Zalman Reserator 1 Plus

CPU Cooling tricks and techniques.

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Zalman Reserator 1 Plus

Postby scottla » Sat Nov 05, 2005 5:19 am

Hi,

Anyone out there using this setup?

Image

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16835118120

I have followed this for a while with interest, but never taken the plunge. Now, with the unit running at a lower price than when released, I'm back interested again.

I read all of the NEwEgg customer reviews and they are overwhelmingly positive. That said, I do know that I read a lot of negative feedback on the first one (the blue one), in particular about the noise and longevity of the pump. From what I can tell, the pump is the same unit as in the prior.

Any thoughts on this unit greatly appreciated. Particulars from current users also of great interest.
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Postby scottla » Sun Nov 06, 2005 7:52 pm

Hmm. Guess no one out here's using this. Perhaps I'll be the lab rat...
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Postby scottla » Tue Nov 08, 2005 4:59 pm

FYI, ordered one from Newegg. Should have it in a few days. I'll let y'all know what I think once I've got it up and running.
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Postby Mr T » Tue Nov 08, 2005 9:43 pm

They are big, bigger than what I though... Downside is moving the unit and PC.. They do supply clamps if you want to disconnect it from the PC (tube clamps)... I went with the coolermaster aquagate over that... Can be fitted internally...
I have been programming on computers since the ZX81.
I am an apprentice trained Electronics Engineer with qualifications to back it up.
I have been repairing computers since 1996.
Yet to some people I still know nothing...
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Postby scottla » Wed Nov 09, 2005 3:25 am

Mr. T, don't know if you followed my contemporaneous post about the Nextherm AC'd case, however the specific challenge this unit is meant to tackle is wicking away heat from a PC that's (now) kept inside a cabinet. We have new built-in cabinets where this PC lives and the enclosed area elevates the ambient temps to the point that both CPU and VGA temps climb to alarm levels.

The plan is to run the tubing up thru the work surface grommet with the monitor cords and have it sit in the corner of the desktop above the cabinet and in the open air.

Even if I could get another model to sit far away from the case, I was worried about fan noise, etc. on the desktop.

Anyway, I'll just have to see. Perhaps I over-thought all this and have outsmarted myself...
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Postby scottla » Thu Nov 10, 2005 1:58 pm

Just came in today. This thing is nothing short of beautiful. Zalman does it again from a craftsmanship point of view.

That said, first rub. They recommend the unit be place on level with the PC. My plan was to have it on the desktop above. My guess is this has to do with air bubbles and the strength of the pump. I'll go ahead with my tests and see what happens from there.

More as I learn it!
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Postby MrCraigCraig » Fri Nov 11, 2005 10:43 pm

Thanks for keeping us posted on how it's working out Scottla. 8)

~Craig
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ASUS K8N, AMD Sempron 3100+(1.8ghz), 1gb RAM, eVGA 5500FX 256mb AGP, two WD120gb SATA drives in RAID 0 (striping), 450w power supply.

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Postby scottla » Sat Nov 12, 2005 6:47 pm

Ran the system overnight to check for leaks. So far, so good. Now to get it installed onto the system.

I've hit two issues, one being my considering a CPU upgrade. Given all the work to install, I'm thinking I might make the leap and install a 4000+ over the 3500+ while I'm in there for surgery. That could delay things waiting for NewEgg to ship.

The second, is that the manual suggests somewhat strongly that the radiator unit be placed level with the PC, not above or below. I can see the below, given air bubbles. The above, I can only attribute to the pump strength -- it takes more to move liquid up hill.

Anyway, I'm probably going to go ahead with my original plans, which is to have the radiator on my desktop and the PC in the cabinet below. If a few feet makes that big a difference, then I'll have to modify my plan. (They do give you 4 meters (!) of tubing and say the pump is rated for it, so I'm hopeful the uphill push won't be too big an issue.)

Mr. T, on the 1 Plus model (the black one), the clamps have been replaced with "quick connect" fittings at the bottom of the reserator. This makes it marginally more easy to connect as the unit is not supposed to leak when they are disconnected. You still have to deal with the water in the lines however.
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Postby scottla » Thu Dec 08, 2005 7:20 pm

Ok, in case you were interested here's the report (finally! got some time tonight to go thru install).

INSTALL

This process was relatively easy. The only two issues I encountered were:

1. For socxket 939, they ask you to replace the motherboard base plate and on the ASUS A8V Deluxe, you can't -- it's glued. As a result, the nipples stand too high for the stock clip setting. The simple fix is to bend it more into a "V" so it exerts more pressure.

2. The VGA chip heatsinks have little patches of thermal tape. You're supposed to let these cure for 24 hours so they stay on. 8O Needless to say, I selectively forgot to read that rule. You need to use a lot of force to get the hoses on the VGA cooler, so it's very easy to pop the little buggers off. You might imagine how I know. It may be I'm off to the store for more tape tomorrow if they don't stay on.

The rest of the process was very easy.

MECHANICAL RESULTS

Both blocks that came with the kit fit without issue. Finish on these is great as well.

As to the resevoir, the pump seems strong and is DEAD silent -- so much so that I'm constantly checking the "flow indicator" to make sure I'm not cooking my chips!

The "quick release" clips that allow you to decouple and move the machine work great as well. No leaks (so far), and only a few drops lost when you decouple.

The clamps are tight and well engineered.

PERFORMANCE RESULTS

Can't believe I'm staring at these numbers, but my CPU temp is 25C after a pretty interesting work out. My machine used to BOOT at 37C and run into the high 50C's with the stock heatsink. Needless to say, I'm extremely pleased here. It may be that at steady state, the reserator will get heat saturated and level out at a higher temp -- I've only had it on for a little over an hour.

Regardless, :mb_woot1::

The mobo temp is running about the same -- about 3C cooler than before at 34C.

There's not temp probe on the VGA, but it hasn't quit yet, even after 3DMark and AquaMark. So, that seems to be cooling fine.

OTHER NOTES

The one thing I can say that is a potential negative that I had not considered before is that the pump is powered seperately from the PC and there's no probe or motherboard connection like there is for fans. The upshot of this is that if the pump quits, the PC's gonna keep on going. Since I fold with this machine, there's a small, but ever-present chance I'll come home one day to the smell of burnt plastic. (The heat shutdown would probably kick in, but since this system is not passive, it's still a concern.)

FWIW, I'm sending Zalman a note to recommend that they have a probe that goes into the box and connects to the CPU fan pins on the mobo. It would be very easy to put a fan in the flow indicator that was spun by the liquid, for example. If that stopped spinning, perhaps you could initiate a system shutdown.

Well, there it is. If anything bad happens, I'll let you know so you can laugh at me. If there's any questions, don't hesitate to ask.
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Postby MrCraigCraig » Thu Dec 08, 2005 8:56 pm

Thanks Scottla. There's good information in your write-up.

I like your suggestion to add a connector for communication/monitoring of the cooling system by the motherboard.

Sincerely,
MrCraigCraig
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