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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm researching and choosing parts for a new build and for the first time I will be building the loop by myself. (Old rig has a very old custom loop where the parts were picked by someone else and I mostly watched it being installed. I didn't take much part in it at the time and my modest experience is from fixing a minor leak due to pre-existing damage and rearranging some parts and tubes later on.)

At first I will be cooling and overclocking a 5800X and a 980Ti or a Titan X (that will be enough for now, plus I'd like to have something able to drive my CRT monitor well directly :p ). For the future I'd like to provision for upgrades to a more powerful mainstream CPU (e.g. a 16 core) and a more powerful GPU (e.g. a RX 6900 XT) and maybe even something like Intel's cryo cooler (TEC). I may want to keep two GPU blocks in the loop just to be able to switch quickly from one to the other, although I don't expect to put load on both at the same time.

What I care about:
  • Low CPU temp for reaching high clocks (at least on a few cores);
  • Low noise at least up to about a 400W-500W heat load (with room for more);
  • Reliability, longevity and other things to make my life easier overall.
What I don't care about:
  • Looks;
  • High price point, as long as it's not unfair for what it provides, and doesn't go for stuff I don't need.
Other notable components for the system: RM1000X PSU (already bought), G-Skill Ripjaws memory (heatsinks are tall). I've selected or bought practically everything except for cooling and case. Parts are being bought from Germany. Here's what I'm considering right now. Please correct any errors or misconceptions I may have, advise and recommend parts worth buying!

I want to limit myself to 140mm fans, because the larger diameter generally leads to a lower pitched noise for a given noise level, right? I definitely prefer lower pitch. So I'm looking for cases that can accommodate large radiators for 140mm fans, and this turns out to be harder than I anticipated. The case also needs to allow for at least 3x3.5" HDDs, and I want to be able to place them somewhere where they get some airflow (if possible) while a potential leak from a fitting or something like that wouldn't kill two of them at the same time. I'd like the case to also accept large mainstream desktop motherboards (a little wider than ATX) and long and tall graphics cards for upgrades. So far I've found these (please suggest more options; what do others use for many 140-wide rads?):
Core X71
Core V71
View 71 Tempered Glass Edition
be quiet! DARK BASE 900 or pro 900 rev. 2 with the front open: be quiet!, be quiet!. Opinions? Not entirely sure if these would meet my needs with no issues.

For the rads my understanding is that it'll be a good idea to go with 30mm thick ones which don't restrict airflow much (suggest model). I reckon I'd need at least two 420 rads (top, front), and maybe a 280 for the bottom of some of the cases above? I guess 8x140mm worth of rads would be needed for about 800W of dissipation at acceptable acoustics? How about the ~400W-500W use case?

Then please recommend 140mm fans to go with them - especially for low noise at the ~400W-500W use case, but also capable of ramping up for a ~800W scenario.

For the CPU block: I liked when I saw that the aquacomputer Cuplex kryos NEXT has a mounting option specifically for Ryzen 3000/5000 series which is essentially an offset mount, and also that they (I think) promise retrofit kits for supporting new sockets when they come out. But I also saw other models being recommended for cooling performance, such as: Optimus AM4 Foundation, TechN AM4 (seems less convenient to install and less likely to support other sockets, right?) and Watercool Heatkiller IV PRO (and others). Which one(s) should I actually expect the best cooling performance from? Which ones have advantages or drawbacks compared to others?

For a pump/res I'm considering a single D5 (with PWM; preferably a res combo) for good acoustics (recommend a brand).

I want to include some quick disconnects around the GPU(s) for the convenience and freedom to have anywhere between 0 and 2 GPUs in the loop (so, between 1 and 3 QDCs in the loop). Which ones would fit my needs best (high quality, low flow restriction), in your opinion? Bitspower(=Corsair?)/Koolance QD4/EK/something else?

Tubes will of course be soft, and it'd be good to be able to do tighter bends without kinks, so should I choose 10/16? Or 1/2″ ID, like what some D5 pumps accept directly?

I'd greatly appreciate some help to really get into custom water cooling!
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