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So, I bought a little Coca-Cola minifridge at Walmart for $30. It hold 6 cans, and it's cute as a button. I'll post a picture of it later.

It turns out these little guys use thermo-electric cooling. Now, I'm not going to rip my minifridge apart, but I'll happily buy another and rip it apart. What I'd like to do, assuming the TEC is the right size, is attach it to the back of my reservoir, attach a heat sink to the other side, insulate the whole thing and protect it against condensation, build a shroud, and blow an exhaust fan over it. Does that sort of thing work, or am I missing something? When my computer is built, it'll be a Coolermaster 690, so I was thinking of using the bottom fan port for it.
 

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The TEC is too weak. Check the plug and give me the wattage rating.
 

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In the average watercooling loop, the water is only ~5-8C over ambient temps in the first place. The TEC in the mini fridges only cool the soda well because the soda isn't actually putting out any heat. The TEC is probably a 10-20w TEC (if that) and would maybe lower the water temp by a fraction of a degree at the most. Not really worth the trouble imo.
 

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Ive made chilled metal res's before with teks , but 200 watt ones.
It also gets very dicey and you need limit controls on it. or youll
fluctuate too much and get condensation bigtime on your loops
 

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Actually, I should have known that. It has a low operating temperature (ice sometimes forms in it), but it doesn't cool very quickly. What I didn't know is that watercooling loops run so high above ambient. Someone told me it was only a few degrees, and I took that to mean perhaps 4° or so. Up to 8 or so is a little high.

Here's a link to the manufacturer's info page, if you're curious. They claim that the fridge cools to 32°F below ambient, but obviously that's operating temperature, and it doesn't tell you anything about the wattage.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MrDeodorant View Post
Actually, I should have known that. It has a low operating temperature (ice sometimes forms in it), but it doesn't cool very quickly. What I didn't know is that watercooling loops run so high above ambient. Someone told me it was only a few degrees, and I took that to mean perhaps 4° or so. Up to 8 or so is a little high.

Here's a link to the manufacturer's info page, if you're curious. They claim that the fridge cools to 32°F below ambient, but obviously that's operating temperature, and it doesn't tell you anything about the wattage.
It's not having to deal with any heat output though. That is the problem with fridge coolers. Computers put out a constant heat that has to be dealt with.
 

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sorry to destroy your thread, but can anyone explain how all this work? maybe some pics of it? thanks
 

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Originally Posted by go4life View Post
sorry to destroy your thread, but can anyone explain how all this work? maybe some pics of it? thanks
How a TEC works, or what?
 

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Originally Posted by TnB= Gir View Post
How a TEC works, or what?
yeah, I don't completely get it:/
 

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Discussion Starter #12
That's the problem for standard fridges, because of the whole burned out compressor thing, but I didn't think TEC's had the same vulnerability.

I know it would have to be able to remove more heat from the system than the CPU and video card put in to cool it below ambient, but I was hoping that a TEC like that would be a little more powerful than the rest of you think it is. I was really just thinking of it as a cheap way to suck a few more watts out of the system, but if the temps run that high, it won't make much of a difference.

For my own curiosity (and I know it's outside of the watercooling section), how much water, in liters, do you typically fill a loop with a CPU, video card, and reservoir with?
 

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Originally Posted by MrDeodorant
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That's the problem for standard fridges, because of the whole burned out compressor thing, but I didn't think TEC's had the same vulnerability.

I know it would have to be able to remove more heat from the system than the CPU and video card put in to cool it below ambient, but I was hoping that a TEC like that would be a little more powerful than the rest of you think it is. I was really just thinking of it as a cheap way to suck a few more watts out of the system, but if the temps run that high, it won't make much of a difference.

Correct... you need a much bigger TEC and the TEC would need its own dedicated cooling.

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Originally Posted by MrDeodorant
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For my own curiosity (and I know it's outside of the watercooling section), how much water, in liters, do you typically fill a loop with a CPU, video card, and reservoir with?

It varies.... I would say about 0.5L to 1.5L is average.
 

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Originally Posted by go4life
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ok, thanks
but is it worth to do this with my wc setup? will my temps drop down much? and how much cash is needed for something like this? Sorry for all the questions


No it isn't worth it for reservoir cooling. Now if you get a TEC block and use the TEC on the CPU itself, that will lower temps a lot more than TEC'ing the res. But you're talking about $100 for the PSU (last I checked, not positive now.), for the TEC, you're only looking at about 10-30 bucks. For the TEC waterblock, you're going to need to buy a block made for TEC use. Those are usually around 200 bucks. Not to mention the increase in electricity from running a 400w TEC.

IMO, it's not worth it, but it can be a fun experiment. I tried a waterchiller made from a window AC this summer and it was a lot of fun. I ended up breaking one of the cap tubes on accident though, so I never got to finish.
 

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Originally Posted by DuckieHo
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It varies.... I would say about 0.5L to 1.5L is average.

yeah I used 1.3L I think.
 

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Originally Posted by TnB= Gir
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No it isn't worth it for reservoir cooling. Now if you get a TEC block and use the TEC on the CPU itself, that will lower temps a lot more than TEC'ing the res. But you're talking about $100 for the PSU (last I checked, not positive now.), for the TEC, you're only looking at about 10-30 bucks. For the TEC waterblock, you're going to need to buy a block made for TEC use. Those are usually around 200 bucks. Not to mention the increase in electricity from running a 400w TEC.

IMO, it's not worth it, but it can be a fun experiment. I tried a waterchiller made from a window AC this summer and it was a lot of fun. I ended up breaking one of the cap tubes on accident though, so I never got to finish.


Ok, maybe I will try something like that in some years
I dont got that much money now sadly
well thanks for the help Gir! rep++
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yeah, the TEC needs dedicated cooling, which was the idea with the fan and the shroud, remember? I know it isn't a magic cold box.

I'm honestly thinking about trying this just for the hell of it. Even with a heat inflow of perhaps 400 watts (CPU, VGA, plus whatever the pump inputs), an extra 40 watts of outflow is nothing to shrug at, even if inefficiencies in how the TEC is attached to the reservoir and how it's cooled drop the cooling to, say, 30 watts. It depends on whether or not I can find this fridge again for $30. If I can find it, I'll chop it up and post the before and after temps, FOR SCIENCE!
 

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Quote:


Originally Posted by MrDeodorant
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Yeah, the TEC needs dedicated cooling, which was the idea with the fan and the shroud, remember? I know it isn't a magic cold box.

I'm honestly thinking about trying this just for the hell of it. Even with a heat inflow of perhaps 400 watts (CPU, VGA, plus whatever the pump inputs), an extra 40 watts of outflow is nothing to shrug at, even if inefficiencies in how the TEC is attached to the reservoir and how it's cooled drop the cooling to, say, 30 watts. It depends on whether or not I can find this fridge again for $30. If I can find it, I'll chop it up and post the before and after temps, FOR SCIENCE!

I've done it with a 80w TEC.... I believe my temps dropped only 2-3C.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Was that your water temperature, or your chip temps? Also, I was convinced to use the Thermochill PA160 radiator, so I'm sort of nervous about it, because nobody else ever seems to have one. I'm afraid that it won't be enough cooling, in which case an extra 30 watts might come in handy.
 
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