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1/4, 3/8 or 1/2 inch connectors?

jacob weber

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Ok, I am new to water cooling. I want to eventually watercool as many components as possible. I will first dot he obvious, cpu (quad core maybe), and northbridge. I might do a nvidia 8800 series video card and ram latter.


I guess that my starting question is "what kind of compatibility should I look for in connectors?" Should I choose 3/8 or 1/2"? I noticed that most memory blocks are either 1/4 or 3/8 inch. Is this an issue? Should I maybe have all my water pipes the same size at maybe 3/8"? What order should I hook everything up (pump to cpu to vga to memory to hard drive to radiator to pump?"



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The smaller the ID of the water line you use, the less water flow through the system you will have. 1/4" ID is primarily used in entry level systems with low flow pumps while 1/2" ID tube would require a really high flow water pump to get the most benefit from. 3/8" tube seems to be the main stream now days as it flows a decent amount of water, does not require a really high flow pump and the OD of the tube is still small enough to allow tighter bends in the tube before the tube kinks and creates less clutter inside the case. Also, it seems there is a wider selection of water blocks for 3/8" ID tube then anything else. Here is a pic of my water cooled system (the water cooling kit started out as a Corsair Cool kit that has been "upgraded"). Also, if down the line you want to cool more than just the cpu and n/b, I would suggest upgrading the radiator to a dual fan radiator as this will give you more cooling capacity especially as the high end video cards tend to run rather hot. The order of components should be RES to PUMP to RAD to CPU to N/B to GPU to RES. The CPU and GPU are the biggest heat producers with the GPU usually being the hotter of the two so you would want the CPU to get the coolest water in the system first and since the GPU would heat up the water the most, it should be the last in the loop before going back into the resivour. If you also want to water cool your memory, place it in the loop between the CPU and GPU along with the N/B (would not matter which one is first). Keep in mind though that the more water blocks you put into the loop, the more water restriction is induced into the system and would require a higher flow rate pump to maintain high water flow through the system. Also, the more heat that is absorbed into the system (ie more water blocks), The higher the overall component temps will be (that is why I recommend a larger radiator).



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