Description

This is a custom loop conversion of a PC I built previously, and is also my introduction to custom water cooling. I wanted to prove that it was possible to stuff all the required components of a custom loop into this tiny chassis. Also, the CPU/GPU were overheating/throttling in the air-cooled version in synthetic/artificial loads. (Furmark/prime95/etc).

The CPU block I chose was the Swiftech Apogee Drive II. I saw this featured in a JayzTwoCents ITX build, and found that it would be one of the only viable options for this build. The other option I considered was the Alphacool Eisbaer LT Solo, but I had concerns about the pressure/flow rate it would be able to sustain, due to its small size and lack of heatsink. I'm very happy with it. It is loud at full speed, but you can adjust the speed via PWM, so I have it set to 35% and have had no problems.

The GPU block is from AliExpress, by a brand named Bykski. Don't buy this particular one, because the G1/4 threaded piece conflicted with the power connector on the GPU, so I had to dremel a bit of it away. Otherwise, it's been working well so far and the quality seems fine. It comes with all the required mounting hardware and thermal pads.

I decided to go for soft tubing for this build. My rationale was that the soft tubing would be easier to bend and route around this compact chassis. What ended up happening was that the tubing would kink around tight bends, so maybe hard PETG tubes with careful bending would've been a better option. To avoid kinking everything, I had to buy many different fittings, which added cost.

My rationale for using a single 120mm rad to cool the 2 components was none other than the R9 295x2. If a single 120mm can cool that card, then it can cool this PC. The default front fan mount was not in an ideal location for the radiator, so I had to use 3M double sided tape to secure it to the case. It is also sandwiched between the edge of the motherboard and the case front panel.

As far as the performance goes, the CPU went from 105C/throttling under synthetic load (with delid/liquid metal), to around 80C at stock, and 90 at 4.3ghz. The GPU used to hit ~85C, and now only hits 50C. These are not great temperatures for a custom loop, but for the size of the enclosure, I have no complaints.

I'd like to end this writeup by saying that I don't recommend anybody to do a build like this. There is way too much sketchy jerry-rigging required, the spacing is way too tight, maintenance (filling, draining, etc) takes too much effort and risk, etc etc. But I've gotta say, I'm very happy with this build. The temperature and coolness improvement was definitely worth it for me.

Comments

  • 9 months ago
  • 4 points

cool factor 100.

+1

  • 9 months ago
  • 3 points

Nice tiny build my friend. And it's water cooled too. A very unique combination.

  • 9 months ago
  • 1 point

Thanks! I can't say the struggle was completely worth it but it ended up working pretty well!

  • 9 months ago
  • 3 points

That’s a nice clean little build!

  • 9 months ago
  • 3 points

This is absolutely unbelievable. +1 for the Bykski block on the card too.

  • 9 months ago
  • 1 point

Glad you like it! I was hesitant to use a brand I'd never heard of, but it looks like it performs great

  • 9 months ago
  • 2 points

I love it! Had to face the same heat problems with my mATX build and since it's watercooled the temps are back to normal.

  • 8 months ago
  • 2 points

I just watched a tech yes city youtube video where he makes similar one with a better cpu and gpu... though yours looks better and he only used aio. I got a similar size Hadron Air (a bit longer), But i could not imagine fitting custom cooling in there since they have a Water cooling version that is like 2"taller for the radiator. You some how got it to perfectly rest on the components as though it was made to be like that. Put a i7 with a 1070 mini down the line, be a 1440p beast.

[comment deleted by staff]
[comment deleted by staff]