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Does anyone else NOT like liquid cooling?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by NeoBix, Jan 7, 2008.

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  1. NeoBix

    NeoBix Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
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    In the past 4-5 months I have been enjoying my new system that I built completely from scratch. It is, without a doubt, the best gaming rig I have ever had, and I am very proud of it. It's my pride and joy, but my pride and joy has one problem... and I think it's a pretty big problem, or at least it potentially could be: OVERHEATING.

    I ordered all of the parts of my system off of newegg, and when I ordered these parts I also ordered something else that I figured would be very useful considering I was getting a video card and a processor that would probably get pretty hot if used repeatedly (and I use my computer constantly.) I ordered a pretty fancy, $130 liquid cooling system. Now, just from looking at the thing in a small picture on newegg, I figured it would be pretty simple to assemble and I wasn't intimidated by it in the least, but then I receive it in the mail. When I received it, I waited to try and put it together until after I got everything else with my system put together.

    After a couple of days (it probably would've taken many of you guys only a couple of hours, I know :p ), my system was built, it looked beautiful. But then there was the big elephant in the room: my $130 liquid cooling system, unopened. I sort of looked at it, sitting there in the box, and then I looked at my computer. I looked at it again, then looked at my computer again. I started thinking to myself "Have we really come to the point with computer technology that we have to actually install liquid cooling systems in our computers to keep them cool because of the overheating parts?"

    I thought about it, and thought about it, and thought about it some more. I came to the conclusion that I spent way too much money on my new system to even think about installing a number of tubes with liquid running through them in my system. I simply did NOT like the idea of having liquids that close to my precious new video card, processor, RAM, hard drive, etc. Call me old-fashioned and perhaps needlessly worrisome, but I just didn't like it.

    Add to all of this the fact that I had NEVER assembled a liquid cooling system before, and by this point I had completely made up my mind. After all, my computer couldn't POSSIBLY overheat THAT much, could it? Right? Little did I know just how hot these fancy new video cards and multi-core processors could get. At any rate, I contacted newegg and I sent the liquid cooling system back to them and I got my $130 back. Now, at the time, I had thought this was a good idea. But was it? I still don't know.

    Since then, I have had numerous overheating episodes with my system, and it's not getting any better. Most of you are probably going to laugh at what I'm about to tell you, but it's true. During extremely cold winter days, my system has actually overheated so much that I have actually cracked the window in my office and let below-freezing air blow into the office to help keep the temperature of my system to a minimum. Surprisingly, this has actually helped a lot. When my computer overheats, it gets VERY loud, and keeping the window cracked to allow the cold air to blow in has been very helpful in keeping my computer both quiet, and cool. Yeah, trust me, wearing a heavy sweater and a wool cap in your office gets old and uncomfortable after a while. :p

    Needless to say, I do not want to resort to these extreme measures whenever my computer overheats. I mean, what am I going to do during the warmer months of the year? My system will turn my office into a veritable sauna!

    Am I the only one who has this anxiety in regard to liquid cooling systems? Are there liquid cooling systems that are very trustworthy and won't leak liquid onto my expensive computer parts? Am I just staunchly old-fashioned and annoying all of you with my banter? ;)

    Please let me know what you guys think about all of this, and let me know if you guys have had similar problems with your systems overheating and how you deal with it effectively.

    I really really REALLY need to find a way to keep my system cool. If I absolutely have no choice but to turn to liquid cooling, then fine, I probably will. But if there are alternatives that do not involve running liquid-pumping tubes through my system, I would love to hear what they are and decide which one would be the most realistic for me and my system.

    Please, guys. Help me. Before my computer melts the plastic off of my tower. :p
     
  2. mooml

    mooml

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    207
    You sound a lot like me. I built a very expensive high-end computer about a year ago. The only difference is, I am very happy with my computer because I DID install my water cooling system.

    I bought an even more expensive cooling system: the Koolance Exos-2, and I also had to buy the water blocks for my cpu and video card. I think the only problem your having is anxiety problems. The only places a cooling system can leak(unless something goes horribly wrong) is at the connections, like the connections at a tube splitter, or from tube to water block, or tube to radiator. If you make sure those connections are absolutely tight, there are no problems.

    This was the first water cooling system i've ever made and I don't have any leaks, drips, or any problems at all with it.


    But now on to your question. Obviously, i think the best choice is to go back to liquid cooling, but if your not comfortable with that, there are many other ways to control overheating.

    How many fans do you currently have in your computer case? You can always add more, but without putting them in the correct place, they might not work as well as you had hoped. If you decide to buy some extra fans, make sure you do a little thinking about where the fans would be the most helpful. And also consider if you want the fans to suck in cool air or blow out warm air.

    Another option is to buy some aftermarket heatsinks for your cpu and video card. Especially for video cards, better heatsinks can take the temperature down on some of your valuable parts. Again, you will need to do some research/read some reviews about these heatsinks. Some are good, and some are not-so-good.

    You can almost always expect your computer to be running hotter in the summer months. And in the winter months, sometimes I leave my window cracked as well. :D

    Hope this helps!
     
  3. Waldo_II

    Waldo_II

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2007
    Messages:
    339
    What are your system specs?

    If you have a GeForce 8800GT, the sensor for the fan is messed up, so the fan doesn't increase speed with GPU temp increase.

    Case fans are helpful.

    Make sure all of your spare cables are tucked away. I have a bunch of unused hard drive/optical drive bays, so I jam all of my spare cables in there.

    Have a good, well ventilated case. A gamer case should have an opening in the front, two in the side (one above the video card, one above the CPU (give or take a few inches), and one in the back (behind the CPU fan).

    I suggest a Zalman 9700NT. It keeps my AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ cool (a notoriously hot chip). I have the LED version (versus NT) which has a external knob for fan speed, but the NT version's fan speed can be controlled digitally.

    You can usually adjust your GPU fan. If it is an nVidia card, go to the nVidia control panel and look around a bit; it should be under "Adjust GPU settings"
     
  4. NeoBix

    NeoBix Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
    Messages:
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    Good info guys, thanks a lot. I am going to look into the heatsinks and also do some more research on some liquid cooling systems.

    By the way, it's good to know that I'm not the only one that cracks my windows to let the cool air in, lol. :p

    Right now I have 9 fans in my system, and they seem to do a good enough job, but they need help.

    Furthermore, I've thought about manually increasing the fan speed on my vid card but I have heard that if you increase the speed too much then it can be hard on your fan and make it wear out quickly, so I'm not sure if I want to resort to that just yet. But maybe I will.

    As for my specs, I'm running a GeForce 8800 Ultra. I swear I could fry some eggs and bacon on this bad boy. It gets unthinkably hot.

    My processor is a Pentium quad core. I don't think my processor gets nearly as hot as my vid card but I do believe that it overheats a bit. I could be wrong though. It may be just as much of a problem as my GeForce card.

    Also, I wanted to ask you... you said that I should make sure there are openings in my case since it is a gaming rig. Well... I have heard that having too many openings like that can make dust build up in the system much quicker, which, by extension, can clog up fans and thus make the system run hotter because the fans will slow down and block air circulation. What do you think about that? I'm not sure.

    I'm going to try a few different things here and there and see if I can get the temp down by at least 5 degrees.

    I will keep you guys posted and let you know how it's going.

    Thanks a lot for your help btw. :D
     
  5. prunejuice

    prunejuice

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2002
    Messages:
    3,432
    Liquid cooling made more sense with Prescotts and smouldering Socket A's.

    Modern, cooler and low watt processors and excellent breakthroughs with heatpipe technology
    have taken a bite out of liquid cooling.

    Also, with that fact that quad and dual cores being fast and affordable enough for most folks,
    I think the emphasis has shifted more towards silence and energy efficiency.
     
  6. Waldo_II

    Waldo_II

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2007
    Messages:
    339
    What you said about increasing the GPU fan is true, but only if you turn it up really high (70% or higher). Turning it up another 10-20% won't do any real harm.

    What you said about more openings is partially true too, but trust me, the dust buildup doesn't increase too much faster, and if you really are a dedicated gamer, than you really won't mind giving your hardware some compressed-air cleaning once in a while. I should probably do the same to mine soon..
     
  7. D-Rock

    D-Rock

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  8. NeoBix

    NeoBix Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
    Messages:
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    Thanks guys. I'm coming up with some good ideas here. I will let you know what I finally decide on. :D
     
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