Koolance PMP-500 Pump

Posted: December 13, 2012 in Pumps
Tags: , , , , ,

Hydraulic Performance Pump Testing

Unlike many reviews where they test one condition, I like to do the full performance curve via digital manometer and flow meter.  I do this because pump curves vary significantly in both slope and shape, so a single condition test doesn’t complete the picture very well and it’s very common to have two different pumps each perform better than the other depending on restriction.  High restriction loops usually flow around 1.0 GPM where low restriction loops may flow upwards of 2-3 GPM.  Depending on your particular setup, you can review the data that is most important to you.

Test Setup

Also any review that doesn’t show you their test setup is not worth reading further, here is mine.   I am using:

  • Mastech HY3005D DC power supply to regulate voltage
  • Cen-tech P98674 Digital multimeter to read molex plug voltage
  • Crystalfontz CFA-633 + WinTest B1.9 to monitor and smooth RPM
  • Dwyer 477-5 Digital Manometer to read Pressure Differential across the pump
  • King 7520 (Valved) to measure flow rate and adjust restriction


Detailed Test Results

Using the variable test power supply, I tested the pump at 5V, 7V, 10V, & 12V to cover the range of voltage possibilities as well.





So that captures the detailed results, now on to a summary of curves.

Summary Curves

Taking the above curves and combining them into one.


You can see above, that the pump has very good range and may be dial down to a 4W pump or turned up to a 30W pump depending on voltage supplied.

Comparison Hydraulic Performance Curves

While not apples to apples with a single pump, I was asked to also compare it to the 35X2 which has two very strong 35X motors running in series with a dual top.  Here is how that looks:


The 35X2 with two very efficient and high powered pumps does produce more pressure, but at $200 per pump, you could nearly buy three of the PMP-500s so it better.  The PMP-500 fall somewhere betteen a single 35X and the 35X2, however notice the differences in power consumption too.  The 35X2 draws upwards of 52 watts where the PMP-500 max was about 31 watts.

But for a true apples to apples 12V single pump solution, let’s look at the competition:


It is king of the compact 12V pumping power area even topping the highly optimized MCP35X in power.  It is producing about double that of the PMP-450 in the 1.5GPM range, so it’s capable of what two PMP-450 pumps can do in series, very impressive!

Bottom line the PMP-500 is about equal to two PMP-450 pumps in series,  nearly as strong as the mighty $200 MCP35X2 (two pumps in series), and stronger than any other 12V single pump it’s size.

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  1. Kevin Hua says:

    Finally, a pump that has dethroned the ddc series in all aspects! Nice testing Martin, I’ll be sure to pick up this pump! Maybe a custom pcb can lower power draw/noise… It’s using the old style transistors for power.

    • Martinm210 says:

      Yeah, if noise can be reduced via PCB and motor controller upgrades to say less than 40dbA max and a comfortable like tone that blends/hides well in your typical fan noise, that would be sweet. Add PWM to that and you would have one hard to beat little pump..:)

  2. nleksan says:

    So glad to have you back!!!!!!!!!!

    You are truly a pillar of the water cooling community, and if it weren’t for yourself and the few like you who have been so incredibly dedicated to scientifically analyzing and reviewing anything and everything water cooling, it’s quite likely that the hobby would still consist of a lot of non-modified aquarium pumps, semi-custom “water blocks”, and heater cores! I realize that you are a humble man, but take a moment to recognize the immense contribution you have made to “PC Water Cooling” as a whole, and if you’re ever nearby I’ll buy you a beer, hell, I’ll buy you a keg!

    • Martinm210 says:

      🙂 … Thanks!! and Cheers!!

      • Cole Markusen says:

        Not a problem. Might have to step up and buy one of Koolances controllers. The tone/pitch is almost unbearably annoying after long periods of time. Obviously the controller won’t get rid of it but lessen the severity a bit. Any idea what kind of components those controllers use? Would hate to have the same noise issue as the fan controller.

  3. Hi Martin,

    I lost my rubber washer (https://martinsliquidlab.files.wordpress.com/2012/12/koolancepmp500-16.jpg)

    I would like to know if my pump will get flooded or I can run the pump without.

    Thank you,

  4. Hi Martin, I just had a failure on my power supply just 20 minutes after starting my system with a PMP-500, an ATI 7870 and a FX-8350 oced to 4,6ghz, my power supply was a corsair GS700 with a single 12v rail of 56A, can you tell me what power supply should I buy to move all this without problem? Thank you!

    • Martinm210 says:

      I have had good luck with my TX650 and a single 570gtx card and hot hexacore, but I’m not up to speed on what the latest cards are drawing. I would plug it all into one of the online power calculators and base it on that. I would also check reviews on newegg on any model you are looking at and watch for how many bad reviews there are.