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Collateral Damage
Jun 13, 2009

If your bios allows it you can dial the power limit for your CPU down and it will run considerably cooler for a pretty insignificant loss of performance.

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Collateral Damage
Jun 13, 2009

VelociBacon posted:

I'm surprised it's not cheaper and more aesthetically pleasing to just use a bigger case but I'm curious how this will end up so please post pics!
So after my little mishap the other day I left the machine to dry in front of a box fan for 24 hours.

I then had a scare when the GPU's leak detection went off as soon as I turned it on but that turned out to be the EK Torque fittings being so chonky that they short circuit the leak detection circuit if you tighten them too much. Loosened them by an eighth of a turn and it was fine.

Loop order is pump -> top rad -> cpu -> front rad -> flow meter -> gpu -> pump

I designed and 3D printed both the plate that mounts the fan and rad on top and the bracket for the pump/res at the back. I'll put the designs on Printables if anyone's interested.

Not entirely happy with the front rad to GPU run but there was no other place I could fit the flow meter that didn't prevent the side cover from closing, look like rear end, or both.

With the mesh sides on it looks fine, and it has no problem maintaining a 35C target temperature for the water under load without having to go above 40% fan speed. The top rad absolutely help, as does the more powerful pump. With the EK DDC pump running at 70% it's practically inaudible and I get a 90L/min flow rate, almost twice the what I was getting with the Alphacool DC-LT pump. And that was before adding another radiator.

While re-routing everything I also realized I had previously plumbed the CPU block backwards, which probably did no favors for the CPU temp. :v:



VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

Collateral Damage posted:

So after my little mishap the other day I left the machine to dry in front of a box fan for 24 hours.

I then had a scare when the GPU's leak detection went off as soon as I turned it on but that turned out to be the EK Torque fittings being so chonky that they short circuit the leak detection circuit if you tighten them too much. Loosened them by an eighth of a turn and it was fine.

Loop order is pump -> top rad -> cpu -> front rad -> flow meter -> gpu -> pump

I designed and 3D printed both the plate that mounts the fan and rad on top and the bracket for the pump/res at the back. I'll put the designs on Printables if anyone's interested.

Not entirely happy with the front rad to GPU run but there was no other place I could fit the flow meter that didn't prevent the side cover from closing, look like rear end, or both.

With the mesh sides on it looks fine, and it has no problem maintaining a 35C target temperature for the water under load without having to go above 40% fan speed. The top rad absolutely help, as does the more powerful pump. With the EK DDC pump running at 70% it's practically inaudible and I get a 90L/min flow rate, almost twice the what I was getting with the Alphacool DC-LT pump. And that was before adding another radiator.

While re-routing everything I also realized I had previously plumbed the CPU block backwards, which probably did no favors for the CPU temp. :v:





Yeah I'm curious how much of a difference the flow direction makes across the CPU block - I could see it being pretty important depending on how the thing is machined.

That looks great - I'm still not sure that the order of the components in terms of where the rads are in the loop matters that much - a lot of youtubers seem to think it doesn't, I can appreciate the reasoning for both sides of the argument. My system is plumbed with rads between the GPU and CPU because it happened to be the cleanest way for me to run the tubing. I do believe there's a falloff in terms of pump speed on a kinda bellcurve... IE the faster the fluid is circulated past the cold plates the less time it has to pick up heat energy and the less time it has to transmit heat energy to the fins of the radiator. I think unless you're running a d5 @ 100% RPM (lots of people do) you probably are within a window where you're being helped by gradients quite a lot.

power crystals
Jun 6, 2007

Who wants a belly rub??

Collateral Damage posted:

While re-routing everything I also realized I had previously plumbed the CPU block backwards, which probably did no favors for the CPU temp. :v:

Reading this made me check and goddammit I did that too. Now do I want to break the loop to fix it or just live with it since even with that it's not thermal throttling with prime95 small FFT...

Theophany
Jul 22, 2014

SUCCHIAMI IL MIO CAZZO DA DIETRO, RANA RAGAZZO



2022 FIA Formula 1 WDC

VelociBacon posted:

Yeah I'm curious how much of a difference the flow direction makes across the CPU block - I could see it being pretty important depending on how the thing is machined.

That looks great - I'm still not sure that the order of the components in terms of where the rads are in the loop matters that much - a lot of youtubers seem to think it doesn't, I can appreciate the reasoning for both sides of the argument. My system is plumbed with rads between the GPU and CPU because it happened to be the cleanest way for me to run the tubing. I do believe there's a falloff in terms of pump speed on a kinda bellcurve... IE the faster the fluid is circulated past the cold plates the less time it has to pick up heat energy and the less time it has to transmit heat energy to the fins of the radiator. I think unless you're running a d5 @ 100% RPM (lots of people do) you probably are within a window where you're being helped by gradients quite a lot.

I have my GPU plumbed backwards at the moment because ~reasons~ and it seems to hold up well enough despite the block clearly being machined to flow in a certain way. I will correct it when drain and move my PC next month because it bothers me, but functionally it doesn't seem to have much of an impact.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

Collateral Damage posted:

If your bios allows it you can dial the power limit for your CPU down and it will run considerably cooler for a pretty insignificant loss of performance.

If this is @ me, yeah I'm overclocking it right to the limit of stability/heat because the sim racing I do (in VR) is incredibly CPU intensive so I need everything I can get! I can't afford to lose even 2-3 fps.

Collateral Damage
Jun 13, 2009

VelociBacon posted:

Yeah I'm curious how much of a difference the flow direction makes across the CPU block - I could see it being pretty important depending on how the thing is machined.

That looks great - I'm still not sure that the order of the components in terms of where the rads are in the loop matters that much - a lot of youtubers seem to think it doesn't, I can appreciate the reasoning for both sides of the argument. My system is plumbed with rads between the GPU and CPU because it happened to be the cleanest way for me to run the tubing. I do believe there's a falloff in terms of pump speed on a kinda bellcurve... IE the faster the fluid is circulated past the cold plates the less time it has to pick up heat energy and the less time it has to transmit heat energy to the fins of the radiator. I think unless you're running a d5 @ 100% RPM (lots of people do) you probably are within a window where you're being helped by gradients quite a lot.
Thanks, I'm pretty happy with how it all turned out. And yeah, as long as you have sufficient flow the order doesn't matter. Plumb it up in the order that makes it easy to route the tubes and/or is aesthetically pleasing.

In/out on the blocks may or may not matter, depending on the design. Some (Most nowadays?) CPU blocks use a jet plate design where incoming water is forced through a narrow opening which increases velocity before hitting the fin stack. They'll work in reverse, water will obviously still flow across the fins but it won't be as efficient. Others just have an inlet and an outlet on either side of the fin stack in which case it doesn't matter.

eviltastic
Feb 8, 2004

Fan of Britches
If anyone was waiting for it, it looks like the Thermal Grizzly direct die block for AM5 is coming out soon. It's starting to be listed for preorder in a handful of EU stores. Caseking lists it as being available on August 17.

Old Balls McGee
Nov 2, 2008


First water cooling ever. All done

This took a while, between figuring out what to order, my work schedule and the silly mistakes I had to deal with. I am not sure I'd do this again. I'd probably just go with a good AIO for the i9 and maybe the MSi Suprim AIO vchard.

The tube bending wasn't too bad and I only had one bad fitting, an offset. Somehow didn't get all the screws tight for the contact plate so the memory wouldn't show up even though I had tested and installed winders before the water stuff with an air cooler. First PSU couldn't handle any games even though it was A tier on the CPU Cultist list. I had to file down some standoffs for the vertical mount as the factory ones were too high and the vchard wouldn't seat fully because of them. Also, the Lian Li vertical mount didn't clear the fans, so I have the EKWB.

I know I could have done a little more in the way of cable management but honestly I was just done.

Also, thanks again to the goon for the windows key

Oh yeah, temps are where you think they would be for this cpu.

namlosh
Feb 11, 2014

I name this haircut "The Sad Rhino".

Old Balls McGee posted:



First water cooling ever. All done

This took a while, between figuring out what to order, my work schedule and the silly mistakes I had to deal with. I am not sure I'd do this again. I'd probably just go with a good AIO for the i9 and maybe the MSi Suprim AIO vchard.

The tube bending wasn't too bad and I only had one bad fitting, an offset. Somehow didn't get all the screws tight for the contact plate so the memory wouldn't show up even though I had tested and installed winders before the water stuff with an air cooler. First PSU couldn't handle any games even though it was A tier on the CPU Cultist list. I had to file down some standoffs for the vertical mount as the factory ones were too high and the vchard wouldn't seat fully because of them. Also, the Lian Li vertical mount didn't clear the fans, so I have the EKWB.

I know I could have done a little more in the way of cable management but honestly I was just done.

Also, thanks again to the goon for the windows key

Oh yeah, temps are where you think they would be for this cpu.

Looks super nice! Sorry if this is a dumb question, but What radiator(s) is that?

Old Balls McGee
Nov 2, 2008

namlosh posted:

Looks super nice! Sorry if this is a dumb question, but What radiator(s) is that?

EK Surface? Pretty sure. Slim up top, regular on the bottom.

Triikan
Feb 23, 2007
Most Loved
Is there a collection of some sort of "water cooling theory" somewhere? Trying to plan out my first build, and want to do some off the trail stuff, but don't want to be repeating mistakes that were figured out long ago.

spunkshui
Oct 5, 2011



Triikan posted:

Is there a collection of some sort of "water cooling theory" somewhere? Trying to plan out my first build, and want to do some off the trail stuff, but don't want to be repeating mistakes that were figured out long ago.

Youtube tech channels basically.

Jay2cents has done a few.

https://youtu.be/5ZnDESqJdyU?si=N_oIZWCIoXjrgwhE

But also seek out a few more to get a well rounded background.

namlosh
Feb 11, 2014

I name this haircut "The Sad Rhino".
Another maybe dumb question:
Do people reuse the component parts of AIOís? Like Iím sure that people would say itís a bad idea, but why? At the very least, the radiator and fans could be reused right?
2 reasons Iím curious:
1) buying all the components separately seems way more expensive, even factoring in stuff like not being able to reuse AIO blocks and water pumps.
2) if I understand correctly, AIOs have a life expectancy of like 6 years or so due to permeability? Throwing it out at that point seems wasteful as all hell

jink
May 8, 2002

Drop it like it's Hot.
Taco Defender

namlosh posted:

Another maybe dumb question:
Do people reuse the component parts of AIOís? Like Iím sure that people would say itís a bad idea, but why? At the very least, the radiator and fans could be reused right?
2 reasons Iím curious:
1) buying all the components separately seems way more expensive, even factoring in stuff like not being able to reuse AIO blocks and water pumps.
2) if I understand correctly, AIOs have a life expectancy of like 6 years or so due to permeability? Throwing it out at that point seems wasteful as all hell

You can reuse the fans but the other components are purposely disposable to increase sales. Profits, baby. [EDIT]: If the pump continues working and there is fluid in an AIO there is no reason to stop using it if it has compatible mounts. However, fluid changes are normally destructive, rarely accessible fill/drain ports.

The point of spending more money on components is being able to reuse the majority (blocks are outliers). It's a steep jump but this is an extremely niche market and quality is very high from most companies (I am a Bitspower fan).

Triikan
Feb 23, 2007
Most Loved
What are the go to sources for buying individual parts?

Warmachine
Jan 30, 2012



Triikan posted:

What are the go to sources for buying individual parts?

Straight from the manufacturer usually. EK and Alphacool both sell all the components you need for open/custom loops. I bought everything I used in my loop from either EK, Alphacool, or Aquacomputer, with the one exception of XSPC TX240 radiator, which I had to source from somewhere else and it's a niche part for ultracompact builds where standard thin radiators won't fit.

Indiana_Krom
Jun 18, 2007
Net Slacker

namlosh posted:

Another maybe dumb question:
Do people reuse the component parts of AIOís? Like Iím sure that people would say itís a bad idea, but why? At the very least, the radiator and fans could be reused right?
2 reasons Iím curious:
1) buying all the components separately seems way more expensive, even factoring in stuff like not being able to reuse AIO blocks and water pumps.
2) if I understand correctly, AIOs have a life expectancy of like 6 years or so due to permeability? Throwing it out at that point seems wasteful as all hell

There is a major reason to not mix AIO parts into a custom loop: dissimilar metals. AIOs are pretty much universally made from aluminum, while custom loop components are more often than not made from copper and brass (often with nickel coatings). Copper, nickel and brass are very similar metals to each other, but aluminum is significantly different from them. Having dissimilar metals in contact with a liquid leads to galvanic corrosion which will quickly destroy internal components of the loop and lead to premature failure.

Now the fans you could reuse no problem, they don't touch the coolant. But anything that does touch coolant from an AIO should not be used with copper custom loop parts.

Aluminum is the preferred metal for AIOs because it costs significantly less to work with. Copper is the preferred metal for custom loops because it is higher performance.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

Every AIO I've used I've wanted to replace the fans almost immediately so I don't think you'd want to save 2% of the overall cost of the custom loop by reusing whatever fans you have around.

AIOs and custom loops are just best thought of as completely divergent things that you can't mix and match.

Indiana_Krom
Jun 18, 2007
Net Slacker
Yeah, I generally don't even think of AIOs as really being "water cooling", they are basically just air coolers with way more flexible mounting options. They are designed primarily for mass production and cost savings, it isn't that they are low quality (I would say they are quite good quality these days), but in order to hit a sale price that doesn't completely tank it relative to a high quality heat pipe tower cooler AIOs have to make some serious compromises.

Custom loop parts on the other hand are low volume and generally make no compromises so their price reflects that.

namlosh
Feb 11, 2014

I name this haircut "The Sad Rhino".
Ok, the dissimilar metals argument makes sense. Is there any reason not to buy used custom loop stuff? Like if a radiator has been drained after being used is it no longer good due to corrosion or termites or something?

Indiana_Krom
Jun 18, 2007
Net Slacker
I don't see why not.

In the worst case I think in dissolving out a bit of corrosion from a used radiator shouldn't be too much of a problem when done in moderation. Obviously a good cleaning and flush is the best practice before installing used components, gotta get all the old fluids and any potential debris out.

Indiana_Krom fucked around with this message at 14:59 on Sep 9, 2023

SpartanIvy
May 18, 2007
Hair Elf
Using second hand water cooling components is fine, but you really need to make sure they're cleaned good. If it's a water block with fins you should disassemble it and make sure there's nothing in the fins. If the prior owner used any coolant with particulate in it, it's probably stuck in the fins a bit and around o-rings and such.

I used a second hand reservoir for part of my first loop and did not get it clean enough and some bits came loose in my loop and clogged up a filter screen I had installed. It took several flushes to get all that poo poo out after the fact.

You should also be aware of dissimilar metals when buying used components as well, because even though most are copper, there have been kits over time that use aluminum components, so make sure you know what you're getting.

namlosh
Feb 11, 2014

I name this haircut "The Sad Rhino".

Indiana_Krom posted:

I don't see why not.

In the worst case I think in dissolving out a bit of corrosion from a used radiator shouldn't be too much of a problem when done in moderation. Obviously a good cleaning and flush is the best practice before installing used components, gotta get all the old fluids and any potential debris out.

Cool, thx.

I used to run a custom loop 15 years ago and loved it. But I got that as a complete kit from a CompUSA liquidation. Looking at prices now is a bit of a shock, especially as someone who likes to tinker and would much rather cobble together something Frankenstein style. But the dissimilar metals thing is a real hurdle. Tough to find radiators that arenít aluminum from anywhere other than the pc liquid cooling niche market and that have a high cost as such.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

namlosh posted:

Cool, thx.

I used to run a custom loop 15 years ago and loved it. But I got that as a complete kit from a CompUSA liquidation. Looking at prices now is a bit of a shock, especially as someone who likes to tinker and would much rather cobble together something Frankenstein style. But the dissimilar metals thing is a real hurdle. Tough to find radiators that arenít aluminum from anywhere other than the pc liquid cooling niche market and that have a high cost as such.

There's really no benefit to going outside of the PC market for this, it's more of a headache than it's worth. Automakers use aluminum heavily in their blocks/radiators so that's automatically out. I also wouldn't go for a used component build, who wants to roll the dice on what poo poo might be inside a used radiator? I think all my stuff for my dual 420 rad setup was around $900 CAD. If you can't afford that it might be better to just hold off and use AIO and start saving up for when you can afford to do it properly. I think it only really gets more expensive from there!

Warmachine
Jan 30, 2012



It's kinda important to remember that between performance air coolers and AIOs, custom loops are more a luxury/flex purchase than every before. Your percentage gains per dollar spent are not in your favor, you do this because you want to tinker, or want a certain aesthetic, or are trying to do something particularly niche.

pnumoman
Sep 26, 2008

I never get the last word, and it makes me very sad.

Warmachine posted:

It's kinda important to remember that between performance air coolers and AIOs, custom loops are more a luxury/flex purchase than every before. Your percentage gains per dollar spent are not in your favor, you do this because you want to tinker, or want a certain aesthetic, or are trying to do something particularly niche.

100%. In terms of cost, time, and effort, you should definitely go AIO or air cooling. I upgraded my PC a while back and I only went with a custom water loop because I've always wanted to do one. It was fun, but definitely not something to do to save money. And even in terms of performance, it's good but I wouldn't say it's leaps and bounds above a good aio and case setup unless you're running a stupid hot CPU like a 13900k or something. And even then, it's not really THAT much better.

Looks rad though, even with my low effort soft tubing. And it was really fun! (But time consuming and expensive)

Indiana_Krom
Jun 18, 2007
Net Slacker
Yeah, a big expensive custom loop may not significantly outperform high end air coolers on temperatures and will definitely cost a lot more. They will however look amazing and more importantly crush air coolers when it comes to sound levels at a given performance. A big custom loop can be dead silent while still transporting more heat than air coolers with screaming loud fans on them. When I got my EVGA FTW3 3080 Ti card I was honestly surprised at just how loud it was under load, I had always intended to put it under a full cover block but testing it out and putting it through its paces for a week ahead of time before doing the cooler swap was almost painful.

If you want to flex a PC with a good speaker system, but don't want the high pitched fan noise ruining the experience, a custom loop water cooler will absolutely deliver.

namlosh
Feb 11, 2014

I name this haircut "The Sad Rhino".

pnumoman posted:

you're running a stupid hot CPU like a 13900k or something. And even then, it's not really THAT much better.

This is what I'm about to pull the trigger on. I'm a software dev and can use all of the cores I can get. I was looking at grabbing a 360mm AIO and since I had custom loop experience in the past, figured I'd look back into it. Was pretty surprised at the prices... I mean I have no problem spending money, especially on professional equipment which this is, but spending so much on some of the pieces when "a radiator is a radiator and a pump is a pump" just didn't look to make sense. I realize now that I wasn't thinking about the different metals thing.

Funny enough, I should have known: I actually remember a BMW engine having problems with corrosion because they used Magnesium as part of the variable valve setup, IIRC... not mine thankfully, but one of the different models/engines.

Indiana_Krom posted:

Yeah, a big expensive custom loop may not significantly outperform high end air coolers on temperatures

This is the only other thing I can't believe (tbc, I do believe it, it's just surprising). When I ran mine years ago it brought down temps like crazy. Now I get it, processors put out a lot more heat nowadays, but dang man. I would think moving from air to Liquid Cooling would have a HUGE impact. I guess I was wrong :(

thanks for the help/sanity check everybody.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

namlosh posted:

This is what I'm about to pull the trigger on. I'm a software dev and can use all of the cores I can get. I was looking at grabbing a 360mm AIO and since I had custom loop experience in the past, figured I'd look back into it. Was pretty surprised at the prices... I mean I have no problem spending money, especially on professional equipment which this is, but spending so much on some of the pieces when "a radiator is a radiator and a pump is a pump" just didn't look to make sense. I realize now that I wasn't thinking about the different metals thing.

Funny enough, I should have known: I actually remember a BMW engine having problems with corrosion because they used Magnesium as part of the variable valve setup, IIRC... not mine thankfully, but one of the different models/engines.

This is the only other thing I can't believe (tbc, I do believe it, it's just surprising). When I ran mine years ago it brought down temps like crazy. Now I get it, processors put out a lot more heat nowadays, but dang man. I would think moving from air to Liquid Cooling would have a HUGE impact. I guess I was wrong :(

thanks for the help/sanity check everybody.

The issue these days is that there are so many heat generating whatevers inside CPUs that the bottleneck is the thermal material that transfers the heat from the transitors or w/e to the cold plate. Even when they use a solder TIM, you end up with marginal gains because the CPU is limited by it's ability to get it's thermal energy to the cold plate to be removed.

SpartanIvy
May 18, 2007
Hair Elf
Air cooling has also improved by leaps and bounds in the last decade by not only improvements in the heatsinks with the inclusion of heat pipes, micro fins, better materials, and by just getting bigger, but also by improvements in case designs and air flow management. Cases in general are more open, have more fans, and bigger fans that greatly improve the cases ability to keep the components surrounded by fresh air.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

SpartanIvy posted:

Air cooling has also improved by leaps and bounds in the last decade by not only improvements in the heatsinks with the inclusion of heat pipes, micro fins, better materials, and by just getting bigger, but also by improvements in case designs and air flow management. Cases in general are more open, have more fans, and bigger fans that greatly improve the cases ability to keep the components surrounded by fresh air.

Yeah the fact that the Thermalright Peerless Assassin 120 SE is 35 bucks and can cool basically any processor as well or better than most AIOs is insane.

Indiana_Krom
Jun 18, 2007
Net Slacker

VelociBacon posted:

The issue these days is that there are so many heat generating whatevers inside CPUs that the bottleneck is the thermal material that transfers the heat from the transitors or w/e to the cold plate. Even when they use a solder TIM, you end up with marginal gains because the CPU is limited by it's ability to get it's thermal energy to the cold plate to be removed.

Yeah, modern CPUs are smaller than they have ever been before while simultaneously consuming more power than they ever have before. Your CPU is basically putting out as much heat as two 75-100 watt incandescent light bulbs in about as much surface area as the filaments, they are going to run hot. The bottleneck in cooling is just how small the heat source and how much more heat it is generating.

pnumoman
Sep 26, 2008

I never get the last word, and it makes me very sad.
The noise is so much better though, like the previous poster said. I always hated fan noise, and now I get to play in blessed silence. And while it's hard to know if the computer is on when the monitor is off and things are completely silent, that's what RGB is for, right? (I actually have no RGB in the case, it's all blinding custom mechanical keyboards for me)

Warmachine
Jan 30, 2012



pnumoman posted:

The noise is so much better though, like the previous poster said. I always hated fan noise, and now I get to play in blessed silence. And while it's hard to know if the computer is on when the monitor is off and things are completely silent, that's what RGB is for, right? (I actually have no RGB in the case, it's all blinding custom mechanical keyboards for me)

RGB is the enemy. Aluminum box, and a WASD-brand keyboard.

Death to rainbow rave vomit.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009

pnumoman posted:

The noise is so much better though, like the previous poster said. I always hated fan noise, and now I get to play in blessed silence. And while it's hard to know if the computer is on when the monitor is off and things are completely silent, that's what RGB is for, right? (I actually have no RGB in the case, it's all blinding custom mechanical keyboards for me)

I guess you're still dissipating the same amount of heat energy with fans so I don't know how it could be much different - aside from the fact that you get to use the mass of the circulating volume as a buffer so your little spikes in heat will result in less fan noise. If left until heat has fully saturated and reached homeostasis I would expect an aircooled and a watercooled PC to have similar fan speeds to reach the same temps, just due to how physics works. Maybe the radiators act as sound insulators for the fans a bit more? Or maybe there's more convective dissipation of heat from the radiator surface area? Or actually maybe just more fans at a lower RPM for the radiators in a watercooled setup vs 2 fans on the CPU + case fans in an air cooled setup. I dunno. There's literally a concert being held on the street 150ft below me as I write this so I suppose I'm just used to headphones.

SpartanIvy
May 18, 2007
Hair Elf
The noise can be less with water cooling because you are removing the constraint that your fan has to be within X distance of the source of heat, and that constraint usually means there's a smaller area able to be cooled, and thus faster fans are needed. So even though the heat energy needing to be removed is the same, because of other factors it typically results in more noise.

The water in a custom loop can carry that heat energy away from the small area around the CPU to a radiator which has a tremendously larger surface area and that can then be cooled by larger and slower spinning fans, which reduces noise. In theory if you had a big enough radiator you wouldn't even need any fans, and it could be passively cooled. In another extreme direction, you could have your radiator in another room and run your piping there, so that the heat, fans, and noise are totally removed from where you and your computer are.

Indiana_Krom
Jun 18, 2007
Net Slacker

VelociBacon posted:

I guess you're still dissipating the same amount of heat energy with fans so I don't know how it could be much different - aside from the fact that you get to use the mass of the circulating volume as a buffer so your little spikes in heat will result in less fan noise. If left until heat has fully saturated and reached homeostasis I would expect an aircooled and a watercooled PC to have similar fan speeds to reach the same temps, just due to how physics works. Maybe the radiators act as sound insulators for the fans a bit more? Or maybe there's more convective dissipation of heat from the radiator surface area? Or actually maybe just more fans at a lower RPM for the radiators in a watercooled setup vs 2 fans on the CPU + case fans in an air cooled setup. I dunno. There's literally a concert being held on the street 150ft below me as I write this so I suppose I'm just used to headphones.
If the air cooled PC and water cooled PC had the same size radiators then yeah it would be the same. But pretty much the whole point of water cooling is that it doesn't have to be the same size. Since we use a pump to actively transport the heat away from the source, you can pretty much throw unlimited radiator space at it. For instance my custom loop has 700x38MM of high density fin packed radiators occupied by 5x 140MM fans that can push a theoretical 410 CFM through them. It is like 5 of the biggest 140MM heat pipe tower coolers you can buy packed into a single case.

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pnumoman
Sep 26, 2008

I never get the last word, and it makes me very sad.
Very simply, big ol radiators let you use big ol slow moving fans that generate very little noise for the same amount of cooling.

It's fast moving fans that make the most noise, which is why small GPU fans are loud as hell when they spin up.

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