The Fluid System
Unlike a lot of the other liquid cooled computers on the market, there is no holding tank, or reservoir in the Swiftech Quiet Power liquid cooled server case. The fluid system is entirely sealed, and self contained in the flexible tubing and various components. This is both good and bad as we see it.
It is good because there are no standing areas of fluid to evaporate, leak or retain thermal energy. It is bad because it makes bleeding the system of air bubbles (if you decide to fill it with your own special blend for instance) more difficult. In the event of a pump breakdown and subsequent severe thermal melt-down there is no area for pressure to release either.
The LiteOn FS020 WTX server case that the Quiet Power system utilizes is large enough for a reservoir and this will probably be our first mod in the near future.
Incidentally, I can't stress enough the importance of using good clean sterile fluid in a cooling system such as this.
Since the fluid is recirculating, any bacteria that is let in will have a nice warm environment in which to grow so be sure to only use distilled water. Swiftech recommend adding 10% RedLine water wetter, and 15% antifreeze as well.
The case uses three valves for filling and purging the air bubbles out of the fluid and this worked pretty well for us when we gave it a try.
The valves are located out of the way where the power supply for case components is (not pictured on this initial unit). To gain access to the valves the secondary side panel must be removed, and then two small lengths of semi-rigid tubing can inserted into the fittings.
The Quiet Power system arrives fully filled and purged so you don't need to do anything more than drop in your components, but to facilitate some of our testing we had to partially disassemble the unit and refill it.
Speaking from first hand experience, filling and bleeding the fluid system of air bubbles is little bit of a pain, but not too difficult. The biggest thing to remember is that air lodges itself in the water block. Luckily for us Swiftech have designed the water block in such a way that it really only needs to be oriented right way to get all the air out. I do think it is worth mentioning if you intend to build a system like this from the kit level however - make sure there is no trapped air!
There are no additional switches or controls to the Quiet Power liquid cooled computer system that the user can mistakenly turn off and this is what makes it very simple for non-technical people. The case components (ie the pump and four cooling fans) are connected to a small circuit which is turned on at the same instant as the rest of the computer so long as the Molex connector is plugged in. The pump runs off of 120V AC, but the fans run off of the internal power supply.
When you turn the computer on, even with hard drives and video cards installed it is surprising how quiet it is. Given the components we used in our Pentium 4 test system the loudest components were the rear exhaust fans. There is a small clicking sound when the pump engages, but other than that the case is very quiet running. The two rear 120mm cooling fans produce a little bit of noise, but their RPM's are pretty low all things considered and thus there is no high pitched sound.
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