I updated this system with 2 Radeon RX Vega 64 GPUs! I will post a full build log and video of the transformation at a later date. New pictures and updates for now are on Page 8 - 9.
10/19/2017: Added "Cooling loop" notes at the bottom of this post as I was getting many questions on Discord and PMs about this loop and the order in general.
I hardly ever build anything fun for myself; let’s face it: after building systems for others and pouring your heart and soul into delivering just the right system for them, all you want at the end of the day for your self, is a system that just works. No more tinkering or crazy modding. That’s all about to change for 2017! With the “new kid” on the block (AMD Ryzen), I am finally going to build a “Whiskey-Foxtrot” themed system complete with a matching color liquid cooling loop. It so happens that the Ryzen colors (some of the gradients at least) somewhat match the face-shield part of the Whiskey-Foxtrot logo. Actually, the Ryzen colors are predominantly more orange, but our logo color is still Ryzen’ey.
I named this system “Oscar Mike” because in Military lingo it means “On the Move” – also signifying getting ready for action which is fitting for a new AMD system. AMD is definitely ready for action and on the move!
I’ve had most of the parts I needed for the build just a week after launch, but I’ve been putting this off for months now as I wanted to include a Radeon Vega GPU. I can only stand to look at this huge pile of sexy computer parts for so long and I’m dying to have my own Ryzen system so without further ado, let’s get cracking on this build starting with my parts selection below: We are Oscar Mike!
|CPU||Ryzen 7 1800X|
|Cooler||EKWB Custom Loop|
|Motherboard||Asus Crosshair VI Hero|
|Memory||32 GB G.Skill F4-3200C14-8GTZR|
|Graphics||Radeon RX Vega 64 x 2. RX-480 8GB (Crossfire)|
|Disc Drive 1||1TB Samsung 960 EVO Pro|
|Disc Drive 2||Seagate 10TB|
|Disc Drive 3||Seagate 10TB|
|PSU||EVGA 1200 G2|
|Monitor||Pixio PX347c-PRIME (100Hz UWQHD 2K), Samsung C34F791 (100Hz 2k), both AMD FreeSync|
I know - why bother watercooling RX-480's: well, I had them sitting in the box, sealed and everything and I have just about every part EKWB has made. For now these RX-480 are placeholders for hopefully a Radeon Vega!
You have NO idea how happy I am right now! - I've waited way too long for this day and wanted to share it here first.
Build pictures (parts prep, test bench, assembly)
On the bench - I only have one Rx-480 on here as the other one was already prepped with a water block. I don't have a full water system, but a dedicated Alphacool Eis Baer 120 CPU cooler.
The longest 6 minutes: Installing Windows 10 Pro!
One of many stress tests run: 10 iterations of PassMark's Performancetest, 3D Mark's Stress-test tool, CPU-z, and of course 1 hour of Prime95. All passed without a hitch.
Both GPU's prepped for water cooling now!
Stripped the case of all unwanted junk - cables have yet to be re-sleeved. Those unsleeved cables are unsightly!
Both EKWB 360 rads acid washed, flushed; both have 3 Vardar PWM fans and 3 Cougar PWM fans for a push-pull configuration. The Cougars are in front for color; the Vardars do all the hard work.
20 minutes of tube therapy! Freehand sizing, cutting, and installing necessary tubes for the waterloop. I used Acrylic as I want the clearest I can get and I love working with it. I could've used glass which is actually easier to work with, but for this build I want to avoid using fittings/elbows as much as possible. My loop layout is as follows: Reservoir -> Pump -> Lower radiator -> GPUs -> Upper Radiator -> CPU -> Reservoir. Once I have #rx vega and a matching water block, I'll split the loop with a dedicated GPU loop on the lower 360 rad.
Freshly filled with a custom orange coolant I created for a perfect match of the Whiskey-Foxtrot & Ryzen logo's and my custom sleeved cables. Everything went smooth during filling - except for one missing plug at the bottom of the reservoir! Glad I caught it in time or there would be a huge mess to clean up! The system is currently prepped for an overnight leak test/run; everything's looking good and I'm not worried about leaks.
"Oscar Mike" ran overnight hashing away at various stress tests, crypto-hashing and more without any issues; I think he's ready for prime-time!
As I mentioned, I have a full video build log, including a full GPU conversion video of these cards. If permitted, I can post the links here at some point.
Post Radeon RX Vega pictures:
Cooling loop notes:
I was asked a few times in Discord and through PMs about the order of the loop and why I had it that way. Normally, the order of the loop does not matter "much" and I obviously can't cover every scenario - just why and how it works in my system. There are also other factors involved such as turbulence, water pressure, TDP potential of parts being cooled (and thermal transfer capacity of the radiators), ambient temps and your Delta-T. In my system (Oscar-Mike), I have separate RADS for my GPUs and CPU. At max load, my GPUs (2 x Radeon RX Vega 64) stay around 36 and level out at 43C for an hour load and up before dropping back down over time. My CPU overclocked to 4GHz stabilizes around 57C max at full load after an hour and longer. In this case, having 2 radiators DOES matter and without the separate RAD for my GPUs, the overall system becomes warmer quicker and widening the Delta-T gap faster. Eventually (2 - 3 hours) the overall liquid temps rise to 65C and leveling off with the Delta-T narrowing MUCH slower over time. Ambient temps are always around 20C where this PC is located. As for other systems with only one radiator, you'll see pretty much the same as directly above.
Idle temps with 2 Radiators:
CPU: 42C (OC'ed to 4GHz)
100% Load temps with 2 Radiators:
GPUs: up to 43C
CPU: up to 57C
Idle temps with 1 Radiator:
100% Load temps with 1 Radiator:
GPUs: up to 52C *
CPU: up to 68C * (OC'ed to 4GHz)
* These temps level out with overall loop temps and at one point I've measure both GPUs and CPU around 68C. Temp probes and sensors are placed at multiple points: at the pump, after the GPUs, after the CPUs, at in the reservoir.
Apps used: OCCT+Linpack, and Blender loops/Luxmark
Numbers will vary based on the factors I mentioned above, but they will still be relative. As always, basic laws of thermodynamics apply - transferance happens from hot to cold, in this case hot surface plates to cooler liquid, and then out through the radiators.
Have questions on loops, let me know!
Thank you! Not a competition unless you were bringing in a "blue" and "green" system We're all on the Red Team and every "Red" system adds more to the rebellion!
Thank you kxuping I don't think I've been this excited about a PC in years!
Yes, I am getting the monoblock shortly! Right now the VRMs hover around 35'ish F, but once I start pushing the system after May AGESA the extra cooling it provides will be helpful.
darkwolfca it's a lot of fun, but at the same time also a money and time sink at first! Money-wise because you have to invest in proper tools and initial equipment Radiators, fittings and couplings (you can never have enough!), water blocks, pump(s) and tubing. Most reputable vendors are starting to offer (or already have) kits, almost like AIO's so most of it plug and play. EKWB and Alphacool for instance have modular kits you can expand or upgrade at a later date.
I have it down now to where I can have a full system measured, bent/cut/fitted in under 30 minutes but it has taken many years and lots of swearing when no one's around! I've learned that it's definitely worth planning and researching as much as possible and be prepared for major changes. If you ever need help or want to toss ideas around hit me up!