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Doctor Venture
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A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 4:43 pm

I've heard the rumors that threadripper will need an AIO liquid cooler. I was checking out newegg, and was just curious if any of you kind folks were aware of a case (The Cosmos could work, but it's pricey, and huge), that would accomodate not only whatever size that cooler radiator may be (I'm guessing anywhere from 80mm to 320mm). I'd love to be able to put in a ton of 120mm Noctua case fans for intake/exhaust (more exhaust than intake, to create negative pressure). With the threadripper build, it would be the CPU, whatever cooler it comes with, 128GB DDR4 RAM (I'm not going to overclock anything, and several SATA 3 HDDs, since I'm more worried about the longevity of something like an NVMe Samsung 960 EVO, and a lower end GPU that can drive a widescreen monitor (or two bezeless ones). Of the cases I've seen, they seem to be limited to like 3 or 4 case fans, and I have zero desire for that dumb Deepcool case with the built-in 320mm resevoir.

Any ideas? When I was first looking at Ryzen cases, there was a Corsair that had quite a few case fan mounts (and that side duct) that would handle a large radiator, multiple 120mm case fans, and an 80mm on the back. I can't seem to find anything like that in the full or super tower range, other than the Cosmos.

Something else that I'm curious about, has been that I've seen folks squawk about Intel using cheap TIM paste, instead of solder. Some folks were mentioning liquid metal paste. Wouldn't that be electrically conductive? I did a quick NewEgg search, and a good many of them talked about using Cermaique (I know what ceramic is, but I've never heard *that* term), carbon, liquid aluminum, and even "nano diamonds". I haven't used thermal paste since I bought some arctic silver waaaay back when I built my current Sandy Bridge rig, so I'm very out of the loop. What should I be looking for, since in addition to the threadripper workstation, it's long past time I built a new gaming rig. Any suggestions on what to get, or what to avoid?
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:04 pm

Doctor Venture wrote:
Something else that I'm curious about, has been that I've seen folks squawk about Intel using cheap TIM paste, instead of solder. Some folks were mentioning liquid metal paste. Wouldn't that be electrically conductive?

Yes. But provided it is properly applied, it stays between the top of the silicon die (which does not have any active circuitry on it) and the heatspreader, so it can't short anything out. Solder is conductive too.

Doctor Venture wrote:
I did a quick NewEgg search, and a good many of them talked about using Cermaique (I know what ceramic is, but I've never heard *that* term),

It's a trade name for a specific brand of thermal compound that contains ceramic nano-particles. It works reasonably well, but it is VERY sticky; I've had PGA CPUs get pulled out of the (still latched) socket when trying to remove the heatsink with Ceramique.

Doctor Venture wrote:
carbon, liquid aluminum, and even "nano diamonds". I haven't used thermal paste since I bought some arctic silver waaaay back when I built my current Sandy Bridge rig, so I'm very out of the loop. What should I be looking for, since in addition to the threadripper workstation, it's long past time I built a new gaming rig. Any suggestions on what to get, or what to avoid?

Unless you're planning to overclock the type of thermal paste really shouldn't matter.
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Doctor Venture
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:17 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Doctor Venture wrote:
Something else that I'm curious about, has been that I've seen folks squawk about Intel using cheap TIM paste, instead of solder. Some folks were mentioning liquid metal paste. Wouldn't that be electrically conductive?

Yes. But provided it is properly applied, it stays between the top of the silicon die (which does not have any active circuitry on it) and the heatspreader, so it can't short anything out. Solder is conductive too.

Ah! OK. Thanks for clarifying that! :D

Doctor Venture wrote:
I did a quick NewEgg search, and a good many of them talked about using Ceramique (I know what ceramic is, but I've never heard *that* term),

It's a trade name for a specific brand of thermal compound that contains ceramic nano-particles.

Ooooh, OK. That makes sense.

Doctor Venture wrote:
carbon, liquid aluminum, and even "nano diamonds". I haven't used thermal paste since I bought some arctic silver waaaay back when I built my current Sandy Bridge rig, so I'm very out of the loop. What should I be looking for, since in addition to the threadripper workstation, it's long past time I built a new gaming rig. Any suggestions on what to get, or what to avoid?

Unless you're planning to overclock the type of thermal paste really shouldn't matter.


So sticking with Arctic Silver is still good? That's what I used with my old Sandy Bridge, and it's served me well over the years *knock on wood*. I don't intend on overclocking the threadripper workstation, or the new gaming rig (I might end up getting a CPU from Silicon Lottery, if moving up to Kaby Lake isn't worth it).
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:24 pm

IIRC some of the older formulations of AS used to separate and harden eventually. I don't recall which ones had this issue though. Biggest issue with AS is that it's a PITA to clean up. In general it's decent.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:27 pm

just brew it! wrote:
IIRC some of the older formulations of AS used to separate and harden eventually. I don't recall which ones had this issue though. Biggest issue with AS is that it's a PITA to clean up. In general it's decent.


If it was a build you were making, which brand would you recommend going with?
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:39 pm

Doctor Venture wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
IIRC some of the older formulations of AS used to separate and harden eventually. I don't recall which ones had this issue though. Biggest issue with AS is that it's a PITA to clean up. In general it's decent.

If it was a build you were making, which brand would you recommend going with?

These days I generally just use whatever comes with the heatsink.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:48 pm

I'm with JBI, there really isn't a big difference in thermal paste now.

Personally, I have Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut, a conventional paste. But, Thermal Grizzly also makes liquid metal stuff, too. I got the Kryonaut because I needed some paste for a reapplication in my laptop.

The last chart I've seen showed a spread in the single digit range for most pastes. Some of the really cheap, generic brands were outliers on that chart. So, any respectable brand will typically be good.
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Doctor Venture
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:49 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Doctor Venture wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
IIRC some of the older formulations of AS used to separate and harden eventually. I don't recall which ones had this issue though. Biggest issue with AS is that it's a PITA to clean up. In general it's decent.

If it was a build you were making, which brand would you recommend going with?

These days I generally just use whatever comes with the heatsink.


Cool. Hopefully we'll get some details soon on what AMD is going to include, if the rumors are true about a required heatsink.

I don't think my current corsair AIO liquid cooler came with any thermal paste, though. I could be wrong. I'll have to look that up.

EDIT: I just looked it up, and I was wrong. My corsair 80i came with thermal paste pre-applied.
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Sun Jul 23, 2017 10:04 pm

just brew it! wrote:
IIRC some of the older formulations of AS used to separate and harden eventually. I don't recall which ones had this issue though. Biggest issue with AS is that it's a PITA to clean up. In general it's decent.


Ive been using AS forever, never had any issues cleaning it off, always came right off with some 91 ISO alchol. I gotten a ton of old ceramic package athlons clean as new with nary an issue. I have had more trouble with dried up old TIM's and dried out old white grease, then I really have to break out the elbow grease to get it off.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:52 am

If the rumor is that Threadripper comes with a liquid cooler (which seems plausible), it's probably just 120mm. They're pushing clocks pretty high for a 16C part, but even if it were double the power draw of an 1800X, that's nothing compared to what the 120mm liquid coolers on the Fury X and Vega FE have to handle.

If the rumor is that it needs a liquid cooler, color me extremely skeptical. It's probably beyond what AMD's own lineup of air coolers can handle, but air coolers that can handle 190W (again, worst case) aren't that hard to come by, doubly so because AMD is still soldering IHSes. If Threadripper is the point at which they're deciding to quit soldering, and they think they're going to do a really bad job of TIM application/spacing, then maybe I could see it.

Threadripper seems likely to have a higher TDP than Skylake-X, but very unlikely to draw more power in the real world than Skylake-X. Even aside from that, Skylake-X would be fine if Intel had done up the TIM a bit better and told the mobo manufacturers it had a 180W TDP.

As far as TIM, JBI and titan are right that it isn't a big deal, but I go with Noctua NT-H1 whenever the choice comes up. IME it's as well-behaved as any in both application and clean-up, and in the thermal testing I've seen, it's been at the top of the pack of conventional TIMs and unreasonably close to the weird stuff like Liquid Ultra.
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:38 am

I was sure there was an AC Ceramique paste and a Ceramique adhesive, too? Gotta be careful which one you get, if so!

Most of the 'grey stuff' you buy now is all the same - I tend to buy Gelid Extreme, but only because it's usually on sale more than the rest. Noctua, Grizzly, AS - much of a muchness.

As for cases, you're probably going to have to do a bit of re-tooling if you want a case with a stack of mounts to do negative pressure - they're all geared for big intake, and by the time you put a 240mm radiator in the roof, you're nearly pressure-neutral.

The [Corsair] 450D will do it - two intake, two in the roof and one rear exhaust. Cheap and very easy to build in - as are all Corsair chassis'.

I just finished a (custom loop) build in an AeroCool LS-5200 - and I'd have one for myself, nice bit of kit. Remove an intake fan and repurpose as an exhaust and you could do it there, too. Also check Cougar for reasonable cases cheap - but the aesthetic might not be your fit.

If they're all a bit pricey, Fractal's new Design Focus cases are nice and cheap, but well-built and stock fans are pretty nice. Two intake, three exhaust positions. SilverStone Redline or Primera also - same chassis, different plastic bits.

I'd wager the AIO for TR will be 120mm, however I'd love to see a 240mm on there myself!
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:41 am

Most of this thread has focused on thermal paste, but what I'm wondering about is...what is the point of the OP's preferred case layout? Sure, you can buy a full-tower case and stuff it full of fans until it self-merges with a drone hobby, but I don't "get" the purpose. It will be loud and probaby no more effective than a "typical" case with 3-4 90mm or 120mm fans that are optimally placed for cross-flow air paths. Several vendors, including Fractal, sell that case with all the bells and whistles.

Speaking as someone who once took a hole-saw to a steel AT case 15+ years ago to create a dedicated CPU duct, and had another project case that was stuffed full of fans until it sounded like the afterburner had just kicked in, it's not worth it.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:54 am

I was thinking the same thing. Diminishing returns and all. The only time I've used more than three fans(recently) in an air cooled machine was in one of those dual chamber cases where I had intake and exhaust fans for each chamber, but it was headless and stuffed away in a closet so I didn't care about noise.

I've used more in a watercooled machine, but usually with some kind of fan speed control to keep the noise down.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:01 am

I'm not convinced that Threadripper will even need a liquid cooler; The limiting factor in most air coolers is how many Watts of heat can be moved from the CPU to the fins. There are plenty of 120mm tower coolers capable of dissipating 150+ Watts, and several 140mm tower coolers capable of going beyond 200W. Realistically, the fin area of a good tower cooler is similar to the radiator surface area of a 240mm liquid cooler. The only real difference is the method of moving that heat - whether it's via heatpipes or pumped water.

Normally, the limitation to heat transfer rate is the surface area - in that the IHS of the processor makes direct or near contact with, at most, 6 heatpipes and typical CPU heatpipes are capable of shifting about 25-35W each. There's little point adding more heatpipes simply because the limiting factor is the surface area of the processor. If you see an 8-heatpipe design, it's little more than a marketing ploy for a four-heatpipe cooler, since the surface area of 8 half heatpipes on the CPU's IHS is almost exactly as effective as the surface area of 4 full heatpipes on the CPU's IHS.

Threadripper is so physically large that there should easily be enough room for 8, 10, or even 12 heatpipes to move 200-300W away from the socket. Think of Threadripper not as a single die, but two dies that happen to be extremely close to each other. It has double the thermal load to dissipate and double the surface area to dissipate it with. Cooling a large CPU with up to 155W should be no harder than cooling a pair of normal-sized CPUs with "ordinary" 78W TDPs.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:42 am

So lemme get this straight...You're doing a build with a high TDP CPU that comes with it's own AIO, and a low-ish power GPU. I'd assume the threadripper AIO will be 240mm at best. Hence you can put that in the top of a typically size mid-tower ATX case that has room for a 240mm rad at the top of the case. After that, all you need is two front fans to feed air into the case.

Not sure what's so terribly extreme about those requirements or why you need a CM Cosmos case for something like that.

How about a Fractal Design Define S or a Phanteks Eclipse P400S.
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:30 am

Doctor Venture, practically any mid-tower will have the ability to mount a 240mm rad someplace. It's harder to find one that can't these days. You don't need a massive tower like the Corsair 900D unless you're going full out DIY watercooling.

Chrispy_ wrote:
I'm not convinced that Threadripper will even need a liquid cooler; The limiting factor in most air coolers is how many Watts of heat can be moved from the CPU to the fins. There are plenty of 120mm tower coolers capable of dissipating 150+ Watts, and several 140mm tower coolers capable of going beyond 200W. Realistically, the fin area of a good tower cooler is similar to the radiator surface area of a 240mm liquid cooler. The only real difference is the method of moving that heat - whether it's via heatpipes or pumped water.


At stock I think you're right.. But I think most enthusiasts will be adding some clocks. And water has always been better for higher density cooling. The advantage to the radiator in your example is that it has two fans instead of just one, and hence lower fan speeds are needed.
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:55 am

I don't understand why it's such a big deal either. We're talking about chips with 40w lower TDP than FX9370 and FX9590 which didn't require such heroic cooling, so there should be plenty of room for overclocking using the cooling solutions available 4 years later.
 
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Re: A case with LOTs of mounts for fans, and a question about thermal paste

Wed Jul 26, 2017 6:49 am

I should have mentioned, my Node 804 has multiple locations that can be used to mount a 240mm radiator, maybe a bit more:
http://support.fractal-design.com/suppo ... or-options

And it could have way more fans than it needs:
http://support.fractal-design.com/suppo ... -locations
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