There's a lot of info out there on water cooling - but it's almost all focused at the overclocking gang - who don't seem to care about the amount of noise coming out of their systems (probably can't hear it over the blaring game sounds coming out of their speakers anyway
It seems like practically any watercooling setup would effectively cool an un-overclocked system (even the non 1.3 Athalons (Palomino) which need to dissipate up to 72W) - at least as long as you had a copper contact plate in the processor water block to conduct heat away from that *tiny* die.
So, even though the overclockers have made very few comments about relative noise, there were a few side comments like (all from different sources):
- Eheim 1046 pump is the quietest
- lower waterflow resistance makes the pump run more quietly
- non mag drive pumps quieter than mag drive
Note the last comment is in conflict with the first as the Eheim is a mag drive.
FWIW, I went with the Eheim, an Innovatek reservoir (for easy system priming) and am running 3/8" ID tubing.
Now, there's the issue of what sort of radiator to use. The ideal for noise would be something totally passive. Something like the pipe-with-plates-attached used for baseboard heat springs to mind. However, I decided I wanted this to all fit inside a case (and not look like a mad scientist setup) so I opted for an internal radiator (which will need a fan - but this fan can also double as a case exhaust fan).
The issues with radiators seem to be:
- water flow resistance
- air flow resistance (if you're going to use a fan, you want to run it as slowly as possible)
I looked at a number of possible radiators and eventually decided on the Black Ice Pro, which
- being a fin flow radiator with multiple parallel fins, offers low water flow resistance
- being thin, offers low air flow resistance
- is sized to be placed over a 120mm fan hole
I now have the pump, radiator, and reservoir set up and running on a test-bench.
The pump, as long as it is placed on a piece of foam, is inaudible - unless I actually *touch* my ear to the pump.
I have set up a 120mm fan (with additional 120mm fan "frame" between fan and radiator to reduce turbulence noise - "askenazy effect"?) and can, with a Zalman Fan speed controller, reduce fan speed to the point that the fan is inaudible and there's still some airflow through the radiator.
This is as far as my project has gotten. I'm still waiting for my Swiftech socket A water block (and mobo and processor) to see if I can keep the fan turned down this far and still run the processor at standard speed.
I will update when I get further along (including pictures - nothing much to show, yet)
So far the water cooling gear (including water block, adapters, hosing) has cost me $160, including shipping, so It's lot like I'm spending *scads* of money on this.
BTW, I'm aware of the galvanic issues associated with having both Alu and Cu in the same system. It looks as though many of the major water cooling systems mix these metals (for instance, both Swiftech and Innovatec have water blocks made of both copper and alu). I have to assume they hard annodize the inside alu surfaces to sidestep this issue.
Thanks for listening (reading)!