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General Liquid/Water Cooling Discussion For discussion about Full Cooling System kits, or general cooling topics. Keep specific cooling items like pumps, radiators, etc... in their specific forums.

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Unread 09-07-2006, 05:59 PM   #1
Lope
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Default About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Hey people.

My loop is 18 months old now, and there is so much white gooey blobby crap growing in it that the water is almost stopped by it, hehe

Specs:
Purpose: Silent (no fans anywhere)
CPU: 1800+
Graphics card: 10+ years old
Ram: 1GB
HDDs: 250 + 160GB

So yeah, it was my first attempt.
The radiator is passive. its a crap design. its not very efficient and its heavy as hell. the whole PC weighs about 40 KG, its a real bitch to move
To its merit, it is unique in that its one of the only portable self contained fanless silent rigs that doesnt need refilling.

So yeah, i'd kind of like to always keep it around for sentimental reasons

Its kind of my internet/work PC.

For my 2nd PC which i'm gonna get soon, the priorities are the following:
Lightweight as possible (portable)
Fast and capable for games. (lanning)
Bonus: quiet.

I wanna get a lanboy case for it. (4kg)

So maybe i'll just run it aircooled for a while, or get some zalman thing :/

I'd be open to trying out an Evap bong on it, they are pretty quiet and light.
I'd also be open to trying a heatercore on it, obviously though thats going to increase the weight. But i'd be okay with a slight increase in weight if it kills the noise significantly.

Any Ideas?
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Unread 09-07-2006, 06:37 PM   #2
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Evaporative cooling is guaranteed to give you more biological growths than a sealed or semi sealed system.

Brian's Design Rules for System Cooling
If you want portable, go air cooled.
If you want REALLY quiet, go air cooled.
If you want mostly quiet and/or overclocked, go water.
If you want maximum bling, go water.

For air cooling, get a Scythe HSF with a Yate Loon 120mm fan 5V'ed for your CPU, and an aftermarket GPU cooler (if you can't bear to use a passively cooled GPU).

For water cooling, just about all the CPU blocks work well enough. However, I unreservedly love the 10W DDC. I hear the PA.160 radiator works really well too if you pair it with a 7V Yate Loon (or Nexus because they are rebranded Yate Loons).
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Unread 09-07-2006, 06:41 PM   #3
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

The reason top-notch air cooling seems to be quieter than watercooling is that I can't seem to find a water pump that is quieter than a Yate-Loon 7V fan (which is the max you'd need if you got a good HSF).

Water noise sources: pump + (optional) fans
Air noise sources: CPU fan

Even if you use passive heat transfer with the radiator, my 7V fan is quieter than my 12V water pump even after I put it on egg-crate foam and surround it with rubber sound insulation.
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Unread 09-07-2006, 07:19 PM   #4
Lope
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

thanks for the great tip. i checked out that heatsink, and wow it rocks.
i'll definitely get one.

i'll figure out something for the GPU when i know what gfx card i'm gonna get.
Probably ATI

yeah, the pump noise issue can be a bitch
all i hear from my PC is the buzz of the water pump.
i'm inclined to think if someone is psycho enough the pump noise could be killed by burying it under enough padding and sound blocking material.
i havent been psycho enough to find out what extent one needs to go to yet.

i'm a lot more attached to the PC than the radiator, perhaps some time for fun i'll redo the radiator part.

-----
oh also, i wanted to mention that thats not true what you said about going aircooled for quietest operation. even with a quiet cpu cooler like the skythe... hard drives still make a lot of noise, power supplies make a fair amount of noise, and then u have to keep the mobo chipsets cool, and make sure you're keeping air flowing through the case.
with an aircooled setup you need at least 4 fans. psu, cpu, gpu, case
assuming you get a fancy northbridge cooler.
then you still have unsmothered noisy hard drives.

it may not be obvious by looking at the pic, but i've WC'd everything from the psu to the mosfets on the motherboard.
i even thought of doing the cdroms, but that was a bit of a ridiculous idea.

Last edited by Lope; 09-07-2006 at 08:21 PM.
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Unread 09-07-2006, 10:38 PM   #5
Azazel
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

HDD Noise can be mitigated in many ways. I've got a laptop drive in an Alleycat-esque (see SPCR for more details) enclosure. Silent. Pump noise is a bitch. I still can't get rid of it, even using a similar method for enclosing it (a DDC, for the record) and putting that on foam resulted in a pump that was still clearly audible, even over a yate loon @ 12v.
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Unread 09-08-2006, 01:10 PM   #6
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lope
oh also, i wanted to mention that thats not true what you said about going aircooled for quietest operation. even with a quiet cpu cooler like the skythe... hard drives still make a lot of noise, power supplies make a fair amount of noise, and then u have to keep the mobo chipsets cool, and make sure you're keeping air flowing through the case.
with an aircooled setup you need at least 4 fans. psu, cpu, gpu, case
assuming you get a fancy northbridge cooler.
then you still have unsmothered noisy hard drives.

it may not be obvious by looking at the pic, but i've WC'd everything from the psu to the mosfets on the motherboard.
i even thought of doing the cdroms, but that was a bit of a ridiculous idea.
It's certainly open to debate as to whether you can do better silencing with water, but saying that the hard drives make the difference is a bit odd. Do you have different hard drives in an aircooled case?

My ideal aircooled computer has two fans: PSU and case. The CPU and GPU are passively cooled by case airflow. This is possible depending upon the graphics card that you buy. You can get passively cooled nVidia 7600GT (I think, but I know you can get 6600GT passively cooled), a Scythe cooler on a cool CPU (undervolt or use a cool CPU like the newer Intel chips), and the case fan can move enough air through the whole system to keep things under control. This might be easiser with a low-powered hard drive (laptop maybe?) and a good case such as the Antec P150, P180, or Fusion (or the cheaper version of the Fusion which is NSK3000?).

Stepping up in power, you get into cases where water starts to become more attractive because you need to add fans for localized hot spots or to increase the case airflow. I've always said that water rules when the heat load is large. This is the case when you overclock, add lots of hard drives, use a high-powered GPU and/or use high powered CPUs.

I watercool my HTPC based upon a Barton 2500+ and 2.5TB of disk.

It's a spectrum, not a black and white question.
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Unread 09-08-2006, 02:06 PM   #7
ricecrispi
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

I also have a DDC in HTPC and the thick foam wasn't good enough. What i did was rolled a thin piece of foam (1/8" piece) in half and placed it under the pump. The second piece helped and works better than having one piece of foam or having the second piece flat Still some minor buzzing but not enough to hear over the low speed fans at 12 V.

I haven't tried it yet but a thick and soft egg foam my do the good. I would also try suspending the pump off the floor using zip ties.
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Unread 09-09-2006, 06:12 AM   #8
Lope
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

i've got some bubble wrap under my pump, with the large bubbles, works okay. it would be cool to use a pump that doesnt run at 50hz. like a 10hz pump would rock. haha. or maybe a tesla turbine pump.
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Unread 09-11-2006, 01:05 PM   #9
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

I've tried 3" egg-crate foam, suspension and multiple layers of foam. I can hear the whine. Better than the D4 though.
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Unread 09-12-2006, 11:31 AM   #10
bobkoure
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Sounds like the cooling-for-quiet folks might want to check out the Innovatek HPPS pump. It's a modded Eheim 1046 (runs on 12VDC, slightly different impeller) that's quieter than AC-powered 1046s and provides pressure similar to a 1048.
You need to couple it with a block that doesn't rely on high pressure or flow (the now-obsolete Swiftech 6000 was a perfect match).
This pump is quieter than Nexxus fans sub 7V (probably more like 5 - I use noisemagic nmts to control fan speed - spec says minimum of 5V). Yes, it vibrates a bit, but that just requires some foam underneath, no contacting the side of the pump to something rigid in the case (so no need for a full foam surround) and making sure the vibrations don't travel through the hose (so no stiff hose - I mostly use soft silicone).
That said, if there's a way to be as quiet with air (and maybe do a bit of o/c) I'm all for it. There's no worrying about your coolant level with heat pipes.
We were talking about the Scythe SN1CF, right? Wonder how that'd do with non-case-air ducted to it...?
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Unread 09-12-2006, 12:36 PM   #11
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Not the scythe infinity, the scythe ninja. SPCR just reviewed the infinity as (with the things that I find important) inferior to the ninja.

See Newegg Scythe Ninja

Specifically, the Ninja is lighter (less mobo stress) and performs better. Note that heatpipe tolerances are reputed to be really sloppy. You may be +/- 10% variation (according to what one heatpipe VAR mentioned). I'm sure that you can request better tolerances, but the ones used in consumer Heatsinks are probably not that good.

With air there is no worrying about galvanic corrosion, biological growths, an extra mechanical component (pump), coolant leaks, coolant transpiration, and so on. Plus, I've found that watercooled computers are harder to transport if the need arises. I'm not a lan warrior, but I would like to transport my computer if I want to do diagnostics on it at work or go visit a buddy and transfer files. I am thankful for the advent of portable USB drive enclosures with 500GB drives.
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Unread 09-12-2006, 05:33 PM   #12
Lope
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

i dont worry about any of those things you mentioned. i worry about them as much as i'd worry about my CPU fan dying. and if the CPU fan is loud enough to make its presence known constantly its a POS and a thorn in the side.

Same goes for maintenance. changing the water needs to be done less often than cleaning the dust out of heatsinks. I've had my rig running for 18 months without maintenance. If i was using fans i'd probably have cleaned the dust out long ago. and for that i usually take the heatsink off and put it under the tap.

(dont have compressed air available) *cough cough*

also, in future i'll be using opaque tubing with one or two little transparent sections for inspecing the water, which i'll cover up during normal use.

I've heard of PCs running for 4 years easily without water changes.

another thing which may influence things, is i know most water coolers love those brass hose barbs, and think its the end of the world if their heater core doesnt have them. i'm not in this for bling. all my connections are just copper pipe, i slap on some silicone RTV gasket sealant, and a jubilee clip, i've never had a single leak and dont worry in the least.
i reckon J clips and RTV sealant is way more reliable than hose barbs.

another thing if i DID have some block with hose barbs, i'd probably use the gasket sealer and a J clip aswell if the hose didnt fit very tightly.

(i've also used just J clips and clear flex, but without the silicone gasket stuff the plastic gets compressed into the crevices on the copper pipe and its a bit of a b*tch to remove.

gnight yall, god bless
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Unread 09-13-2006, 12:07 AM   #13
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

I've got a watercooled computer that has been running with no maintenance for 2.5 years and no problems, but not everyone has that kind of experience.
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Unread 09-13-2006, 07:22 AM   #14
Lope
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

hehe, i'm quite amused, the other day i was really checking out the slimey blob lifeform stuff that accumulated mostly at the bottom of my PC in the hard drive waterblock, blobs of the stuff would break off and flow up the rig... so i started poking at it etc, and squeezing the pipe where the edge of it was, causing the whole blob to get sucked through and flow through the rig... well, there is no blob resiging there anymore, and my temps are good as new. its quite funny.
Its quite likely that the blob got stuck inside the resevior.

which by the way, i dont know how the hell i'm going to clean out.

so its a lot less urgent now, but i will be changing the water soon. there is a lot more air in my system than i'd like. since i filled this system up, i've aquired a really high powered pump, which i'll bootstrap in for filling/bleeding, that should force any trapped air out very nicely.
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Unread 09-13-2006, 08:03 AM   #15
bobkoure
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brians256
I've got a watercooled computer that has been running with no maintenance for 2.5 years and no problems, ...
Ditto - only coolant gets topped up every 6 or 8 months (silicone hoses).
I'm convinced I don't have biological problems because the loop isn't exposed to light at all...
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Unread 09-13-2006, 11:24 PM   #16
Brians256
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

My reliable watercooled case is custom made aluminum sheet metal. There are no windows.

I do need to vacuum the heatercore air intake though.
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Unread 09-16-2006, 07:21 AM   #17
bobkoure
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Default Re: About to refurbish 18 month old loop & New PC on the horizon

Oh, right - dust removal.
Mostly, if I'm vacuuming the office, I'll pop the bezels of the two PCs there and use the brush attachment to remove any built up dust from the fronts of the now-exposed heatercores.
I took one PC out to the garage (had had a RAM failure, so had been digging around in there anyway, trying to figure out what was wrong) and blew it out with compressed air. It was surprisingly "not that bad", other than dust built up on the leading edges of fans. I guess heatercores make decent dust filters...
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