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Thread: Project: Aquarius

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2011

    Default Re: Project: Aquarius

    Ok here we go with some more substantial updates and news. Finally.

    We have started assembly and have gotten pretty far. We got all the fans painted and back together.

    This was just the second coat. You can notice the different types of fans. This was intentional. Some of the positions of particular fans required different specs of fan. some PWM, some 800 RPM, etc. All besides 2 fans in the entire system will be controlled by Crystalfontz's CFA735

    Once those dried we got them in place on the top Black Ice GTX 480 HardwareLabs Radiator

    We also got 2 more fans put in the front radiator, a HardwareLabs Pro II XFLOW

    If you notice on the bottom right of the 240, we crafted a custom manifold so we could route the flexible tubing through the front with enough slack to allow the door to be functional while the system was in use.

    I temporarily placed the only 2 hotswap drive bays for the upper system, once we crafted a protective and decorative plate over the back of it. These 2 bays will be the only open bays for the upper system. Rest is taken up by monitor, the 735 controller and water pump behind them.

    Dennie is busy making some really fancy Fan Header manifolds so we can run each "sector" as one fan, then control it with the CFA735. I'll have some shots of those later this week.

    So I got started on the fan grill that I'll be cutting our with a design. We're not 100% set on the design yet, but we do know it has to flow well with the design and be able to match one the 120mm and 240mm radiators.

    The radiator in this picture is of course HardwareLabs GTX120 Gen 2 XTREME slightly marred from me sliding rough sheets of aluminum across it for fit testing. Both this one and the 240 are set up for Push/Pull configuration. The 480 is just set up for Pull. Mostly due to space restraints. I would have liked to have added 4 more fans to the 480 but we are flat out of room in this giant case.

    Here is a glory (or not) shot of the front. Mostly for preservation as a before and after shot later when we're done.

    We're still trying to source three NVIDIA 670 waterblocks, with them being so new and i guess not that popular among enthusiasts, there are only a couple people crafting them at the moment. We have time though as we still have another 50 feet or so of sleeving to do on top of everything else.
    I think we were a bit too rambunctious in the beginning and are trying to put too much inside what we thought was a big enough case. Which in reality, the Fusion 4000, as good as it is, is more than enough for most people. We just wanted to push this one way over the top. Let us know if you think we are... over the top that is.

    On a side note, stop by our place, Device Unknown and register. We are almost always giving away these product samples we get in for reviews either in our forums or on Facebook and would like to strengthen our community on the US side.

    Thanks guys we'll talk to you again soon.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2011

    Default Re: Project: Aquarius

    Well gang, another update. We're moving rather slowly on this. Definitely slower than we would have liked. Part of the delay was a promise by Gigabyte to provide motherboards for this ,then after jerking us around for weeks (after committing to it) changed their minds. The sponsorship really was no big deal, it was the waiting for weeks and having to resend a bunch of irrelevant information to several people. I can see why marketing positions are such high turnover. Seems every month we work with someone new in each company. Anyway, on to what we have gotten so far.

    EKWB hooked us up on the blocks for the Zotac 670's we're using. We were apprehensive about the new "CSQ" design but once we had it in place, it actually flowed quite well with our design. Their circles are hardly noticeable.

    As you can see we did NOT go with Gigabyte. Even if the color would have matched.

    We did make some changed with the upper system. Our thought for the top system would be more of a NAS device, or low power server. So we went with the G630T Processor which is only 35 watts but more than enough performance to push what we need. I also decided to air cool it as adding a water cooling loops to such a basic system would have only increased the complexity of an already overblown system. I found the best CPU cooler to use too. REEVEN's ARCZIEL 12. I have no intentions of overclocking this upper system as it's more than powerful enough to run a Small Business server type setup. All while keeping the wattage under control. But.. With this cooler I am allowed the flexibility of upgrading to a larger processor down the road, especially since the board is 1155. The Arcziel is a fantastic CPU cooler to boot. Shame it's not available in the US yet (that i know of).
    We did make one change to the CPU cooler though. We changed to a low profile 1200 RPM fan so that it would fit. We also changed the orientation so that it pulled up. Initial testing has shown us that it made little to no difference in cooling efficiency. We'll look more into it later.

    We are using an external 120 watt PSU to power the upper system.

    We ran into an issue needing some more internal USB headers and even some External USB headers Inside the case. Primairly for the USB Monitor we are using for the top system, which uses 2 external USB plugs. Plus we wanted to fit both systems with as much connectivity as possible. So we built our own USB "hubs" which includes several internal 4 pin plugs, and some external plugs.

    Sorry for the fuzzy image. We are making more of them so I will have you some better pictures soon. Plus we intend to release the tutorial on our website for those who are not sure how to do it.

    Now, I'm sorry this is such a small update. This mod really is not my priority in life right now but we know it needs to be done as we have other things to get started on. So hang in there. We should have more updates coming in faster now that we are in the assembly phase.

    Thanks again for reading.

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