Given your arrangement of case fans, it seems to me that a lower-profile CPU cooler and a Condor with the wing in standard (up over the CPU) orientation would be a good combination. The SI-120 would be a good choice.dperrella wrote:My main question is whether I should go with the Aerocase Condor or the HR-03. I imagine the HR-03 was not around when your (Chris') system was built and I'm not sure if you would recommend it over the Condor. I imagine either one could work passively on my display card - at least when I am not gaming and have not overclocked the card - but that the Condor might be able to passively cool the card during gaming and up to almost its full potential, while an actively cooled HR-03 might go a bit further. If I get the HR-03, I'll almost certainly never try it passively and just slap a low voltage Nexus fan on it. At low voltage, these fans are so quiet that their noise is not an issue for me. My real trade off is between the silence of the Condor and its huge size.
The issue with the CPU cooler is similar, a debate between the huge size, but great CPU cooling of the Ninja against the compactness and greater cooling of the voltage regulators and Northbridge radiator with the SI-120. I don't want to have to go to the same extremes as you on cooling my motherboard. I will overclock a bit, but not as aggressivley as you (currently I'm running at 2.88 Ghz, just to test the overclocking utility that cam with the MB, I'll probably be a bit more aggressive once I have my final cooling in place). With modest overclocking and a Scythe Ninja with a Nexus fan running at 5-7 volts, will I be endangering my MB because of the lack of airflow directed at it?
With modest overclocking (and thus no overvolting) of a 6600, the P5W voltage regulator does not get hot. This is for three reasons: the CPU power consumption is relatively low, the VRM is 8-phase which is highly efficient, and the motherboard has a heavy copper layer (called StackCool) that sucks heat away from the MOSFETs.
Also I gather that you intend to stick with the stock north bridge/VRM heat sinks. This would be a fourth reason not to worry about the VRM temperatures.