CPU Pump in Apogee Drive II is not strong enough. Any suggestions?

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
Hi folks! I finally finished my triple rad NR200 build. But one DDC pump seems not strong enough to drive my loop.

Here are the components:
1x Black Ice 280GTS rad
2x XSPC TX240 rad
17x 90 degree fittings (I know it's kinda crazy.....)
1x quick release plug(pretty restrictive)
1x Apogee Drive II (CPU block + Integrated Swiftech MCP35X DDC pump, 18W)
1x GPU block

So I end up with a really weak flow. I don't know if reducing the amount of 90 degree fittings would help but I guess I need an extra pump to drive this loop.
The MCP35X can't even bleed out air itself, I use tap water to flush the loop and get most of the air out. Right now this loop can support web browsing etc. but can't survive any stress test.

I'm thinking about iceman pump res combo but I prefer to put everything inside the case. What's the smallest option out there with a decent amount of pressure? Will putting in another DDC pump solve my problem?

Any suggestions would be highly appreciated!



UPDATE: I put an extra ddc pump with the iceman pump res combo, optimize the tube routing and use only 7x 90 degree fittings and 2x 45 degree fittings.
It turns out dual pump is a must for this triple rad build. There is always a misconception in all kinds of discussion that "ONE 18W PUMP CAN EASILY DRIVE 2 TO 3 RADIATORS".
Well, apparently it's not the case for ITX water cooling. People who used to water-cool their mid-tower build generally used the regular/beefy rads and those rads are less restrictive. Also, you will inevitably use some 45 or 90-degree fittings for your tubing given the restricted space for itx builds.

Hands down, one 18w DDC pump is not strong enough to drive a triple rad NR200.
Data:
One 18W DDC@max, 0.8GPM.
Two 18W DDC@max, 1.2GPM
Two 18W DDC@quiet level, 0.75GPM

Ideally, you want to reach 1.5GPM, but anything above 1GPM should be good enough.

As for temp, my extremely OCed 3900x will never pass 78 celsius in any stress test.
 
Last edited:

thelaughingman

SFF Guru
Jul 14, 2018
1,112
1,196
I'm currently using the Iceman with Bitspower DDC pump to power my triple rad build as well - 2x Leviathan SF240 + 1x TX240 and yes the flow rate is rather weak even at 3000RPM. IMO only a D5-based solution will solve this issue or you'll have to reduce the number of components in the loop.
 

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
I'm currently using the Iceman with Bitspower DDC pump to power my triple rad build as well - 2x Leviathan SF240 + 1x TX240 and yes the flow rate is rather weak even at 3000RPM. IMO only a D5-based solution will solve this issue or you'll have to reduce the number of components in the loop.
Have you bleed out all the air? I'm guessing I have airlock but I have no idea how's the performance even in the "perfect" no air loop.
 

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
I'm currently using the Iceman with Bitspower DDC pump to power my triple rad build as well - 2x Leviathan SF240 + 1x TX240 and yes the flow rate is rather weak even at 3000RPM. IMO only a D5-based solution will solve this issue or you'll have to reduce the number of components in the loop.
Have you bleed out all the air? I'm guessing I have airlock but I have no idea how's the performance even in the "perfect" no air loop.
 

thelaughingman

SFF Guru
Jul 14, 2018
1,112
1,196
Have you bleed out all the air? I'm guessing I have airlock but I have no idea how's the performance even in the "perfect" no air loop.
I have the TechN AM4 block and it just becomes a reservoir with all the air bubbles trapped there - can't move them over to the Iceman at all
 
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biopunk

Airflow Optimizer
Bronze Supporter
Sep 24, 2020
235
329
Hi folks! I finally finished my triple rad NR200 build. But one DDC pump seems not strong enough to drive my loop.

Here are the components:
1x Black Ice 280GTS rad
2x XSPC TX240 rad
17x 90 degree fittings (I know it's kinda crazy.....)
1x quick release plug(pretty restrictive)
1x Apogee Drive II (CPU block + Integrated Swiftech MCP35X DDC pump, 18W)
1x GPU block

So I end up with a really weak flow. I don't know if reducing the amount of 90 degree fittings would help but I guess I need an extra pump to drive this loop.
The MCP35X can't even bleed out air itself, I use tap water to flush the loop and get most of the air out. Right now this loop can support web browsing etc. but can't survive any stress test.

I'm thinking about iceman pump res combo but I prefer to put everything inside the case. What's the smallest option out there with a decent amount of pressure? Will putting in another DDC pump solve my problem?

Any suggestions would be highly appreciated!

You might have some air stuck in the pump block. Try orienting the pump horizontally (not upside down!) and shaking the case a bit while bleeding. You'd need to have a T-fitting or a reservoir above the pump for air to escape.
Why did you use so many 90 degrees? That seems excessive with soft tubing. Removing 1-2 won't make a difference but 8+ in terms of flow restriction would be close to removing a radiator. Replacing multiple 90 degrees with 45 degrees might also help.
If the flow rate will still be too low, I'd remove one TX240 of the two whichever gets worse airflow (likely the bottom one) and just run 2 fans as intake. As a benefit, two other radiators would be getting colder air if you run them as exhaust.
 
Last edited:

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
You might have some air stuck in the pump block. Try orienting the pump horizontally (not upside down!) and shaking the case a bit while bleeding. You'd need to have a T-fitting or a reservoir above the pump for air to escape.
Why did you use so many 90 degrees? That seems excessive with soft tubing. Removing 1-2 won't make a difference but 8+ in terms of flow restriction would be close to removing a radiator. Replacing multiple 90 degrees with 45 degrees might also help.
If the flow rate will still be too low, I'd remove one TX240 of the two whichever gets worse airflow (likely the bottom one) and just run 2 fans as intake. As a benefit, two other radiators would be getting colder air if you run them as exhaust.
I used excessive 90 degree fittings because I was trying to optimize the airflow. The combination of 90s helped me avoid massive tubing. But I obviously forget about the ability of single DDC.
I'm rerouting the loop and this time I will use as less 90 fittings as possible. If the single mcp35x still struggles, the iceman with extra pump will by my only choice.
 

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
I'm currently using the Iceman with Bitspower DDC pump to power my triple rad build as well - 2x Leviathan SF240 + 1x TX240 and yes the flow rate is rather weak even at 3000RPM. IMO only a D5-based solution will solve this issue or you'll have to reduce the number of components in the loop.
I reduced 90 degree fittings as many as I can. Shake the ccase for an hour to bleed air. End up with 0.7GPM. Now I believe a second pump is a must.
 

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
Update: I put an extra ddc pump with the iceman pump res combo, optimize the tube routing and use only 7 90 degree fittings and 2 45 degree fittings.
It turns out dual pump is a must for this triple rad build. There is always a misconception in all kinds of discussion that "ONE 18W PUMP CAN EASILY DRIVE 2 TO 3 RADIATORS".
Well, apparently it's not the case for ITX water cooling. People who used to water-cool their mid-tower build generally used the regular/beefy rads and those rads are less restrictive. Also, you will inevitably use some 45 or 90-degree fittings for your tubing given the restricted space for itx builds.

Hands down, one 18w DDC pump is not strong enough to drive a triple rad NR200.
Data:
One 18W DDC@max, 0.8GPM.
Two 18W DDC@max, 1.15GPM
Two 18W DDC@quiet level, 0.75GPM

Ideally, you want to reach 1.5GPM, but anything above 1GPM should be good enough.
 
Last edited:

thelaughingman

SFF Guru
Jul 14, 2018
1,112
1,196
Update: I put an extra ddc pump with the iceman pump res combo, optimize the tube routing and use only 7 90 degree fittings and 2 45 degree fittings.
It turns out dual pump is a must for this triple rad build. There is always a misconception in all kinds of discussion that "ONE 18W PUMP CAN EASILY DRIVE 2 TO 3 RADIATORS".
Well, apparently it's not the case for ITX water cooling. People who used to water-cool their mid-tower build generally used the regular/beefy rads and those rads are less restrictive. Also, you will inevitably use some 45 or 90-degree fittings for your tubing given the restricted space for itx builds.

Hands down, one 18w DDC pump is not strong enough to drive a triple rad NR200.
Data:
One 18W DDC@max, 0.8GPM.
Two 18W DDC@max, 1.15GPM
Two 18W DDC@quiet level, 0.75GPM

Ideally, you want to reach 1.5GPM, but anything above 1GPM should be good enough.
glad you've got it working now! I've moved on to another case and use a D5 pump now. such a night and day difference. Now my TechN block has 0 bubbles and I only need to run the pump at 2000 RPM for a single GTS 360. Cannot and will not go back to DDC now :)
 
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zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
glad you've got it working now! I've moved on to another case and use a D5 pump now. such a night and day difference. Now my TechN block has 0 bubbles and I only need to run the pump at 2000 RPM for a single GTS 360. Cannot and will not go back to DDC now :)
Glad to know! I guess I've been too obsessed with this case lollll. Check my new post as I put every details in it.
 
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AndreUniverse

Efficiency Noob
Mar 3, 2021
6
3
Update: I put an extra ddc pump with the iceman pump res combo, optimize the tube routing and use only 7 90 degree fittings and 2 45 degree fittings.
It turns out dual pump is a must for this triple rad build. There is always a misconception in all kinds of discussion that "ONE 18W PUMP CAN EASILY DRIVE 2 TO 3 RADIATORS".
Well, apparently it's not the case for ITX water cooling. People who used to water-cool their mid-tower build generally used the regular/beefy rads and those rads are less restrictive. Also, you will inevitably use some 45 or 90-degree fittings for your tubing given the restricted space for itx builds.

Hands down, one 18w DDC pump is not strong enough to drive a triple rad NR200.
Data:
One 18W DDC@max, 0.8GPM.
Two 18W DDC@max, 1.15GPM
Two 18W DDC@quiet level, 0.75GPM

Ideally, you want to reach 1.5GPM, but anything above 1GPM should be good enough.
Out of curiosity: How loud are the pump at quiet level?
This was something that shocked me when I first used a DDC pump: It was so damn loud even at it's lowest setting!!
My first loop I was using a dc-lt pump from alphacool, which is pretty much inaudible. I knew the ddc would be louder, but I was shocked at how much louder...
It was an EK 3.2 pwm by the way.

Also, I'm surprised a single ddc wasn't enough to run your loop!!
A tiny dc-lt could (barely) run a dual rad + gpu + cpu loop. Rads were, HWlabs gts 240 nemesis + alphacool nexxos 240 st2.0 + gpu was a EK mounted on a PNY 3090, and cpu waterblock was an alphacool xpx aurora which I believe is quite restrictive.
I would imagine a ddc would be able to power through a loop like yours no problem! Thanks for sharing the info!
 

zk2004mb

Trash Compacter
Original poster
May 23, 2020
48
18
Out of curiosity: How loud are the pump at quiet level?
This was something that shocked me when I first used a DDC pump: It was so damn loud even at it's lowest setting!!
My first loop I was using a dc-lt pump from alphacool, which is pretty much inaudible. I knew the ddc would be louder, but I was shocked at how much louder...
It was an EK 3.2 pwm by the way.

Also, I'm surprised a single ddc wasn't enough to run your loop!!
A tiny dc-lt could (barely) run a dual rad + gpu + cpu loop. Rads were, HWlabs gts 240 nemesis + alphacool nexxos 240 st2.0 + gpu was a EK mounted on a PNY 3090, and cpu waterblock was an alphacool xpx aurora which I believe is quite restrictive.
I would imagine a ddc would be able to power through a loop like yours no problem! Thanks for sharing the info!
It actually depends on how you think about water flow. Will the 0.5GPM and 1GPM make a huge difference in the daily tasks? Not really. There might be several degrees difference at full load but you won't notice it on other occasions. My goal was to build the future proof loop at a quiet level. So single DDC won't be able to do the job.
As for the noise level, the two pumps are very quiet. I ran all my fans at 45%, and put my case on the top of the desk near the monitor. All I can barely hear was the wind noise, not the pump noise.
 
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