[SOLVED] Figuring out optimal Case and Cooler combinations.

Domino08

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Not considering a custom loops, I've been trying to figure out what combination of PC Case and Cooler would give the best balance of cooling performance, noise, and efficiency. After seeing some reviews for individual products got more curious about which ones had the best overall compatibility working together. If I were to purchase a Fractal Torrent Case would that go best would a Deepcool AK620? If I wanted to go with an AIO like the ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II 420, which case would suit that best? Or another combination? For a PC not server, other premium cost components are OK.
 

Phaaze88

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For the cases that you mentioned, did you have recommendations for complimentary CPU cooler products?
Depends - again. Pick something you'll like - if you care for that sort of thing. Examples:
Fractal Torrent: Tower air cooler - preferably 140mm class. No ifs and or buts about it. NH-D15S, Assassin 3, Dark Rock Pro 4, Frost Commander 140...
[Now that I use this as an example... some say one needs to set up both intake and exhaust fans, but the Torrent is a great example proving that is not always true.]

Meshify 2: Very flexible... perhaps too flexible for a lot of users; there are several different cpu cooler combinations one can do and not be 'wrong'.
I don't think I even want to try going into it, as it'd make my post too long...

NZXT H500: Stick to an air cooler. While it does support 240 and 280mm AIO/CLC, they are woefully inefficient inside this. These coolers do best when the radiator is installed against an open mesh panel.
Corsair Carbide 275R: 240mm AIO/CLC top exhaust + rear 120mm exhaust.
[There's a certain weakness with negative pressure cases not seen with the other 2: managing thermals of the hardware becomes more difficult as system power consumption goes up. Well, that can happen with all types, but it seems to be worse with this type.
I would be less confident packing an i9 + 3090(Ti) in these kinds of cases than I would with the other 2.]
 
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punkncat

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Of the cases I have owned recently, I think the Phanteks P400(A) was the quietest. It didn't start out that way, as when I purchased it was prior to the A revision with the mesh front. It was both loud and hot. I got the mesh front, a 240 AIO and a bunch of Arctic fans and took a great deal of time tuning the fan curves and placement and it turned out to be whisper quiet for general use. It was pretty much as loud as anything on a gaming run.

My current case is a Lian Li O11D Mini and where it offers a lot of placement for fans and loads of air flow keeping the components cool, it is almost irritatingly loud unless I also have a fan running in the office with it.
 
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Depends on some things that would be hard to judge.

Your personal tolerance for noise.

Your anxiety level if temps were X rather than X minus 10.

Your willingness to deal with factors related to liquid cooling generally.

Your willingness to go to additional expense or time spent in experimentation.

You may be largely indifferent to some issues and more concerned with others. "Balance" is a personal judgement based on your own nature.
 
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Domino08

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Of the cases I have owned recently, I think the Phanteks P400(A) was the quietest. It didn't start out that way, as when I purchased it was prior to the A revision with the mesh front. It was both loud and hot. I got the mesh front, a 240 AIO and a bunch of Arctic fans and took a great deal of time tuning the fan curves and placement and it turned out to be whisper quiet for general use. It was pretty much as loud as anything on a gaming run.

My current case is a Lian Li O11D Mini and where it offers a lot of placement for fans and loads of air flow keeping the components cool, it is almost irritatingly loud unless I also have a fan running in the office with it.
I'll definitely take a look at some of the Phanteks with the mesh fronts. I figure adjusting the fan curves will be an important part of suiting one's own preferences.
 

Domino08

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Depends on some things that would be hard to judge.

Your personal tolerance for noise.

Your anxiety level if temps were X rather than X minus 10.

Your willingness to deal with factors related to liquid cooling generally.

Your willingness to go to additional expense or time spent in experimentation.

You may be largely indifferent to some issues and more concerned with others. "Balance" is a personal judgement based on your own nature.
Happy to have the input of peoples' experience with different products or best judgement.
 

Phaaze88

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I've been trying to figure out what combination of PC Case and Cooler would give the best balance of cooling performance, noise, and efficiency.

Happy to have the input of peoples' experience with different products or best judgement.
It depends, varies - Lafong already said it. Nothing's going to surpass doing your own experimentation...
Not everyone wants to hear that(selective hearing?), so that leaves making recommendations/suggestions that may not even be ideal for the configuration one ends up using.


Some pointers:
1)Cases with lots of open spaces have no pressure(neutral). Fan position and personal fan curves are more important. Ironically, it's the more closed up cases that are oriented towards positive or negative.
Positive pressure, the flow that everyone seems to want, is the case design least represented out of the 3; the current market consists mostly of neutrals and negatives...
Fractal Design's Torrent and Cooler Master's H500P & H500M are 3 great - and few, sadly - examples of positive pressure designed cases.

2)If you fill every space with fans, you're doing it wrong - usually. Scratch that, you're doing it more for looks, unless the case has few fan slots.

3)Try to 'guide' air in a singular direction.
A case like the Torrent is very straightforward: Through the front and out the back.

A neutral take - Fractal's Meshify 2, for example:
-Through the front, yet curve upwards and out the top. [Top mounted AIO/CLC.]
-Through the front, and out the back. [Tower air cooler, priority to cpu thermals.]
-Through the front, curve upwards, and out the top and rear. [Tower air cooler, priority to gpu thermals. Also, front mounted AIO/CLC.]

A negative take - a sizeable chunk of NZXT cases fit here, but the H500 is very popular: Just fill the rear and top exhaust and pretty much leave it alone from there.
[Some negative cases have front panels that allow very little, or no air through, due to poor design - even when fans are set up correctly. Take the front panel on Gigabyte's C200 Glass, for example.]

Then you've got cases that offer both side and front panel options, like Corsair's 5000 and 7000 series - resist the urge to fill them both with fans. That goes back to point 2.
Flow is being T-boned and turbulence is created.
That feature is really for custom loops; a user can install a distro plate or pump+reservoir combo in the side panel, and use the front for normal air intake.


Currently running a chimney in an O11 Evo. Case is sitting on a pair of 2x4s to enhance bottom intake.
Air set to go in one direction: straight up. No fans at the side and none at the rear - there is a filter there for air that does get drawn in that way.
 
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Domino08

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Sep 28, 2015
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Fractal Design's Torrent and Cooler Master's H500P & H500M are 3 great - and few, sadly - examples of positive pressure designed cases.

A neutral take - Fractal's Meshify 2, for example:
-Through the front, yet curve upwards and out the top. [Top mounted AIO/CLC.]
-Through the front, and out the back. [Tower air cooler, priority to cpu thermals.]
-Through the front, curve upwards, and out the top and rear. [Tower air cooler, priority to gpu thermals. Also, front mounted AIO/CLC.]

A negative take - a sizeable chunk of NZXT cases fit here, but the H500 is very popular: Just fill the rear and top exhaust and pretty much leave it alone from there.


Then you've got cases that offer both side and front panel options, like Corsair's 5000 and 7000 series - resist the urge to fill them both with fans. That goes back to point 2.

Currently running a chimney in an O11 Evo. Case is sitting on a pair of 2x4s to enhance bottom intake.
Air set to go in one direction: straight up. No fans at the side and none at the rear - there is a filter there for air that does get drawn in that way.
Thank you, a lot of good info about the different air pressures of cases! Yes I'm looking more for a push in the right direction to look into the products specifics more myself. For the cases that you mentioned, did you have recommendations for complimentary CPU cooler products?
 

Phaaze88

Titan
Ambassador
For the cases that you mentioned, did you have recommendations for complimentary CPU cooler products?
Depends - again. Pick something you'll like - if you care for that sort of thing. Examples:
Fractal Torrent: Tower air cooler - preferably 140mm class. No ifs and or buts about it. NH-D15S, Assassin 3, Dark Rock Pro 4, Frost Commander 140...
[Now that I use this as an example... some say one needs to set up both intake and exhaust fans, but the Torrent is a great example proving that is not always true.]

Meshify 2: Very flexible... perhaps too flexible for a lot of users; there are several different cpu cooler combinations one can do and not be 'wrong'.
I don't think I even want to try going into it, as it'd make my post too long...

NZXT H500: Stick to an air cooler. While it does support 240 and 280mm AIO/CLC, they are woefully inefficient inside this. These coolers do best when the radiator is installed against an open mesh panel.
Corsair Carbide 275R: 240mm AIO/CLC top exhaust + rear 120mm exhaust.
[There's a certain weakness with negative pressure cases not seen with the other 2: managing thermals of the hardware becomes more difficult as system power consumption goes up. Well, that can happen with all types, but it seems to be worse with this type.
I would be less confident packing an i9 + 3090(Ti) in these kinds of cases than I would with the other 2.]
 
Reactions: Domino08

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