First build. Need help with choosing a case good for water-cooling


Apr 13, 2013
this is my first build and I'm going to watercool it. I think I've found all the right parts, but i can't be certain. Also I'm not sure if the case I've chosen is optimal for the components I've chosen. I'm also looking to mod the case, so any advice on that would be appreciated.

here is a link to a list of the parts I've chosen. there is two images.

P.S I'm not really sure how to overclock the parts either, so any useful advice would be appreciated.,ApO4EVQ
May I suggest as a first time builder that you just use a good air cooler.
It will be cheaper, quieter, more reliable, and will cool a conservative oc just as well as an air cooler.
There are too many tales of woe when a cooler leaks and destroys everything.
+1 having built air and h2o for me the latter could sometime be more trouble than worth actually and by the time one splashes out for a good h2o cooling set up, one realizes that by sticking to air the funds could have been channeled to a better rig...


Apr 21, 2013
First thing I would suggest is going with an AMD setup the processors tend to be faster. For this I recommend an ASUS Crosshair V Formula Motherboard. For a chip I would use an AMD FX 8350 Vishera. It's eight cores has a standard speed of 4.0 GHZ. And it's less expensive than your setup so far an FX 8350 will run you about 179.00 us dollars the Asus about 239.00 us dollars.

For Memory I would go with a G.SKILL Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2400 (PC3 19200) Desktop Memory Setup its not a bad amount to start with its an ok price now since your using only two sticks what I like is you can upgrade to 32 gb by throwing in another two sticks in stead of tossing out the old ones. Also if you going to use only two sticks no matter what memory size REMEMBER TO LOOK AT YOUR MOTHERBOARD MANUAL TO SEE WHAT MEMORY PORTS TO USE TO TAKE CARE ADVANTAGE OF THE DUAL CHANNEL SETUP! Sorry to caps that but it is extremely important if you don't put them in the right slots they still work but it wont take advantage of the dual channel capability.

For a case I would recommend a A COOLER MASTER HAF X RC-942-KKN1 Black Steel/ Plastic ATX Full Tower Computer Case it has room for a 360 mm Radiator plenty of bays to hold your drives water cooling equipment and still have room for expand ability.

Video Cards Seem fine. One thing I can tell you is a bigger power supply is in order go to extreme powers supply and use thier calculator Assuming you want a power supply that you dont have to change I Put in for you intel processor Overclocked this thing is a power hungry bitch no I admit I guessed on vcore power and the oc speed but if I'm right and its always best to assume more than less if you can push this 4800 mhz and Vcore 1.4 or 1.5 you will need over 270 watts alone I did an sli configuration on your video cards and I also assumed you would want to use your maximum amount of memory slots eventually I also did the calcualtions for your HDD and SSD and Bluray I also allowed for the dual pump setup I'm going to recommend for cooling also put in the specs for max amount of fans and options on your case and I also set TDP 100% and Capacitor aging at 35% Again I figured this supply should last for a few years. you need at least 1065 watts and it recommends 1115 watts Intels tend to be power hungry which is also why I like the 8 core visheras you could get 5200mhz and 1.5 vcore for 216 watts. Bottom line you need at a 1100 or 1200 watt power supply to make sure you cover all this equipment. If you wanted to go with a 1350 Watt power supply to give yourself room for future upgrades I would say the ENERMAX MAXREVO Series EMR1350EWT 1350W ATX12V / EPS12V v2.92, v2.8 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Full Modular Power Supply is a good bet but it's pricey at 319.00 us dollars if for whatever reason that's to expensive than the Coolmax 1200W ATX12V v2.3 /EPS 12V v2.92 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply is a good choice at about a 150.00 us dollars.

For water cooling I would use a setup like this:

Swiftech Maelstrom 5 1/4" Dual Bay Standalone Reservoir w/ Dual MCP35X Pumps (Maelstrom-35X2) ( if this is out of stock when you go to order than use this instead (Swiftech Maelstrom 5 1/4" Dual Bay Standalone Reservoir w/ Dual Pump Housing (Maelstrom-DPH) you will have to by the pumps which you can use a Swiftech Dual Extreme Duty Small Form Factor 12 VDC Industrial PWM Pump - White (MCP35X2-WT) Fair warning it will cost a bit more cause they are separate. I like this setup for pumps and resivoir though because its easy to mount in 2 5.25 inch bays.

Black Ice GTX Xtreme 360 Radiator - Black

PrimoChill Pure Intensified™ - Performance Coolant (32 oz.) - Clear You can choose any color you want I used the clear because I idn't know what color you wanted all are the same price so doesn't matter)

PrimoChill PrimoFlex Advanced LRT Tubing 1/2"ID x 3/4" OD - 10ft Retail Pack - Clear ( again same thing as with the coloant color doesn't matter mix and match the colors if you want)

Bitspower Summit EF CPU Liquid Cooling Block - Intel LGA Series - Black Acetal (BP-WBCPUIAC-CUMBKBK)

HEATKILLER® GPU-X³ GTX 670 / 660Ti Reference Design Full Coverage Water Block - Nickel / Black (15526) you will need two of these

Swiftech MCW30 SLI Chipset Water Block (it was the only one I could find on it is supposed to be compatible with most intel chipsets just be careful when you install it)

Bitspower Liquid Cooling Fill Syringe - 70 mL (BP-WTT-70ML) I find this to be the safest way to fill you system with coolant.

If you want to use compression fittings this is the type you need for your size tubing Bitspower Ultimate G 1/4 Thread 1/2" ID x 3/4" OD Compression Fitting - Matte Black (BP-MBCPF-CC5) you will need about 10 of them these are 9.50 us dollars a piece.

If you want you can use these instead Alphacool G1/4 Thread 1/2" (13mm) ID FatBoy Barb - Deep Black they are a third the price but you will also need 3/4" OD Reusable Clamp for PrimoFlex Tubing You get a discount at ten so there .80 us dollars making this the cheaper option 3.80 us dollars per fitting. (It really is a personal preference there is no right way to do it if you have the cash and want a cleaner looking fit go for the compression fittings if not this will work fine to.)

You will also need a few 1/2" ID UV Reactive Leakproof T Fitting the y come 2 to a pack 3 packs should do (this a judgement call these are cheap so I always get more than I need)

1/2" ID UV Reactive Leakproof Elbow 10 of these should do (again judgement call but if your designing a system that splits the cooling using t fittings so that super heated cooling isn't reaching a part these will be a life saver there a little better at keeping flow going then 90 degree barbs.

If you were using your case instead of the cooler master you have a few options one is use a single 140mm radiator where your optional side fan is (I dont recommend this but i not a lot of coolant for a case this big other option is to remove the 140mm front fan and use the double 140 fan capacity to put in a dual 140 radiator (a little better but still a little less than I would use) your other option is to do both these things and put in an 140mm and a dual 140 radiator not bad idea keep in mind if use either the second or third option the double radiator has to be set up so the fans do an intake of air. (The manual usually can tell you how to do this)

If you should decide to use your case than these are the radiators I would use a Black Ice GT Xtreme 280 Radiator - Black and/or a Black Ice GT Xtreme 140 Radiator - Black

Its always a good Idea to flush out your system before using it on your computer for this I would use Primochill Sys Prep Cooling Loop Pre-Treatment Cleaner - 15mL and PrimoChill Base Intensified™ - High Purity Deionized Water - 1 Gallon - Clear (PC-BASE128) Flushing out your system is optional. Although with how dense the 140 radiator is a lot people recommend it.)

A few other notes if you should decide to go with the ASUS AMD Processor setup I mentioned the only modifications to your cooling system would be a Bitspower Summit EF CPU Liquid Cooling Block - AMD Series - Ice Black Acrylic (BP-WBCPUAAC-CUMBKIBK) and a EK ASUS Crosshair V Formula(-Z) Full Board Cooling Block Kit - Acetal + Nickel CSQ (EK-FB ASUS C5F-Z - Acetal+Nickel)

Youtube is a good place to find videos that will answer all of your questions and also give you reviews on a lot of the products for your computer.

Also if your western digital caviar black is a bare or oem drive make sure you get the proper sata cables IT WILL NOT COME WITH THEM! OKGEAR 18" SATA 6 Gbps Cable, Straight to Right Angle W/Metal Latch, UV Blue, Backward Compatible with 3 Gbps and 1.5 Gbps should do fine.

One last question is what os are you using if you dont have one I would suggest a 64 bit copy of windows 7 home premium.

Also remember that if you use the two radiators instead of one you need to get 2 extra compression fitting or 2 extra barbs and clamps depending on which you choose to use.
Jkein has articulated, ^ in great detail why a simpler air cooler will be better for you.
The only purpose of a liquid cooler is to be able to extract slightly higher cpu overclocks.
A i7-3820 is not easily overclocked anyway. A 3570K would be better for you, but you did not ask that question.

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