Posts Tagged ‘Apogee’

i7-3930K CPU Swiftech Apogee HD

Posted: March 22, 2012 in Blocks
Tags: , , , , , , ,

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

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.


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.

Continuing the i7 – 2600K based CPU block testing is the latest offering from Swiftech, the Apogee XT Rev 2. This is actually more of a revision 2 upgrade review rather than a complete review since the block itself is only a minor update and retains all of the Revision 1 external features and mounting mechanism. This is good because the XT exterior is arguable one of my own personal favorites visually, and the mounting mechanism is without a doubt the easiest to use on the market.  This upgrade review is my fifth in my series of i7 2600K CPU block reviews.

While I purchased the original XT rev 1 block myself, Swiftech offered to sponsor sending me the upgrade XT rev2 housing that is now available for existing XT revision 1 users.  Also any users purchasing an XT rev2 block would also be receiving this housing upgrade as part of a complete block package. A special thanks to Gabe from Swiftech for sponsoring this testing XT Rev2 update!

Packaging Photos & Information

My package arrived very quickly direct from Swiftech in your typical box in a box with ample protection.  Since this was just a housing upgrade, the box is fairly small:

Upon opening the box, you are greeted with the housing wrapped in packing paper surrounded by layers of white foam.  In addition to the housing was an allen wrench and new housing screws contained in a plastic bag.  Finally at the back is a bill of materials with an assembly parts diagram that serves as your instructions.

I believe my package is unique and also included the chrome inlet plate insert.  I think normally the housing package only includes the gunmetal gray portion and screws, but mine came as shown below.  From the exterior, the Rev 2 is identical to the Rev 1.

However, when you flip the block over, that’s when you see the change.  The internal ceiling to the copper pins is now tapered down reducing the restriction and increasing flow.

To better show the difference between XT revision 1, and XT revision 2, I’m including the following side by side photo.  Same exact top except for those tapered sides, which per Swiftech reduces restriction while retaining the same performance.  Swiftech has always been very forthcoming in providing real testing information and data with their products, many times at or even before product launches.

So, that’s the change.  If you want detail on the rest of the block, please visit my Apogee XT revision 1 test here.  This review is intended to be a supplement to that original review by simply showing you the above and my testing results.

Welcome to my third in a series of CPU block tests I’ll be working on for the new i7-2600K processor.  This is Swiftech’s flagship water-block the Apogee XT in revision 1 format.  Swiftech is now also shipping a revision 2 which is essentially the same block with less restriction and the same thermal performance.  So while this isn’t the latest revision it should be equal in terms of thermal performance and essentially the same block other than restriction.  I tested the Apogee GTZ in my Q6600 roundup and was looking forward to getting my hands on the latest design.

This sample I purchased myself from one of my favorite water cooling shops, sidewinder computers.  While perusing sidewinder, I noticed they had the XT rev 1 on sale for $20 off normal, so I couldn’t resist and wanted to see how it would do on my new i7 2600K since there is so little testing on these latest cores.  If you haven’t already shopped there, I would highly recommend it…one of the very best shops in all of water cooling to order from stateside.

I personally chose the Apogee XT because of my previous experience with the Apogee GTZ and it’s inherited modern mounting system.  With the smaller i7 2600K core, I had hopes that the more controlled mounting system on the XT would provide some performance/consistency benefit.  The XT in other reviews also performed pretty well, and I liked the looks of it…so I wanted to see one for myself.


  • Easy Mount System ( Tool free and no loose parts!)
  • Complete Intel Package (Includes back-plates, barbs, clamps, TIM, manual)
  • All metal construction (brass top, copper base, steel hold downs and back-plates)
  • Hold Downs and back plates for Intel (1155,1156,1366)
  • G 1/4 BSP threading Alternate inlet option provide large compression compatibility
  • Plating to prevent brass oxidation (Base copper is bare)
  • Bowed Base

Packaging & Contents

It comes in a plain black box with a white printed sticker of which my sample was hard to read due to handling and storage of the blocks having worn the light print over time.

Opening the box reveals the user guide and 1155/1156 hold down above the block. Clamps and TIM on the right, and barbs in back.  The block mounting system itself is actually serving dual purpose here to protect the block which is unique and clever.

Package Contents, barbs and clamps included..

The package includes pretty much everything you need for Intel 1155,1156, & 1366 users planning 1/2″ barb systems, but lacking pieces for 775, AMD, or 3/8″ barb users.

  • 775 users will need to contact Swiftech for a free 775 back plate.
  • AMD users will have to order the AMD kit separately for compatibility.

There is an installation guide provided that is also available via web PDF download. Swiftech provides the installation guides for the XT you can view prior or later and print (IN COLOR) if you so desire:

The intel installation guide is under the “Documentation” heading near the bottom of the page and the same as the black/white version included in the package. It’s a fairly simple 4 step guide that should be enough to get most people going, but it’s not extremely detailed.  For example, there isn’t any mention of the center vs alternate inlet plate, which backplate is which, etc.

Black and white double sided letter sized user guide

The package also does come with Artic Ceramique TIM compound, but I would suggest something better such as MX-2 for an extra boost in performance.


Overall the packaging was good for me and all 1155/1156/1366 users, but absent of all that’s needed for AMD and 775 users (will need to order/request separately).  The user’s manual was also a bit limited, but a good place to start and more than I would read anyhow having installed blocks before.  Swiftech is generally very generous in their packaging accessories, and that’s consistent here as well.  Many blocks do not come with a back plate, let alone a set of nice metal barbs and clamps, so I was very pleased with the package as an 1155 user.  Really the only thing I didn’t use was the 1366 bracket and TIM tube..the rest was put to good use..:)