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Build

Panigale - Underwater

by ivan_lazarov

89
60 Comments

Part List View full price breakdown

Details

Date Published

April 8, 2015

Date Built

April 8, 2015

CPU Clock Rate

4.7GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

25.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

49.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.71GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

7.55GHz

GPU Temperature While Idle

25.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

49.0° C

Description

This is high end water cooling micro ATX desktop. I am using a modified Silverstone FT03 as chassis with externally mounted Phobya 3x140 double thickness radiator. Most of the water cooling components are mounted outside of the case. This is not simply for ascetics (although it does look insane :) ) placing the radiators outside of the case, results in more efficient thermal dissipation because they are at ambient temperature of the room instead of case temperature. Taking this into account plus the huge available surface area allows me to run the system in completely passive mode without any fans spinning for every reasonable day to day routine. However, when performance is needed I was surprised to see that even at the ultimate torture stress test of Prime95 or AIDA64 (floating point, system cache, CPU and GPU all at the same time) I got an average temperature of 45 deg C and a peak of 50 deg C. This gives a decent headroom for hardcore overclocking in the next couple of days. As I cannot add part reviews to custom water cooling components I will just add several comments below over the next couple of days.

  • Phobya UC-2 CPU water block does extremely good job for it's price. It is benchmarked in top 3 for LGA115* in this extensive test -. Probably EK EVO would do a slightly better job, but most of this system is going to be from the same factory Phobya/Alphacool.

  • Mayhems Clear X1? Why? Well, I am not a big fan of coloured coolants because they stain, clog, and often provide less performance compared to standard clear liquids. I decided to go with clear coolant which is based on distilled water, it has biocide additive and corrosion agent. In order achieve the colour scheme I wanted, I decided to go with red tubes and red reservoir instead of coloured liquid.

  • Monsoon UV Red acrylic tubing is not red at all :D . However, there were no 16mm OD red acrylic tubes with reasonable delivery to the UK at the time of this purchase. One of the mistakes I made is trying to match the red colour of the reservoir and the tubing. I ended up spraying a thin layer of Automotive red TINT (not solid but semi transparent) paint on the finished tubing. I managed to achieve good coverage. It is not going to peel, I had to make a little bending adjustment on one of the members after I had painted them and even when heating the tube to several hundred degrees the paint stayed perfect with no bubbles, pealing, artifacts etc.

  • Acrylic tubing and hardline fittings.. this was harder than expected! Much harder to work with compared to standard flexible hoses and compression fittings. I am using Bitspower fittings. They seal the tube via small O-ring inside the fitting and a large one on the outside part which you screw down on the tube. HOWEVER, this was not enough to seal the tubes perfectly. I got 4 small leaks and on the first leak test. I decided to put a fair amount of white PTFE plumbing tape on the very end of every tube which slides into the fitting. (There's a closeup image of this have a look above) This way I achieved a much better seal inside the fitting and by using two instead of just one O-ring on the outside I managed to fix all problems. One of them goes on top of the tape, the other one stays on the tube. See the images for details.

  • Alphacool GPX waterblock for GTX 970 G1 - This is a custom block specifically for Gigabyte Windforce cards. It comes with a massive backplate for its decent price. This looks like a full cover block but keep in mind that the GPU processor and the memory are only water cooled, the rest of the card is mostly passively cooled. Furthermore, the core cooler is also attached to the passive cooler and this helps a lot! It does not have the performance of a full cover EK block but given the fact that it is literally half the price of ANY EK product AND it comes with a backplate - I decided to trust Alphacool. Also my GTX 970 is only about 150W so no problem with cooling whatsoever. In my case the GPU is positioned vertically, thus the notches on the passive cooler are vertical as well. As it dissipated heat, the hot air would naturally go upwards and exit the case. Thus the vertical orientation should also favour the cooling compared to standard horizontal GPUs even with the same block.

  • Phobya DC12 Pump - I got the middle power model which is rated at 400 L/h it was advertised at 20 dB noise level and is almost as quiet as advertised. Probably about 30dB at full speed. However, it could be PWM modulated so the noise could be reduced if you do not need it to run at full power. It DOES need to be decoupled from the case/desk as the vibrations are quite disturbing especially when you have put so much effort to achieve a completely passive system and the pump is the only noise/vibration source.

  • No issues with the radiators, both Alphacool and Phobya are manufactured in the same factory. They were very very clean on the inside. I flushed them with hot and cold distilled water several times. Overall small amount of debris came out.

  • I changed the blue "power on" and "hdd" LEDs on the panel of the case with red ones. I had some small heatshrink around and now they are as good as new.

  • I got several meters of red and UV LED strips. For the time being I am going to switch them from a small external switch below the case. However when I have some more time I will fabricate a custom capacitive touch sensor switch. Thus when you touch the logo of the case, the interior is going to light up. The solid aluminium panels of case are actually utilized as heat sinks.

That's about it guys. I will add several more photos, description and benchmark results over the next couple of days!

Comments Sorted by:

Growliff1234 1 Build 11 points 21 months ago

HEY PC PART PICKER FEATURE THIS BUILD! I KNOW YOU'RE READING THIS !!!!!!!!!!

mlach 3 Builds 3 points 21 months ago

Needs more comments for a feature, do it now!

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 3 points 21 months ago

Thank you guys. I appreciate it! I am going to put more material in this thread in the next couple of days.

Wcschuyler 7 Builds 4 points 21 months ago

very cool, someday i want to do a custom loop like this

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Thanks man. You've done some great builds as well. I really like the "Cthulu's" vinyl on the side panel.

gcrimzonspartan 2 points 21 months ago

Awesome build man! I'm hoping to do a custom loop sometime in the future. Thanks for sharing! Let us know how the overclocking goes

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Hi there, I achieved a mild boost of 4.7 GHz on the CPU. However even now the temps at full load (Prime95) are <65deg C. I will play with it in the next couple of days to see what was my luck in the silicon lottery :D Hopefully, I will get a stable 5.0 fingers crossed!

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

However I like numbers so whatever the overclocking results are I will benchmark it with some real applications in order to quantify the system improvement (for example the famous cpu Pi benchmark and many others)

Meithen 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

A lot of detailed planning went into this, great build and beautiful loop!

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Oh yeah I did plan a lot of it. I don't like spending money on random components. However the satisfaction from the almost completed product is great...(although it's never finished :/ )

Daisyahoy 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

adding comment to get this thing featured

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Thank you! I appreciate it!

Jobran 2 points 21 months ago

how did you make these cool 3d pics of your build? btw, great build +WHY A 970??

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Hi, have a look at my reply above to "smoke9's" similar question. Cheers!

Jobran 1 point 21 months ago

Is the 970 good for CAD software? plus, what is the name of the case? it looks incredibly neat.

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

The case I am using is Silverstone FT03 Titanium. However, I mod it buy removing all the weird fan mounts inside, I made a clear side panel of 2mm acrylic. I lifted up the case slightly to get more room beneath it and put it on four rubber damping pads. I also did some minor modifications to the HDD mounts and added some "carbon" wrap on a cardboard template with double sided tape to the front panel. Next step would be to add several LED strips with a capacitive touch sensor I designed, so when you touch the logo the interior will light up.

Any decent high end gaming GPU could handle quite a bit of CAD. Of course it does not have that many CUDA cores and double precision floating point capability as high end Quadro card BUT it is much more affordable. Also you can run any game you want on it, thus you are not dedicating it solely to CAD apps. In addition I am doing modelling more as a hobby and for university related projects, I am not yet a professional who makes his living from it so in my case a high end gaming gpu was the preferable option compared to a Quadro/FirePro card.

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Oh didn't see the + thing. Well, I don't really need more than a 970. I bought it back in December on a Christmas sale. Before the whole 3.5gb blood bath was discovered. I was really frustrated and then I tried to think rationally. I tested the GPU and pushed it to the limit, yes it did have similar to every other 970 behaviour but there was no real life effect whatsoever in any of my games, or CAD software. I am extremely happy with it and it does what it is supposed to do flawlessly. There is still no AMD analogue for less than 200W (btw this is my first nVidia card, I have got about 5 different ATI/AMDs so far). I do not find the 980 a particularly reasonable choice because of the price point. Not to mention the Titan X which doesn't even have a backplate for it's price... I hope that the R9 3** series will offer something competitive in the next couple of months.

Jobran 2 points 21 months ago

Oh, I'm sorry, I don't really browse PCPP much so I forgot about that functionality, you got it now! I see your reasons now, and btw, your build is GREAT!

smoke9 2 points 21 months ago

How did you create this pictures? Which program did you used?

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

I have used the engineering package Solidworks to create all of the CAD models. You can find a huge community with shared resources here: www.grabcad.com. The 3D model was used to estimate the center of gravity of the finished build (this was an issue due to the large heavy radiator filled with water). I could possibly use it to simulate the airflow in the case and the thermal dissipation of various components. It helped me a lot to picture how should the tubing look like weeks before I purchased the components. You can also relatively easy see how would the chassis deform under the load of the radiators, how much would the sag and this data allowed me to design, manufacture and assemble various mounts and custom components.

Jobran 2 points 21 months ago

Judging from your comment, it looks like a lot of planning went into this, did you follow a certain guide for water cooling parts? I don't know anything about liquid cooling and I want to know more about it

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

To be honest this is my first water cooling attempt. This is why I put so much time into research and planning before I tried it. I've used AIO cpu coolers but this is definitely another level of complexity. I have not followed somebody's guides, just tried to find as much info as possible. Let me know if you are unsure about something specifically. I could try to help.

Revosok 2 points 21 months ago

sweet!

rellyrale 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

sweet!!

Zeoheart 2 points 21 months ago

But why is this not featured yet? Seriously, this is sexy as hell and functional to boot

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

Mhm, yeah I does boot. 6.2 sec to be more precise :D

Zeoheart 2 points 21 months ago

Haha, that was good.

Dubben 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

Looks great. How about a pic of the finished product

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

It's coming! This is the plan for the weekend :)

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

I've added several photos with the side panels on. I will add some more over the weekend. Cheers!

ankousmachine 2 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

saw this build and saw the price tag on this thing, you my man have done an amazing job at keeping a low cost, imo this build is the best of of any of the damn builds ive seen on here.

1+ for just amazingness.

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Hi! Yes I really tried to keep it as low as possible. I am a full time student and I worked my a** off to be able afford it. The main reason to get is because I really need it for engineering CAD, FEA and electrical simulations etc. not just for gaming. Thank you for your feedback!

Bobbymon1 2 points 21 months ago

Holy mother of god... this PC is so beautiful I am losing my ability to typ-ealsdj awlda. One second please, while I go cry because of my sucky build.

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Hahaha common man your saved part list looks good!

gabegabbert 3 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

This thing is insane. That radiator is bigger than my motorcycle. Cooling for an internal combustion engine is smaller that a radiator for a computer. engines run off explosions. Computer must run off unicorn farts.

...but really beautiful build and well engineered!

Here's to hoping for a feature, cheers!

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Yeah it definitely is in the motorcycle radiator size range but there is no such thing as too many radiators :) Any bike engine usually has working temperature of 70-100deg, and the rad is actively cooled by the cold air when you're riding. As long as you're moving you should be good. Here however the large surface area is simply for being able to turn off all fans and to still keep it under <30 at trivial workload.

Thank you for your feedback!

gabegabbert 3 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

That makes a lot of sense! For some reason it just blows my mind the pure awesomeness of the radiator on your PC.

I have a solution! PC game while riding a motorcycle for best overclock

DirtyTortilla 2 points 21 months ago

That is simply beautiful! +1

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Thank you!

Arkwoman1990 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

Pretty sweet looking build

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Thank you!

Growliff1234 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

Pc Part Picker what the heck ?!?!?! This isn't going to be featured ?! Made my son a Minecraft Box was featured but this isn't going to be ?! What in the world ?!

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Not sure how does the featuring happen. Probably they do the selection manually.

Growliff1234 1 Build 2 points 21 months ago

That's what I was thinking, but amazing build good job +1000 if I could. Needs to be featured. HEAR ME MANI ??!?!

reliKBORG 3 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

This thing is epic! +1

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Check out the new photos!

SpecificAlduin 2 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

Featured. Now. PCPartPicker. Do it. Awesome build. I wish i could do something as awesome as this.

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Thanks man! To be honest I lost hope about the featuring. It's been a week now and they've changed two rigs already. If only there were some criteria for featuring listed somewhere, it would have been great to see at least what they expect.

Hussein.H 2 points 18 months ago

This is so amazing!! How's the case to build in?

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 18 months ago

Hi, thank you. I am glad that you like it. It is a bit tricky case but I am sure that you will enjoy the results should you decide to go that route.

BrilliantCreeper 2 points 4 months ago

This computer is pretty epic! Nice build dude!

monkeybars 1 point 21 months ago

That looks incredible. Why the Bitfenix fans though, I've always heard not great things about their fans.

mlach 3 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Yes, standard spectre fans are so so. But Bitfenix spectre pro fans run much better.

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

The reason to go with specifically these fans is the high static pressure. These are not fast fans which push ridiculous amount of air, but they do apply a lot of pressure when positioned on a radiator. I did all the maths in order to select them. Specifically, I went through the datasheets and evaluated 18 possible options. My main criteria were noise, price, static pressure, RPM, PWM. These are the best fans for my specific application because they are low RPM, high static pressure, extremely queit (seriously even at full speed are barely audible) reasonable price, all have PWM control and are simply black with no weird colours. Thats why Bitfenix fans :)

mlach 3 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

Because maths

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 2 points 21 months ago

Math's good! Sometimes is your best bet before spending a fortune on a fancy box.

eopest 7 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Not elaborate, but well planned and executed. +1 Hope you get featured. :)

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Hi, thank you very much. If you would like to read a brief description of the part selection process, please have look at my previous air cooled version of the build on my profile. I did not include it here because it is rather long and this thread was going to end up too large. Regards, Ivan

ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Photos updated! Red and UV LEDs added to the build. It will now render even faster! :P

[comment deleted by staff]
ivan_lazarov submitter 5 Builds 1 point 21 months ago

Thank you mate. It's true..there was some planning involved.