Final Touches


Case Modding
Wiring 2 PSU's
Mobo Prep
Water Block
Final Touches

Cooling the Northbridge adds to system stability and might possibly aid in attaining a higher front-side bus frequency.  For this, I choose the ThermalTake Blue-Orb (BLoRB for short).  This may not be the best fan for the job, but it sure as hell looks cool.  At any rate, it is better than the heatsink/fan combo Abit includes with the KT7A.  But with the MCW-462 mounted, I was no longer able to use the mounting holes on the motherboard.


The only method I was able to come up with was to secure the BLoRB to the chipset with glue.  Arctic Silver make excellent (if not the best) thermal adhesives/compounds.  I used Arctic Silver Thermal Epoxy for the North/Southbridge heatsinks and Arctic Silver II as the thermal compound for my CPU core.



While I was on a epoxy tangent, I decided to add heat sinks to the Southbridge chipset and the pll/clkgen chip.  The Southbridge sink is a "greenie" heat sink from an old motherboard and I picked up a small heat sink from Radio Shack to attach to the clock-generator.


After using a copper water-block with an aluminum radiator running tap water through it for 4 months, I decided it was time for a change, for obvious reasons.  After reading many opinions about the proper cooling solution over in the [H] forums, I decided to use 90% distilled H20, 10% Ethylene Glycol, chased with 1oz. of Redline Water Wetter.

When I booted up for the first time after installing the block, I said "What the fuck!"  My temps. were pretty high (hovering around 80F).  I knew this was way too high for such a gigantic water block coupled with a 156W TEC.  I checked the tubing for kinks and verified that the pump was pumping.  Everything looked o.k. with the pumping system, so I whipped out my trusty voltmeter and measured the current on the 12v rail.  My Enermax PSU was only supplying the TEC with 9V!  I needed a load on the 5V rail ASAP.  I headed out to Radio Shack and bought a bunch of resistors.  After fooling around with different combinations of Ohms, I decided this was for the birds.  I purchased two of these little beauties:

This is a 1A load generator made by a company called Arcol that I bought from CyberguysHere is the URL of the product, if you are interested.  I hooked up one of these (generating a 1A load onthe 5V rail) and measured the voltage on the 12V rail again, now my PSU was putting out 10V.  I added one more load generator (for a total of a 2A load), and now my PSU is putting out about 11.4V on the 12V rail.  These bad-boys do get rather hot, so keep any stray wires away from them and mount a fan or two in their proximity to cool 'em down.

Here are some pictures of the whole enchilada:


page 7:  benchmarks