Help a Watercooling nooby :3?
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February 20, 2013, 08:28 PM
Join Date: May 2010
My System Specs
1) The most common sizes for tubing are 1/2"id 3/4"od and 3/8"id 5/8"id. The difference in flow loss is negligible, so just go with the look that you prefer. Some cheaper tubing is more prone to kinking on sharp bends than others. I like primochill 1/2"-3/4" myself.
2) For fittings, barbed fittings with hose clamps are cheaper, compression fittings are better looking but more expensive. Compression fittings have an outer collar that "pinches" the tubing to seal it to the fitting. Some people like to use undersized tubing on barbed fittings with no clamps, but I would not recommend this for someone new to WC.
3) When buying a waterblock make sure the block will fit the card. If you have a reference card, you need a reference block. If you are buying a non reference card, first make sure that there is a block available for it. Not sure exactly which block you are looking for, but EK makes a nice looking acrylic block for the 680
EK-FC680 GTX+ - Nickel - GeForce GTX 6x0 Series - Full Cover for Nvidia GeForce - VGA Blocks - Blocks
4) Yes there are several different pumps available. Two types of pump are very common: Firstly, the Laing D5 (aka MCP655) this pump comes in a fixed speed and variable speed model and has been rebranded by several retailers. Several aftermarket tops and reservoirs are available for it. Secondly, the Laing DDC. This pump comes in many configurations like the MCP350, 355 and 35x. Several retailers have rebranded these pumps as well, so you will see them with different names. There are lots of aftermarket tops and reservoirs available for these pumps as well.
In a nutshell, any of these pumps will be fine for anything but the most extreme WC setups. The "which is better" topic comes up all the time and there isn't a single right answer. From my experience and research: Positives of the D5 are that it is quieter, more reliable and pushes more volume at low restriction. Positives of the DDC pumps are that it is smaller, has more tops available, comes in PWM variations and pushes more volume with higher restriction. I personally use the variable speed D5 because it is quiet and reliable.
5) You can get leds or cathode lights. Cheaper leds are very directional while cathodes give off 360* light and are generally easier to position. To hide the UV lights just put them on the sides, top and bottom of the case up against the side with the window. This way they will throw the light into the case but will not be visible through the window.
6) Tons of reservoirs are available. Most commonly cylinder, integrated with radiator, square or 5.25" bay mounted. Some setups integrate the pump with the reservoir. Looking for something specific?
7) Those are some of the big names, but check out some retailer websites to see what else is out there.
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My System Specs
ASUS Rampage IV Extreme -- EK Waterblock
3930K -- EK Supreme HF Waterblock
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EVGA GTX 1080 TI -- EK waterblock
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