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DIY: Cooling Head for Intel® NUC

omnium

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Cooling Head for Intel® NUC


Ideas / DIY schrieb:
NUC Cooling Head/Case: Cooling Head (fanless) ca. ??€, DIY / DIY, mockup / Helado-Style / NUCube
NUC-OpenFrame: see ETfraXoRs BRIX-DIY-Case / fanless / Open Frame like H-Frame mini
Coffee Lake NUC schrieb:
Barebone, Core™ i3-8109U, Iris™+ Graphics 655, HDMI 2.0a, WLAN ac, BT 5.0, Thunderbolt 3: NUC8i3BEK/H ca. 260€, Review
Barebone, Core™ i5-8259U, Iris™+ Graphics 655, HDMI 2.0a, WLAN ac, BT 5.0, Thunderbolt 3: NUC8i5BEK/H ca. 350€, Review
Barebone, Core™ i7-8559U, Iris™+ Graphics 655, HDMI 2.0a, WLAN ac, BT 5.0, Thunderbolt 3: NUC8i7BEH ca. 470€, Review
System-SSM (M.2 2280): Intel SSD 760p 128GB / 256GB / 512GB / 1TB / 2TB ca. 50/70/140/270/700€, Test
System-SSM (M.2 2280): Samsung SSD 970 EVO 250GB / 500GB / 1TB / 2TB ca. 80/140/290/570€, Test
Ram: SO-DIMM Kit 8GB ca. 60€ / SO-DIMM Kit 16GB ca 120€
CPU Cooler (Plan A): Arctic Alpine 12 ca. 15€ / Arctic Alpine AM4 ca. 15
CPU Cooler (Plan B): Thermalright Macho 90 ca. 35
CPU Cooler (Plan C): waiting for your ideas / Third Party Product eg Cirrus7 Nimbini 2.5

Timeline:
10.01.2018: ordered NUC8i5BEK, SSM M.2 2280 500GB, SO-DIMM Kit 8GB
10.02.2018: ordered Arctic Alpine AM4
10.05.2018: basic setup and testing, see progress
10.08.2018: disassembling the NUC, Proof of Concept
10.09.2018: ordered Thermalright Macho 90...to verify Plan B, first impression
10.11.2018: ordered Thermal Glue Silverbead SG100X
10.25.2018: ordered some 5mm Ø Neodymium Magnets
10.26.2018: ordered different copper plates to experiment with.
11.04.2018: ordered cutting discs for a Dremel
11.09.2018: ordered MakerBeam Starter Kit just for fun..in former times I had a 'Stabilbaukasten' ;)
11.10.2018: ordered copper block 15mm thick

This project is a one-off project, but I'm trying to make sure everyone can recreate it.
This project via FanlessTech@Twitter / Reddit. Comment/Like/Dislike it if you like.

--
Linus Torvalds schrieb:
When I’m working, I don’t want to hear anything.
Not music, not any noise from the fans in my computers.
Just stillness.
 
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omnium

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Plan B™ with Thermalright Macho 90

Plan B™ with Thermalright Macho 90


--
Linus Torvalds schrieb:
I want my office to be quiet. The loudest thing in the room - by far - should be the occasional purring of the cat.
 
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omnium

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Cooling Head for Intel® NUC8i5BEK (project diary)

10.05.2018 - 10.07.2018

NUC8i5BEK in action, Stresstest (OOTB), stress continues, KODI Live-TV, KODI 100-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv, Relax with Loriot

The orgone pyramid is only for decoration ;). The build quality is very good and the setup was an easy task. The NUC8i5BEK is very snappy and quiet with normal load. While Stresstest, the noise is ~42 db(A)..not so bad, but not to ignore...you have to decide for yourself what the effort for absolute silence is worth to you. The Temperature while stresstest is ~75 °C, no throttle. Everything runs very smooth :d

10.08.2018

250-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc, 4K HDR Youtube, under the lid w/o fan, with Alpine AM4, fanless stresstest, fanless cooldown

The Arctic Alpine AM4 performed as expected...out of the box :) but I don't like the high RAM and MB Temperatures despite the open test-construction. The massive AM4 bottom and the low distance to the MB, take its toll..so, Plan B must be checked :fresse:

10.09.2018 - 10.11.2018

'Alpine NUC'@Twitter, Intel Extreme Utility, Benchmarking, first Macho 90 impression, 'The Champ' in action, Stresstest (CPU, FPU, Cache, RAM)

See 'Benchmarking' with the Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility...1224 Marks with the i5 (with a youtube Video and other tasks in the background) vs 1276 Marks with the i7 in this review :). Maybe, I misinterpreted the temperature values for the AM4. 'The Champ' just did only a little better. A more realistic Sresstest (CPU, FPU and GPU only), Handbrake Encoding Job and other tasks with 'The Champ' and the AM4 will follow.

10.11.2018 - 10.28.2018

'The Champ'@Twitter, Macho CPU-FPU-GPU, OOTB CPU-FPU-GPU, Cinebench R15, what's next?, Passmark

I think i have to accept, that in fanless mode the temperatures of the MB and RAM under full load, are about 10°C higher than with the fan...and when the case is closed, it gets even worse :(...but no temperature difference for the CPU between 'The Champ' and with fan/stock NUC8i5...'The Champ' performs even better :). Take a look at the fantastic Cinebench results...the NUC8i5 is a little infernal machine :). How to get the heatpipes from the heatspreader? The Passmark result seems to be bogus compared to this result? I will do it again (obwohl ich mit dem Schwanzvergleich im Kindergarten aufgehört habe) and OLLI@nucblog.net will also test a NUC8i5 and bring some light into the matter. I think my result CPU Mark = 7589 is ok and the result >11000 must be a fake/not serious. But just now, OLIII@nucblog.net confirms, that the i5 will get 11k+ in Passmark CPU test...so there must be something wrong in my setup :stupid:..but Cinebench/Geekbench is ok..:stupid: I hope that OLLI@nucblog.net can clarify that. Olli told me in his blog, that his Geekbench results are in line with my results..so everything is ok and my Passmark results will remain a mystery...topic done ;)

10.29.2018 - 11.14.2018

Milestone, heatpipes removed, with aluminium block, with Arctic Aplpine AM4, stresstest

I'm very pleased. Raising the Alpine AM4 with the aluminum block has kept the RAM and MB temperatures as hoped/expected bearable. Don't mind the short throttling...that came right after finishing the stress test. The turbo takes its toll. The Alpine AM4 is sufficient and with a copper block it probably gets even better. Experiments with the Macho 90 will follow. Then I will decide if the final version will come with the Macho or with the Alpine AM4.

11.14.2018 - 11.18.2018

Macho on alu-block, stresstest, Relax with Spot

As you can see, the difference between the Macho 90 and the Alpine AM4 became very small :) and I wonder about it.


--
Gautama Buddha schrieb:
Do not speak - unless it improves on silence.
 
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thorosoe

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Very interesting post and finally some images from the new Bean Canyon's inside. Thank you very much for that. Do you by chance have some images of the cooling from beginning to end of the disassembly? I am wondering, how big the stock blower is (width and thickness) to estimate noise (and I just want to see it out of pure curiosity, too). And how is the stock thermal paste with this generation of NUCs - does it seem like the usual mess off too much of very cheap stuff or did Intel get better with that?

I do not plan to turn this into a silent system in the beginning (although I might at some point), but I am very concerned about the noise, too. I already expect, that I will have to change the thermal paste to something more capable.

Oh, and since you did not post frequency numbers - on what frequency on all cores did it run?

Thanks in advance! I'm very curious to see, where your project will go.
 

omnium

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Hi,
thank you for the feedback. Here is a Review of the NUC8i7BEH via Google Translate with very good images to answer your questions. I just installed the Intel Extreme Tuning Utility to read the frequency numbers...image will follow.
Stay tuned, to see the progress of this project...I eagerly wait for the Thermalright Macho 90 :d and I hope (I am sure) the temperatures for the MB and RAM will be much lower as with the Arctic Alpine AM4.

cu,
omnium
 
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thorosoe

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Thank you very much for the swift answer. The linked review was a great read and it in deed gave me detailed pictures of the cooling (and every other component). One thing missing was the thermal paste. What was your impression of the amount and quality used on your NUC?
 

omnium

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What was your impression of the amount and quality used on your NUC?
..sorry, I dont know. I did not remove the heatpipes with the copper plate but the AM4 had a good contact with the flat heatpipes and was very hot while stresstest.
 

ijoijsfadf

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Interesting concept. What is your power consumption idle/load with the nuc8i5? I am asking because i want to use mine 24/7.
 

mamatteo

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thanks for your information! looking for a more silent cooling approach for my NUC8I5

wondering if something like the NH-L9i . would also work..
 

omnium

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Hi mamatteo,
I think the NH-L9i would also work/fit after some handicrafts...but not fanless/noiseless. Noise perception is subjective but for me even the imo very quiet NUC8i5 is too loud after a while. How do you feel the fan noises from your NUC8i5?

cu,
omnium
 

mamatteo

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i am using it as a little standalone audio processing unit... so i want it to be as performant & small & silent as possible :d

currently i think its a little to loud during load.

thinking about 3d printing this: Cooling system for NUC by Tchoum - Thingiverse

i am also considering removing the default case completly and build a custom case with the nh-l9i . (i love the noctua fans for their low noise)

am i right you just put the cpu cooler on top of the two big heat pipes from the chip?


cheers max
 

omnium

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am i right you just put the cpu cooler on top of the two big heat pipes from the chip?
yes, as an experiment. No optimal solution but good enough to get an impression. The Alpine AM4 and the Macho 90 became very hot, so the contact was very good.



You/anyone knows how the heatpipes are attached to the copper plate...soldered or glued?
 

mamatteo

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sry dont know...... would expected it to be non removable ...

maybe using a dremel to remove the fan parts.. and stick a nh-l9i on top and a custom 3d top case... lets see where we are going ;)
 

omnium

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ok, I definitely want to use the copper plate with the steel springs. Sawing off the heatpipes along the red line is the last possibility I consider...but the heatsink with the rest of the heatpipes have to be remove..i think that's why RAM and MB get so hot in fanless mode.

 
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mamatteo

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yeah keeping the copperplate with the screws is a good idea probably :d
 

omnium

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ok, I'll get the heatpipes off without bending the copper plate.
 

mamatteo

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do you mind sharing some more pictures of your work? really interested :)
 

omnium

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do you mind sharing some more pictures of your work?
yes, of course and thank you for your interest.
The idea is to make a copperblock (size of the NUC CPU-die) which flush with a universal/special lid, made of aluminium. Then it will/should be easy in the future, to test/use other/new/custom made/selfmade heatsinks/cooling heads on this NUC test basis ;)
 

mamatteo

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Really looking forward. I am in the need for a low profile solution.. so I am trying to find a way for this noctua fan
 

omnium

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you will be able to use the NUC test base for your beloved noctua heatsink with fan...maybe you have to make a special lid...but nothing else.
What is your maximum height? Think about a fanless solution with a Plan B™ in mind...cooling on demand to keep a cool head..always ;)


Plan B™ (summer+heavy tasks/climate change/undersized heat sinks/???), cooling on demand
 

mamatteo

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I am looking at a maximum height of around 8cm... also wondering if that space will be enough for the fan to suck enough air..... already undervolted my i5 by -90mv which helps with the temperatures
 

mamatteo

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Waiting for the fans to arrive... then building some „proper“ fitting to the dies or heatsink ... then do some benchmarking:)
Probably not keeping the case at all...
 

omnium

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ok...please tell me something about the '„proper“ fitting to the dies or heatsink' you want to build...thank you.
 

thorosoe

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Wow, that is al LOT of thermal compound! Might really be worth to replace it with a more reasonable amount of a well working brand (Thermal Grizzly Cryonout did great in a comprehensive test by tomshardware - pretty much the best non "liquid metal" one. I shy away from those so it has to be a standard thermal paste).
Also: too bad they are using thermal pads for the GPU and memory ... With the retracted cooler plate it is out of the question to work with thermal paste there, too. Maybe better pads though ...

As far as one can read, better thermal paste can improve thermals rather drastically (Skull Canyon and Hades Canyon Nucs have been modded that way a few times that you can find online). This should improve both load perfomance (max sustained boost on all cores) and noise. Thanks a lot for your pics and experiences!

Also could you measure, how deep the depression in the heat sink part for the thermal pads is? Since pads should be replaced once the sink has come off, I'd have to order some pads of appropriate thickness (0.5, 1.0 or 1.5 mm).
 
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