Best layout of watercooled CPU, air cooled GPU, etc.

CRABBY GUY

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Jun 28, 2017
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I have a Gigabyte Z390 motherboard, an i7 9700K, a Corsair H115i, an EVGA 1060, etc. that I plan to fit into a Corsair 300R case. Does the following sound right? Put radiator in two front holes with air sucking in. Have top rear fan exhaust and somehow tied to speed of two fans on radiator. I plan to block off other fan holes (on top, bottom, and side). Or do I need more exhaust fans?





 

Barty1884

Titan
Moderator
Off the top of my head though, your rad would be better mounted on the top, exhausting out - have the front for clean, fresh intake.

The way you propose it, you'd be pulling air through the rad. While not likely to be a particularly huge difference, your GPU is then receiving air that's >ambient, so not exactly optimal.

Couple intake at the front, top mounted rad exhausting, and a rear exhaust would be my gut feel for your setup.

Yeah, 280mm support on top - assuming it'll clear your motherboards VRMs.
Top: 2 x 120 / 140mm fan Mount
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811139011

Couple of 120 or 140mm in front, 120mm exhaust.
 

CRABBY GUY

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Jun 28, 2017
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Thanks very much for answering.

I have always believed the explanation that having radiator airflow cool the processor is the most important part of cooling a PC and that maximizing the temperature difference between the CPU and the air going through the radiator will cool the processor the most. If you will go along with this for the moment, the airflow should come from outside the case through the radiator. Admittedly, logic argues in having the air flow in either direction. However, I have seen a couple of tests that run the air both directions and the impact of somewhat warmer air through the radiator on, say, memory and an air-cooled GPU or two is not that important compared to cooling the processor the best.

I am saying, I think, that determining the best direction of airflow through a radiator cannot be solved by thinking but must be determined by measuring.

If, for the moment, you will go along with the idea that air should flow in through the radiator, I have also believed that the cooler air should enter the case at or near the bottom so that it will rise as it warms and then be exhausted at or near the top of the case. This would seem to argue that the radiator should be near the bottom of the case. (In my Corsair 300R, this would be in the front.) If this is true, I am still puzzled regarding whether it is better in terms of both cooling and noise that the warm exhaust air should go out only the rear or the rear *and* the top. Also, should exhaust fans be adjusted up and down as air intake fans are (in my case, through the radiator) or will having a couple of open holes in the top do the job?




 

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