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Radiator positioning opinions

Discussion in 'Overclocking & Cooling' started by imperialreign, Nov 13, 2008.

  1. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    Well, I'm thinking I'll finally get off my arse this weekend and do some chopping to my case and get my liquid system setup.


    But, I'm trying to decide where I'd like to put the radiator. It's a 3x120mm unit, so it's rather long . . . I have a rad box for mounting rear-external to the case, but without designing a second support mount, I don't think the single 120 radbox will support the weight; also, I'm fairly certain mounting at the rear will interfere with cable hookups - plus the hot exhaust from my two 4870s will be blowing right into it, decreasing overall efficiency.


    My next thought was to put it at the front, as I can easily slap 3 120mm fans on it, and use the Stacker's fan mount design to secure the radiator . . . but I'd have to give up my ODD, and mod another spot for my primary and secondary HDDs. If I cut open the bottom of the case, and flid the radiator inlet-side down, I could squeeze it to allow for mounting of my primary HDD and ODD, but I'd still have to relocate my two ribbon-drives elsewhere . . . but with the rad upside down, filling/bleeding the system will be an outright PITA, requiring me to dismount the radiator, and lay it flat or flip it to bleed it, then remount it . . .


    My final thought is to mount it at the bottom of the case, with the inlet/outlet sticking up into the chasis . . . I'd have to further cut the bottom out, to allow for more airflow, as well as put larger castors on the bottom of the case to lift it up another .5"-1" . . . but I wouldn't have to worry about relocating any drives. Bleeding shouldn't be too bad . . . but my concern is of warm air being trapped under the case, lowering its efficiency - or too warm of air being blown right into the air-intake paths of my GPUs . . .





    So - any ideas or recommendations? What would y'all go with? Can you give some reasoning behind it as well . . .
  2. The Haunted

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    You can mount it on top if you don't mind the look.
    That way it is completely external and use cold air . Btw, that's what i use.
  3. tzitzibp

    tzitzibp New Member

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    top is your best option and probably the best!

    However if you are for some modding you can place it on the side (outside) of the case, behind the mobo, but you 'll need some kind of support mounts.
  4. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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    If the rad is positioned on top what about the resevoir?
  5. The Haunted

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    You can put it anywhere, it just need to be easy to fill.
  6. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    perhaps I should've mentioned that as well :p

    the reservoir is going external on the top of the case, for reference, this is the unit I purchased: XPSC reservoir

    it's almost as long as my case is, front to back.



    I had given some thought to mounting the rad on one side or the other . . . but, TBH, I'd like to be able to keep 90% of the system internal, mostly for looks. There's the slight possibility that the case will be moved about on occasion (like, going from one home to another), so the less I have to dismount, the better.
  7. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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    That res is a biggun! I'm mulling this stuff over in my head right now too as I deffinitely want the radiator on top inside my case.:)
  8. Chryonn

    Chryonn

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    rad positioning is something i consider to be paramount to any liquid cooled system. i, myself, have been looking/researching into how to best place a rad on my Antec P180, as i'm looking into getting a 3x120mm. the thing is, ideally you want cold or cool air coming in over the rad then warmer air leaving hopefully away from the case. internally mounting the rad means no cool air (if the fans are blowing in->out) or you get warm air being blown into the case if you allow the fans to suck cooler air from the outside and into the case. the other thing i'd like to know is how many fans are ideal on a 360mm rad, 3 or 6 i.e. single sided or double sided?
  9. The Haunted

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    Here's some pictures of my loop with an external radiator.
    The rad tubing are long enough so that it can lie back on a table for easier drain and you don't need to unscrew anything (pic2).
    Also you can position your reservoir so it can be moved far from the case while filling.
    Very practical when you are bored of messing with this stuff because its FAST. I admit though, its not the best looking option. I hope this helped :)
    http://www.techpowerup.org/uploaded.php?file=081113/100_0700.jpg
    http://www.techpowerup.org/uploaded.php?file=081113/100_0704.jpg
    http://www.techpowerup.org/uploaded.php?file=081113/100_0705.jpg
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2008
  10. Chryonn

    Chryonn

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    very nice pics, i see you've got two of the components i'm after: the DTek CPU block and the micro-res
  11. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm pretty sure that having just "push" fans is fine. Adding some "pull" fans does close to nothing except add to the ol' power bill.
  12. Chryonn

    Chryonn

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    roger that
  13. MKmods Case Mod Guru

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    did you see the mod I did for Steevo, thats my favorite way with the pump between the DVD and PS.
    Keeps the stuff out of the way of the GPUs, keeps hoses short and keeps the Fill port up top so bleeding/filling is very easy.
  14. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    I agree it's the most critical component to place . . . big reason why I've been sitting on these parts for about a month now, I still haven't decided what I'm going to do.

    I'm trying to avoid hacking the case, as I just haven't been in the mood for it . . .

    . . . but, I've been thinking placing the rad underneath the case would equate to the best solution for cooling, and for less cutting . . . although, to place it here, I want to raise the case another .5"-1", which can easily be done with new castors.

    I've got 4 140mm fans on the side panel that blow air in, provinding cool air directly to the GPUs, and to the whole mobo . . . I considered tacking 3 120mm fans on the radiator, blowing this fresh air down across the rad through the bottom of the case, but I then might run into the issue of the side panel fans creating a venturi effect, and pull some of this warm air back up and into the case. Could be easily combated with a air dam along that side of the case, though.


    Ideally - I'd still like the front of the case, as that would eliminate such an effect, but would require extensive case modification. Easiest thing to do would be to just buy a much larger case (as if a Stacker 830 isn't already big enough), but I don't have the funds for that ATM, and don't really feel like having to remodify all my PSU cables by extending them again.
  15. CyberDruid

    CyberDruid New Member

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    I like making an enclosure for the rad and mounting it under the case. If you are ina postiion to do something like that it can be the cleanest way to install it. A couple of holes in the case floor for tubes and that's it.

    Sort of the way some phase units mount.


    LOL

    I posted while you were posting :toast: great minds :D
  16. MKmods Case Mod Guru

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    where is the fun in that?:laugh:

    There is 1 more option...send me the case I just bought a 100 pack of 1.5" Dremel cutoff wheels.....
  17. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    yeah, I saw that, and excellent job as always, man! :toast:


    Although my biggest hitch right now is determining the best and less intrusive spot for the radiator - I've already kinda figued where I'm going to mount the pump . . . if I do place the rad underneath, the HDD cage that comes with the Stacker can mount 3 HDDs, but with only two in place, there's extra room where fitting wouldn't run the risk of contact a drive, so I intend to mount the pump on the top of the HDD cage, which will also keep it out of sight as well.

    My intended loop will be CPU => rad => res => pump. Basing on my experiences with vehicle cooling and heating systems, I think this would prove to be the most efficient, especially considering the res can act as a passive cooler as well - this way the CPU will have the largest amount of pressure and volume coming straight from the pump, without having to worry about system pressure loss should the block be a couple of components away from the pump.
  18. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    I just got some cut-off wheels the other week anticipating this setup :D I went into it knowing something was going to be involved.

    Aside from our weather just being crap recently, and I'll be out in the garage, I've just been lazy as well . . . ain't lethargy great? :p


    TBH, today I brought home my 3" pneumatic cut-off tool . . . the aluminum used for the Stacker is THICK, just the couple of cuts I made for cable management with a dremel cost me 2 disks and about 1.5hrs. Screw that small stuff when you've got the mack-daddy tools around :toast:
  19. MKmods Case Mod Guru

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    In ur first post you said you need to give up your ODD.. what is that?
  20. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    Optical Disk Drive . . . any CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, combo drive, etc
  21. MKmods Case Mod Guru

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    LOL, thanks, Im a bit slow...
    there is plenty of room,, Steevos case seemed a bit shorter than yours.

    I hate mounting rads and fans in the top or bottom especially with the long GPUs (block up/down airflow) And keeping air from front to back works so efficiently its a shame to add turbulence.
    (like those silly side fans)
  22. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

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    TBH, I'm not too concerned about effecting the airflow in a Stacker, the chasis is so open as far as how much air can pass through - it's not like a more closed up case where good airflow from front to back is more effective. Thing I've found with this case, keeping air moving seems to be more effective than trying to channel it from one side to the other.

    I mean, as case fans go I've got 4 140mm fans on the side, 1 120mm at the back, 2 120mm at the front, 1 120mm at the top . . . it's effective enough that with the right ambient conditions, I've been able to run this quad at 4GHz with an Z9700 cooler.
  23. King Wookie

    King Wookie New Member

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    An interesting article to read re: how many fans.
    http://www.martinsliquidlab.com/Radiator-Fan-Orientation-And-Shroud-Testing-Review.html
    Chryonn and modder say thanks.
  24. modder New Member

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  25. kyle2020 Guest

    Subscribed, just for future reference :)

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