Pointlessly expensive Water-cooling Build – Help and Advice



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Pointlessly expensive Water-cooling Build – Help and Advice

Hello All,

I am planning on a new water-cooling build and I’d some input / ideas / constructive criticism from you guys here who have technology geeks / geniuses / gamers / awesome people!
This computer will be strictly used for gaming purposes at 3x1080p with an upgrade to 3x1440p in the near future!

This is not my first water cooled build, so I’m not completely new to this. But, this will be the first build I want to do with Acrylic / Plexiglas tubing.

I have a pretty good budget, but I have to say the budget will be limited to bang for the buck / my usage / purpose of the build. I do not intend to simply throw away money to impress the online community and friends.

I am also aware that technology keeps getting updated, but I am looking to build something that will still perform well 3 years from now.

Z97 i7-4970K or x99 i7-5820K

Now that the x99 platform is released, is the 5820k a performance boost enough for me to invest in the platform, especially that DDR4 Ram and the Motherboard is more expensive too?

Is the lower clock speeds on the 5820k going to be better?

I would love a 5930k, though I don’t think I need it that much at 500$

It kind of sucks that the 5820k does not support x16/x16. It will support x8/x8/x8, which is the same as the 4970k.

AMD equivalent?

ASUS Maximus VII Formula –Z97 – It looks awesome and it’s got a water-cooling loop!
Asus x99 Deluxe or the EVGA x99 FTW or the EVGA x99 Classified

The Asus z97 is about 350$ now. The Asus x99 Deluxe and the EVGA x99 Classified are 399$ and the EVGA x99 FTW is 299$. Is the extra 100$ worth investing in the EVGA x99 Classified or the Asus x99 Deluxe?
Does anyone have a different suggestion on the motherboard? Are there any that are a better bang for the buck while still maintaining OC functions and good features? MSI Mpower? Gigabyte G1? ASRock?

Also, how important is Motherboard Cooling? How much does it affect OC and performance?

How much benefit does the aftermarket water block benefit me if I decide to go with a non-water block cooled Motherboard?

Does anyone have any recommendations from experience on what boards have been great for overclocking?

If anyone suggests an AMD equivalent, what boards would you suggest?

Again, DDR4 vs DDR3

Is I was going the x99 way, I would definitely need a DDR4, and these are about a 100$ more for a 2x8GB.

Also, I know DDR4 currently has higher CAS latency, but higher speeds as well. How much is this going to be a factor?

How much benefit will water-cooling the RAM do?

Graphics cards
Now that NVIDIA has launched the GTX 980 and the GTX970s, the GTX 700 series is dropping in price pretty radically.

The GTX900 series cards definitely have more technology and features and lower power consumption and temperatures!

The 970s are 350$ and the 980s are 550$. GTX780Tis are about 450$.

I am definitely doing a SLI configuration, so here’s the question…
Does dropping 1100$ in a 2Way 980 make more sense or 1050 in a 3 way SLI? Which would perform better?
Or does it make sense to get 2 way 980s and add one later on if I need to boost performance ?

Should I even be thinking about the 700series?


With the newer cards drawing a lot less power, would an 850W work for a 2 way SLI? Or a 1000W for a 3 Way SLI?


CPU: I’m going the Swiftech route, anything better?

GPU: I’d like a full cover water block. Also, correct me if I’m wrong: The Stock back plates aren’t going to fit the GPU water blocks.

Any suggestions on the Pumps, reservoirs, GPU water blocks, fans, tubing manufacturers, fittings?

Can I do copper/metal tubing? I’ve read that distilled water will damage the tubing. If this is true, don’t they affect the solid copper water blocks?

Finally, is a good sound card worth it? I do not like headphones, so I will have a 7.1 surround setup

Does anyone have anything else to add about the build?

So, if I do an x99 build, it will cost me about 250$ more in components. Is this price bump worth it ?
Also, if I get the 5820k, would it support more than 32gb of RAM if I decide to add in the future ?
I guess this covers most topics I have questions about.

My case: Cooler Master HAF Stacker
Storage: 256GB SSD; 2x2TB HDD
Optical Drive: LG Blu Ray burner
OS: Windows 7 x64 Pro

ALL suggestions welcome!!