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400Q & H80i V2


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Hi everybody!


New user, recent lurker/scavenger of information.

So, I'm building a new PC (first time, specs are declared), and I've decided to get the Carbide 400Q tower. Now I'm contemplating which CPU cooler to get for the 6700K. Originally I was thinking H100i V2 or H110i or possibly H80i V2. But then as I was browsing through the forums (total liquid AIO noob) and I'm reading stuff about different fans, static pressure, airflow fans, rad positioning and I'm a little conflicted.



1. Between H110i V2 and H110i, is 1 "better" or preferred over the other? If so, why?

2. I hear that having the rad in the back is better than the front, so as to not blow warmer air into the case. That being said, should I go with a rear mounted H80i V2 instead? Note: I intend to only overclock the CPU moderately (which is fairly subjective since overclocking is new to me too)

3. Anybody familiar with what an ideal overclock is for this CPU? Follow up question is that, is there a better CPU cooler for that ideal overclock?

4. What sort of fans should I lean towards if I go with front dual rad vs rear single rad?

5. I'd prefer to avoid top load, since I've opted to go with the quieter case option. Would it be better for me to ditch the idea of no fans on the top, and have a top mount instead?


I wrote the title before I wrote the body...

Edited by AlphaJeun
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1) The naming scheme is a mess. There is no H110i version 2. The H110i is the "v2" for the H110iGT. As far as we know, there are no differences and most of the v2 coolers were changed in name only. Some have a minor firmware tweak to allow for CPU package temp fan control, but that's not the method I would recommend even when available.


2) Yes and no. Generally, exhausting your radiator waste heat directly out of the case is good. It does not help anything to dump it into the case, although the severity of the consequences vary greatly and depend largely on case design and CPU average power draw. So that's plus 1 for rear exhaust H80i. However, putting 50mm of metal over your one active exhaust point will dramatically restrict the exhaust flow. You will generally need moderate to high fan speeds just to evacuate air out of the case. A second problem is the proximity of the radiator to your GPU. Under sustained GPU loads (like gaming) you will heat up the local area at the back of the GPU. Touch your rear slot some time -- hottest spot in the case. This will boost the coolant temperature inside H80i v2 to 5-8C (on average) over what you might normally experience in a different placement. That means your CPU baseline temp will also be 5-8C higher. Now, this is a viable option and many people are set-up this way, but if you have other options with your case, I would explore them.


3. All of these coolers H80i v2/H100i v2/H110i v2/H115i can handle a highly overclocked 6700k. The difference will be in placement and the required fan speeds. The larger the radiator surface area, the more heat the radiator can dissipate at once. You will need more fan speed with smaller coolers (h80iv2) and the least fan speed with larger 280mm coolers (H110i/H115i). Your radiator fans will always be the loudest in the case, both because of their blade design and the resistance they face. If you like quiet, go big.


4. Same either way. You want a fan with flat, wide blades, and minimal space between the blades. A classic example is the Corsair SP120. The 120/140 coolers will come with SP120L fans. I am not so appreciative of that variation, but I am also very picky when it comes to these things. Most people are happy with a "hybrid" style fan that is a compromise between airflow and pressure focused. A good example is the current ML120 series or even the RGB 120mm fans. Those fans can also be used as case fans, so it is an attractive option for people looking for uniformity in their build.


5. You could mount an H80i v2 in the front of the case, preferably on the top 120mm slot. It would dump most of it's waste heat right out the top, passive or not. Then the rear exhaust fan can focus solely on exhaust duty and move twice the air out when needed under load. Now, that whole fan/rad/fan sandwich is 99mm thick, so you need to take that into account, both from a physical and aesthetic perspective.


Normally, I wouldn't block the front fans if I didn't need to. However, the 400C/Q has something of a shallow top and I prefer the look without a top radiator. Also, without drive bays to block the flow, a fair amount of radiator waste heat will exit straight out the top and not add quite so much to case temperatures. I understand your desire for low fan noise on the top and presumably, it will sit right beside you. However, two 140mm fans running at absolute minimum speed will be a big improvement over passive exhaust. Either way, that is a decision that can be left for later and tested.


If quiet is the main focus, I might opt for a 280mm radiator in the front, with low speed exhaust at the top and back.

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Hey, thank you so much c-attack for your insight.


Sorry, I meant H100i V2 vs H110i, oversight on my part. Although your response more or less gives the answer to go with a bigger rad. And as a result, my best option sounds to be front mounting it.


In your point #4, whats the difference between SP120 and SP120L? The 400Q comes with a front AF140L and rear AF120L according to the website. Should I change them both to something with more static pressure as opposed to airflow? I read that negative static pressure is ideal as you want the exhaust to be able to pull out more hot air, than positive where there is an abundance of warmer air within the case. Whats the best set up to achieve that in the 400Q?


Should I consider a push & pull config on the rad? Since opting for the 400Q, ideally I'd want to keep the top plate on, to minimize the noise. How does that factor into the fan decisions since there wont by any exhaust/ventilation from the top.


Never thought cooling would be so complex... I think I've spent more time reading about cooling, than anything else related to this build

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With no top exhaust at all, the waste heat from a front mounted radiator will need to travel through the case to exit at the rear slot. When under moderate CPU load, this may cause your case ambient temp to be perhaps 5C higher than it would with top exhaust. That is not a problem from a tolerance point of view and normal operation will not be affected. So then it really comes down to intended use. If this is a number crunching machine with largely CPU only duties, an H80i v2 in the rear slot is just fine and offers the lowest system wide temps. However, if you are likely to see more heavy GPU loads or mixed duty use, the H100i v2 in the front likely is the best solution. You would mount 3x120mm fans to the front, then mount the H100i v2 behind the top 2 fans. The lowest fan would be free from radiator restriction, run from a separate motherboard header, and be able to provide cooler air toward the GPU.


The SP120L is the plain grey, stripped down version of a SP120 fan and is included with many of the coolers. "L" does not have a specific meaning, other than indicating it is included with product. "L" fans are often slightly different on each case/cooler. The AF140L and 120L that comes with the case are much more likable, although also plain grey. I hadn't noticed the case only comes with 2 fans. You'll have to go fan shopping as well. The included AF120L can be used in the rear slot. You will need at least one more 120mm fan for the front, if you use the 2 SP120L that come with the H100i v2. If not, than 3x120mm fans.


From everything written so far, I suspect quiet is a large factor in the decision making. Adding a second set of fans for push-pull can increase airflow at low and moderate fan speeds. In theory, this means you could run the fans slower (quieter) and still get the same airflow. However, you then get into a quandary about what makes less noise -- 2 fans at 1300 rpm? Or 4 fans at 1000 rpm? The answer is often very fan specific and obviously 2 more fans costs more money. I don't see any reason to commit to it on a normal thickness radiator until you know the 2 fans you have aren't doing the job needed. You also have to consider GPU length. Depending upon your 1080 length, you may not have the room for a second set. A H80i v2 is almost twice as thick as the H100i v2. It does need the second fan for push-pull and is included with the cooler.


Don't over think the negative vs positive pressure aspect of the airflow. This is some thing you can control with fan speed and not particularly essential to anything. Ultimately, what you are really doing with case fans is removing warmer air from the case and replacing it with slightly cooler air from outside the case. Tipping the exhaust/intake balance to on side or the other usually has minor consequences. Ideally, you replace air at the same speed you remove it. While at first, your case may seem "intake heavy" with 3x120 fan in and 1x120 fan out, realize the top 2 120mm fans will move a fraction of their airflow when radiator restricted. The 3rd front fan can be kept at moderate speed. The rear exhaust fan can be increased when under GPU load when more exhaust may be needed. You are likely to have near neutral balance by default and if anything slightly positive. That can be helpful when passively exhausting air, but with the top on that is not a concern.

Edited by c-attack
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Again, awesome response, thank you!


So, since the H100i V2 comes with 2x SP120L fans, and i'll need a 3rd fan for the front. Should I get an an AF fan for the 3rd at the bottom? or an SP fan? Mind you, the PSU/3.5" HD bay cover is also there, so im not sure that will impact the air flow. Would I be better suited to move the AF120L from the rear to the front and consider an SP fan for the rear? Or are SP fans as exhaust not usually a good option?

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Usually, you don't want static pressure designed fans for the rear exhaust. It will need to run much faster than an airflow designed fans to move the same amount of air. You can use another "AF-style" fan the lower front. You could also use a SP-style fan, but I might opt for a hybrid style to cover your bases. It won't be crippled by restrictions and still moves a decent amount of air.
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