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Thread: Fittings & Elbow Impacts to CPU Temperature (TEST RESULTS)

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Fittings & Elbow Impacts to CPU Temperature (TEST RESULTS)

    This started out as sort of a fitting review and morphed into more of a elbow/fitting restriction guide. As most of you know...changes in system flow translates to very little CPU temperature change. This leads to the assumption that fittings and elbows have no impact to performance at all. While that's generally true from a practical +- a degree doesn't matter perspective, you can split hairs if you want.

    So with that, I'm splitting hairs. I wanted to see what if anything I could measure between various elbows, fittings. While it is relatively insignificant, we all use these little bits and pieces, so I thought it would be worthwhile measuring what I could.

    Special thanks to the many sponsors in my past testing that contributed to the various bits of fittings I've collected. This includes Danger Den, Bitspower, The Feser Company, Swiftech, and Koolance. Without their generosity, this review/guide would not have been possible..



    FITTINGS/BARBS

    In many ways, these juicy little shiny bits are like the legos of our builds. They assist in fabrication of our many ideas and serve in that critical junction between flexible tubing and rigid blocks. We also now have many compression fittings options that clean up an otherwise less than perfect zip tie or clamp,etc.

    I actually tested barbs as well, but found that the differences between 1/2" high flow barbs were too small to even properly measure. To measure differences in barbs, you would have to string 10 fold barbs together. There is a very minor loss in compression fittings however, so I've tried to capture that here.

    THE TEST
    Standard pressure drop except I tested on a Danger Den MC-TDX and simply switched out the inlet barb. In the end, I subtracted out the restriction of the standard barb test, giving you just the "Added" restriction over standard barbs.



    I also "Attempted" a barb retention type test, but in the end found they all passed with flying colors. I was only able to test up to about 50PSI, and using as little as a single zip tie was more than enough to exceed 50PSI. Beside that, I was getting tired of getting wet! Just make sure you use clamps or zip ties, or the compression ring, and you should have no problem exceeding the rating of the tubing or most pumps. Here is a snapshot of that test, since nothing would remotely fail, I even resorted to testing without clamps...even with that, the least amount tested was still nearly 20PSI, larger barbs would get up to 30psi without any clamping.



    RESULTS

    I'm giving you both the pressure drop measured and a translation to CPU temperature gain.

    This took a while and requires many assumptions, but I feel it is important to convey flow rate in terms of CPU temperature impact. Thanks to great tests like Vapor's CPU block testing, I was able to pick a typical CPU block and estimate the change in CPU temperature due to the flow rate impacts.

    The pressure drop testing was an actual measurement, but the CPU temperature results were derived by calculation based on a variety of test results and should only be used as an approximation.

    I've just come to the conclusion that the universal language in the overclocking community is degrees celcius..so I did my best to translate..



    CONCLUSION

    BARBS ONLY
    All of the barbs worked relatively the same, although I did notices slightly more retention by the longer barbs. Restriction differences were too minor to really measure with just one barb. My personal favorite is a tie between the DangerDen/Bitspower Fatboy and Hardware Labs kit barbs that came in my SR1 radiator package. D-tek barbs are another testing favorite of mine because they are a bit easier to remove 7/16" ID tubing (My personal favorite). This just makes taking things apart while testing easier.

    COMPRESSION FITTINGS
    My favorite for function/performance would be the Koolance fittings. I like the flat spot in the threads for wrenching the barb on/off. I also prefer the flat style knurling as it's less harsh and equally effective in giving finger grip. Finally, I just like the larger/deeper barbs on the Koolance compression best. BP and TFC probably get my pick for visual looks, but they measured a touch more restrictive and I've had trouble using them without resorting to some sort of plyers to remove them. Regardless, I rarely use compression fittings of any kind, and I'm a bit old school and like my barbs and clamps or zip ties.

    ELBOWS
    I didn't test too many, but the 45s as you might expect were roughly half the restriction of a 90 (Who would have guessed?..). Also using the combined compression/elbow fitting was very slightly less restriction than separate 45+compression pieces. My suggestion is to use elbows when you need them, but don't let them become the "Spare tire in the woods" where they multiply like crazy. Tubing CAN bend you know.. Temperature has very minimial effect, but it does add restriction. One elbow on the low restriction DD MC-TDX adds almost 40% more resistance, so it will have impacts to flow rate...but it's not going to add up to much in terms of temperature.

    BOTTOM LINE

    In the end, fittings are very much a personal preference thing. Elbows and fittings do cause some restriction, but it's very much fractions of a degree and impacts flow rate much more than it does temperature. All of these fittings and options are winners in my book, just another color/shape lego block for you to build with. But...if performance is absolutely #1 priority, and you want to take on the hair splitting performance alway first perspective... less is more and generally standard barbs with tubing bends and longer tubing runs will generally net you the very highest flow rates. Many people assume that tubing itself is restrictive and will assume that adding an elbow to shorten the tubing length will be a net benefit. Unfortunately, the it rarely is...one 90 elbow is about equal to 4' of 1/2" ID tubing so the few inches you saved is lost and then some. Do not add an elbow to save a few inches of tubing, it's counterproductive in performance.

    However, if you are building a piece of art which many people do....by all means add the fittings as needed for the cleanest possible look. Sure some extra fittings will add restriction, but it's very minor. As the chart shows, it would take almost 30 each 90 degree elbows to add up to 1 degree in CPU temp rise. Half a dozen to get to aesthetic perfection is perfectly fine from an art priority perspective.

    Cheers!
    Martin
    Last edited by Martinm210; 01-30-2011 at 07:14 PM.

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    Xtreme Member Gamb311's Avatar
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    Thanks Martin

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    Xtreme Member thegcpu's Avatar
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    Now we have real data..
    Thanks for the time and effort
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    Xtreme Enthusiast charles_h's Avatar
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    Good stuff; thanks Martin.

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    Xtreme Guru Church's Avatar
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    Should be added to stickies.

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    I am Xtreme zalbard's Avatar
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    Great info, thanks!
    +1 for sticky.
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    Xtreme Member BrokenArrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martinm210 View Post
    ELBOWS
    I didn't test too many, but the 45s as you might expect were roughly half the restriction of a 90 (Who would have guessed?..).
    Martin
    From my experience, the sweeping rotary type 90 from Bitspower is much less restrictive than the "hard" 90 you have tested.

    To me, the two 45s you tested would be more like the former type than the latter. Interesting.

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrokenArrow View Post
    From my experience, the sweeping rotary type 90 from Bitspower is much less restrictive than the "hard" 90 you have tested.

    To me, the two 45s you tested would be more like the former type than the latter. Interesting.
    I'm sure they are, I didn't have any dual rotaries, but that makes sense..
    Last edited by Martinm210; 01-30-2011 at 02:07 PM.

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    Good to see some definitive results regarding this. How about the forbidden placement of a 90 degree fitting on the pump inlet? Does the proximity of the fitting to the components make any difference?
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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nvmc View Post
    Good to see some definitive results regarding this. How about the forbidden placement of a 90 degree fitting on the pump inlet? Does the proximity of the fitting to the components make any difference?
    I was going to try that in my pump testing next, but I'm still waiting on pumps. No toys to play with just yet..

    Which 90's would you want to see?

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    Registered User Mazlov's Avatar
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    So the use of 29 90Deg elbows instead of regular barbs will cost me a total of 1Deg CPU temp?

    Thanks for finally clearing that up!
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    Xtreme Enthusiast bot@xs's Avatar
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    Thanks Martin for the good work and the insight.

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    Xtreme Guru Church's Avatar
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    Martinm210: i'd love for 2*45 90deg angle fitting (similar with barb)to be tested in this test as well, just to finally write down, is it worth enough to replace "sharp" 90deg with more expensive 2*45, or higher price of them is not justified.
    I wonder why barbs are that much better restriction wise then CFs? Bigger internal bore diameter or something else?
    BTW, how about putting comparison to restriction of other typical components for simple illustration how much restrictive fittings are or are not? As in how much barbs (or CFs, or angle fittings) are needed to match restriction of single rad or single cpu waterblock? (like i often love to cite your words that one needs 20 rads to match single cpu waterblock )
    Last edited by Church; 01-30-2011 at 03:13 PM.

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    ... IFMU's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thegcpu View Post
    Thanks for the time and effort
    +1
    Quote Originally Posted by churchy View Post
    Should be added to stickies.
    Quote Originally Posted by zalbard View Post
    +1 for sticky.
    done

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by churchy View Post
    Martinm210: i'd love for 2*45 90deg angle fitting (similar with barb)to be tested in this test as well, just to finally write down, is it worth enough to replace "sharp" 90deg with more expensive 2*45, or higher price of them is not justified.
    I wonder why barbs are that much better restriction wise then CFs? Bigger internal bore diameter or something else?
    BTW, how about putting comparison to restriction of other typical components for simple illustration how much restrictive fittings are or are not? As in how much barbs (or CFs, or angle fittings) are needed to match restriction of single rad or single cpu waterblock? (like i often love to cite your words that one needs 20 rads to match single cpu waterblock )
    I'm guessing the CF difference is that blunt leading edge, if that had an internal chamfer it would help. Also many of the standard barbs exceed 10.0mm, getting up near 10.3mm. The BP and TFC 3/4"OD compressions are only 10.1mm or so ID. The Koolance CF is 11.1mm on the inlet ID, but reduces down to only 9.0mm ID near the threads.

    Comparison like this?


    But that's using a low restriction Supreme HF. Using something like the AC double impact, it would equal about 42each 90 degree elbows. So the comparison does of coarse vary depending on the block chosen. The DD MC-TDX happens to be an extremely low restriction block. It only takes about 3 90s to equal it..

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    Moderator shazza's Avatar
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    Great work, Martin.

    (Thread added to the Info/Guides Sticky at the top of the page)

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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    Awesome, thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Martinm210 View Post
    I was going to try that in my pump testing next, but I'm still waiting on pumps. No toys to play with just yet..

    Which 90's would you want to see?
    I'm personally going with Bitspower G1/4 90 degree adapters. That way I'm not tied to one type of fitting.
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    Xtreme X.I.P. Martinm210's Avatar
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    I've got a pair of these and will plan on using them for the pump elbow effects tests..

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    Registered User Red M's Avatar
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    Nice review martin great to see the numbers on those parts

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    Excellent Martin, thanks! I personally love the BP 45s and rotary 90s and now I can put some pencil to paper on them.

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    Xtreme Guru Church's Avatar
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    Martinm210: i thought - simply writing numbers with words . Hmm, i somehow expected for more 90deg fittings to equal cpu waterblock. Makes me shake my head on builds where ALL fittings are 90deg + straight tubing. As in in those connections between blocks alone most probably are the most resistive part in loop, with flow cut twice by sacrificing to looks.

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    Xtreme Guru Johnny87au's Avatar
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    Thanks for the test martin, So the discussion of to many 90 degree fittings in a setup reduces airflow should now be closed!!

    Another thing I find funny is AMD/Intel would snipe any of our Moms on a grocery run if it meant good quarterly results, and you are forever whining about what feser did?

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    Lol, that picture is so going into my useful graphs folder ! Thanks for the comparison Martin !
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    Amazing Martin! Now we have solid evidence on the effectsnof 90 degree barbs! It's interesting to know that it adds as much as 8"!!! that's the size of some... Er... Bananas...!!!
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