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Old 09-22-2020, 03:20 AM
rabies rabies is offline
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Default Advice regarding my 280x Crystal build!

Hello there folks!
I'm in need of some advice. I'm planning a build with a 280x crystal-case, and an i7 10700k+ a RTX 3080.

Obviously i realize that this will be quite hot, and will require some substantial cooling. Since i dont have either money or competence to build a custom loop, i'm gonna go the AIO-route. And since this case is so small, i only have two alternatives: A 280m or a 240mm.
And the 280 should seem like a clear-cut choice perhaps, but it isn't.

See from my understanding, it's impossible to fit a 280mm radiator in the *front* on this case (optimal placement). So if i pick a 280mm, then i'm gonna have to mount it in the top of the case (with the dissipating heat from the 3080 coming through it).

So i'm wondering, which route should i go?

If i pick a 240mm and place it in the front then it will push fresh, cold air through the radiator, but still, it's only a 240mm! It just feels so small for a CPU with such a high TDP and LP2 you know?
I mean, would a front-mounted 240mm even be enough for such a beast of a cpu? From my understanding the PL2 on this bad boy is like *225w*... :/

It seems like a 280mm would dop a better job. BUT, if i have a 3080 spewing out a massive amount of heat inside this teeny-tiny case, wouldn't that heat up the radiator more with all that hot air coming through, and thusly, mitigate the size advantage it has?

A the same time, i've seen benchmarks where 280 aio's are almost 10 degrees celsius cooler then its 240 counterparts! So obviously, this ***** makes my head spin lol.

I mean i know that the optimal is to have the radiator in the front, but since i'm limited by size, i dunno what to do.

As i said earlier i would love to have some feedback =),

Best regards!

Last edited by rabies; 09-22-2020 at 03:31 AM.
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Old 09-22-2020, 08:12 AM
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DevBiker DevBiker is offline
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I actually had some difficulty mounting a 280mm in the top of the 280X - the CPU power cables got in the way.

That said, I do have a 240mm radiator mounted in the top of the case. It has a 1070 in there so not as much heat as the 3080 but it can still get warm. I've found that putting the radiator in the top as intake works best. The bottom fans (there are two) are the exhaust. The warmest part of the case is just under the GPU, in the back.

If you put the top in as exhaust, you'll actually have two things that you are fighting against. First, as mentioned, is the GPU heat. You'll be blowing it straight into the cooler. Second - and this one is really more of an issue that many realize - is that the tempered glass at the top restricts how much air is blown out of the case. We've seen this on other cases as well - not just the 280X and not just Corsair cases - restricted tops serve to "trap" warm air and it builds up inside the case, preventing cooling. Reversing the airflow so that the top is intake mitigates this. You'll still have some restriction from the tempered glass but it doesn't cause the issue with heat buildup.

I know, you're thinking to yourself, this guys is f---ing nuts. Heat rises. Top should be exhaust. Well, cooler air tends to be denser and thus, tends to sink. However, this type of convection is easily disrupted by anything else that can impact airflow ... like fans. Now, if you didn't have any fans at all or any airflow, then we could talk about the importance of convection in heat management. But you do have fans. And the fans are what count when managing heat and airflow, not convection.
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