21 April 2012

21st of April

This week I did a couple of upgrades. The most notable one was this thing. This is the Corsair H80 liquid cooling solution. The i7-970 was running rather warm and even with a 120mm CoolerMaster heatsink it wasn't coping very well.

In the kit you get a couple of Corsair 120mm fans, the radiator, tubing and cold plate. Its a closed-loop system so the radiator, tubing and cold plate are already connected and filled with coolant. All you need to do is install them and the fans.

This is looking at the back of the machine. We've used Noctua fans instead of the Corsair ones. They move more air, last longer and are quieter.

Here is another picture showing the radiator at 38mm thickness, plus the 2 fans at 25mm each.

And here is another photo looking towards the back of the case.

And lastly some stats from SIV showing it peaking at about 58 degrees C under load. Previously it was peaking around 70-72 degrees.

The other upgrade was replacing the OCZ SSD (which was only 64Gb) with an Intel 520 series one thats is 120Gb. Its in the i7-950 machine. After a bit of stuffing around with a Sata cable that wasn't quite plugged in and the DVD reader disappearing as a result I went to do a firmware update, but it turns out its already up to date. They give you a "data migration tool" which is a version of Acronis to copy your existing data across. I ran that and then removed the old SSD. There is also a "tuning kit" that disables a number of things such as the indexing service and Defrag. You have to download the software from the Intel web site.

I did some fiddling with the memory settings on the i7-970 during the week as well. With the help of Red-Ray on the Seti forums (author of SIV) I managed to get it running at 1600Mhz. Unfortunately it seems the 12 core Gulftown memory controllers are somewhat slower than the Bloomfield ones. The Gulftown i7-970 was getting around 10,000 MB/Sec at idle. The older Bloomfield i7-920's are able to get around 15,000 MB/Sec.

I have another Intel SSD to install in the i7-970 machine, but seeing as it got the H80 installed this weekend I figured it can wait a few days before I touch it again.

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