'm questioning it's value over a custom loop. Apparently the pumps are much stronger but temperatures aren't my main goal here. Which leaves the alphacool options.

Ive only air cooled so far and having used a Macho HR2 and a Macho 120 SBM the CPU never gave me much headaches in terms of noise and temps. Its usually the intakes and exhausts which bother me when trying to get enough cool air into and hot air out of the case to keep the CPU and especially the GPU at my target temps. And obviously as quiet as GPUs nowadays are compared to yesteryear, they still tend to be the loudest component under load especially if you use them for more than one generation and inevitably wear kicks in.

Current setup is a 3570K (to be replaced next year with a Zen 2 or Ice Lake) cooled with a Macho 120 SBM, a Palit Jet Stream GTX 980 (to be replaced with a next gen xx70 or xx80 depending on performance) two 140mm Silent Wings 3 as intakes in the front and one Arctic BioniX F120 as exhaust in the back. Both CPU and GPU are overclocked and I plan to do so with future parts as well.

The setup I'd be considering is an Eisbaer 280 now and then add an Eiswolf 120 when I have a new GPU.

So much for background, now the questions.

1. Are the alphacool AIOs any good? Specifically pump noise as I've heard that's the main reason AIOs tend to be louder. I did read if they run at 7V they're virtually inaudible but does anyone have first hand experience to confirm this?

2. If running at 7V, would the pumps be strong enough to decently cool both CPU and GPU with low fan speeds?

3. What noise levels should I expect compared to my current setup, if we assume similar temps for comparisons sake?

4. Will a 280mm and a 120mm radiator be enough, or should I consider adding another 240mm one?

5. Theres also an LT version of the Eisbaer with a slim 240mm radiator and a pump without reservoir, but its significantly cheaper. The pump is the same, but the lack or reservoir would make it quite harder to eventually refill or vent the loop or am I missing something here. Which one makes more sense?

6. Are there any (potentially better) options besides EKWB and alphacool? Are the EKWB parts so much better they justify the higher price?

Also right away more technical questions so I don't have to ask later on if I decide to go for it.

7. What would be the best mounting positions? I thought about the 280 in the front as intake and the 120 in the back as exhaust. Would the 120 be better horizontally at the bottom front intake and another fan in the back as exhaust better?

8. With a block on the GPU I could just save a few bucks on the card an go for a reference/blower or lower tier (as in cooler) card and oc it right? Im a bit out of the loop and not sure if binning already starts at lower/mid tier levels or if its just the cooler thats different.

9. Would my existing fans work well enough or would I have to replace them?

10. This ones more out of curiosity but I may just do it. Would making a foam dampened shroud put over the pump to further reduce noise cause any issues?

So all this considered, what would you guys suggest? Should I just stick with air and try to mod my case to eventually get where I want to be noise wise? Can an Eisbaer/wolf loop even perform better that my current setup in terms of noise and temps?
 

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by the time you've bought all the kit you're better off going for a proper custom loop. I've got two AIO's in my system. one cooling the GPU (kraken G12) the other the CPU. I paid roughtly £190 for everything and it is fairly quiet. GPU never goes above 45c (RX580 gaming X) and the CPU doesn't go above 60 on a benchmark and never above 55 when video rendering. hovers around 40-45 gaming depending on ambient. This is on a ryzen 1700 3.9 @ 1.325v. The extra cost of the EKWB and alphacoo are worth it but others may. The only time I hear my CPU pump is at 3am in the morning when I get up for work. can't hear it any other times. a 280 for the CPU and a 240 for the GPU
 

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I was facing the exact same question and bought an eisbaer 360 and added my GPU.
Then I realized that:
1) the pump is quite load
2) refilling is almost impossible due to the stupid design of the fillport on the reservoir on the pump
3) the pump died
Conclusion: I returned the unit and am now happily running an open loop using alphacool parts.
Don't get me wrong: the company is good and their products in general are as well (I'm still using the same GPU block that I back then had connected to the eisbaer) with the exception of the eisbaer unit.
That one is just poorly designed - sadly.

Gesendet von meinem Moto G 2014 LTE mit Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I was facing the exact same question and bought an eisbaer 360 and added my GPU.
Then I realized that:
1) the pump is quite load
2) refilling is almost impossible due to the stupid design of the fillport on the reservoir on the pump
3) the pump died
Conclusion: I returned the unit and am now happily running an open loop using alphacool parts.
Don't get me wrong: the company is good and their products in general are as well (I'm still using the same GPU block that I back then had connected to the eisbaer) with the exception of the eisbaer unit.
That one is just poorly designed - sadly.

Gesendet von meinem Moto G 2014 LTE mit Tapatalk
Yeah I've read about the bad CPU pump but wanted to get some first hand experience. What about the GPU pump the Eiswolf has? Is it loud as well? Would it be enough to feed two radiators. Alternative to an Eisbaer would be getting an Eiswolf, a 280 Eiswold ready radiator and a CPU block without pump.
 

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Yeah I've read about the bad CPU pump but wanted to get some first hand experience. What about the GPU pump the Eiswolf has? Is it loud as well? Would it be enough to feed two radiators. Alternative to an Eisbaer would be getting an Eiswolf, a 280 Eiswold ready radiator and a CPU block without pump.
I never used the eiswolf pump but an GPU block and quick connect fittings to connect it to the eisbaer.
The eisbaer pump was enough to power that setup (CPU + gpu and one 360 rad) so I'd assume that the eiswolf pump might be fine but I never used it. Maybe google knows something.

Gesendet von meinem Moto G 2014 LTE mit Tapatalk
 
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