Archive for the ‘Blocks’ Category

Welcome to my second value ($100-$150) 2 x 120mm water cooling kit review, the XSPC Raystorm 750 RS240 DIY Water Cooling Kit w/ Free Dead-Water. These XSPC kits have been very popular among the forum users due to their extreme value and good Do-It-Yourself parts. This kit is very much DIY-custom regarding installation and does not come pre-filled like the AIO units such as the Corsair H100 or Swiftech H220. It does however come packed full of value and the performance level we expect from a DIY-custom water cooling parts.  Unlike the sealed AIO kits with their tiny little 1-2watt pumps intended for CPU only needs, this kit affords you flexibility and enough pumping power (6W) to expand later to include a GPU and extra radiator.  It also provides your usual DIY flexibility in allowing custom barbs/compression fittings and any flavor tubing you want to suit your custom build needs.  Last but not least, it comes in a mostly individual component package (Except for pump/reservoir combo) that makes future upgrading things like the CPU block less costly.  XSPC wraps all that up with some additional visual bonuses such as blue LED modules for both CPU block and reservoir that does add some nice visual flare to your custom water build.  The kit also comes at the ready with extra hardware to mount external radiators which is something those AIO kit’s just can’t do because you need to route tubes through case walls, etc.  In the end it provides you with a big box of water cooling goodness intended to start you in the journey of water cooling without breaking the bank and retaining as much flexibility in installation as possible.

This review is a “LIVING” review as I’m still in the process of testing and writing up the results.  If you have testing or review request, please post in the comments. 

A very special thanks to Mark from FCPU for sponsoring this XSPC Raystorm 750 kit, your one-stop-shop for all your PC modification supplies.

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XSPCRaystorm750-01

A quick photo of the Kit’s Raystorm block in darkness action!

Product Description

The XSPC Raystorm RS240 Extreme Universal CPU Water Cooling Kit comes complete with everything you will need to cool your CPU. This kit is designed to handle your CPU and can be expanded to handle more blocks as well.

The kit uses the newest XSPC CPU block, the Raystorm as the core cooling component. This block has a pure copper base and is a top of the line in performance and looks. XSPC coupled this with their RS240 radiator which is a thin profile radiator giving more flexibility with compatibility.

The reservoir is a combination of the XSPC dual bay reservoir along with a XSPC X20 750 pump. This pump has been revised and is much more reliable than previous revisions. It is now injection molded for seamless joints and this new revision 4 model is a black color.

This kit comes compete with all fittings, clamps, fans, mounting hardware and hose.

Note: Kit does NOT come with fluid or additive.

Features

  • Designed for Multi-core CPUs
  • Complete Kit
  • Top End Performance
  • Full Copper Base Water Block

Specifications

CPU Block
Compatibility: AMD Sockets 939, 754, 940, AM2, AM3
Intel Sockets LGA2011, LGA1366, LGA1156, 603, 604
*Requires mounting holes
Block: XSPC Raystorm – AMD and Intel
Sockets: AMD Sockets AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+
Intel Sockets LGA1366, LGA1156, LGA1155
Base Dimensions: 56mmx56mmx3mm
LED Support: 4x 3mm LED Holes
Radiator
Radiator: XSPC RS240
Dimensions: 121x35x277mm (WxDxH)
Ports: G1/4
Screws: 6-32 UNC
Fans: 2 x 120mm (4x with push/pull)
Reservoir
Reservoir: XSPC X20 750 Dual 5.25″ Pump / Reservoir Combo
Fitting Ports: 2 x G1/4″
Dimensions: 149 x 100 x 85mm (WxDxH)
Tubing and Fittings
Tubing: 2 Meters – 7/16″ x 5/8″ Clear
Fittings: 1/2″ Barb (Hose Clamps Included)
Pump
Pump: XSPC X20 750 (Black Revision 4)
Pump Performance: 750 lph
Delivery head: 1.8m
Voltage: 12V (4pin)
Fan
Fan: 2 x XSPC 120mm x 25mm Radiator / Chassis Fan – 1650 RPM
Size: 120mm x 25mm
Airflow: 65.2CFM
Noise: ~29dBA
Static Pressure: 1.8mmAq
Operating Voltage: 5.5 – 13.8V.
Connector: 3-Pin
Wire Length: 45cm
Included: RayStorm CPU Waterblock
X2O 750 Pump/Reservoir
RS240 Dual Radiator
G1/4″ to 1/2″ Barb (Black Chrome) x6
Plastic Hose Clip x6
XSPC 1650rpm 120mm Fan x2
120mm Fan Grill (Black) x2
Intel and AMD RayStorm Brackets
Socket 1366 and 1155/1154 Backplates
Socket AM2 and AM3 mounting kit
80mm to 120mm Radiator brackets
3mm Twin Blue LED with 4Pin Molex
5mm Blue LED with 4Pin Molex
2 Meters of Clear 7/16″ Hose
24pin ATX Bridge Tool
K2 Thermal Paste

One particular to take extra note of is that this kit does not come with fluid. It does however come with a bottle of IandH Dead Water (Biocide), so you will need to buy a gallon of distilled water or a liter of water cooling fluid. In spirit of “Value” I chose the first because a gallon of distilled at Wal-mart is only 88 cents which fits this value theme nicely.  Also noteworthy is the 1.8m head pump and low restriction Raystorm CPU block that should leave you with some extra pumping capacity to handle adding more to the loop later.  There are also several other nice features not expected in a value kit such as the LED modules for pump and block, the 24pin ATX bridge tool to make bleeding easy, and the external radiator mount brackets so you can install the kit on back or on top of cases with limited space.  There is quite a lot in just one box..

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i7-3930K CPU Swiftech Apogee HD

Posted: March 22, 2012 in Blocks
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Welcome to my fifth i7-3930K series of CPU block tests, the Swiftech Apogee HD.   This is Swiftech’s successor to the Apogee XT Rev2 sporting the same premium prescribed pressure and minimal loose parts mounting system in an all new top with multiple port outlets and completely redesigned base.  This new model promises an increase in thermal performance, reduced restriction, lower cost, and black, white, or gold plated (Limited Edition) brass tops.

This sample was sponsored by Gabe from Swiftech, thanks!

Manufacturer Specifications

http://www.swiftech.com/ApogeeHD.aspx#tab1

Product Details:

ap.o.gee: The farthest or highest point; the apex; a final climactic stageThe Apogee™ HD is Swiftech’s new flagship CPU waterblock. Close to 18 months in the making, it was designed to surpass its predecessor the Apogee™ XT in all critical areas:
  • Improved thermal performance with emphasis on Intel® and AMD® latest and upcoming processors: the HD is Socket LGA2011 (Intel®) and “Bulldozer” (AMD®) ready.
  • Reduced flow restriction compared to the Apogee XT Rev2.
  • Innovative features, with the introduction of the multi-port connectivity:   two more outlet ports have been added for dramatic flow rate improvements in multiple waterblock configurations and when used with the new MCRx20 Drive Rev3 radiators that now also include two additional inlet ports (3 total); read more about “Flow Parallelization” in the section below including examples and in-depth explanations.
  • Improved thermal performance out of the box with the inclusion of high performance PK1 thermal compound
  • Cosmetic appeal: the Apogee HD is now available in two colors, Classic black or Fashionable white to match high-end case offerings from NZXT™, Silverstone®, Thermaltake and many others.
  • Reduced cost of ownership.

Features:

SUMMARY
Improved Performance World’s best thermal performance based on our comparative testing, and 2ºC better than the Apogee™ XT Rev2.
Low To Moderate Flow Restriction 30% lower flow restriction than the Apogee™ XT Revision 2.
Exclusive Triple Outlet Port Design
Ability to parallelize the flow to the graphics, chipset and/or memory waterblocks to improve overall loop performance by dramatically increasing the flow rate where it matters most: in the radiator and CPU waterblock. This exclusive feature can be easily activated when the block is used in conjunction with the new MCRx20 Drive Rev3 radiators that now also include 3 inlet ports.
 
Another benefit of such setup is that it is now possible to use reduced tubing size for the devices installed in parallel without unduly taxing the pump, resulting in less clutter, and easier tube routing in cramped spaces.
Compression Fittings Compatibility Chart 

Primary Inlet/Outlet

Secondary Outlets

Primary Intlet/Outlet

Secondary Outlets

With 3/4″ Tube OD fittings Max 3/8″ tube OD fittings With 5/8″ Tube OD fittings Max 1/2″ Tube OD fittings
Fine-tuned Retention Mechanism, with universal Desktop Processor Compatibility 
Swiftech’s retention mechanism is widely recognized as the simplest and safest to use. It has been further enhanced with added attention to details and quality, such as hollowed thumb screws, and improved back-plate fabrication.
  • Adjustable screws provide compatibility with all Intel Desktop Processors:
    • Socket 1155, 1156, and 1366 (back-plate included)
    • Socket 775 (not included, mailed free of charge upon request)
    • Socket 2011 spring-screw kit is included!
  • An elegant Multi-mount hold-down plate provides compatibility with all AMD Desktop processors:  sockets 754, 939, 940, AM2, AM3, 770, F, FM1, as well as legacy Intel Server socket 771 processors. The kit is not included with the Apogee HD, but supplied for free (shipping not included), upon request.
Available in Black or White The Classic All Black will give any system the high-tech look you are looking for, or the fashionable white combined with the new MCW82, Bridges, and MCP35x pump top (also available in white) will allow you to build elegant and distinctive systems.
Shipped with High Performance Thermal Compound The Apogee™ HD ships with PK1 thermal compound highly rated by enthusiast users and reviewers (and confirmed by in-house testing) for its excellent thermal performance and ease of application.
Lower Cost More affordable than the Apogee™ XT and other top Performing Blocks on the market (the HD also includes 1/2″ fittings and clamps, whereas many of our competitors do not).
There is quite a bit of information there,  but the HD does enhance several things over the XT including thermal performance, reduced pressure drop, and reduced cost.  They also note the “Triple Outlet Port” feature which can be used to parallelize flow in more complex loops.  In addition they note that black or whilet POM material is and option, better PK1 compound is included, and cost has been reduced despite including barbs and clamps which all others do not.  In general the specifications include more information than any other block I’ve seen, perhaps a bit too much for your average user to absorb in one sitting, but still a good informative collection of information on what has changed over the previous XT.

i7-3930K CPU EK Supreme LTX

Posted: March 18, 2012 in Blocks
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Welcome to my fourth i7-3930K series of CPU block tests, the EK Supreme LTX.   This is EK’s more budget friendly “Light XTreme” version of the Supreme HF.  So this is a lower cost option without a center nozzle plate, without the metal hold down plate, and without some of the premium accessories like back-plates.  After seeing the very favorable Supreme HF Plate #6 results on the 3930K, I was really interested to see how this lighter brother would do.

This sample was sponsored by EK waterblocks, thanks!

Specifications

http://www.ekwaterblocks.com/shop/ek-supreme-ltx-en-nickel.html

Quick Overview

EK-Supreme LTX (LTX stands for Light XTreme) is a universal Intel socket CPU waterblock for the advanced enthusiast users. It has been designed to lower the production costs yet still offer the EK quality branded CPU waterblock at the best price.

Product Description

EK-Supreme LTX is the direct successor of successful EK-Supreme LT which debuted in 2007.
It’s main improvements are:
better flow: due to improved channel depth design up to 10% higher flow compared to EK-Supreme LT
– better cooling performance

The EK-Supreme LTX cooling engine uses fin design. The water (coolant) accelerates through 46 very thin channels which provide extreme cooling surface area. Very thin copper base bottom wall even further improves cooling performance.

The base plate is made of electroless nickel plated (EN) electrolytic copper lapped and polished to +/- 0.0007mm flatness. The top is made of quality cast acrylic material.

CPU socket compatibility:
– Intel LGA-775
– Intel LGA-1366
– Intel LGA-1155/1156
– Intel LGA 2011

Enclosed in the box:
– EK-Supreme LTX series water block
– Classic CPU mounting mechanism

Please note:
– Due to superior nickel plating method and corrosion resistance, the waterblock may loose brightness over time and become of a bit duller tone.

I got this sample a bit over a month ago now and it does come with some LGA2011 hardware.  The specs also note how the LTX is an improvement in both flow and cooling over the LTX.  The one obvious difference I noticed in addition to the block is the lack of a back-plate for 775/1366/1155 systems, but that’s of no consequence to LGA2011 since you don’t use one anyhow.

i7-3930K CPU EK Supreme HF Plate 6

Posted: March 16, 2012 in Blocks
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Welcome to my third i7-3930K series of CPU block tests, the EK Supreme HF Plate#6 Copper/Plexi.   I had previously reviewed and tested this block using the older P3 (Double slot nozzle) with my 2600K, however since that time EK has released a new and improved P6 nozzle plate which is a larger single slot nozzle.  Using the p3 nozzle the Supreme HF P3 did well on the 2600K but a little behind thermally than other top blocks.  Now that I had my new much larger 3930K system up and running I was looking forward to giving it a retest with the new nozzle plate.

EK sent me the new P6 plate recently and I have the old June P3 packaging, so this review is more of a P6/3930K test update rather than a full review.  I did however save a bunch of my old review photos and will share with notes indicating what has changed since then.

This sample was sponsored by EK waterblocks, thanks!

Specifications

http://www.ekwaterblocks.com/shop/blocks/cpu-blocks/ek-supreme-hf.html

Product Description

EK-Supreme HF (HF stands for High Flow; revised version) is a universal CPU socket waterblock designed for the most hardcore enthusiast users.

EK-Supreme HF is a direct successor of the world renown EK-Supreme waterblock launched in 2007.
It’s main improvements are:
better flow: due to improved design up to 70% higher flow compared to EK-Supreme
better cooling performance: up to 4°C lower CPU temperatures

The EK-Supreme HF’s cooling engine uses fin design. The water (coolant) accelerates through thin jet plate’s channels and turbolently continues it’s path through 49 very thin channels which provide extreme cooling surface area. Very thin copper base bottom wall even further improves cooling performance.

The waterblock is already equipped with best performing jet #6.

The base plate is made of electrolytic copper lapped and polished to +/- 0.0007mm flatness. The top is made of quality cast acrylic material. Mounting plate is made of black painted steel.

CPU socket compatibility:
– Intel LGA-775
– Intel LGA-1366
– Intel LGA-1155/1156
– Intel LGA-2011
– AMD Sockets: 939, 754, 940
– AMD Sockets: AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+

Enclosed in the box:
– EK-Supreme HF series water block
– EK-CPU Easy Mount HF mounting mechanism with LGA-2011 add-on
– Universal Intel LGA mounting plate (preinstalled)
– Additional universal AMD Socket mounting plate
– Universal CPU retention backplate
– TIM / thermal grease: Arctic Cooling MX-4 (1.6g)

Please note:
– With introduction of new easy mount mechanism, additional jet plates were removed from box. Despite this EKWB made sure the best performing jet plate is being preinstalled.

I have highlighted the LGA specs since it does note something about an “LGA2011 add-on”.  My package was from June 2011, so I did not have this included at the time, but as of November 2011 new packages have the 2011 hardware.

http://www.ekwaterblocks.com/index.php?mact=News,cntnt01,detail,0&cntnt01articleid=112&cntnt01returnid=17

Welcome to the another Raystorm test, this time the all metal premium Raystorm Copper block on my new 3930K processor.  The Raystorm turned out to be an excellent performing block in both 2600K performance and restriction, yet there was only an acetal top with acrylic hold down version until now.  The copper top is the same high performance design constructed out of more durable metal materials.  I tend to personally favor the use of metal top blocks myself too, so when XSPC asked if I would be interested in reviewing a copper top, I was happy to accept.

Before reviewing, I’d like to give special thanks to Paul from XSPC for sponsoring this sample product!

Features/Specs

First, let’s look at the manufacturer’s specifications:

Special edition all copper waterblock with a CNC cut aluminium bracket. The best performing CPU waterblock just got better.

– Designed for Multi Core CPU’s
– High Performance Copper Base 56x56x3mm
– CNC Cut Copper Top
– CNC Cut Aluminium Bracket
– G1/4″ Threads
– Compatible with Most Compression Fittings
– Supports Sockets LGA775, 1156, 1155 and 1366

Supplied with mounting hardware, 775, 1156/1155, and 1366 backplates,
allen key, and K2 thermal paste.

Of special note is the CNC Cut “Copper” top and “Aluminum” bracket.  The original Raystorm is made from plastic acetal/delrin and acrylic for the bracket (hold down).