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New to Water Cooling and Overclocking - Q's that need A's

For my next build I am planning on going all out. Price really isn't an issue, that being said I told my wife I wouldn't go over $3,500 ;-P . I'm an enthusiast gamer and programmer, and I want to enter into the realm of overclocking my CPU and GPUs. I am planning on the following set up:

I've included the lowest prices I've seen per item, I'm in no rush to buy. I wait for sweet deals. God's greatest gift is Manufacturer Refurbished items in my opinion!

Case: Cooler Master HAF X ($160)
MoBo: MSI X99S Plus ($160)
CPU: i7-5820K Haswell 6-core (3.3GHz) ($390)
GPUs: 2x MSI GTX 980Ti Gaming 6G (SLI) & MSI SLI Bridge ($670 e/a) + $30 Bridge
RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws 4 32 (4x8) DDR4 2800 ($300)
Power Supply: Rosewill Lightning 1300 w Modular ($150)
SSD 500 GB Samsung Evo ($178)
HDD 3 TB Toshiba ($90)
Optical Drive? (Do I need one? I don't watch DVD/Blurays on my comp. and I never burn anything)
Monitor 1: ACER 28" 4K UKD (XB280HK) ($500 Manufacturer Refurb. eBay :))
Monitors 2 & 3: ASUS 24" 144Hz 1ms (VG248QE) ($206 Manufacturer Refurb. :))
TOTAL: $3,320---not including combo discounts that newegg sometimes has.

Okay, first of all is there anything wrong with my proposed build? I've done hours upon hours of research and for all I know everything is top of the line and compatible. However, maybe I'm missing something, or over killing/over paying on particular areas of my set up that really won't benefit me at all. What do you all think?

Also, as I stated before, I want to venture into water cooling for the first time and overclocking. Water cooling and overclocking go hand-in-hand and I know that they are more of a lifestyle and choice for computer enthusiasts. I know both carry some risks (potentially catastrophic risks) but that's what makes it fun for me! With my proposed build listed above, can I water cool my CPU and dual SL I GPUs on one single loop? If so, how many rads would I need and what size(s)? I am familiar with the 240 mm for every main OC'd component (I think is how it goes). Does that mean 240mm * 3 = 720mm? If so, should I use 2+ Rads or one big one? It would all fit in my giant HAF X case, right? Also, is water cooling 2x GTX 980Ti's SLI just plain overkill? Would I be wasting my money for barely any performance increase? I am going with a 4K monitor & custom water cooling is always great I know, but when is it burning through my wallet?

If you've read this far, thank you very much. I really appreciate the time your taking to help me out. It's always great to get different opinions and hear what experts have to say. Please post below!
8 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. Just to get the posts started, I put your entire proposed build intp pcpartpicker without changing anything http://pcpartpicker.com/p/vyRxqs I think you're already over your budget, and that's before watercooling.

    I won't pretend I know the exact needs of a programmer, but 32GB of RAM sounds like a lot. Maybe you have a reason, idk. I am wondering if you need the 3TB of extra storage? Why not just get something like a Samsung SM951 512GB M.2-2280 instead of either storage option? The speed is crazy on it, if you're into those kinds of things (price might be a limiter though).
  2. datguy20 said:
    Just to get the posts started, I put your entire proposed build intp pcpartpicker without changing anything http://pcpartpicker.com/p/vyRxqs I think you're already over your budget, and that's before watercooling.

    I won't pretend I know the exact needs of a programmer, but 32GB of RAM sounds like a lot. Maybe you have a reason, idk. I am wondering if you need the 3TB of extra storage? Why not just get something like a Samsung SM951 512GB M.2-2280 instead of either storage option? The speed is crazy on it, if you're into those kinds of things (price might be a limiter though).


    Thanks for your post! So I updated the OP with some of the lowest prices that I've seen and I'm at about $3,320 w/o water cooling (which would easily add another $800+ to the price tag with a custom loop). as far as the 32 GB of RAM goes yeah it's a little bit much, but it definetely would improve OC results and helps to future proof my rig which I'm all about. But you're right, I may just consider 16GB (4x4 I need four sticks for the MoBo lanes minimum). 3TB of HDD is just nice for all of my movies, music, and documents. 3 TB is overkill but the HDD that I've chosen really isn't more expensive than other lower capacity HDD's that I've seen. Do you know of a better one?
  3. Just going purely off ratings, I would say go with the Seagate Barracuda 3TB instead. Slightly cheaper, little bit better ratings. I still think you might want to consider an M.2 because you are doing an x99 build. Depends on your needs though.

    As for watercooling, if you haven't already then may I suggest reading the sticky http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/277130-29-read-first-watercooling-sticky

    I'd say put it all in one loop, especially because of your concern of going over-budget. For the amount of radiators, I'd say follow the sticky's advice on calculating TDP. You'll probably end up with 2 to 3 radiators. Watercooling your 980 ti's might not be a total waste, as they use the same chip as the Titan, which is known for being hot. If you are going to watercool them, going with the cheapest reference card might be a better idea, for GPU block compatibility. http://configurator.ekwb.com/step1_complist?gpu_gpus=1682 That particular card doesn't have a block available from EK.
  4. Any more thoughts?
  5. Best answer
    iRon_Man22 said:
    Any more thoughts?
    Maybe consider a motherboard with more power phases? The MSI x99 SLI Plus is only 8. While 8 isn't terrible, I would recommend a board with 12 or more phases for big OC's on that CPU. Something like http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asrock-motherboard-x99mkiller is basically the same price with a better VRM design.

    You also might want to read http://www.techpowerup.com/204387/intel-core-i7-5820k-features-fewer-pci-express-lanes-after-all.html and consider if either you still want to do SLI, upgrading the CPU, or if you don't care about it being a x16/x8 SLI config.

    Here's a little messed-with version of what you might want to consider http://pcpartpicker.com/p/rZ6YK8 it has reference design 980 ti's for waterblock compatability, a better CPU with enough lanes for unrestricted SLI, better motherboard for overclocking, but admittedly less RAM. 16GB should be plenty though (32GB adds another $100).

    Motherboard is mAtx, but idk if you have any need for more than 3 PCIE slots? The ATX version of the x99 Fatal1ty is like ~$30 more.

    I'm also starting to wonder what you're plan is with that specific screen setup though? Just curious.
  6. Watercooling on this build is going to be over $600 alone, and that's just me pulling a number out of a hat, including NOT using compression fittings, full cover GPU blocks (no backplates), dual rads, small reservoir, tubing and only running a single pump. Is this the same one you have in the other thread? If so, why different threads?
  7. rubix_1011 said:
    Watercooling on this build is going to be over $600 alone, and that's just me pulling a number out of a hat, including NOT using compression fittings, full cover GPU blocks (no backplates), dual rads, small reservoir, tubing and only running a single pump. Is this the same one you have in the other thread? If so, why different threads?


    Yeah this is the same build, I know multiple threads are not stupid. I had originally made this thread to be about purely my system as a whole where I could ask lots of different questions and get advice on the rig as a whole. The other thread was specifically for questions on water cooling. I realize now that was kinda dumb. :P
  8. datguy20 said:
    iRon_Man22 said:
    Any more thoughts?
    Maybe consider a motherboard with more power phases? The MSI x99 SLI Plus is only 8. While 8 isn't terrible, I would recommend a board with 12 or more phases for big OC's on that CPU. Something like http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asrock-motherboard-x99mkiller is basically the same price with a better VRM design.

    You also might want to read http://www.techpowerup.com/204387/intel-core-i7-5820k-features-fewer-pci-express-lanes-after-all.html and consider if either you still want to do SLI, upgrading the CPU, or if you don't care about it being a x16/x8 SLI config.

    Here's a little messed-with version of what you might want to consider http://pcpartpicker.com/p/rZ6YK8 it has reference design 980 ti's for waterblock compatability, a better CPU with enough lanes for unrestricted SLI, better motherboard for overclocking, but admittedly less RAM. 16GB should be plenty though (32GB adds another $100).

    Motherboard is mAtx, but idk if you have any need for more than 3 PCIE slots? The ATX version of the x99 Fatal1ty is like ~$30 more.

    I'm also starting to wonder what you're plan is with that specific screen setup though? Just curious.


    Great answer, this gives me a lot to research and think on. I'll definitely rethink my MoBo and you've convinced me to go for the i7-5930K although admittedly I don't quite understand how PCIe 16x16 will give me a higher OC. I need to re-read more about PCIe and lane whatnot.

    As far as the monitor set up, the first one is b/c I want to get into 4K gaming. The other 2 monitors are for gaming/work/school/research.

    Thanks for the help and I might be PM'ing you in the future for more advice!
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