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Thermaltake P90 / Custom Water Loop / i7-8700K

by PCPartPickerChas


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

Aug. 21, 2018

CPU Clock Rate

5 GHz

CPU Temperature While Idle

26.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

75.0° C


Still tweaking a bit...

  • Non-gamer PC hence no video card
  • Moved an existing build into the P90 and added a custom distilled water loop (for fun)

The PC is overclocked to 5,000 MHz CPU / 3,600 MHz RAM. Build comments:

  • The pump is rather noisy (outside of the absolute lowest setting via PWM)
  • I'm past RGB (prefer not to have my room lit up)
  • The case is extremely easy to work with and appears to have a little better quality control than previous Thermaltake cases I have built
  • Dual boot Windows/Ubuntu with storage via a networked ODROID NAS
  • Mod wise I drilled holes for mounting the pump/reservoir and borrowed a "leg" from a P3 for a middle leg which let me pass on the leg supports
  • I have tried various fittings and prefer Thermaltake's flex and hard tubing models

Overall a great case for a custom loop. It's not suited for anything else. My inspiration was a mechanical or engine vibe. Like RGB I'm over the 90 degree loops.

Part Reviews


Nice bang for the buck which should offer viable performance for a couple of years.

Thermal Compound

No complaints. Haven't noticed better performance over "stock" thermal paste yet I don't exactly push the PC.


So far it's been rock solid in three builds. Appreciate the styling.


Runs as rated... even overclocked.


Upgraded from a 960 Evo (250GB) and surprisingly found a "decent" performance increase. I think it's largely from the 500GB models being faster than the 250GB models.


Another fine P series case from Thermaltake. For custom loops it's worth a look.

Power Supply

Until proven other wise my go to power supply company. I do wish they offered upgraded cables.

Case Fan

High quality design and performance.


After many months it performs and looks like the day I unboxed it.


After many months it performs and looks like the day I unboxed it.

Comments Sorted by:

Simulint 4 Builds 1 point 8 months ago

With a rad like that you should be able to get a stable 5.2GHz or higher OC.

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 2 points 8 months ago

Even though the rad is only 30mm I agree cooling isn't in play. I have been over 5GHz with older firmware - via a 120mm AIO. The latest firmware doesn't handle auto overclocking as well and I haven't bothered to mess with it myself.

jb2577fn 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

Why would anyone need a $300 cpu and not need a GPU

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

Two builds ago I had a AORUS GeForce® GTX 1080 Ti Waterforce WB Xtreme Edition 11G with the i7-8700K and found I only stressed the CPU...

Shakaron 7 Builds 1 point 8 months ago

So what exactly do you use the PC for? Do you need overclocking and a custom liquid loop for your workflow, or it's totally unnecessary, but fun to do it anyway? :)

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

A custom loop is totally for fun. As stated above I had a Corsair H75 in a previous build and it was more than capable. CPU wise I don't consider the i7-8700K to be "insanely" powerful rather a middle-of-the-roader that should have a decent life cycle.

Shakaron 7 Builds 1 point 8 months ago

Sure, there are more powerful CPUs than the i7-8700K. My point was that sometimes system stability is more important than raw computation power, so overclocking might not be the best idea (e.g. running financial applications where downtime is critical).

In other cases, one welcomes the extra speed received by overclocking by trading speed for a (potentially) lower system stability. E.g. gaming or workflows, that do not take too long and you can easily restart things, in case of your computer crashes, such as rendering, or editing.

I was just interested, if you want/can disclose, what tasks you do where the extra power gained by the CPU is desirable, but you do not need a GPU. (Rendering, video editing, etc can benefit from a GPU as far as I know.)

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

As posted above I had the same build with and without a 1080 Ti and didn't notice any difference in my experience. As for my "tasks" I simply find the PC snappier compared to lessor processors.

I'm on a 43" IPS panel at 4k 60Hz. I do notice Ubuntu's video driver outperforms Windows although I don't find myself waiting on either. Bottom line I used a 1080 Ti for six months and sold it at the crest and it hasn't been missed.

Now much like the custom loop I could add one down the road for the heck of it. I debated adding one however with no performance increase (based on my usage) and new cards around the corner I passed. Based on my usage the fans never spin even on the low end cards (such as a 1050 Ti) I saw even less need to water cool it.

HiroNewf 1 point 8 months ago

hate the case :(

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

It is rather polarizing. I didn't like it when it first came out. That is until I wanted to feature a custom loop.

HiroNewf 1 point 8 months ago

Yeah idk I like a clean look and all the glass makes it really hard to get that with no place to hide the cables and all.

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

Cable management is a bear. Originally I was going to use custom cables since they are so exposed. However I tried "hiding" the fan cables with tubing and afterwards thought it matched the build to a large degree so why not try the rest... less than $10 of tubing that can be instantly removed. Doubt it would work with any other build however so far I like the look as it plays to the theme.

HiroNewf 1 point 8 months ago

hmm sounds like a good idea, why did you go with the glass case aways?

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

I wanted a hardline loop (my first) and why bother if it's hidden within a case per se. I have also built Thermaltake's P1 and P3 open air cases and enjoyed the challenge of making them "presentable" It's too easy hiding a PC in a box. :)

In this case I appreciate the "view" and don't mind my work being on display.

Otterman366 13 Builds 1 point 8 months ago

what are you doing that warrants an 8700k but no gpu? Is this supposed to be some type of server?

PCPartPickerChas submitter 1 Build 1 point 8 months ago

I appreciate its performance (versus the less powerful chips I have tried) and it should age rather well as software becomes more demanding. For me it's a rather silly debate... the custom loop costs far more than the CPU and it's completely unnecessary... and in this case its "horsepower" is sure to be used over course of its life (it's been in three builds to date)... one with a 1080 Ti.

[comment deleted]
SeeamKhan 1 point 5 months ago

This is so overkill, I love it!!