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  • Water-cooling

    Not that a couple computer fans in the trunk would really be that annoying, but has anybody tried water cooling a carpc with some hosing and a small radiator that brings in fresh air or air conditioning?

  • #2

    You can buy fans that don't sound like jet engines taking off, such as the scythe fans which run at 20-30 dB (vs. typical case fans of 50-60 dB), which is more then sufficient for low power car systems.

    I have yet to discover any applications which my Via C7 1.5 system won't handle in a reasonable manner, and one scythe fan keeps it cool, even though it is buried under two inches of foam underneath the center seat in my truck.


    • #3
      watercooling in a carpc?
      we tried to make it as simple as possible,
      watercooling means more problem, leaking problem, etc etc etc.

      yes I used watercooling which is very reliable on my home pc, but I won't put it on my constantly vibrating car.

      I am very interested to see one though
      dsatx in voompc 2 case <HERE>


      • #4
        I've watercooled for performance and silence - neither of which are relevent in the car


        • #5
          if you air conditioned the radiator it would condensate and cause problems.


          • #6
            Been covered in detail... search if you like.
            D201GLY2, DC-DC power, 3.5 inch SATA

            Yes, you should search... and Yes, It has been covered before!

            Read the FAQ!


            • #7
              to all of them...why make it more complicated?

              leave your home PC ideals in the house.

              This is a car, think like you're going to be in a car.
              Jan Bennett
              FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

              Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!


              • #8
                Originally posted by RedGTiVR6 View Post
                to all of them...why make it more complicated?

                leave your home PC ideals in the house.

                This is a car, think like you're going to be in a car.
                Funny thing with that is, the whole entire water cooling idea came from automotive, hense the first, and still many water cooling setups using heater cores from cars.

                2006 Mazda 3
                Behringer DCX-2496
                JL300/4 Focal 6W4311B Focal TN52
                JL500/1 JL10w6v2


                • #9
                  Water cooling something mechanical (like an engine block) is completely different than water-cooling something electronic.

                  If the radiator hose pops off a fitting and spews coolant all over your engine, then you merely have a mess.

                  If a hose pops of a fitting and spews coolant all over your computer, you've got fried com0ponents, a potential fire hazard and a mess.
                  Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
                  How about the Wiki?

                  Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.


                  • #10
                    Thats true, the reason I always cancel it out is simply, water cooling will only bring the computer down to ambient temperature at best, this is good for in your house, cause you can have the radiator outside of the computer case so it can be cooler, rather then a HSF which not only has to deal with the heat from the CPU but the radiant heat of the compents which share the same case.

                    I feel that in a car, it would still be hot being in the trunk, and if you put the effort to putting it in a spot that is cooler then the trunk, now its a hassle putting your computer in your car, or taking it out.

                    2006 Mazda 3
                    Behringer DCX-2496
                    JL300/4 Focal 6W4311B Focal TN52
                    JL500/1 JL10w6v2


                    • #11
                      while it is true that low-power systems can be sufficiently cooled by air, a high power system may require more effective cooling (?liquid?). I see nothing wrong with wanting to water cool a car PC. the argument that water cooling belongs in the home and has no place in a car is pretty stupid, as many people will argue that a PC has no place in a car as well. so who are they to decide what belongs or does not belong in a car?

                      I've been making my own PC water cooling setups for years on my home PCs. If you design and build it right then there will be little or no risk. installing PC water cooling in a vehicle will need better components than you could get away with using in a home PC. in a vehicle your WC will be subjected to much higher temps and constant vibrations. it's safe to say that no commercially pre-made water cooling kit is suitable for use in a car (the quality is usually too low to withstand a vehicle environment). you would have to make it yourself, and make it with the right parts.

                      if you use flared hose barbs and metal "worm" clamps then a hose will never "pop" off(a quality compression fitting would probably work ok as well). I would also seal every fitting with a silicone aquarium sealant (stays extrememly flexible yet also stays strong enough to bond).

                      only use high-quality vinyl hoses (masterclear is good, tygon is better), don't use the cheap stuff you find at home depot. the pump should be mounted with rubber/silicone bushings/grommets to help absorb vibrations.

                      the chances of frying components is very low, even it it did leak. in most cases water leaks cause no permanent damage, and once dried it will work fine again. I have had regular tap water leak onto the motherboard, video carde, and RAM sticks; the computer bugged out, I turned it off, dried all the visible water, let it air dry for 24 hours and it still works fine to this day, in fact I'm typing on it as we speak with that being said, I would still recommend you use a non-conductive liquid as the coolant. there are commercially available coolants that are non-conductive. remember, water itself is NOT electrically conductive, minerals/impurities in the water are what conducts electricity. distilled/deionized water are non-conductive
                      but any contamination (even from a few drops of tap water) can make it conductive again as well as natural re-ionization caused by using different metals in the cooling loop (for example, an aluminum radiator and a copper waterblock). if using water as a coolant, you will need to add alcohol as an antifreeze during the winter (or simply air cool it during the winter instead).

                      so to anyone who wants to try water cooling in a car... I say go ahead and try it! be different!
                      F150 Truckputer [1.0] (coming soon!)
                      Fusion Carputer [2.0]
                      Fusion Carputer [1.0]


                      • #12
                        if someone is completely deadset on using liquid as a colling solution on their CarPC with the goal to get a cooler temp, just use a peltier (TEC...Thermo Electric Cooler) on the CPU with the CPU waterblock on top of the TEC.

                        there is absolutely no reason to need one in a car (unless your trunk gets to about 140°F in the summer months and you never use AC). My trunk in a black car on a Florida summer day gets around 115°F when its 95°F outside. 115° is hot, but not hot enough to fry a computer unless you are doing some odd sort of rediculous math calculations (which i highly doubt you will do in your

                        If someone wants to do it, i say let 'em. its not my car...

                        Trouble deciding on car speakers? Clicky Clicky
                        Speakers: DLS Ultimate Iridium 6.3 Link
                        Subwoofer: removed
                        Amplifier#1 (Front Stage): DLS Ultimate A4
                        Amplifier#2 (Sub) removed
                        Carputer: Removed for tablet install


                        • #13
                          ok, I have liquid cooled one of my carpc's & I still would be the first to admit that it is extreme overkill & mostly unecissary, although it does have it's benifits too, like computergeek said, forget the normal home liquid cooling setups, not gonna cut it, don't even bother.

                          you have to think like an automotive cooling system, the radiator should be in the airflow of the moving vehicle to disapate heat efficiently, I'll use a fan at the radiator (tranny cooler) that would only come on under 15mph maybe, if your sitting still there will be no airflow over the radiator which is why all automotive cooling systems have fans, but when your traveling on the highway hours can go buy when the fans won't even come on once.

                          I use good high pressure hose & fittings, there is no more chance of failing than any other new cooling system really. in the end the water blocks that you'll get off the shelf are going to be the weakest link, go for function over form & forget those fancy plexi widow flimsy blocks, there are some good ones out there too. the pump I use is a monster aguralcultural 12v pump that is rated for 100% duty cycle at max rpm, but then I throttle it way back, this insures 100% reliability & no worry of failures for years...

                          it is excessive extreme & unecissary, but then again so is a supercharger, a racing suspension or power rear seats,$6,000 3 piece forged wheels,multi hue'd 3 stage custom pearl paintjobs, conelly hides, there are many things that you can do to a vehicle that is more extreme & excessive too, this winds up being more of a hotrodder/ mechanical type upgrade than your average geeky type project, as it would be intimidating & overwelming for a novice really, if not done correctly, THEN yeah, I can see it being all those bad things that all these people have mentioned.. this ain't the kind of job for someone who's not mechanically inclined, everything needs to be installed in a way that ensures longevity & trouble free operation. this can be a huge task taking the firewall & the underhood routing into account, bracketry & mountings will need to be fabricated & there may be a bit of dissasembly of the bodywork of the car even depending on the vehicle

                          honestly, unless the rest of your system is really maxed out & you have a sunlight viewable screen or even multiples & everything else that makes a great system with all the bells & wistles, you'd be better off putting the time energy & money into another aspect of your install, but if everything else is maxed out & you still want more, liquid cooling is pretty cool too
                          MY NEWEST INSTALL:modded infiniti fx with big screen

                          first windows carpc liquid cooled LVDS screen :D


                          • #14
                            I have been using this water cooling kit for my home pc (a P4-3Ghz), it has a water pump with water reservoir, radiator and fan, fan speed controller and thermometer all in a package the size of 5.25" CD-ROM.

                            It comes with 2 water blocks for my CPU and VGA card, and a 2nd radiator with fan

                            It has been running perfectly for the last 2 years and keep my temperature around 40 degree.

                            since I have upgraded my home pc for something too hot for this water cooling kit to handle, I intend to use it for my upcoming Car PC. The reason why I want to avoid fan is that fan will suck in dusts which will be difficult to clean. I have ordered a mITX board with Pentium M 1.7Ghz, so this small water cooling kit will be more than sufficient.

                            I intend to use the VGA water block for the north bridge chipset, which should be the 2nd hottest component. Since my Car PC will be quite near to the dash, I can extend the 2nd radiator to the aircon blow hole near the leg area.

                            Question :
                            Shall I mount the motherboard alone in a custom acrylic case without fan? How much heat can the mosfet and RAM can generate? Below the motherboard will be the water cooling system, hard disk and DSATX, I will place a small fan to keep the DSATX and hard disk cool.


                            • #15
                              I like this subject on water cooling infact I use Thermaltakes water cooling cause it has pressure fittings on all parts (pump, resov, radiators).
                              Except I use a different tubing which is a little more rigid and kink free..
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