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  1. #1
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    Thumbs up The lean mean green HTPC Watercooling Project |Worklog + Opinion Requests|

    Okay so one of my HTPCs (HTPC 2 in my sig) is a bit hot of a PC tbh. It works okay but the temps tend to scare me. Heck it gets so hot on the back of it I feel as if it is going to set my tv stand on fire when I am running 1080p content. It is fairly quiet right now though. The loudest thing in it is the hard drive. Everything else sits around 20DB. I certainly don't want it any louder than it is.

    I am considering watercooling the CPU and the graphics card.

    Problems/questions with this are:
    -I have never done watercooling before ever and trying to figure out what I need and what is best has me overwhelmed.
    -It's a custom micro-atx case. It is built to be as small as possible while housing all the electronics inside. Therefore I am not sure where the radiator is going to go or how it will be mounted etc. I have one of those fans that goes in an expansion slot is there a radiator that can be mounted that way?
    -Is the radiator fan going to be louder than 20db?
    -Will this drop temps enough to be worth it?
    -How much would I probably be spending total?

    Thanks for any replies/help!
    Last edited by Bearded Frog; 04-15-2010 at 08:47 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Are you gaming on your HTPCs? That's an awful lot of processing power to play a few video files if you're not doing any gaming.

    Better to spend your money downgrading to reduce the heat output if you don't need the processing power.

  3. #3
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    You wouldn't be gpu folding with that rig would you?

    Water cooling should work good for you, get the pump and rad out of the case for best results.

    Sounds like you are running your fans too slow for your current usage patterns. Of course fast fans make noise.


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  4. #4
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    I went lazy with one of the Aquaduct 240 PRO Mark II self contained systems.

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  5. #5
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    I wouldnt put water in a htpc.

    But you are using an original Phenom which were pretty hot.

    Have you considerered the Corsair H50? Its water without the hassle.

    And I dont think you GPU needs to be water cooled.Id sell that and buy something like a 4350 or nvidia equivalent

  6. #6
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Underclocking will also significantly reduce heat output and it's free

  7. #7
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Have you considerered the Corsair H50? Its water without the hassle
    Extremely easy to install and very quiet.

    Works on par with the best of the air coolers and takes up less room in the case.
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    Never argue with idiots, they will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

  8. #8
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Naw I don't fold on it. Nothing against any of the folding projects they seem like a great idea to me. I just don't need the extra heat/power costs. I do use this PC for gaming from time to time. It is an excellent PC for LAN parties as it is super small and easy to carry around.

    So underclocking isn't really an option. Although I already use cool n' quiet to downclock the proc. The fans are running at full speed (well the gcard is on auto) theyre just all ultra quiet fans.

    The corsair thing doesnt really work cause I need to cool the graphics card as well. I am pretty sure the graphics card is the main cause of heat in the system. It gets much hotter than the CPU does. The hottest part of the case is the side where the graphics card sits.

    That aquaduct thing, does that just sit next to the PC or something? I don't want to lower the portability of this HTPC.
    Last edited by Bearded Frog; 02-23-2010 at 09:27 AM.

  9. #9
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bearded Frog View Post
    That aquaduct thing, does that just sit next to the PC or something? I don't want to lower the portability of this HTPC.
    Yep, though I have just laid the assemble on top of the box (towel between of course! ) to move it around.



    http://forums.pcper.com/showthread.p...t=dreamCatcher if interested........
    Last edited by jedihobbit; 02-23-2010 at 09:42 AM. Reason: link added

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  10. #10
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    well one thing that comes to mind other than portibility which I forgot about is clearance. There is absolutely no room in this case between the top of the graphics card and the top panel of the case. I had to get this specific graphics card model/brand because it is one of the only ones that had power connectors mounted on the side of the card rather than the top of the card. Otherwise the top panel would not close over the power connector. The cooler you have there for the graphics card extends far above the PCB of the card. This would be an issue in my case. I dunno if they even make a watercooler block for a graphics card that would fit in my scenario.

    Maybe I'll take some pics of this system later when I get home so you guys can get an idea of what I am working with here.

    edit- maybe this one? http://www.dangerden.com/store/aceta...r-version.html
    Last edited by Bearded Frog; 02-23-2010 at 10:34 AM.

  11. #11
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Actually the "origianl" layout had one like that.....here you see it on my G92 however I was using an Ultra MicroFly for then. Make sure you have passives on the mem. If your case is layed out like this case most of your heat will be there as the card acts like a firewall and all the air movement is on the proc side. Think this contributed to me "frying" two PSUs as they were the only source to move the air and it exceeded their designed operating temperatures.



    BTW how about a pic or two of your case??

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  12. #12
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Quote Originally Posted by jedihobbit View Post
    Actually the "origianl" layout had one like that.....here you see it on my G92 however I was using an Ultra MicroFly for then. Make sure you have passives on the mem. If your case is layed out like this case most of your heat will be there as the card acts like a firewall and all the air movement is on the proc side. Think this contributed to me "frying" two PSUs as they were the only source to move the air and it exceeded their designed operating temperatures.



    BTW how about a pic or two of your case??
    Okay yeah that setup you have there would work great for the gcard. I will take some pics of this setup when I get home. I have been meaning to do it anyway because its a pretty cool setup.

  13. #13
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Took some pics tonight via my blackberry storm 2. Not the best camera but I haven't bought a new real camera since my last one died.

    some water got inbetween the front acrylic plates when I was cleaning it for the photo. Was too lazy to take it off and dry it for the photo lol.


    Perfect use of space. Except there is a little bit of space under that fan there.

    Pretty damn compact. Although I could technically fit a longer graphics card due to the hard drive cage to PSU distance, I have had no luck finding one with the right power requirements and with a side mounted power connector.
    Last edited by Bearded Frog; 02-23-2010 at 11:20 PM.

  14. #14
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    That is so trick!!! I'd be interested in the particulars and the build....did you do a work log?

    Leaving work so will have to get home and look more closely!!

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  15. #15
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    Re: Watercooling for HTPC possibly?

    Quote Originally Posted by jedihobbit View Post
    That is so trick!!! I'd be interested in the particulars and the build....did you do a work log?

    Leaving work so will have to get home and look more closely!!
    Thank you I did not do a work log unfortunatelly.

    I want to cut a large square out of the top panel and put a piece of clear acrylic there as a top window and then add a green cold cathode and paint the interior of the case either that green or black as well. Maybe mount a fan in the middle of it. Not entirely sure. I just haven't got around to that part of the project. You can't really tell from the pics but you can actually see through the green acrylic to the insides on the sides of the case as well.

    I guess the ultimate goal of the project would be that plus a really cool watercooling setup that would fit the theme and drop temps. Also might put a 2.5" optical drive in it as it has no optical drive installed right now. I know how I would do that and I have the drive already but this would raise temps further as well; as airflow would be decreased as it would extend to about where the cpu fan sits. I would need watercooling to make that work I think.
    Last edited by Bearded Frog; 02-24-2010 at 10:52 AM.

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