Water pumps

By CMH ยท 45 replies
Apr 23, 2006
  1. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    I've been looking for some good radiators. What do you guys think about a car's heatercore? I've got some problems procuring copper ones for cheap, does steel ones still perform better than made-for-computer radiators? These are 2x120mm fan ones.

    I can get the copper ones for the same price as the made-for-computer ones, but I have the impression that heatercores perform better than any radiator designed for computer use.
  2. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    i think you're looking to deep into this whole water cooling issue. water cooling is water cooling... no matter what parts you use it will cool better than air.

    i use a cheap $15 pump inside an electrical box, and a painted steel radiator with no fan attached, and my CPU temp never rises above 32c. if i add a fan to the radiator it will drop a couple more degrees, but not alot. i have no fan because I water cool for silencing purposes.

    just go ahead an buy some parts and start building!!!
  3. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    Sorry, but this is definately not the case. There are watercooling kits which are worse than high end air cooling. And thats with only CPU blocks, with GPU blocks the whole setup is useless.

    I'd like to have something I can trust will work well. I'm not looking for a silent PC, I'll have to invest in alot of money if I'm going to make my computer work area quiet (3 comps running simultaneously). Therefore, I'm going for performance, and if getting the right equipment will get me 2C lower temps, I'm going to do that.

    I know the pump is probably not the most important item, but I just needed to know the rough specs which will be good for PC watercooling setups, and I think I've got the answer from earlier posts already (new posts welcome though). I can't do anything about the blocks, since I can only get swiftech (and apparently I can't do any better with other brands anyway). So the only thing to attack now is the radiator. I would've gone for the Black Ice Extreme, but I was looking for cost reduction and/or performance increase. If I can get a heatercore for 20 bux and work as well as a 150bux Black Ice Extreme, why not? I also don't mind paying 150bux for a good heatercore if I can see 2C lower temps all over. Probably won't bother if its 1C or no difference.

    And I'm definately gonna use fans with my setup, as many as the heatercore can take. I'll be needing at least 1 fan for my HDDs as well, had a bad experience with overheated HDDs (what, 1mbps transfer between HDDs?!??) :D
  4. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    for example..... ???? -or- made by.... ????

    lol... you could reduce your system temps 2c just by adding another case fan. it would not be worth all the effort just to gain a 2c improvement. with good water cooling compared to stock air cooling, you can generally excpect a 5c-15c reduction in temps.

    there is no difference between 1c and 2c, PC temps rise and fall much more than 2c all the time, besides... the temp sensors cannot accurately display a 1c or 2c difference correctly anyways

    in my personal experience with water cooling, the biggest difference i noticed was the consistency. with air cooling... there was a big gap between idle and load temps, but with water cooling it stayed more consistent
  5. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    When I said temps, I meant lead temps.

    So far, MBM gauges my temps pretty well (I'd say relatively) and they stay on those levels. I'd see if there was a 2C temp difference on the comp. Depending on the room temp of course.

    I see 2C temp difference to be quite alot, given that on my air cooling my idle is 22-23C and load 45C. A 2C temp difference is 5-10% difference. The gauges aren't accurate, but I trust them to tell me if my PC is actually cooler than before. 2C reported difference should be large enough to make that much of a difference.

    It is to me anyways, and since I'm blowing the money, why not? :D

    Also, adding case fans DO reduce system temps. However, my internal ambient temp is just about the same as my room temp, adding more will not do anything. On top of that, in a watercooling system, adding more case fans shouldn't make any difference at all, since its not the air in the case thats cooling the CPU/GPU (dependent on the position of radiator/heater core).

    Just for the record, I cannot add more unless I drill my own holes into the top/side of the case. I'm running 4 80mms and 2 120mms as it is. The only fan I added was the 120mm fan, and that was a high CFM fan, which I saw a rough 2-3C reduction in temps. The main difference was when I changed my PSU fans to higher CFM fans, and bypassed the fan speed control (max speed fans). PC sounds like a rocket, but its cooler than a cucumber.

    May I also remind you that I'm going to do overclocking, every drop in temp matters to me. As long its not something really extreme (sub ambient cooling), I'm ready to do it. I've researched quite abit last year on TEC cooling (you can search it up), and my conclusion is that its too much of a hassle. Not to mention to make my own, I'd need a high W/cm^2 TEC, and I can't get any high enough for modern CPU heat production.

    I've seen nitrogen cooling, its a great way to cool, but liquid nitrogen is just too expensive, and too dangerous to handle. Easy to procure though.

    I've seen the tomshardware oil cooling, but thats just too radical.

    I can't really think of any other way to really cool the CPU. Most doable is watercooling, and I'd want the best I can get.
  6. twite

    twite TechSpot Paladin Posts: 937

    their is also a system called the vapochill which is vapor cooling that brings the cpu to negative temps, but its $800+, so as you said water cooling will probably be the best option..you could always take the 2 120mm fans you have out and post 2 radiators their instead...you might also consider having two seperate radiators, a sytem that goes in this order would be ideal for two gpu's..pump,radiator,cpu,(second)radiator,gpu,gpu,pump. The reason i would suggest two radiators is because the cpu and oc gpu's are going to produce way to much heat, and with just one rad. the cpu and gpu are going to just pass the hot water on to eachother, so a second rad. inbetween the cpu and gpu would prob lower the temp by a good 4-5 degrees
  7. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    a second radiator would significantly cool the water down before passing through the second waterblock, however it makes another set of multiple bends that the water now has to pass through, which in turn reduces the flow rate and unless it's got a powerful pump... cancels out the benefit of the 2nd radiator.

    CMH already suggested something simliar, which I also think would be a better idea, which is running "parallel water circuits". this could mean 3 different things:

    1. two independant circuits, each with their own pump, tubing, raditors, and reserviors

    2. one system that simply splits the water from the pump into each water block separately then combines them back into a single radiator and so on

    3. a hybrid of 1 and 2

    The most effective system would be 3 independant circuits (CPU, GPU, NB), but who has the room for all that??
  8. twite

    twite TechSpot Paladin Posts: 937

    # 2 would still be very hot, and #1 and 3 would be to expensive...i would just put the money into buying a better pump, maybe 1000lph+ so it has enough power to push the water through 2 radiators

    if the money is their to spend, #1 would be very good,but as someone said eariler, how are you going to fit 2 pumps, and 2 radiators into one case..you would probably have to go external..and in that case i would just buy a whole external system like the zalman reserator or the koolance exos.
  9. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    were they western digital HDDs?? I use a wd drive and man does that thing get hot!!

    My solution was to mount the 3.5" HDD in a 5.25" drive bay inside a floppy drive adpter, then I sealed up the main air intake at the bottom/front of the case with some electrical tape. this forced more air to be sucked in through the opening in the floppy drive adapter that my HDD is mounted in, with all the air flowing all around the HDD it keeps it pretty cool.
  10. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    When I said parallel watercooling, I was thinking of #2. It will run pretty hot, but I'll see if 1 2x120mm heatercore will suffice, if not, I'll add a second, which will definately be enough. I'm actually looking at a few pumps, and I've narrowed the pumps I want to a very specific set of specs: 55-65W, >3.5m head, 1200<LPH<1800. I might change the LPH to something higher, but from what I read, 600LPH should be plenty.

    I'm more worried about how to set up the parallel circuit. The amount of water that is gonig to run to the GPUs and CPU will follow the electrical system formula: 1/R(total)=1/r+1/r+1/r..... Therefore, I'll need some clever tubing length tweaking to ensure equal amounts of water goes through all 3 tubes (unless I can find 3 way water splitters). A visit to the local plumbing shop will tell me. Not very hopeful at this time.

    I just realised I've got more money to spend on this, cos the money going into dual raptors just got freed (decided the gain from those are minimal, after loading the programs).
  11. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    And about the HDDs, they were one of the new 7200RPMs, and I had 2 of them close to each other, making heat buildup pretty bad when both HDDs are used at the same time. Those were in the era of P3s, HDD cooling wasn't much of an issue then, and my case couldn't solve the problem very well (can't add fans). I ended up inserting a very unused 1.44" FDD between the 2 HDDs, and that solved the problem pretty well.

    Lets leave that as that, I'm more interested in setting up a good watercooling system.

    Also, I've read that watercooling the NB (and GDDR RAM, HDD and PSU) is a futile exercise (with experimental data to go with), so I'm ditching NB cooling for air cooling. There are some pretty good NB aircoolers out there which I'll probably use.

    Looks like my comp will still sound like a rocket, but hopefully a smaller one than my current comp.
  12. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    with all the fans that you are adding it will probably be even louder than your old one... lol.

    as far as the NB is concerned, i gues it depends on the mobo, some chipsets get very hot while other dont. one thing for certain is that when you overclock the system bus a significant amount then your NB will heat up alot more then it does now.

    also keep in mind that the most powerful a pump you buy, the higher the water pressure becomes. it may not leak at first, but chances are the high pressure will force leaks out after a few weeks.
  13. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    I was thinking of leakage.

    I would think 24 hour leaktest period should be plenty enough. But just in case (don't want a brand new comp going up in smoke :p), how do I prevent leakages? I'll definately install those ring things (to tighten the connections). Is hot glue removeable? Don't want to permanently adhere my piping around the waterblocks/pump/radiator.

    I might just get the NB waterblock, even if its just for making the parallel circuit even.

    My current plan is:

    ---- < ======= GPUs ======= > -----
    pump--< > Radiator ------ reservoir
    ---- < ======= CPU & NB ==== > -----

    About the reservoir, I'm definately getting one, and if it works anywhere near how I think it does, its gonna be installed as high as possible, no matter what people say.

    Will be gone for 2 weeks, so no reply till then.
  14. ModGuru

    ModGuru TS Rookie Posts: 20

  15. ModGuru

    ModGuru TS Rookie Posts: 20

    Submerge pumps are use in aquarium and it's not advisable for reef aquarium use because it generates a lot of heat under water. Most submerge pumps can also be use as external.

    12V Pumps


    The best pump that I've used is Swiftech MCP600. I had that thing for almost 4 years and not a single problem. So quiet, you could barely hear it running. I moved it on my other watercooled PC. I'm currently using the MCP655 in my latest rig... [​IMG]
    PolarFlo TT Series, same as MCP655. PolarFlo just modified it with a different casing...

    If you must use an AC one, get the EHEIM pumps (German made). They have it available on 12V for pc use. Innovatek uses them... Very dependable pumps!


    These Eheim pumps below can be use submerge but I advice you not to...
  16. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    those are all good pumps, however they all cost a fortune!
  17. AtK SpAdE

    AtK SpAdE TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,495

    Whats the difference between what Modguru posted and a pump like this? Do they run off DC?


    @ 250GPH its got more then enough umph. And it only uses 24w so its cool. And i work with the suckers, and they are tough as nails. Run em dry, run em with sand in them, whatever they keep on trucking.
  18. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    I'm back.

    I don't think I'm after something that's built specifically for PCs, they tend to be overly expensive. I know enough to modify 12V power plugs to molex ones (at least I think I do), so I think I'll be shopping for something easily available from aquarium shops.

    But I agree that the MCP600 (or the later 655) should be a good buy if I wanted to spend so much. I'm actually going to base my pump spec to be as good, or just a tad higher than those pumps (just in case).
  19. ModGuru

    ModGuru TS Rookie Posts: 20

    You can always get a relay switch, they're cheap...

  20. ModGuru

    ModGuru TS Rookie Posts: 20

    Yeah, that mag drive will work. They're cheaper but they're noisy. Just get yourself a relay switch. Use the stainless steel clamps you can find at your local hardware store. Don't use those plastic ones, I had a bad experience with those plastic clamps.
  21. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 2,039   +9

    o.O, a relay switch :D

    I've read up on that a little, and I think thats probably the way to go.

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