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Anyone know about Aluminum WB's?

Posted: Mon Oct 19, 2009 3:29 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
I am trying to adapt a 5770 to my Zalman tower. I have a 3870 on there now. That draws in the mid 80 watts on load, and gets like low 40's temps on load as well.

kinda nice considering the stock was like 80C or so!

I am planning on putting a 5 volted Nexus fan on the card to cool the VRM + Ram and putting a block on the chip. The stock is so crappy that this would be heaven for the little guy. (90 c is stock load, ew)

BUT zalman is annodized Aluminum. So, I would need an Al block, not copper or other strange metal combo.

Havent found one yet that is universal that will just screw on for the GPU.

I have this link that says that the Universal Zalman block can be attached to a x1900 series.

Now, this is a SLOW card for todays standards, but it drew tons of power.

I guess it would be cool right? pun yes.

Posted: Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:04 pm
by ascl
I think your options are somewhat limited. Products have been moving away from aluminium for a while now, and copper is used in the majority of blocks/rads/etc these days.

So, either you switch rads to a copper rad, and get a copper block. Or you run with mixed metals and used anti-freeze to inhibit corrosion.

Posted: Mon Oct 19, 2009 8:55 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
I do know that copper is the new the main item.

it is unfortunate as copper vs. aluminum is almost negligable. Al is so much lighter weight and can be anodized for a never to be corroded surface.

What do you think about the link and my idea though?

my resevoir weighs like 25 lbs. of pure Al and stands over 2 feet tall. can't replace that :)

it's the best cooling option in existence. nothing else has such a high capacity for heat yet is fanless and uses an eheim 300 pump.

I could put a 5850 and a quad core on it easily. the thing is a beast.
plus it lasts unattended for 2 years. I use water wetter and steam distilled water from supermarket.

Posted: Mon Oct 19, 2009 9:09 pm
by ascl
I don't see a link in your post?

Anyway, VGA coolers (air coolers I mean) are so incredibly crappy, that, providing you can make it fit, I would imagine the Zalman would be a HUGE improvement.

With a MCW60 (copper I know), my VGA temps went from 50 -> 35 idle temps and 75 -> 40 load temps... and this was with the fan at 80%!
EDIT: My point here was that the MCW60 is also a very old block, and it cools my gtx 260 just fine, more than fine, very well in fact!

Bottom line: I think your problem will be making it fit, not its cooling abilities. Some minor modding and you will quite possibly be okay.

Posted: Mon Oct 19, 2009 10:58 pm
by spartan117
Well you CAN mix the wb materials, isnt really advised but if you use a corrosion inhibitor, you can prevent the corrosion. I got a zalman XT and I know that zalman have mixed metals / plastics within the zalman xt unit it self.

Best bet is to stick with some aluminum blocks, not too sure which ones are even suitable for a 5770, Im lucky zalman make a 8800GTS one :P and manged to get it off ebay for £10 brand new.

you could also run somthing like this in your system if mixing metals if you cant find a corrosion inhibitor ... 231&page=1

Posted: Tue Oct 20, 2009 5:10 am
by iggy
best bet might be trying to find an older model aquacomputer or innovatek block. they used to make universal fit blocks out of alloy.

Posted: Tue Oct 20, 2009 8:21 pm
by ~El~Jefe~

this is the item. kinda neat. discontinued in many places. i should just go get what i can get while i talk about it.

and I did. 25 dollars for the block, nice. :)

I am ASSUMING it will fit. I believe the 3000, 4000, 5000 all have same pin holes, or relatively so. the Zalman has a variable swing on it.

Posted: Tue Oct 20, 2009 8:25 pm
by ascl
Looks pretty adaptable, you might be fine with it.

Please report if you do get it! :)

Posted: Tue Oct 20, 2009 8:31 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
Just bought it :)

I am now going to move onto getting the cheapest ATI 5770 Card WOOT.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 12:50 am
by spartan117
:D but make sure you dont forget your ram sinks :P otherwise your going to end up burning your card out. ... cards.html

you might also need ones for other parts of the card, I know I needed more than just ram sinks when I was using a HR-03 on my 8800GTS.

Basically whatever the stock heatsink touches probly will need a ram sink on it.

Good luck with the mod :)

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:14 am
by Olle P
spartan117 wrote:Basically whatever the stock heatsink touches probly will need a ram sink on it.
From what I've understood it's the VRM section that's the second most cooling demanding part of modern graphics cards (after the GPU). Probably needs to be part of the water cooling solution unless some dedicated fan is used.


Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:41 am
by ascl
While the VRMs need some cooling, they really don't need to be watercooled. Small heat sinks like the ones linked above do a great job. I found with enzotech heatsinks, that they cooled much better than the stock heatsink. Having SOME air movement over them is a good idea however.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 5:22 am
by ~El~Jefe~
Thank you for you inputs!

I will buy the zalman ones and the enzotech one. Yes, I do think that my mod will work.

This enables me to get a 5770 and keep the system near silent.

my hd is the only crappy thing. i have to get a new one and softmount it somehow.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 6:10 am
by ascl
For true silence you need an SSD! (Actually, an SSD is an amazing upgrade performance-wise too).

Post pics when you are done! :)

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 3:44 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
ascl wrote:While the VRMs need some cooling, they really don't need to be watercooled. Small heat sinks like the ones linked above do a great job. I found with enzotech heatsinks, that they cooled much better than the stock heatsink. Having SOME air movement over them is a good idea however.
I am confused as to which enzotech's to use. I see there are ram heatinks. I wonder if these fit. They look awesome. I know clearance wise is not an issue for the waterblocks.

Also, how do i do the vrm? I wouldnt think these fit that.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 3:48 pm
by ~El~Jefe~

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 4:40 pm
by ascl
I used this guys for mosfets:

and these for ram:

The ram sinks are available in two different heights, in case you have clearance issues.

EDIT: And here is some random pic I found with some of these sinks installed (and some extra ones for whatever reason. This is not my card, I only used the 2 pictured above):

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 4:55 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
wow neat pic thanks :)

which is a Mosfet and which is the VRM?

and will a packet of the mosfet little ones be adequate to cover my 5770?

I am planning on getting the full height ram heatsinks as there will be no heat clearance issues. I am concerned about the little ones falling off. I guess they dont.

so, you are suggesting one set of the ramsinks and one set of the mosfet guys?

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 5:10 pm
by ascl
I used about a pack and a half of the ram sink sized ones, and one pack of the little ones.

Make sure you have some kind of cleaning fluid (I used ArctiClean), as any oily residue on the chips will stop them sticking.

As far as what to put sinks on, this is dependent on your card. I haven't had an ATI card for a while. Best thing to do, is take off the stock heatsink, and see which items are covered with strips of thermal tape. Those are the items you will absolutely need sinks on.

Check this pic (yes I like images!):

Its a 4890, so the 5770 may (or may not, I don't know) be somewhat similar. You can see the strips of thermal tape, and should be able to line those up with the chips etc Count the number of items, and then figure out how many of each type of enzotech you need.

If you are in doubt if something should have a sink, put one on it. Providing its not creating a short, it can't hurt.


Seems zalman offer a heatsink for the VRMs:

Or you may be able to reuse the stock one. Plenty of options, pulling apart the stock heatsink should tell you what you need tho.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 7:21 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
Hm. Now that's confusing.

I would have assumed you use the tiny ones over the big ones.

I was about to buy 2 packs of the tiny ones and 1 set of the full length ram heatsinks. I am confident that the ram will not need air movement. I am unsure about the VRM's.

which is a vrm and which is a mosfet? THis is confusing to me. I do like your idea though. However, if i remove my card's heatsinks without a thing to put on it, i cant use it for a week!

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 7:33 pm
by ascl
Pull it apart, count the chips etc that need sinks, and put it back together again while you wait. Only takes 5 minutes. Or find a 'naked' picture of it online (I couldn't find one, but didn't look very hard).

Voltage Regulator Module (VRM)s are made up of MOSFETs, chokes etc. The terms are often used (probably incorrectly) interchangeably.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 9:45 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
Yes, they are. The physical things are Mosfets!

It took a long time to get an understanding of them. They regulate voltage in a special way. 2 = 1 phase, 4 = 2 phase.

It is good and even required that a company use 6 little flattened guys for vga board. The more the merrier.

I read places that more "phases" was just marketing. I read the electronic principles about mosfets and can say with clarity: More mosfets on your board the better. They will share the wattage going through them.

You know, if they made vga cards with like 24 mosfets, we wouldnt need to EVER cool them. the power would be split up 12 ways. Imagine like less than 10 watts per mosfet on load, totally passive for 108 max watt cards like my 5770.

Probably would raise costs a few dollars. Not like we wouldnt easily put that much out for it, I would pay 40 bucks for a load of "phases"

Anyways, now that I am the master of mosfet, I can show you this:

5770 Mosfets!

Now.... the STRANGE THING is:

What the hell is 9 mosfets? NINE??? the math works with 2 mosfets. Does an odd one out have some sort of special function? I do not know.

Well, then 10 pack would fix it. Of course, I am wondering if the mosfet thingie from Zalman, the one that just SNAP! clicks into place is even better. I actually would doubt that. I have to do a weight comparison of the two. I know this though: that even pairs of mosfets all parallel the amount of output so its not like a RAM heatspreader on a ddr piece where 1 chip is getting used the most often, making a spreader more effective vs individual heat sink tabs.

I thought I was the master of mosfet. Hm.

Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:29 pm
by spartan117
Well tbh the more the merrier, just increase your surface dissertation for heat thus means you can have a lower speed case fan :) cos im assuming, your water cooling cpu/gpu so that the case fans can be run really slow for some true silence ;)

You might have some problems with high temps though depending on your room temp / flow rate / cpu.

my Gpu idels at 44C/ Cpu idels 35 /room temp 27C / coolant 28C

though I got a fan spinning at around 500Rpm in my reserator xt. do you have the fan addon for your reserator?

Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 6:47 am
by ~El~Jefe~
considering that cpu's operate safely past 60 C continuously for years, whatever is lower doesnt matter. GPU's currently, with crap reference shrouds, go up into the 80's as normal functioning. The zalman tower will keep any cpu below 42 on load (that isnt an oc'd stupidly priced one) and has kept all my gpu's down at 42 idling as well.

So, no, no bother with fan attachments. I notice that people are ok with 80 degree gpu's with stock but when modded freak if it goes neat 50...

that never made sense to me. its 1/2 the max operating temp!

I might wait a bit for the card to appear locally. I can get 6 months no interest on it if I do. Newegg never approves me for shit.

Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 11:57 am
by spartan117
guess stuff that stays cool lasts longer :P specially if you end up rendering on them like me running at 100% cpu for a week straight at times isnt going to do wonders for the life span of the component :)

Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 7:52 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
No. it will not.

You should read the US Army specs about processors!

can be CRANKED for YEARS!

I can tell you that the processor is the strongest link in the ordeal. mobo's are made like crap. 250 dollar asus = crap. need like a Tyan workhorse, more real stuff tested for that type of cranking

Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 9:46 pm
by spartan117
very true, but military spec processors and motherboards cost an arm and leg :P much cheaper to get consumer grade and just run them cooler :) even going for enterprise grade such as xeons are too expensive :P

Posted: Fri Oct 23, 2009 12:08 am
by ascl
Graphics cards are nowhere near as reliable as CPUs. At least, not consumer grade ones.... and the majority of GPUs are not even pushed hard. I've had CPUs overclocked by 50% run for years and years without a hiccup. Wish I could say the same for my stock clocked GPUs (I don't bother OCing them any more).

EDIT: I believe this is changing -- with more emphasis on GPGPU style applications, GPU makers need to produce more reliable products.

Posted: Fri Oct 23, 2009 7:34 pm
by ~El~Jefe~
It's out of stock at my store.

how irritating. no 5770 for me :(

Posted: Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:30 pm
by spookmineer
By all means, go for the GTX 260 8)
~El~Jefe~ wrote:I currently really WANT a 260gtx.