Want to build new system with AMAZING cooling


May 28, 2008
Hey guys,

I'm looking to build a new system... I don't really have a budget, if I had to give it an imaginary number I suppose $2000 area would be my upper limit.

I want to build a high end gaming system that uses some sort of cooling solution. I was thinking maybe liquid cooling of some sort? Problem is I don't know almost anything about these cooling options. The reason I'm looking into this is because my current system, although great, is extremely hot because of my environment. I can't really control the head where I live and it seems that a lot of the heat rises into my apartment. I've struggled to keep my systems from getting hot but it seems my component always run extremely hot.

So I am interested in it and want to hear opinions of what kind of cooling I should look at. Something I can use to cool video cards (looking to do SLI), CPU, and more.

I also want to move towards solid state. I'd really be interested in having my whole system run off multiple SSDs in raid 0 so I can get up to a decent capacity.

I don't need a monitor or any other accessories.

Any suggestions for newer components would be really appreciated! I don't know what is the new stuff of the block.

A quality water cooling system will cost a good bit, and more if you have SLI. A single water block for a video card is usually over $100.
If you are in a hot environment and need to cool that much because of it, you are better off buying an air conditioner.

I have water cooling and probably have about $600 into it. A water cooled 5870, Water cooled CPU, Internal small radiator, larger external radiator, pump, reservoir, 11 low RPM fans, fittings, hose...

It requires frequent maintenance (6 month drains) and is not easy. You have to learn a good bit before you start planning and building.

At $2K you might just be a little cramped in the budget to get it all done right.

So, before you jump into that ask yourself this... what do you need really? How hot, EXACTLY does it get? We measure cooler performance based on degrees Celsius over the ambient temperature. So if you have an i5 2500K and your air cooler can hold it to +20C, and your ambient is 30C... you have a processor running at 50C, and are in good shape.

So, you say what your max ambient temp is and we'll make a choice from there.


Liquid nitrogen is fun but you need to be extremely careful or you could get seriously injured.

Air and H2O coolers just extract heat and use fans to blow it out of the case. Either will work but H2O is more expensive and doesn't offer much advantage. The link below has test data for air cooled heatsinks and H2O coolers. If your ambient is hot then both air and water-coolers will be less efficient than with cooler ambient temps. Maybe a room air-conditioner would be a good investment for your PC and body? ;)


Did I miss a link? Or are you looking at one of those forum auto links that I keep turned off? I hate those... a guy talks about something and the forum links his words to something he wouldn't endorse.


May 28, 2008
I don't have exact temps at the moment but I have done research to see myt CPU and GPU run about 20C above average ambient temp and higher depending on the heat.

I actually do have an AC running constantly in my computer room but it doesn't seem to help. Or rather it does help because when I turn it off it runs even hotter. I also have an extremely bad dust problem because where I live is a very older space.

Maybe I could invest in better air cooling methods? I know my cable management in my current system is terrible, maybe invest in a modular power supply or just plain better planning with cabling in general. I'd love to take case reccomendations for large video cards in mind.

I also would like to hear any suggestions for components in general, I've been out of the PC building game for a while so I could use the help.
In my mind there are a few clear choices for you.

Intel i5 2500K
Because it will run fairly cool while being the best performer.

Cooler Master HAF case
There are many versions and all move a lot of air

Corsair AX850 80plus Gold PSU

A couple dual fan Sapphire 6950s

An Asus board with extra spacing between slots
That gives you a bit more space for cooling between the cards.

CPU cooler - might as well grab one of the top rated ones like the Tt Frio

Best paste in most tests... may get you another degree or two
(It's just G751 Shin-Etsu being resold by Masscool)