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Watercooled Inverted 1700X & 1080Ti Build

by hamibh


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

May 27, 2017

CPU Clock Rate

3.4 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.48 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

11.01 GHz


This is my first watercooling loop!

Because my PC is to the left of my desk, I chose an inverted case with a window on the right. Temperature difference compared to upright is a few degrees at most.

The 1080Ti Founders Edition would quickly hit its thermal limit with the stock cooler and start throttling, even at stock clock speeds. The 1700X would also easily reach 80+°C even with a Corsair H80i GT all-in-one cooling loop, so I decided to spring for a cooling looped based on EKWB configurator's recommendation for a silent setup. Delivery took almost three weeks due to parts being out of stock. They were a long three weeks, during which I installed SketchUp and mocked up the entire build, reiterating until I had a sensible number of bends that looked tidy. Once all the parts arrived I discovered that my original plan to have the pump and reservior unit mounted upright to the front of the case would not work because the graphics card is too long to allow for it! My mockups went out the window and I had to resort to good old pen, paper and holding the reservior in various places while trying to decide which looked the best. Unfortunately I had to settle for blocking the view of the CPU block. Total setup took around seven hour including bending the pipes before leaving the loop to run overnight.

I ordered some white 5V LED strips from Ebay and cut them to length for inside the top of the case, the underside of the GPU facing down, and the bottom of the case facing up, then soldered them to a molex connector with thin electrical wire. Combined with the white and grey motherboard, this helps the blue water dye and nickel fittings to stand out nicely.

With the pump set to minimum I'm seeing 20-30°C lower temperatures even with overclocks applied:

CPU: 3.9GHz at 1.3875V (up from 3.4GHz stock)

GPU Clock: +150MHz

GPU RAM: +450MHz

The RAM is rated for 3200MHz but Ryzen isn't quite ready for these profiles yet. Following a couple of BIOS updates I've managed to squeeze out 2667MHz with one of the motherboard's "Try It!" presets which seems to match the RAM's 3200MHz XMP timings but at the lower speed.

Benchmark Scores

Cinebench All Cores): 1695

Geekbench 3 Single Core: 4296

Geekbench 3 All Cores: 33162


Fire Strike Extreme: 12,924

Time Spy: 9,615

Comments Sorted by:

pcbuilderman 2 Builds 4 points 22 months ago

Nice build man! Nothing like a custom loop. The lighting on that 3rd picture is unreal it looks like its 3D rendered.

hamibh submitter 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

Thanks! Yeah, I'm pleased with the lighting. Having an extra strip under the graphics cards really helps to even it out.

RollingSushi 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

Is that the EK cryo fuel blue color? Nice build btw.

hamibh submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks. Yes, it's the blue cryofuel concentrate. It's supposed to be 1 part concentrate to 9 parts water. I filled my loop with a 100ml syringe and counted the number of syringefuls of water it took to almost fill (a little over half a litre) and then roughly worked out the right amount of concentrate from that. The premade might be lighter or darker depending on how off my calculation was!

pengxs972 1 Build 2 points 22 months ago

Absolutely stunning

hamibh submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks! Very pleased with how she turned out. I just wish my wife felt the same way.

Tech22 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Nice build! Leek testing my first one right now =D (hardline) Are the EK Hardline fittings push in or compression that you used?

hamibh submitter 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thank you! They're all compression fittings. I just used the configuration website and took their recommended rads and fittings and read up on those, without bothering to look at anything else to be honest.

Tech22 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Thanks for telling me! This looks amazing

Lyrix 1 point 22 months ago

1+! WOW! this looks great!!!

KingWalrus.8th 1 point 22 months ago

Hella Clean... very nice. I think this might be featured. Nice non-rgb build.

pegotico 2 Builds 1 point 22 months ago

I like it a lot!!

We cant see the leds on the ram. You need to make a hole on the reservoir... +1 on your nice build!


mrzoltowski 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

Beautiful, I love the colour grading on those. The blue matches the yellowish/gold tint of the lighting. Eye candy for sure. +1

OKTowelie 1 Build 1 point 22 months ago

A very professional looking build, if I may say :) I love the blue liquid!

OllieManMan 14 Builds 1 point 22 months ago

Love the upside down mobo layout. Makes the loops look even better. Try and get more light on the top of the gpu block it looks amazing and you can actually see it on this build.

Sm001 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

What tube size did you use? Can't decide on the size, 16mm looks too big and do some reason 12mm look too small?


hamibh submitter 1 Build 1 point 18 months ago

I used 12mm PETG. It doesn't look so small once you've for a bunch of it in your case!

skyrise 1 Build 1 point 17 months ago

Great build!

With the newest BIOS you should be able to lower the voltage to around 1.35-1.38V for better longevity.

"The RAM is rated for 3200MHz but Ryzen isn't quite ready for these profiles yet."

The problem is in the mainboard, and some of the RAM sticks, not the CPU. Generally, Samsung-based RAM with factory low timings performs better.

RydogTKRS 1 Build 1 point 16 months ago

Man, seeing this makes me wish I had gone for a hard line loop. That PC looks absolutely beautiful.

Kylekye27 1 point 8 months ago

Hey man, solid build, I actually have pretty much the exact same parts myself, and was considering getting a 1080ti strix in the future, but I noticed that the only way my pump will fit with the 1080ti in there is if it is horizontal on the radiator like yours or if I remove all the intake fans on the front panel side...which probably isn't a good idea.

My main question for you is, how stable is that pump a year from when you posted the build? Because it seems the pump bracket is supporting all the weight tilted to the other side without any suplort structure on the opposite end of the reservoir.

How do you go about filling it completely when the reservoir is vertical?

Finally, I only have a 360 medium thinkness EK radiator and plan on only water cooling my cpu and future 1080ti or better. I see that you have a 360 and 240, do you just have the extra 240 just to be absolutely sure you have enough radiator space or should a 360 alone be enough?

Thanks for your time in advance and again thank you for the inspiration. I have been struggling how to approach this situation of mine for quite some time.

hamibh submitter 1 Build 1 point 4 months ago

Hey, just saw your message (haven't been on partpicker for ages!). To answer your questions:

  1. The pump is still going strong and having it horizontal hasn't been an issue. It does sag slightly on the unsupported end meaning the air bubbles can drift up the reservoir to the pump intake, but that's not necessarily a problem because the pump intake is still lower than the bubble: https://imgur.com/96RcxqU As long as I keep the pump below 50% speed, the bubble stays in the reservoir. I also have a small piece of wood under the front of the case to tip it back ever so slightly. This isn't necessary but I find it useful for when I'm stress testing and want to crank the pump up.

  2. I fill it by tilting the entire case 90°. It's an inconvenience, but then again watercooling, in general, is inconvenient!

  3. I'm not sure about single radiator performance. I went by EKWB's configurator and was of the opinion that if I'm spending this much on watercooling, I might as well get as much cooling as I can.

Look at EKWB configurator for a recommendation, draw up some plans and then head to the watercooling subreddit (reddit.com/r/watercooling) for some feedback. I missed a couple of things that they picked up on.

I will add that I found hardline tubing a massive pain in the *** to get right. You need to be willing to take your time to get the bends looking good and buy lots more tubing than you think you need for do-overs.

Good luck, assuming you haven't gone for it already!

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