Air vs Water Cooling Noise

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I always read/hear People say, Water cooling is better when it comes to noise. I dont think its true since you have to also add pump noise which is really annoying. I've had several air and water cooling build and my number one gripe is Pump noise.
What do you guys think? Am i wrong?
 

Dullard

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Seems like video cards are the noisiest part of an air cooled rig to me. After a while, that thing is howling like a jet on the runway. But put it under water and hours later it's just as quiet as it was when I started. And pump noise, at least with a quality D5, is very low. If your pump is noisier than a video card after a couple hours of gaming, you got a bad pump. I've never used an AIO, but my last 4 rigs have all been fairly high performance with custom water loops and they are all really quiet.
 

doyll

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I always read/hear People say, Water cooling is better when it comes to noise. I dont think its true since you have to also add pump noise which is really annoying. I've had several air and water cooling build and my number one gripe is Pump noise.
What do you guys think? Am i wrong?
What is your defintion of "water cooling"? Is it a custom loop, an AIO that is not a CLC or a CLC?
Custom loops are very quiet and cool very well, but are also very expensive. AIOs with threaded fittings, copper radiator, fill port, etc. are much better than CLCs that are the absolute cheapest built systems possible. Pump quality and flow rate from D5 (most popular for custom loops) with up to 1500L/h flowrate, to AIOs with 80-600L/h, and finally to CLCs with no spec but independent testing shows about 40-60L/h .. similar to rate a healthy adult urinates.
 

Epos7

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I've always done air cooling with Noctua parts on my builds, but I'm starting to consider a custom loop.

I find CPU cooling on air can be nice and quiet, but as mentioned the graphics card tends to be the noisy part. Previously I installed an Accelero III on my card, which greatly improves the stock heatsink and lowers noise significantly as you can pair it with 120mm fans. On the other hand I found installation really tedious.

I'm considering a custom loop as I think it would allow me to achieve the same or better noise levels I had with an Accelero III, with better overclocking headroom and more consistent boost clocks at stock.
 

Tsumi

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GPUs definitely benefit the most from watercooling. Generally, only extreme overclocks push thermal limits with good GPU blocks. Radiator capacity can be expanded without limit to minimize noise levels.
 

mnewxcv

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Im one of the people bothered by pump noise. I've had swiftech pumps and corsair aios but I always hear them. Fact is this, the quieter your system, the more you hear. No fans? You hear the pump. No pump, you hear coil wine you never noticed before. For that reason I run some silenx fans at 12v. They're not silent, but they're drowning out all the other sounds and by running them at full speed they don't ramp up and down, so the sound kind of disappears after a while.
 

Hakaba

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I could lock my fans to a range of 400-800 and enjoy the near silence, but I let them run at 2K+. Can’t really hear them over headphones...
 

bal3wolf

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Im one of the people bothered by pump noise. I've had swiftech pumps and corsair aios but I always hear them. Fact is this, the quieter your system, the more you hear. No fans? You hear the pump. No pump, you hear coil wine you never noticed before. For that reason I run some silenx fans at 12v. They're not silent, but they're drowning out all the other sounds and by running them at full speed they don't ramp up and down, so the sound kind of disappears after a while.
PWM controls on pumps i have dual ddc pumps i slow them down to around 2500-3000 rpms and you cant hear them anymore. All my fans run under 800rpms unless my cpu hits 65c then they ramp up to around 1000rpms they don't go max rpm till 75c which iv yet to get my 3900x to so far even at 4.4ghz. Im like you i have sensitive hearing because i keep migraines almost all the time so i keep fans and pumps fairly low so not to annoy me.
 

compcons

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I have a D5 pump and 5x120 mm LianLi fans. On idle, its barely noticable in a quiet office. When gaming, the fan from the air cooled 2070 overwhelms those fans. This is definitely quieter than my 4930k which was cooled by a Noctua 120mm fan/heatsink combo.
 

thesmokingman

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If you can hear the pump, most likely you have the pump direct mounted or not properly decoupled. Also as these newer integrated reservoir setups become more prevalent, decoupling is becoming a thing of the past with direct mount taking over. Direct mount is noisy and transfers vibrations. Both D5 and DDC can be silent, DDC up to its efficiency sweet spot of 52%. Note on PWM DDC pumps, at 52% PWM you get roughly 95% of the pumps power so there's never a need to go over that PWM setting.
 

echn111

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If you do nothing, yes a WC'ing pump, even a good quality one, will be noisy. As mentioned above, you need to ensure it's both decoupled to avoid vibrations AND reduce the rpm.

And there's a bit of human subjectiveness involved where whatever ends up being the loudest component will stand out as "too noisy". If your pump ends up being the loudest component, you'll end up blaming it. That's human nature... Amd some people have sensitive hearing...

I tried to build a quiet WC'ed system. But it wasn't silent - and I was infuriated by the noise coming from my HDD's and got rid my my 7200 rpm's drives with 5400 rpm's and encased each in those HDD sound dampening cases that also decoupled them to absorb vibrations. Then it was the outrageously noisy power supply fan, so replaced it with a fanless one... Then it was coil whine, and so I insulated my case with several pounds of acoustic noise dampening, especially around the PSU. And I could still hear "loud" low vibrations from the airflow in the case and looked into building a completely fanless system. Before giving up and deciding to live with it. Now that I think about it, none of those was that loud, but whatever was the loudest was "too loud"
 

somebrains

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GPUs definitely benefit the most from watercooling. Generally, only extreme overclocks push thermal limits with good GPU blocks. Radiator capacity can be expanded without limit to minimize noise levels.
You'd also notice frame pacing was more consistent over time aio cooling a gpu as heat load saturates the block and whatever throttling scheme kicks in.

I should have gone open loop on my 1080ti, who knew it'd be such a long term reliable partner in crime?
 

Tsumi

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You'd also notice frame pacing was more consistent over time aio cooling a gpu as heat load saturates the block and whatever throttling scheme kicks in.

I should have gone open loop on my 1080ti, who knew it'd be such a long term reliable partner in crime?
1080tis definitely were a great value when new, I should have bought one. They've barely depreciated at all since release.
 

Nenu

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It depends on the performance you want to achieve.
With the same fans and speed, water can achieve much more if you dont choose crap equipment.
If you arent performance posessed, air cooling can be pretty quiet too.

I cannot hear my pump.
Its a pond pump and has been running for 15 years silently.
Its an Eheim 1048.
 
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somebrains

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1080tis definitely were a great value when new, I should have bought one. They've barely depreciated at all since release.
I'm ready to move on as soon as there's that next chipset that'll power that next engine.

Seems that game Dev lags far behind hardware capability.

Sad, but whatever the next consoles will be capable of may push PC games farther faster than an indie studio burning years on Dev time.

As far as air cooling a cpu, sure I'm doing it right now.
GPU, hell no, aio at minimum or next worthwhile chipset I'm building a loop for it.
 

Nenu

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I use an Accelero Xtreme III cooler for my 1080ti.
They are dirt cheap and provide a halfway house between water and air cooling temps while being practically silent with fans on full.
This is my 4th card using an Accelero cooler, they are damn good.
 

TheSlySyl

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1080tis definitely were a great value when new, I should have bought one. They've barely depreciated at all since release.
I got my current 1080ti for $400ish. Which is a considerable decrease from launch. I think I paid $250 for my 1060 a launch.
I also recently replaced the cooler on that EVGA 1080ti for an accelero III mostly for noise reasons. Absolutely worth it.
 
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Tsumi

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I got my current 1080ti for $400ish. Which is a considerable decrease from launch. I think I paid $250 for my 1060 a launch.
I also recently replaced the cooler on that EVGA 1080ti for an accelero III mostly for noise reasons. Absolutely worth it.
$700 to $400 (I still see many 1080ti for $450 or so) is not bad depreciation for a 3 year old graphics card. I may have confused with the 1080 though, which launched at $600 4 years ago (reduced to $500 a year later) and held a used price of $400-450 up until last year.
 

echn111

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The Rainjintek Morpheus II GPU cooler is even more quiet than the accelero, especially as you can pair it up with two slow running 120mm fans.

I'm using a couple of Noctura fans with a max rpm of 900 rpm under max load for my rtx 2070 super. It can still be heard, but it's easy enough to setup a fan/temp profile curve to start rpm's at 650, and keep it there most of the time, only ramping up to 900 rpm under max load. This air cooling setup generates the same amount of noise if I watercooled my GPU with a double rad with two slow running 120mm fans. And it doesn't have pump noise - which most people rightly think isn't a big deal (if setup correctly), but it's another component that generates noise, and it all adds up if you're trying to build a very quiet system

But it does weigh almost 2 pounds and takes up 4 slots, so you're restricted to the larger ITX cases for your builds...

Watercooling is still superior if you want to heavily overclock your system and still have it relatively quiet under prolonged load. But if you're not heavily overclocking, air and water are reasonably equivalent from a noise level perspective.
 
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TheSlySyl

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The Rainjintek Morpheus II GPU cooler is even more quiet than the accelero, especially as you can pair it up with two slow running 120mm fans.
I know and would have loved to go with the Morpheus But the cost difference was huge and I actually use lower PCI-E slots so I had to make sure I had clearance.
I actually got the Accelero III for only $35 due to "damaged packaging!"
 

Nenu

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Accelero fans can also be speed controlled ...
But I found no need, mine are on full speed permanently with my 24/7 PC in the living room!
Its not even sealed inside a normal case where it would be quieter, its open plan in a large wooden table with 2cm high vent gaps all round the underside of the top surface and an open rear next to the wall.
 

Epos7

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When I had an Accelero III on my 2080, I had two Noctua A12x25s under it and connected to the fan header on the board (had to find the right adapter). Quieter and cooler than the stock cooler.

My biggest issue with the Accelero is how tedious the installation is. Yeah, they're really cheap, but I'd gladly pay a little extra if they improved the mounting setup or made mounting kits for specific cards.
 
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