Some general questions from a newbie...

Do-it-yourself and user modifications...
Palamedes
Water Pistol Grunt
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Some general questions from a newbie...

Postby Palamedes » Sun Mar 27, 2011 3:09 pm

Howdy all. I'm new to the whole water cooling thing and am going to be building a new system in the next coming weeks.. One of my goals is to get a quiet PC that performs well under load, doesn't get higher than 30dB ever and remains as close to ambient temperature as possible. I have been doing my homework/research and I have a couple questions;

1. Is it more important to cool the CPU or GPU?

From my research it seems that best case should be to cool both, but that generally speaking the GPU (when both are at load) generates more heat than the CPU and as such shouldn't be ignored.. This about right? If you can't do it for one reason or another is it acceptable to only cool the CPU? Or only cool the GPU? My goal is to cool both, but I'm curious..

2. Is getting a waterblock for the northbridge of the motherboard that important?

The new motherboard I am looking at (MSI P67A-GD65) has a north bridge fan/heat sink and so all of the helper configuration tools seem to want me to get a north bridge water block too, but really do I need to? Is that one I can ignore or is it vital? I just don't know how much heat it actually generates..

3. Is there a point to Watercooling Memory?

Memory doesn't seem to get hot at all, and the meager little heat plates that are attached to most sticks of memory do a fine job.. do they need more cooling?

4. How big of a reservoir do you need?

It seems the site sells the gamut from tiny to fricken huge.. is there a formula or a general idea of how big of a res to get? Is bigger better?

5. When building a loop should you go hottest to coolest or coolest to hottest when routing through your various blocks?

So if I have a CPU, GPU and North Bridge in my loop is it best to go hottest to coolest (GPU->CPU->NB) or coolest to hottest (NB->CPU->GPU) or always CPU first..etc.. whats the "correct" order?

6. Is there really any point in trying to achieve sub-ambient temps?

I have heard / read of folks involving various forms of chillers or coolers into their loops such as to get much lower temps.. but the law of thermodynamics seems to imply that you pay for those temps by venting heat into the room which I'd dearly like to avoid (this room is warm enough).. So really, is there any point? I mean sure I could rig a peltier or some other chilling device into the loop but the 10 to 20 degree difference wouldn't really do much more in the way of making the computer faster.. so why do it? Or is there something I'm not considering?

My current machine has a Intel Core 2 Extreme Qx6700 that I got back in 2006 right after the chip came out and is currently peltier cooled.. It works fairly well for a 5 year old 65nm process but it has a habit of heating up the room pretty badly under load.. (I do 3D rendering as well as grid computing when idle so the machine is always cranking out the heat.)

CPUID's hardware monitor tells me that the CPU temp sits right at 60°C under load while the individual core temps report as hovering ±65°C.. My room hovers around 27°C..

7. So with that; if I used water cooling on my current machine, how close to ambient would I get?

If I were to yank the peltier out of this machine and rig it up with a waterblock would I see much better performance? How much better? On the new i7 chip I'm getting overclocked to say 4.5ghz what can I expect to see temperature wise?

8. How loud are the water pumps?

I'm going for super quiet here.. My current machine is no where near as bad as some (my friends computer has a fan that sounds like a hairdryer and my work PC under load sounds like an airplane taking off) but still its louder than I want. At full load it gets to about 38dB.. I'd like to get in under 30dB if possible. Is water cooling that much quieter?


Okay thats more than a couple questions.. and I could likely ask a lot more but lets start there..

Thanks a bunch, I do appreciate it..

Izerous
Rain Maker
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Re: Some general questions from a newbie...

Postby Izerous » Sat Apr 02, 2011 10:21 am

1. CPU vs GPU: I would always go with the CPU first. Video cards are "typically" built with fairly decent stock coolers the shitty heatsinks provided with CPU's are not meant for heavy gaming and overclocking. I have like 6 stock AMD heat sinks sitting in a box somewhere some of them still with the protective plastic and untouched stock thermal paste still on them.

2. Chipsets: Become important them moment you think of overclocking. They are often overlooked and typically can become a part of unstable overclocks.

3. Water cooling memory is often unneeded, however you do need active cooling if you intend to push the ram at all. My ram temperatures would be unmanageable if i didn't at least have a ram fan on them. However it is one of the noisiest fans in the case because of their small size. Liquid cooling them would drop the noise level down a bit.

4. Resivioir size doesn't need to be huge, you don't even need one. It however makes maintainance much much easier.

5. Idealy you want rads inbetween items. In the end order doesn't seem as important as overall routing and making the tubing to take efficient pathing.

6. Sub ambient temperatures = condensation = problems.

7. You can never reach ambient with jsut liquid cooling... will expand on this later tonight.
Corsair 800D
2xPMP-450S > Amd FX8370 > Asus CH4-EX > AMD 6990 > AMD 6990 > 2x1080 rads > return
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Izerous
Rain Maker
Rain Maker
Posts: 1185
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 10:34 am
Location: Edmonton, Canada

Re: Some general questions from a newbie...

Postby Izerous » Sat Apr 02, 2011 9:28 pm

7. You can get to or beat ambient temperatures only with peltiers/phase change/refridgeration and other similar items. Again it becomes an issue of condensation among other things.

8. Pump noise is negligible, pumps have variable speeds
Corsair 800D
2xPMP-450S > Amd FX8370 > Asus CH4-EX > AMD 6990 > AMD 6990 > 2x1080 rads > return
32GB Ram


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