Thermaltake Pacific TF1

Here is my first ever half-assed review of something. The good, the bad, and the leaky.

What is it?

The Thermaltake Pacific TF1 is a monitor, that watches the health of your cooling system, and alarms when there are any issues. I love this idea, because I’m super super paranoid that I’m going to have a failure, and I’m not going to know. I’ll just be sitting here gaming, or editing, or working on a 3d project, and all of a sudden my machine will thermal shutdown. What a terrible thought! I’ve had that happen to me before, so I know the disappointment of having a thermal shutdown, or overpowering a power supply.(Which is why I got the Corsair AX1600i, shut down the paranoia!) My last major malfunction with thermal shutdowns was with the AMD FX 8350, which is the build before this one. Long leap from 8 cores to 32, wow! I ran the FX 8350 this long, and skipped all the other Ryzen fun, because it kept on trucking at a very comfortable speed. So that’s what it is, the hey dude your computer is hot, machine.

Why do I need it?

Well, you could say that you don’t, but it’s definitely a piece of mind. You can watch your water temp, which is great. You can rearrange your cooling system, add and remove radiators, change fans push/pull configurations, see what flow is best for you, where your gains drop off from flow, and see what your water temp looks like compared to your CPU/GPU temps.

You can also see the flow rate, which is super helpful to see what you’re putting out. Do you need another pump? Is your pump failing? Is the pump putting out what spec says it should? Is there a bottleneck? Maybe you need to make some adjustments.

It’s pretty much the ultimate, when it comes to tweaking your cooling system to get the most out of it. I used the hell out of mine for that.

2 Failed Thermaltake Pacific TF1

Why do I not use it anymore?

What about the bad? there’s a bad side to everything, right? Yes, unfortunately there is. With the Termaltake Pacific TF1, I experienced leaking, twice! Two different units, both leaked after about 10 days each. Each time, I redid my bends, and tried to see if there was pressure being pushed towards one side of it, or what the deal is. I couldn’t figure out how to make it not leak. It’s a leaker, that’s not what I want in my system, not for long anyways. I can say, it’s a great diagnostic tool, leaks or not. I enjoyed using it to figure out what optimal looks like for my system.

Second poopy thing that drove me crazy is the alarm, on the first one that is. I shouldn’t say the alarm, it was actually the flow rate sensor, it was inaccurate. It showed flow way low, and kept alarming. When I say low, like 20-30 lph, when I’m running 160-200 lph. That was not right out of the box, it ran about 5 days before having that problem. Bearings? I don’t know, I’m not going to diagnose it, I didn’t get any use out of it.

Conclusion

I love the idea. Love it! I love the Thermaltake Pacific TF1 as well, honestly. I just can’t run it in a daily driver, I’ll keep it around as a diagnostic tool though. I’ve been a huge fan of Thermaltake for years. I’ve always run Thermaltake/Gigabyte in all my machines, and never had a problem. This is my first custom loop, though, and apparently they don’t have their head in that game. Anybody else have the same problem? Last thing I can say is, like a holy bucket – it does not hold water.

Bucket with holes

Immersion Cooling – The COOLEST Cooling System I’ve Ever Seen… NEED IT!

Today, I stumbled across something called immersion cooling. WTF is that!?!? You’ve heard of air cooling with fans and heatsinks, you’ve heard of liquid cooling with waterblocks and radiators, even refrigerated cooling – immersion cooling though? Do you know what the word immersion means? That means we’re putting our frickin components inside a liquid. I need to do this. I feel like it’s so wrong that I need it in my life.

Why though?

Coolness Factor

Of course this is pretty cool. It may be messy, and I could see that being a downfall. Maybe we can add a filter to remove any contaminates from the oil, and keep the coolant looking pretty. I’d like to do one where I keep the waterblocks on GPUs, with pumps in the waterblocks, so there’s extra circulation, rather than an open GPU. What kind of effects can we have using lighting in the oil? Probably pretty sweet ones, do you think we could put some glitter in there that circulates with lighting, to make a snowglobe affect? Probably. Let’s not shake it when it’s full of oil though. I think the biggest reason to do this, is because it’s frickin cool! What else? The oil will make your parts stand out more, shiny! You ever seen oiled up parts? They look nice!

Cost Effective

Believe it, or not, you’ll probably be able to set up an immersion cooling system much cheaper than buying water blocks, coolant, radiators, pumps, reservoirs, tubing, etc, for a water cooling system. Weird, right? Isn’t this going to use some of the same components? Yes, and no. We can do a build without using application specific parts in this case. You’ll have to do some research, but I’m going to try to do that for you! We’ll explore some parts that can be generic, pretty dang cool, without having to purchase parts from companies that make you spend extra because they are made for a computer. For example, the oil, 1/2 gallon of coolant for 10 bucks? What would you normally spend for that much? 50? You may be able to even salvage parts from things you have laying around. What about a windshield washer fluid pump from an old car? Or an old fish tank pump? If it can pump water, it can pump low viscosity oil. I think in my case, I’ll be using an air to water intercooler coolant pump that I have laying around, because I’m a car guy.

Think about how much it would normally cost to set up a water cooling system that cools your cpu, multiple gpus, both chipsets, each stick of ram, and everything else in your machine. That can start to add up. Like thousands of dollars easily.

Efficiency

Immersion cooling is probably going to be the most efficient cooling source you’ll ever use, and I’m going to demonstrate that as I get this project rolling. The idea here is that you’re getting rid of the heat transfer crap, that could be bogging your cooling system down, and cutting right to the coolant. Imagine the coolant jetting right across your cpu/gpu, rather than flowing through a water block. Your regular water cooling system is only as efficient as your thermal compound, and your water block. Additionally, you’re not just cooling the things that are normally cooled, every component in your machine is being cooled this way!

What am I going to do to prove it?

Build coming soon

I’m going to start building soon, so keep an eye out for it! Subscribe, and you’ll get emails as my build progresses.

Current Proposed build

Water Pump – This is an electric water pump that would normally be used in a vehicle.

Hose – This is clear fish tank tubing.

Radiator – This is a heater core, that’s how you get heat in your vehicle. Great at dissipating heat, small form factor.(Slightly bigger than 1 140mm fan)

140mm fan – Regular, quiet, 140mm fan from a PC. 120mm may work as well, if you have one laying around.

Push through ties – For mounting the fan to the radiator

Plexi Glass – To make a case. I chose 1/4″, for simplicity sake, you can go thinner for cheaper.

Self Tapping Screws – Makes it easier to put it together without having to drill holes.

Silicon/Caulk – For making things water tight

Fitting – For input and output of oil through the pump, need 2 of these.

Hose clamps – For holding the hose on to the fittings.

Molex Extension – Extend power from power supply, out to pump and fan. 18″ long, need to probably get 3 of these.

Molex Fan Adapter – Adapt molex to plug the fan in to it.

Price in cart = $237.24

I think that’s a fair price for what is possibly the best cooling system available. Don’t you? That’s normally the price of one water block for a graphics card! Look at this one, $179.12 for just a water block – and that’s an off brand! It’s crazy the prices we pay for things that aren’t even giving us the best cooling possible. Why are we not all throwing our computers in tubs of oil? So, I say screw you vendors, immersion cooling is what I need!

What do you guys think?

Is immersion cooling a little ridiculous? I can see that, maybe. I’m a man of many rediculouses though, so I feel like this is more than a possible solution, it’s THE solution for me.

What other uses are there?

I think the following are possible uses for this cooling system:

  • ASIC Cooling
  • Bitcoin Miner Cooling
  • GPU Miner Cooling
  • FPGA Cooling
  • Overclocked Raspberry Pi Cooling
  • Server Cooling

Any other ideas?