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Gretings and introductions!

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Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Wed Jun 19, 2013 8:52 pm

Been a long, long time since I've seen some of these names!!!

Proud owner of an old BAM RAGE (rotting in a closet somewhere, Lance in sales had called it an "Omen-in-a-Rage" back when it was ordered - I still keep in touch with him now and then!), an about-to-be-upgraded red Omen (missing an eye in the front... Sad), and a very old taxi yellow Envy M360 (upgraded with compal parts, long long ago) with the Voodoo definition tattoo that has been running my Ventrilo server's radio station for years (oh, and I think some of the folks here may have been the ones to teach me how to drop in the new compal internals, long ago!)!


My red Omen is, sadly, showing a sign of its age: dropped a 3-way SLi GTX 470 air-cooled setup upgrade to replace the old pair of 9800s finally, and got horrible idle temps == poor airflow.


About to swap out the old EVGA MB for a second-hand Rampage III, EK block, and fresh tubing, but otherwise leaving the venerable RP-950 and GTS 240 in place.  Smile



Looking forward to reading more, and seeing what mods and restorations are hidden among the posts here, maybe eventually getting the nerve to ask my own questions...

But for now, hi there!




Last edited by gdmaddog on Wed Jun 19, 2013 10:36 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:14 pm

Found two old images from back in my RAGE days:






EDIT - and a rather old pic with an old desk showing all 3:



An older image of my Omen:

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  ADOR on Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:42 am

Nice rage!!!
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 12:34 pm

Thanks!  I've been toying with selling it, but seeing how beautiful that little beast was always changes my mind. 

After the Omen is rebuilt (and the chassis airflow issues resolved... hopefully), I will likely pull it out of the closet and come up with a use for it.  I'm considering draining it and rebuilding it with a newer donor MB, fitting a few drives in there, and making it an always-on, air-cooled, MS Home Server machine.  I've never been able to trust WC systems for 24/7 use for some reason, plus I believe I have a second-hand system stuffed with 5300rpm 2TB drives an a RAID controller that would look better rebuilt into that case. 

If I can get it to run Ventrilo too, it may take over radio station duties as well, freeing up the M360 for sale... if I don't decide to frame it in a shadow box! Razz

The old Omen internals are destined for transplant into an Origen AE HTPC case, one of the first PCs I ever built myself, which may just get a new pump/res and take the 80mm Rads over from the Rage... if they'll fit.

The old Origen here, the internals at the end of the build... it was an old Prescott system, too hot to handle, really.  Will be nice to resurrect it with my spares, maybe grab a Revo PCIe SSD for a system drive to maximize the space in this little case...




Of course, the Rage used 2 m80 rads instead of 1 m160, which makes even hanging them off the back... difficult.  Plus, where to put a pump & res or even T-line in a case like this is problematic.  (I'm not a fan of cases with external bits, regardless)

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 1:48 pm

Ha!  I see East found one of my old pics of my CrystalFont mod to the Rage!  Now I'll have to drag out that old box and take a pic to prove it was me!

http://refugees.makingforum.com/t61p180-my-latest-voodoo-projects#4557

This was my LCD mod, long ago... I wonder if I could get that to run on my Omen...





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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:42 pm

Nice systems. On the cooling though -my gut is telling me you are having problems for a couple of reasons.

1. The omen-r uses a more traditional form factor that traps the heat under the cards. (Although my system traps it under the top of the case so it dosnt really vent away from the cards anyway)
2. A 3 card sli setup is going to run hotter then 2. (I am not sure the specifics with your board but with mine if I utilize all 3 slots the bandwidth on pcie 16x #2 is cut in half and spit between slots #2 and #3, Which is another reason why I personally stick with 2 cards, outside of the heat displacement problem)
3. Is the water loop but you sound like your already on that.


Its really cool that that was your lcd mod, Welcome aboard.
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:28 pm

I'm hopeful these are just gummed up and popping off the plastic housings will reveal some gunk I need to remove.

Or worse case I'll use it as an excuse to buy a pair of GTX 780 Classifieds when they launch under the guise of "two will not have the heat issues of three?"

We'll see...  Wink

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Thu Jun 20, 2013 8:35 pm

I have a feeling if you get the gpu loop going again in a 2 card configuration your problems will be solved

In cases where cooling is an issue sometimes it pays to go with the midrange cards. They tend to produce less heat. That also limits the systems usefulness a bit though.

Just to give you an idea the last time I could be bothered to monitor temps on this I was around 36c idle. I think the highest I ever recorded was 52c in game. That is bone stock with the evga reference coolers.

Also if you notice a one of your cards is running significantly hotter then the others its possible you got a defective card. I had an evga 460 I purchased from newegg I had to return a while back. While the card functioned properly it would consistently peg at 99c, Just a few degrees shy of the thermal shutdown threshold specified by nvidia. Where as my properly working 460 would be around 46c under the same load. Even tried swapping primary cards same issue just in a different slot.

I always liked the way the aesthetics of ek waterblocks compliment my omen BAM. I heard they were having a corrosion problem do to poor nickle plating though. If you decide to give them a look just make sure they have addressed it.
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 8:39 pm

Not to mislead - as of right now and for the forseeable future, the GPUs are Air Cooled...

But that is mainly because of the amount of gear I will have to drop into this box to get them on the loop again. I don't think the single GTS 240 and low-rpm Sythe fans would handle multiple GPUs and an LGA1366 i7... Voodoo built this thing very, very quiet.  Maybe if I upgrade those fans and add a controller.

I do have a few ideas, however.  Simply need a little more freelance editing work to fill the coffers a bit before I jump on adding rads.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Fri Jun 21, 2013 10:38 pm

Just hit a small snag in my intended Omen upgrade when I started to tear down the donor i7-980X/Rampage III machine and discovered this:




...oh dear. 

It ran when I shut it down, so I'm still hopeful, but man that looks like I may need to find a new donor mainboard.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Sat Jun 22, 2013 12:03 am

That depends on whats going on here. Did a water cooling system have a small leak and get on the board depositing some calcium? If its still running you should be good.

I cant see any capacitors near by... Could a cap on a daughter board have blown and some got on the mobo?

I am thinking of something like a sound blaster audigy. They have a lot of caps.

Its kinda weird there is an unuseual shine around the vrm directly above it too. The shine almost looks flux from the vrm chip being replaced (Although that does not appear to be the case)
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Sat Jun 22, 2013 7:34 am

The only thing at that location is a touch point for a multimeter to measure ground on the Rampage III.

Based on the number of dead stink bugs, and the rather unusual setup this machine had, I'm guessing there was an insect involved.  The builder (a recently deceased friend of mine, who's family was kind enough to give me some of his computers after he passed), was a little... odd... and had velcroed a second PSU to the top of his Corsair case.  That PSU ran the MB, while the other ran all the fans, the Corsair H100, and about 8 Barracuda XT 2TBs in a Raid he used for ripped BD playback and ProTools music work (mostly up-converting his CD collection to higher bitrates and re-EQing them - he used to be a sound engineer long ago and had over $4000 of JBL speakers and a fully tuned room this thing lived in)

I think the shine is from the heat of the resultant arc from this short.

My guess is he never grounded that PSU to the chassis, or didn't ground it in the initial build until this happened.  By the time the family brought me in to gut the electronics and other crazy gear, he had run copper wire from both PSUs (and from everything else in the room) to a copper strap that ran the room, then finally exited the house and linked into a bare copper wire he had buried in a complete loop around the house. 

If it wasn't a stinkbug that helped make the connection between MB and case, its possible he was playing with those multimeter touch points and slipped, making the connection with the probe, again before properly grounding the PSU on top.

Seeing as it ran when I tore it down, I'm hopeful (though there was an issue with CMOS, so at least a new battery is in order).  The big thing I have to tackle is properly cleaning the board - he was a chain smoker and never, ever cleaned this thing...

The brown, smelly globs of gunk I keep pulling out are... nightmare-inducing.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Tue Jun 25, 2013 7:51 pm

Just pulled the loop apart in my Omen, and aside from a nasty surprise leak from the reservoir inlet and the frustration of not having a barb to match its fillport...

What radiator was in this thing?? 




All this time I had assumed it was a HW Labs GTS240 stealth... but this feels aluminum, and the barbs are part of the rad?

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  OMEN on Wed Jun 26, 2013 1:57 am

What reservoir do you have in your Omen? I accidentally cracked the inlet of the reservoir when I was replacing the old tubes. Luckily the same reservoir is available at Koolance which is the ( PC4/RP-1000 reservoir)



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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:47 am

Its the RP-950, should be the same as you have.  

The PMP-400 outlet barb had a slow drip for a long time now, but the inlet rotary elbow started dumping blue fluid as soon as it was rotated while I moved the reservoir out - fortunately I had pulled all the drives and MB out already.

I was about to order the replacement you mentioned when I realized I would need to overnight it from Koolance, *AND* I needed new barbs for my new EK block because the O-rings on the old block had been crushed on Voodoo's install.  That plus I can't seem to find a fitting that will screw into the fillport so I can plug in a fill/drain line.

So instead, Frozen CPU got my order for two sets of EK compression fittings (probably could have just gotten new o-rings) plus a new Koolance RP-401X2, and I'll just pull my PMP-400 off the RP-950 and re-use it in the new Res.  Spoke with Koolance a few days back through their FB page and the person who runs it has been just awesome.  They mentioned the PMP-400 is rated for 50k hours, as I don't run my machine 24/7 I'm guessing theres about 8-10k hrs on mine so I should be good for a while.

So that'll set me back a day or so while I wait for Frozen CPU's order to get to NJ.

In the meantime I'm trying to find sheetmetal screws long enough to upgrade my rad fans to 38mm Ultra Kaze 3000rpm fans (which I'll let the MB undervolt until needed), but its more about getting additional air into the case than it is about cooling the radiator...


Though I still have no idea what radiator that is.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:05 am

Oh and a minor update on the GPUs: Popped them out and discovered tell-tale thermal-paste-grey fingerprints on the casings of two of them.

There are 3 cards - one has a different colored PCB.  The two that were the same had clearly been opened before, one had broken tabs and they both had TIM-fingerprints inside.  The odd-colored PCB one was likely never opened up.

Minimal dust on the heatsinks, but the fan blades are still coated in crud despite my best efforts going so far as to pick at it with needle-nose pliers and pull out what I can.

I popped off all 3 heatsinks and cleaned out the stock "use a whole tube" TIM, upgraded it with IC Diamond.  Of the two that had been opened before, one looked the same as the stock, save for the fingerprints... which makes me wonder if the prior owner had just opened it and smeared the TIM around.

The other... had two distinct separate layers of TIM under the heatsink... No 



We heard you like thermal paste, so we put some TIM on your TIM so you can burn while you cool!


The stock TIM and something darker, possibly the same IC Diamond stuff I'm using.

Sadly, even with the updated TIM and cleaned out heatsink fins, they still run way too hot at idle and just heat-soak.



"These are not the temps you are looking for"


I'll probably nab a pair of 780 Classifieds when they ship and be done with it.  2 of these 470s will make it to my HTPC and the other will likely wind up in the old Rage if I ever rebuild it as a Home Server.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:29 am

Voodoo always seemed a bit partial to swifttech. I would not be surprised if they supplied the radiator in the omen-r. If you are looking to replace it dangerden has a model they boast as being very good for low airflow applications. I would be curious to try it out. It is a bit pricy though.
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:40 am

Keeping it for now, seeing as it was handling the CPU just fine on its own and I'm already upgrading the case fans.

I will replace it if I ever try to WC the GPUs, but at that point I may drill out the drivecage rivets and see if I cant squeeze a second 240 down there... or a pair of drivecage-mounted HW labs GTX m184 rads using these to hang them from the V-series drive rails?

http://www.frozencpu.com/products/16012/hdc-94/Akust_35_Bay_to_25_SSD_80mm_and_92mm_Adapter_-_Black_BK00-0108-AKS.html?id=w6jZoC3g&mv_pc=103

Might have to cut them so they sit next to each other right but... very tempting.  (and even combined with a 240, likely still not enough to cool 2x 700-series GPUs plus a CPU.)

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:48 am

You can always put it back with screws and nuts if you save the cage. That is an interesting ssd kit. I shoved mine where the water cooling res is suppose to be.
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:46 am

The center holes (where the two cages meet) are too close together, but I could just support something on the ends with standoffs.  If I keep the cage in, I'm fairly sure a pair of m184s would happily hang snugly in each of the drivecages, each supported by a slightly cut down pair of those SSD/fan brackets... but the restriction vrs cooling... I might actually get better cooling out of 2 m184s than 1 240.  *shrug*


Back to the Rad for a moment:

Odd thing: the S-Flex fans were affixed to the radiator with #6 sheet metal screws, NOT machine screws... I *think* that is about the same thickness/thread as the 6-32 machine screw, in which case this could be a Swiftech, but I'm thinking it could be a HW Labs Black Ice Alpha Pro II:



HW Labs wrote:Now with 12.5 mm (1/2 inch) pre-angled inlet/outlet barbed hose connectors. *Available in 9.5 mm (3/8 inch) custom female 1/4" NPT/BSPT/BSPP compatible fittings. (dealer option).
http://www.hwlabs.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=38&Itemid=35

The Alpha Pro II is the only one on that list of 6-32 compatible rads that looks like the one I have.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:21 pm

The end of the radiator by the fittings looks strikingly similar.
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Thu Jun 27, 2013 10:55 am

That's what I'm thinking, and I seem to recall hearing they were using DD (aka HW Labs) rads back then.  The Alphas were copper, so perhaps I was simply expecting it to be heavy.

EK block shipped with 2 LGA115x back plates instead of one LGA115x and one for my LGA1366.  Frozen CPU is shipping the right one to me USPS, maybe I'll have it Saturday?  So the rebuild will continue to be taking over my kitchen table for the foreseeable future... I really need a bigger apartment and/or an actual workshop.

EDIT: Aaaand my replacement res recycles the O-Ring from the pump... so I'll be waiting on a new o-ring before I can proceed unless by some miracle the 5-year-old one in my pump is not deformed (yeah, right)


Sorry to have turned this into a build thread!

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  East on Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:48 pm

Even if they look ok id never reuse o rings. For the couple of cents they cost its not worth the leak.
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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  killerwill on Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:43 am

I'm not one of the voodoo desktop guys here but I'd like to chime in.

The problem with the thermals with your gpus was also experienced by a lot of us Alienware owners with the Newer Area 51 case.

The core issue we found was that the GTX 400 series family ran to hot and running In SLI we saw this issue get even worse because of the way heat got stuck between the cards. Even the GTX 500 family runs hot but is drastically better. But the best family of cards from Nvidia in terms if heat has to be the GTX 600 and 700s.

Just my two cents tgh.

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Re: Gretings and introductions!

Post  gdmaddog on Fri Jun 28, 2013 2:59 pm

If the 400s are handled the way the 600s and 700s have been, then a 470 is basically a 280 OC'd?  At any rate, I suspect you're right about the heat being at least partly the 400's GPU design and not necessarily the 3-way SLi or case alone. When the 780 Classifieds drop, I'll get two, hopefully.  I'm still thinking I could get better case airflow and not sacrifice too much noise with undervolted 3k RPM Ultra Kaze fans than with the stock 1.2k RPM thin ones.


More & bigger is more & better, maybe?



Build is on hold waiting for a few parts, including a new pump O-Ring.  I should be back on track early next week.

In the meantime, I'm drilling a pass-through into the MB's backplate as the R3E has two fewer internal USB headers.  I have one USB-A to male USB header cable already to push through.  A second hole for a toggle for the lights is in the plans as well, as it would be easier to replace the backplate than replace a case part.  Several, clean, individually wrapped extension wires (PCI-E power, 3-pin fan, Molex) are enroute as well to make for a simpler looking install, and hopefully they're thine enough to lay flat under the extra inch of MB this new one has.  I'm also re-braiding the front-panel wires and have bought some large wire management clips to organize things a bit better than the "coil it up and carpet tape it to the back of the MB tray" approach Voodoo took.  


Looms and braids and extensions... re-wiring or new hairdo?

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