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12 Posts

11-09-2016

FI

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My P330 Tower: modding / upgrade 8700K & cooler, graphics, power supply (PSU, GPU) and overclocking

2019-12-20, 8:30 AM

Hi, 

 

I just wanted to give my 2 cents back to community, and show how flexible P330 TWR is.

 

GPUs:

 

There have been many questions in the forum about P330TWR support for GPUs, and I can confirm that that high quality Lenovo 400W option (FSP platinum) can pull out some serious amps, and it's able to run smoothly GTX 1660 Ti, RTX 2060 and even RTX 2070 (and of course similar TDP GPUs like GTX 1080). You will need splitter cable for those GPUs that require two power cords, but there are plenty of options for single cord GPUs like superb 1660 Ti and 1660 Super.

 

Height is your main concern when choosing GPU, due HDD bay will come to your way when installing high GPUs. Of course the length of the card is also an issue, and powercord positioning due again the HDD bay. You may want to choose those ITX-versions of the GPUs, but they typically have not that great coolers.. but I found couple GPUs that are VERY interesting for P330TWR. The winner in this series was easily new EVGA XC Black -series. They use untypical 2.75 slot wide cooler, that is not that high and not that long. Perfect for P330TWR! One main problem with this GPU will of course be, that they will eat your PCI-E expansion slots.. but if you don't use em, I cannot recommend anything else than EVGAs.

 

With i5 CPU you will be able to run GTX 1080 with 400W stock PSU, and with i7 in your system, I suggest to stay in 1660/2060 series. For better GPU, you will have to change PSU, and that's the next topic:

 

PSUs:

 

Like said, that stock 400W is good one, but also swapping it to better one is so easy. You need a good SFX-PSU like Corsair that will fit to your P330TWR.. and SFX to ATX converterplate. For example, Corsair SF600 can easily feed top tier i7 (8700k/9700k) in your P330TWR, and feed enough amps to your high end GPU like GTX 1080. Corsair SF-series also comes automatically with SFX to ATX backplate so installing is super easy. 

 

Cooling:

 

Cooling in P330TWR is .. not that great to put it nicely. Stock CPU-cooler does basically it's job, and you have 92mm fan in back and 80mm in front. They are all PWM-managed, but even with silent-option choosed in BIOS, they are LOUD ONES and CPUs (i7-8700K in my case) run extremely hot. Of course new Intel CPUs are so smart, that heat is not a problem due they boost so wisely, but you will definetely get less performance out of your CPU with stock CPU-cooler.

 

Only options for better cooling in P330TWR is basically air, due 92mm AIO-watercoolers are tough to find, but also they are loud and not that powerfull. P330TWR cannot eat 120mm cpu-coolers, so you have to stay with 92mm ones due height districtions. I took the route with the best one in the market, Noctua NH-U9B SE. U9B comes with non-PWM coolers, but that's fine due you will want to change that back 92mm stock fan to Noctua one :D. I also ordered one Noctua Redux 92mm PWM fan, and put it to the first CPU fan. U9B SE comes with 3-pin fan-splitter cable, so you are able to run 3x 92mm to cool your system and CPU. I personally didn't change that front 80mm stock fan, due it's running low speeds all the time, even with full load. I think my P330TWR system goes from jetengineturbinish-soundscape to relaxing PC-whisperingish-soundscape. I HIGHLY recommended this option. NOTICE THIS THO: Installing U9B SE will need you to either modify your DVD-bay a bit (couple millimeters, OR you can order U9B SE and extra Noctua 92x92x25mm PWM-fan. That 25mm fan will sit in your P330TWR with U9B SE without ANY modifications to the system. To put it simply: Order U9B SE (comes with two 92mm fans) and Noctua 92x92x25mm PWM fan. Then remove that loud stock 92mm back-fan, use one 92mm non-PWM fan from U9B as a backfan. Then install U9B with thick 92mm fan closest to the backfan and that thin 25mm PWM fan as a "main cpu fan", installed in the front of the U9B. No modifications needed (exept of course removing motherboard, changing cpucooler backplate from stock to noctua one). 

 

What comes to temps, they dropped from ~83-88 degree celcius to ~70-75 *C in full syntetic CPU load, and from ~80ish to ~70ish *C in realworld load (Lightroom, Photoshop, gaming). And that is not the whole story, because overclocking.. in next topic:

 

Overclocking:

 

CPU can now run longer in boost clocks, and thanks to better thermals with Noctua U9B, it will boost MUCH higher clockspeed compared to stock CPU-cooler and much much longer. I was able to gain extra 10% speed in CPU-scores from synthetic benchmarks like in 3DMark etc, and that was just changing CPU cooler!

 

Of course, we are not able to overclock with stock motherboard due it's C246 chipset and BIOS-restrictions, but don't worry.. We have Intel Extreme Tuning Utility -software! So what to do with Intel ETU?

 

One very important thing with latest Intel CPUs is also undervolting. Yes, you heard it right. Without Z-series chipset, we are stuck with Intel ETU, and undervolting options, but that's great. CPUs are run'd with stock voltages, that are "safe voltages for every CPU". That doesn't mean that they will not run with lower voltages. Due Intel boosting is so smart nowdays, actually easiest way to "overclock" your CPU is to undervolt it. Why? Because with lower voltages, you get less thermals in CPU and CPU will boost it base clock higher and longer period of time, Intel boosting handles it all. Some CPUs will not undervolt much (bad individual, no win in "silicon lottery" like they say), some may undervolt a lot. Most 8000/9000 -serie Intel CPUs will undervolt as much as -0.100V. Some may go even -0.175, while others may go only 0.050V. That doesn't sound much, it actually is.. from 1.000V stock voltage that is 10-20% gain! Also lowering your voltage gives you a more amperes to run that CPU, because they are wattage limited. Less voltage + more amps = more megahertzs thx to boosting.

 

With Noctua giving me a better thermals, and as my CPU sample was pretty good (-0.115V undervolting), I stay in very high boost clocks (4.8GHz) with ALL CORES and it will stay there very long times, total CPU scores in various tests raised from 12 to 18 percent (so extra ~10ish percent in the top of that Noctua 10ish percent! That's not bad when remembering that we are running P330 system with NO real overclocking options. 

 

That my two cents, I really hope this helps someone with their great P330TWR. My system now includes 8700K @ 4.7GHz (almost all the time thanks to good thermals), EVGA 1660 Ti XC Black (also had EVGA RTX 2060 XC Black but got good offer with 1660 Ti), 32Gb RAM, stock 400W PSU (also tried Corsair SF600 with GTX 1080), Noctua NH-U9B SE with extra PWM managed 92mm for CPU, NVMe in M.2 slot and 8 terabyte spinner in HDD bay :)

 

 Mod:  edited Subject line to expand thread description

 

 

 

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12 Posts

11-09-2016

FI

13 Signins

186 Page Views

  • Posts: 12
  • Registered: ‎11-09-2016
  • Location: FI
  • Views: 186
  • Message 2 of 4

Re: My P330 modding (PSU,GPU) and overclocking tips

2019-12-21, 10:50 AM

Also, if you have modded your Thinkstation, you are free to post pictures and thoughts :)

0 person found this solution to be helpful.

This helped me too

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5 Posts

05-13-2020

US

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  • Posts: 5
  • Registered: ‎05-13-2020
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  • Message 3 of 4

My P330 Tower: modding / upgrade 8700K & cooler, graphics, power supply (PSU, GPU) and overclocking

2020-05-25, 1:03 AM
Why do you need a sfx power supply, isn’t the original one standard ATX size?
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5 Posts

05-13-2020

US

7 Signins

65 Page Views

  • Posts: 5
  • Registered: ‎05-13-2020
  • Location: US
  • Views: 65
  • Message 4 of 4

Re:My P330 Tower: modding / upgrade 8700K & cooler, graphics, power supply (PSU, GPU) and overclocking

2020-05-25, 1:10 AM

Thanks for the advice. Does the fan swap cause any error code? Heard some people say the system detects it and void the warranty.
FYI, full length gpu does fit.

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