Motherboard and fans

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Stage 2 | Part 1

My 2015 PC water cooling beginner’s guide continues as I move from the test bench of stage one to a Phanteks Enthoo Luxe case. As I detailed in The Plan, this stage of my guide has the end goal of a usable PC with Windows 8.1 installed featuring an all-in-one PC water cooling system. The purpose of this stage is to benchmark the PC before custom PC water cooling components are added as well as to get a feel for how well the PC performs. In this post I will go over installation of the motherboard, all-in-one cooling, and power supply.

Motherboard and All-In-One Cooling

The first thing I did was get the Phanteks Enthoo Luxe case ready for installing the Asus X99 Deluxe motherboard and the Corsair H105 All-In-One Cooling system. To do this I began by removing the side panel screws and taking off the panels. I then removed the top and front panels. These panels simply pull off, but you will want to take care when removing the front panel as it has wires that are attached (the cables for the front panel.) I also removed the PSU shield at this time by removing the three screws on the right side of the case.

motherboard and radiator
Mobo and radiator mounted and panels removed

Once the panels are off, install the ASUS Q-Shield into the case. This is just a cover for the motherboard ports, but if you don’t pop it in now you will have to remove everything later. Since I already had the processor, water block, and radiator installed on the motherboard from Stage One of my PC Water Cooling Guide I just carefully moved everything into place and screwed everything down. The motherboard has nine screws that screw into the motherboard standoffs (these are already installed in the case.) The radiator screws into some convenient tabs on the top of the case in the configuration I used.

Radiator mounted
View of radiator mounted on top
closeup of mobo
Mobo closeup

Power Supply Unit

The next thing I installed into the case was my Corsair ax1200i Power Supply. This is very easy with the PSU cover already removed. Simply slide the PSU into place and screw it down with the four appropriate screws (screws on the outside of the case.) Phanteks has done a really great job with this case so this is an easy step, particularly since the cabling on this PSU is modular.

PSU installed
PSU front
Front of PSU
PSU rear
PSU rear

PC Water Cooling Next Steps

This post covered the main PC component installation into the Phanteks case. In my next post I will continue along these lines, installing the video cards, SSD drives, and cabling the PC. That should leave us ready for Windows 8.1 installation and bench-marking of the PC to wrap up Stage 2.

Full 2015 PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide Series

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – The Plan

Prep Work

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Prep Work

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Prep Work Part 2 

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Prep Work Part 3

Stage 1

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Stage 1 | Part 1

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Stage 1 | Part 2

Stage 2

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Stage 2 | Part 1 (This Post)

PC Water Cooling Beginner’s Guide – Stage 2 | Part 2