PC Specialist Announce Stunning Liquid Series Range

PC Specialist has quickly forged a reputation as one of the best system integrators on the market and constantly strives to provide the best possible user experience. Custom water cooling looks spectacular and offers excellent overclocking headroom but it can be extremely daunting for novices. As a result, many people opt for closed-loop-coolers like the H110i GT because of the simplicity. Unfortunately, the majority of these Asetek-based units are bland and struggle to evoke a premium finish. Today, PC Specialist has launched their brand new liquid series designed to cater towards customers wanting a gorgeous custom loop without the headache of sourcing compatible parts.

The new range covers both Z170 and X99 chipsets which allows you to select a system which suits your power requirements. Pricing starts from £1291.00 and includes a standard three-year warranty. The basic Z170 system opts for Mayhems X1 UV Blue coolant, an i5-6600K overclocked up to 4.6GHz, 8GB HyperX Fury 2133MHz RAM, EVGA GTX 970 SC, 1TB mechanical hard disk and Corsair RM850. Of course, you can customise the specification and improve the CPU, memory capacity and more.

In addition to the generous warranty, you can purchase a service pack for £149.00 which includes:

  • Collection & Return of Liquid Series PC
  • Full drain of the loop
  • Flush and clean the loop (including Pumps, Blocks, Reservoirs & Fittings)
  • Replace all tubing & refill loop with new coolant.
  • 24 Hours Leak & Stress Test

The liquid series implements the highest level of expertise and component selection. For example, braided cables are deployed to form an absolutely stunning aesthetic design. Here we can see some of the creations you can expect under the liquid series brand:

If you’re interested in a liquid series system please visit this link to browse the extensive catalogue and perhaps make an order. In the next few days, a review sample will be arriving and I cannot wait to analyse the system in extensive detail. So far, I’m really impressed with the range and believe it’s a great addition to PC Specialist’s impressive line-up.

Antec Kuhler H20 H1200 & H600 Pro Water Cooler Review

Introduction


Antec is one of the biggest names in the PC component market, with many years of experience in creating chassis, cooler, power supplies and more.  With Antec having created so many products over the years, it’s more than likely you’ve owned a few of their components over the years, so it’s great to see them continue to push the limits. Antec has been a little behind in the cooling market recently, as their last range of Kuhler H20 products didn’t exactly capture the imaginations of the market, but their latest versions, the H1200 Pro and the H600 Pro look set to change that.

Maximum cooling thanks to large copper base plate and high-performance radiator

“To achieve the best results when used with overclocked processors, both Kühler H2O H600 PRO and H1200 PRO are equipped with a large copper base plate that efficiently transfers heat from any AMD or Intel processor to the radiator. For maximum performance, H600 PRO and H1200 PRO feature a precisely constructed radiator with a 0.2 mm fin interval. The dimensions of the radiator are 275 mm x 120 mm x 27 mm for the H1200 and 155 mm x 120 mm x 27 mm for the H600.” – Antec

The new range features a 120mm and a 240mm slim radiator design, with an AIO (all in one) water cooling setup that aims to deliver high-end performance, flawless designs and best of all, wallet-friendly prices. Spec for spec, the latest Antec products are often half the price of their next big competitor, so it’ll be interesting to see if they can keep up with some of the more established AIO coolers on the market, especially at such competitive prices. If they can, then Antec are about to win over a huge part of the PC system building market.

Extremely quiet operation meets tremendous power

“Despite their excellent cooling performance, H600 PRO and H1200 PRO operate extremely quiet. This is due to the high-quality blue LED 120 mm fans that can reach up to 2,400 revolutions per minute. In addition, the enclosed pump impeller is near completely silent while delivering a pressure of 2.3 meters of water. The pump achieves this exceptional pressure thanks to the higher rotational speed of the winding type three-phase motor, maximising cooling performance for any PC system. For clean cable management, the pump is powered by a SATA interface.” – Antec

High build quality for exceptional durability

All components used for the Kühler H2O H600 PRO and H1200 PRO systems impress with their outstanding build quality and durability. The oil-free lubrication graphite bearing has a service life of up to 150,000 hours. The service life of the carbon metal crystalline ceramic axis is also 50 times longer than that of common models.” – Antec

We’ve got both models in the eTeknix office today and will be putting them head to head with each other, as well as a wide range of aftermarket coolers from many other brands, so it’ll be exciting to see how they perform. As you can see, both coolers come in a stylishly designed box, with a nice image of the product on the front and the main specifications, although I don’t think that lightning effect on the H600 is a feature, obviously.

The H1200 comes bundled with two lovely 120mm blue LED fans, each fitted with a standard PWM connector, anti-vibration screw holes and clear fan blades. It also comes bundled with a Y-splitter, so you only need a single motherboard header to connect them. The H600 comes with just one of these fans, which also means it doesn’t include the Y-splitter.

The fans are certainly of a nice quality and they’re Antec’s own design; having personally used a lot of Antec fans in the past, I have high hopes for their performance.

Both the H600 and the H1200 come with the same set of components, with the exception of the extra fan and Y-splitter for the H1200. You’ll find a universal backplate, AMD and Intel mounting brackets, a small tube of thermal paste, and all black fittings for the screws and other mounting hardware.

Both coolers come nicely packaged in protective cardboard, with durable plastic bag coverings on all major hardware, as well as some thick air pockets to help prevent any of it moving around in transit.

Asetek Pursuing Legal Action to Remove Fury X From Sale

Asetek produces the majority of closed-loop liquid coolers including the Corsair H110, Thermaltake Water 3.0 Ultimate and many more! Arguably, they created the concept for a sealed unit and all-in-one block, tubing and radiator design. As a result, Asetek has sued or threatened legal action against any other company utilizing a closed-loop configuration without their consent. For example, a judge told Cooler Master to pay 14.5% in royalties to Asetek as their Seidon, Nepton, and Glacer products infringed the company’s patent.

Theoretically, this means that the Fury X could be removed from sale as the pump is made by Cooler Master and utilizes a Swiftech rebrand pulled from US markets. Some of you might remember the H220 and H320 from Swiftech, which were absolutely stunning coolers, but the company decided to remove them from sale to avoid any expensive lawsuits. Swiftech eventually manufactured the the H220-X and H240-X but these are still very hard to get hold of in certain regions.

In an interview with GamersNexus, Asetek revealed their current legal proceedings and confirmed they had made Cease & Desist orders to AMD:

“Asetek’s attorneys have recently sent cease and desist letters to Gigabyte, demanding that it cease selling Giga-Byte’s GEFORCE GTX 980 Water Force (sold under at least model number GV-N980WAOC-4GD) because it contains the Seidon 120M found by the court to infringe Asetek’s patents.” 

“Asetek’s attorneys have also written a cease and desist letter to AMD, demanding that it stop selling its Radeon R9 Fury X product, because it infringes Asetek’s patents.  Our attorneys have had some difficulty obtaining a Gigabyte GV-N98TXTREME W-6GD, but we expect to receive and analyze one very soon for infringement.”

Additionally, they went onto discuss the Cooler Master lawsuit, and illegal activity in question:

“There is no licensing agreement in place with Cooler Master, nor do we plan to offer any in the foreseeable future.  Asetek sued Cooler Master and CMI USA, Inc. (Cooler Master’s US affiliate) for infringement of Asetek’s US Patent Nos. 8,240,362 and 8,245,764, and the jury found that the Cooler Master products at issue infringe Asetek’s patents and awarded damages to Asetek.  The judge also entered an injunction prohibiting Cooler Master and CMI USA from importing or selling the accused products in the US, and the judge awarded enhanced damages because of continued sales after the jury’s verdict.  The injunction states ‘[a]s used herein, Infringing Products shall mean the following Cooler Master products: Seidon 120M, Seidon 120XL, Seidon 240M, Seidon 120V, Seidon 120V Plus, Nepton 140XL, [Nepton 280L], Glacer 240L, and products not more than colorably different from them.’”

The legal outcomes so far have set a pretty strong precedent illustrating Asetek’s valid patents for closed-loop liquid coolers. It’s not an idea situation for other companies trying to enter the market, but the only option is to discuss the matter with Asetek to pay royalties. Nevertheless, it will be a disaster if the Fury X is removed from sale until an Asetek pump replaces Cooler Master’s illegal design.

Do you think Asetek is behaving fairly?

EK WB Releases DBAY D5 MX Reservoirs and Pump Combos

EK Water Blocks released a new drive bay liquid cooling reservoir that comes in four different versions. The new DBAY D5 MX comes as PWM version with included water pump or without and it is available as both Acetal and Plexi versions.

Space restraints can be an issue when building a liquid cooled setup and the use of the available and mostly otherwise obsolete 5.25-inch drive bays, one can make up for that. The new EK DBAY MX fits conveniently over two of these drive bay slots to cover both the function of a reservoir and a pump. It also makes the entire planning a lot easier, especially for beginners. The two reservoirs are identical besides the point that the EK-DBAY D5 PWM MX comes with a D5 PWM pump included and mounted and the EK-DBAY D5 MX doesn’t.

It is made from injection molded black ABS polymer (Acetal version) or injection molded transparent MABS polymer (Plexi version) and in a sturdy monoblock design that guarantees maximum reliability and rigidity. The reservoir features a G3/8″ threaded port on the top that acts as a fill port and a G1//4″ threaded on the bottom when the unit needs to be drained. Besides that it features two normal G1/4″ threaded ports for normal in and outbound flows.

Integrated anti-cyclone is pre-installed and made from acrylic glass effectively prevents excessive vortex formation of the liquid. EK-DBAY D5 MX series is designed with anti-vibration rubber mounting system. This floating design effectively silences this pump and reservoir setup by de-coupling it from the rest of the computer chassis.

The new EK-DBAY D5 is available now and it can be yours for €64.95 without the pump or €129.95 for the combo package.

AMD R9 Fury X Production Could Be Halted by Cooler Master Lawsuit

The AMD Radeon R9 Fury X could be facing a complicated production issue due to a legal battle surrounding the Cooler Master closed-loop pump. Back in 2014, Asetek, the manufacturer of many all-in-one liquid coolers such as the Corsair H110, won a patient infringement case against Cooler Master. The final verdict awarded Asetek a 14.5% royalty share on all Cooler Master liquid coolers sold throughout the USA. In total this includes the Seidon 120V, 120V Plus, 120M, 120XL, Nepton 140XL, Seidon 240M, Glacer 240L and Nepton 280L.

Cooler Master’s entire range of liquid cooled products are bound by the royalty fee and cannot be sold in the USA due to an injunction. As a result, it’s theoretically possible that the Fury X pump could become a major issue given its Cooler Master branding and manufacturing deal. CoolIT recently settled a lawsuit with Asetek after manufacturing Corsair’s latest H110 GT liquid cooler. In 2013, Swiftech had to halt production of the H220 and H320 all-in-one coolers due to the Asetek lawsuit and produced the revised H220-X and H240-X designs which didn’t infringe on the patent.

This patent war has been an arduous process and other companies selling closed-liquid-coolers could face similar legal wranglings in the future. Yesterday, Cooler Master’s fate was sealed as their appeal was dismissed and increased the royalty rate to 25.375% on infringing products from January 2015. It’s unknown how this will affect the Fury X’s market position in the USA, but the news is rather worrying.

Thank you GamersNexus for providing us with this information.

SilverStone Tundra TD03-Lite AIO CPU Cooler Review

Introduction


We first reviewed the Silverstone TD03 just over a year ago, and I was thoroughly impressed with its build quality, performance and overall design. The TD03 is one of the best coolers in its class, but the only downside that I can see is that it was a little expensive; although you get what you pay for. Today, I’ll be taking a look at the TD03-Lite, a cooler that takes what we knew about the original, but for a much lower price and to reflect that, a few of the design features have been cut back to keep the cost down, offering the product to a much wider market, but has this had an effect on the performance? Let’s find out!

The specifications from the TD03-Lite are promising and the cooler comes equipped with a high-quality 120mm PWM fan, an aluminium 120mm radiator and copper contact block.

The packaging reflects SilverStones budget intentions, a brown box with printed decals, nothing fancy, but a box is just a box after all.

Everything comes neatly packaged in a custom shape carton, with separate compartments for all the major compartments and protective plastic over all sensitive hardware.

The included fan is a 120mm x 25mm design, with a black flat 4-pin PWM cable.

The fan features a 9-blade design and shaped edges to help better direct airflow, reduce noise and improve overall performance.

The included mounting kit supports Intel and AMD, comes with a universal backplate, Molex adaptor, all the required screws and a syringe of thermal paste.

The cooler is nothing too fancy, but it’s certainly presentable. It’s appearance isn’t much different from most 120mm AIO water coolers, with a black radiator, two thick hoses and of course, the CPU block/pump.

The radiator is a slim design, so it should be compatible with a wide range of system builds.The aluminium radiator is pretty straightforward in terms of design and the all-black design means it should easily blend into your system with ease.

The pump is the biggest changes here, the TD03 had a metal housing, while the Lite has plastic. It’s nicely finished and features a nice logo on the top with some small blue LED indicators just behind the logo for some added flair.

The Intel brackets are pre-fitted for a quick and easy installation, but a few screws are all that need to be tweaked to remove it and install the AMD brackets which were included in the box. The pump comes with a 3-pin header, so you’ll need two fan headers on your motherboard; one for the pump, one for the fan.

The copper contact plate is huge, so it should offer lots of coverage on a wide range of CPU types. It’s also well polished and this should help you get a nice uniform fit.

Thermaltake Water 3.0 Extreme S CPU Cooler Review

Introduction


Thermaltake have created some fantastic coolers in recent years, with a range that covers everything from air, to water, budget to premium, including their new and rather stunning custom loop water cooling gear. The model we’re looking at today covers several categories, it’s an AIO water cooler, which promises the high-end cooling thrills of their other water coolers, with a more affordable price tag, making it very attractive to those investing in their first water-cooled setup.

Check out the quick overview video below to find out why Thermaltake stripped down some of the features on this cooler and why that’s a good thing for (most) consumers.

The packaging is colourful and has all the major specification information on there that you will need.

The interior is pretty much what we see with all AIO coolers, a carton with protective bags overall smaller hardware components to keep them safe.

A pair of double curved fans, which can operate between 1200 and 2000 RPM, each fitted with a standard PWM connector and a black braided cable.

There’s no shortage of mounting options on offer, with separate rings and backplates for both Intel and AMD, 2011 screws, fan and chassis screws and even a Y-split PWM cable for the fans.

The radiator and pump are nicely designed, but also pretty standard. Those looking for something unique may want to look elsewhere, but it’s certainly presentable.

The radiator is a slim design, maximizing compatibility with most systems, while the 240mm length provides a good amount of surface area to dissipate heat from your CPU.

Two slim and long hoses mean that it’ll be easy to fit the pump inside your system, whether you have a small chassis, or a large one. The back of the pump has a Thermaltake logo on it, which looks pretty cool.

Pre-applied thermal paste is great for a quick and easy install, but there is no extra paste included, so you’ll need more if you plan to re-install in the future.

We won’t be using the stock paste of course, so I’ve cleaned it off. As you can see, we’ve got a good size copper contact plate and lots of screws providing a snug fit for the pump housing.

EK Water Blocks Introduced EK-XRES MX Reservoir and Pump Combo

EK Water Blocks is a top player when it comes to liquid cooling and they prove again that a great liquid cooling setup doesn’t has to be neither complicated nor expensive. They introduced the new EK-XRES MX reservoir and pump combo that is available both as a complete standalone unit powered by Laing DDC 3.2 PWM pump as well as a separate upgrade for any Laing DDC series liquid cooling pump.

The EK-XRES 100 DDC MX is a reduced cost variant of EK-XRES 100 DDC reservoir that has been designed to lower the production costs yet still offer premium hydraulic performance at the best price. This unit is a high-performance aftermarket pump top with an integrated reservoir for Laing DDC series water pumps. It is made from injection-moulded ABS material and 60mm OD Acrylic glass cylinder. The hydraulic performance has been increased up to 15% compared to the factory top.

The EK-XRES 100 DDC MX comes with an anti-vibration mounting mechanism based on a dampening rubber mount system that effectively de-couples the pump from the rest of the chassis. The reservoirs can easily be upgraded with longer reservoir cylinder tubes as well as additional DDC upgrades such as Heatsink Housing.

All products are already available for purchase where the EX-XRES 100 DDC MX 3.2 PWM with pump will set you back €106.95, the EK-XRES 100DDC MX Acetal €34.95, and the EK-UNI Holder DDC Spider €4.95.

Does The AMD Radeon Fury X Radiator Feature a Built-in Pump?

The AMD Radeon Fury X looks set to be a truly amazing graphics card and details just keep cropping up out of the blue. We first saw it on 3D Mark Fire Strike and everyone just went crazy. Soon after, the rumoured GPU was officially confirmed and we even came across some amazing pics of AMD’s monstrous Fury X, NVIDIA Titan X’s true competitor. But something was interesting when we took a closer look at them. Can you spot it?

I’ll give you a hint. It’s near the humongous radiator. Still having a hard time figuring out? Ok then, we will tell you. The key element that we thought was odd is the 3-pin connector which can be seen in the pics below. We even highlighted it for you this time.

So what could this mean? Well, our first thought and the best bet is that it could come with a built-in pump. And guess what? We have found what fan is pictured too!

It’s a Scythe 120mm fan, which makes it just 25mm thick. This means there is plenty of room for a pump in the middle of the radiator and lots of space for a reservoir at the base. Clever, but I think we’ve seen something similar in the past as well. And we did! Antec had a similar All-in-One (AIO) series as shown in the pic above, so this approach may be seen here on the Fury X radiator too. This means we are looking at a solid water cooling solution here, making the Fury X true GPU beast.

 

Images courtesy of GEARNUKE and Scythe

The Swiftech MCR140-X AIO Pump, Radiator and Reservoir Revealed

Swiftech is well-known for their great looking water cooling gear, but their new all-in-one radiator, pump and reservoir unit, the MCR140-X Drive, sure is ugly!

The new unit features a 25mm thick 140mm radiator, but features an extended housing on the rear that allows them cram in the reservoir and the pump. This means it is a custom loop equivalent of an all-in-one unit. You simply plumb the unit into your existing CPU or GPU water cooling block and you’re good to go.

It’s pretty garish in terms of design, but what it lacks in looks, it oozes in practicality. Suddenly you’re able to cram all this custom loop equipment into a massively compressed space. This could prove extremely useful for those wanting to use something like a GPU water cooling block in a small form factor chassis.

It comes equipped with a SATA power connector for its 1200 – 3000RPM pump, there is an additional fill port, a side window to view coolant levels and it features G1/4 fittings. The unit should be available immediately with prices of around $89.99 US.

We look forward to finding out how well this unit performs in real world test.

Thank you TechPowerUp for providing us with this information.

Images courtesy of TechPowerUp

Raijintek Triton AIO CPU Water Cooler Now Available

Raijintek have just launched their new Triton CPU water cooling unit. The Triton works like an all-in-one water cooler, but it retains the cool style of a custom water cooling loop. Equipped with a high-quality 240mm Raijintek radiator, 2 x 120mm Raijintek fans, clear pipes to show off your choice of cooling fluid and a unique pump/CPU block design with a clear chamber and internal LED lighting. The cooler comes pre-filled with clear fluid, but it’s also supplied with three dyes to allow you to customise it to your own build.

This is easily one of the best looking CPU coolers I’ve ever seen and I’ve heard rumours from industry friends that the performance is going to blow the competition away. What has really gotten my attention about this cooler, aside from the fact that it looks incredible, aside from the fact that it’s said to offer industry leading performance, is the fact that it is priced at just £69.99!

  • 240mm Aluminium Radiator
  • Low-noise pump with graphite pipe
  • Nickel-plated copper cold plate
  • Resevoir with 2 Integrated LED’s
  • Red, Green, Blue or Transparent Coolant
  • 2 x 120mm fans, Manually adjustable
  • Easy & Secure installation
  • Compatible to almost all sockets

Specifications

  • Fan Dimension 120 x 120 x 25 (mm)
  • Fan Speed 1000 – 2600 RPM
  • Fan Airflow 38.889 – 100.455 CFM
  • Fan Air Pressure 0.744 -4.819mm H2O
  • Fan Noise Level 21.6 – 41.6 dBA
  • Fan Rated output 0.08 – 0.48 A
  • Power Consumption 0.96 – 5.76 W
  • Connector 3 pin
  • Radiator Dimensions 275 x 120 x 32 (mm)
  • Radiator Material 100% Aluminium
  • Pump Dimensions 38 x 56 x39 (mm)
  • Pump Bearingh Type Graphite Pipe and Ceramix Axis
  • Pump Q-Max 120L/Hr
  • Pump noise 18 dBA
  • Pump Life Expectancy 50,000 hours
  • Pump Speed 3000 RPM @ 12v DC
  • Pump Power 4 W
  • Copper Cold Plate
  • 2 year warranty

The Triton AIO water cooler is already available for pre-order from Overclockers UK and you can expect a full review from us in the very near future.

[youtube width=”800″ height=”450″]http://youtu.be/14F_6NNEN9Y[/youtube]

NZXT Kraken All-In-One CPU Cooler Roundup Review

Introduction


NZXT had a great success story with the X40 and X60 CPU coolers, but since they launched we’ve seen several rivals come in and steal their thunder, so NZXT have gone back to the drawing board, adding new features and tweaking the specifications of their popular Kraken range to bring them back into the game.

I’m a big fan of NZXT coolers, I personally use their Kraken X60 280mm all-in-one water cooler on my own CPU and I’m very happy with the performance it offers. So I’m eager to find out how well these new models perform and what new features NZXT have to offer.

The biggest change for the new Kraken coolers is the pump; they’re the first consumer model all-in-one coolers to features Aseteks new variable speed pump, something often associated with custom loop water cooling and yet another indication of how far all-in-one cooler technology has been progressing.

I’ve got three new models at my disposal today; the 120mm X31, the 140mm X41 and the 280mm X61 and I’ll be putting them all on the test bench to see how they stack up against each other and against the competition.

All of the coolers come really well packaged in a custom molded cardboard carton to protect all of the major components, with various protective bags and covers helping to prevent any damage in transit.

In the box of each you will find the fan, a simple install guide, a set of high quality fittings, a universal back plate and an AMD bracket (the Intel one is pre-applied to the CPU block.

Swiftech H220-X CPU Liquid Cooling Kit Now Available

Swiftech have just revealed that their new all-in-one liquid CPU cooling kit, the H220-X, is now available. The Patent pending H220-X is part of Switftech’s next-generation of all-in-one CPU coolers. It features a dual 120mm copper radiator, combined with an enthusiast grade pump and water-block.

The cooler, like any high quality cooler, has been designed with low-noise and extreme thermal performance in mind. For your average consumers, you’ll find it works just like any other close loop cooler; it’ll be plug-and-play ready and will not require maintenance within its 3-year warranty period. Those wanting a more enthusiast product will reap the benefits of easily customisable parts; the tubing and fittings can easily be changed out for something else, and the powerful pump can easily drive enough power to feed an extended loop for graphics cards and extra radiators.

One unique aspect of the H220-X is that the pump is fully integrated into the radiator, rather than being on the waterblock. The dual 120mm copper and brass radiator features a built-in backlit reservoir with a visible coolant level, and it’s all hooked up to Swiftech’s recently released flagship Apogee XL waterblock.

The new cooler should start appearing at retailers soon with an MSRP of $139.95.

Thank you TechPowerUp for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of TechPowerUp.

Fractal Design Reveal New AIO Water Cooling Products At Computex 2014

Computex 2014: Fractal Design are well known for their high-end chassis products and robust power supplies, but now they’re reaching further out into the components market with  the release of their very first cooling products. Not only are they now preparing to launch their first range of all-in-one water coolers, but they’re also pushing AIO coolers to the next level with the release of a stunning 360mm unit, something I’ve never seen before outside of the custom loop market.

Three models will be available, a 120mm thick radiator, 240mm slim and 360mm slim, all fitted with Fractal Design fans, a custom pump design, copper radiators and our first hand impression is that the design and build quality are superb. No details on figures just yet, but Fractal say that their 360mm has big benefits over the top offerings from Corsair, Enermax and NZXT.

We’ll have them in for review in a few weeks and more details on pricing and release date will follow very soon.

Coolermaster Nepton 140XL & 280L All-In-One CPU Water Cooler Review

Introduction


The water cooling market offers up some very fierce competition these days, there are so many great products to choose from that it is becoming harder and harder to find a product that is best for your system. The overall quality and performance of all-in-one water coolers has been increasing steadily over the years and with every company trying their hardest to be the best it’s near impossible to buy a poor water cooler, so long as you stick with brand names such as Enermax, Corsair, Cooler Master, Antec, etc. Cooler Master have long been a popular choice for CPU coolers, many of their air and water cooling products have won awards year after year for their performance and that’s something we’re hoping to see reflected again here today. With a few rival products recently launched the Nepton does have some tough competition on their hands, but the Nepton has proven to be a great product before, and these new ones promise to be even better.

In the office today I have not one, but two new product from the Nepton range and I’ll be putting the new Nepton 140XL 140mm cooler and the Nepton 280L head to head to see what they have to offer, while also seeing how they stack up against the competition. Obviously we’re expecting the bigger, more expensive 280L to perform better, but we really want to find out how much better. When you’re out shopping for a new CPU cooler, it’s important to balance your budget and performance needs, perhaps you’ll discover that the 140XL is more than enough for your rig, or if you’re in the market for the 140XL, you might find out that you really need the bigger 280L.

Check out what Cooler Master had to say about their two latest products:

“The Nepton 140XL is Cooler Master’s latest watercooling kit that aims to bring watercooling to the next level. Nepton 140XL is using CM exclusive designed pump with effective waterblock. It has thicker and longer tubing for upgraded performance. In addition, dual JetFlo 140 fans + 38mm thick radiator also provide great cooling ability for over 300Watt heat dissipation, which enable user to overclock CPU to maximum performance.”

“The Nepton 280L is Cooler Master’s latest watercooling kit that aims to bring watercooling to the next level. Nepton 280L is using a CM exclusive designed pump with a highly effective water block. It has thicker and longer tubing for upgraded performance. In addition, dual JetFlo 140 fans + an extra large 280mm radiator provide substantial cooling power with over 300W heat dissipation, which enables users to overclock their CPU and maximize performance.”

With the 140XL costing around £75 and the 280L around £90, there is no doubt that these are high-end, premium grade products, so they’ll be competing with products from NZXT, Corsair and Enermax (to name but a few) for the money in your wallet, so let’s get right to it and take a look at what they have to offer and see which one would be best for your next system build.

Both of the coolers come nicely packaged, with plenty of details on the front of each box letting you know that they’re maintenance free, feature improved UltraFine Micro Channel CPU cooler blocks and durable tubing. The boxes are nicely laid out with protective plastic over the fans, radiator and pump.

All the fittings, brackets and other components are in a plastic pouch, keeping them safe in transit and preventing them from scratching up your new cooler.

In the box you’ll find all the fittings you could possibly need; a multi-socket back plate, fan Y-split cable, thermal paste, AMD and Intel mounts, spacers, screws and clips. This is the pile of components for the Nepton 140XL, but we’ll skip over the components for the 280L as they’re 100% the same.

Both the 140 and the 280 come with two identical 140mm fans. Both are high quality, nicely designed fans with black sleeved cables to help provide a clean overall design, while also featuring firm rubber pads on each corner to help reduce noise and vibration.

Enermax Liqtech 120mm & 240mm AIO Water Cooler Review

Introduction


It was just over a year ago that Enermax first entered the water cooling market with their ELC 240 and 120 all-in-one water coolers and while we loved their overall performance, Enermax needed to be just that little bit more competitive to take the crown from the slightly better Corsair range at that time. Since then, the water cooling market has become saturated with great products and some impressive budget ranges that make finding the best product harder than ever.

Their new Liqtech range looks set to take the premium end of the all-in-one water cooling market by storm. Everything has been tweaked and improved to offer a high quality, high performance product. The only downside of it being targeted at the upper end of the market is that the new coolers are not cheap. However, paying a little extra is no problem, so long as the actual quality and performance are there to ease the burden of the price tag. The Liqtech 120X will set you back around £79.90, which the Liqtech 240 should be priced around £99.90.

Air cooling is more than enough for most users, even for an overclocked high-end i5 or i7 CPU you can get do just fine with a product that costs no more than £40 and still get great temperatures, acoustics and performance. Water cooling, especially custom loop water cooling, can cost hundred of pounds to get all the required components and requires a lot of maintenance and a fair bit of skill to install. The advantage of an all in one unit such as the Liqtech is that it requires almost no knowledge of water cooling, you just bolt it into your chassis, attach the block to the CPU and you’re good to go. Minimal maintenance, easy installation and a much lower cost than custom loops are just some of the reasons that all in one units are so attractive to system builders. While I know I said you can get great performance from air cooling, water coolers typically offer even greater cooling performance and nine times out of ten, significantly quieter acoustics.

As you can see from the specifications below, both coolers come with wide support for all major socket types, a high quality pump, 310mm long rubber tubes and 2 x high quality Enermax Twister Pressure fans with 4-pin PWM connections.

The coolers both come nicely packaged and wrapped to keep them protected prior to use. In the box of each you will find the following:

  • Liqtech 120 Liquid Cooler (ELC-LT120X-HP) or Liqtech 240 Liquid Cooler (ELC-LT240-HP)
  • 2x High Pressure Twister Fans
  • 1x Universal Back Plate for Intel and AMD
  • 4x Spacers
  • 2x Intel Clip
  • 2x AMD Clip
  • 4x Intel LGA 2011 Screws
  • 1x Square Spacer for Intel LGA 775 socket
  • 4x Insulating Sheet for AMD sockets
  • 4x Position Screw
  • 4x Spring Screws
  • 8x Fan Screws
  • 8x Case Screws
  • 1x Dow-Corning Thermal Grease (TC-5121)
  • 1x PWM Fan Y-Cable

The screws and fitting are all really high quality, nicely finished and should look great once installed.

Both fans are of a high quality construction, with strong fan blades and a switch on their motor that allows you to change the peak RPM to no more than 1300, 2000 or 2500. We will of course be leaving ours at maximum performance. Maintenance should be relatively easy too, thanks to removable fan blades.

Also included in the box is an easy to follow user’s manual which will guide you through the installation process.

Zalman Reserator 3 Max AIO Liquid CPU Cooler Review

Introduction


With nearly 15 years in the business, Zalman have built themselves quite the reputation. They have a loyal following thanks to their high build quality and innovative designs. I must admit, Zalman may not be the first brand that spring to mind when your thinking about components, but we’ve been eager to see what their new all-in-one water cooler can do non the less.

All-in-one (AIO) watercoolers are more popular than ever, in fact it may be safer to say that water cooling is more popular than ever, AIO coolers just make it easy and more accessible to those who don’t want to build custom loops. AIO are often much cheaper than a custom radiator / pump configuration and offer near plug-and-play compatibility with super low maintenance. For the most part, water cooling can offer improved performance over air cooling and reap huge benefits for overclocked systems, so it is easy to see why people are so attracted to it.

Below we have a quote from Zalman’s website that details the special coolant they’ve used to fill the radiator, something which combined with the overall design, won Zalman an Innovation Award at CES 2013;

“Zalman with its unique technology came up with the world first nanofluids refrigerant applied cooler to maximize the cooling performance.”

  • Using nanofluids coolant improves thermal conductivity by mixing nanoparticles with fluids.
  • Nm (nanometer): an SI unit of length, equal to 10?9?m (a billionth of a meter).

So with Zalmans reliable history of making CPU coolers and high consumer demand for accessible and powerful water coolers, the Zalman Reserator 3 Max has a lot to live up to, so let’s get right to it and see what Zalmans new cooler has to offer.

As you can see it’s fairly well equipped and while the radiator does mount on a 120mm fan mount, it isn’t a typical 120mm radiator due to its unique design and integrated fan, but well take a close look at that in a moment.

As you can see from the chart below, the Reserator 3 Max comes with a wide range of support for pretty much all major sockets and CPUs for the last few years, ensuring wide support for all kinds of systems from entry to enthusiast level.

The packaging is nicely designed, featuring a cool looking image on the front that looks like a re-imagined arc reactor from Iron Man.

Around the back we have a quick run down of the major features such as the dual radial radiator design, extra fan support, 120mm built-in fan and the blue LED lighting.

In the box I found a package full of mounting components, an installation manual and of course the CPU cooler.

The mounting kit consists of a multi purpose back plate, an AMD bracket and an Intel bracket.

In the other we have some thermal paste, four bolt clips, four long mounting screws (used to add an extra 120mm fan), A sticker, a dual sided sticky pad and an assortment of screws and bolts for holding everything else in place.

Phobya MaxGuide 6 Dualbay Fan Controller Review

Fan controllers are products that we are definitely getting a lot more into these days having already taken a look at Phobya’s Touch 6 and Lamptron’s CW611. Today we are taking a look at another fan controller from Phobya’s range of fan controllers and we have their newly released MaxGuide 6 Dual (5.25″) Bay fan controller. Like a lot of fan controllers that are available on the market today the Phobya MaxGuide 6 Dual Bay fan controller is manufactured by Sunshine Tipway Electronics (STW for short) and resold by Phobya in the UK, North American and European markets. This particular Phobya fan controller is based on the STW-6048 while the Phobya Touch 6 we looked at was based on the STW-6050 and as far as I am aware the NZXT Sentry Mesh is based off the STW-6051 (but I may be wrong, though the resemblance is striking).

In most cases companies will just take these Chinese built and manufactured units, rebrand them and then add on a margin for themselves. However, Phobya are more or less offering them for the same price it would cost the consumer/user to import it from China, and you have the peace of mind that it comes with a Phobya warranty. For this I respect Phobya but it was necessary to bring it to your attention and this is something consumers should be aware of – that is where and how your goods are made.

In terms of specifications you can find those here on the STW website or here on the Aquatuning website (who sell the EU/UK/NA version that you and I are likely to buy). The main features about this fan controller are that it has 6 channels support 36W each, multiple card readers (CF/SD/MMC/MS/M2/TF), a USB 3.0 port, a 3.7 inch LCD display and a fully metal construction. Without any further ado let us move through and take a closer look at this unit.

Phobya Touch 6 Fan Controller Review

Phobya are starting to become a bit of a big player these days with products spanning a wide range of categories at a variety of different market segmentations. A while back we took a look at a trio of Phobya 120mm fans and we definitely encourage you to check that review out as we were pretty darn impressed with two out of the three fans. Today we are taking a look at our first Phobya fan controller, the Phobya Touch 6 which is a six channel fan controller that features only one input which is the 4.5 inch touch screen. This fan controller is made by Sunshine Tipway Electronics (STW for short) and is based off the STW-6050. Other than the fancy looking display this is a pretty standard 5.25 inch drive bay fan controller that supports fans at 5-12 volts with up to 30W of power per channel.

Furthermore it supports voltage control of any three or four pin devices, including pumps, and it supports temperature sensors too. Though it is not as advanced as some fan controllers in the sense that you cannot have advanced temperature fan responses. The Phobya Touch 6 does supports these but only in automatic mode and the threshold is essentially a binary function of: X fan speed below Y temperature OR 100% fan speed above Y temperature. Anyway before I get dragged into too many more specifics let us move onto the rest of this review and take a closer look at Phobya’s Touch 6 fan controller.

Swiftech Reveal H320 “360mm” AIO Open Loop Liquid Cooler

Swiftech’s H220, which we reviewed here, was a breath of fresh air for the AIO market. It brought a high level of quality, performance and finesse to the market that we hadn’t really seen before. Previously the market had been dominated by budget-orientated closed loop solutions but the Swiftech H220 was a performance orientated open-loop solution meaning it was expandable. It may not have been cheaper than the competition but it was certainly a lot better as shown by the fact the Swiftech H220 is still sold out at most retailers across the world and Swiftech simply cannot produce it fast enough.

That said Swiftech are now making a larger version of their H220. The new version uses an identical design except with a 360mm radiator over the 240mm radiator on its predecessor. The Swiftech H320 will offer better performance as a result of the larger radiator and will also cost slightly more than the H220, my estimate is around 15% more. Swiftech didn’t specify pricing but said about $20 more seemed logical. They also went on to state that anyone looking to grab a Swiftech H220 will see stock appearing in the coming weeks or as they put it the stock “situation is about to change, I GUARANTEE IT”.

Images courtesy of Swiftech (Facebook)

SilverStone Tundra TD02 240mm AIO Liquid CPU Cooler Review

The build up to SilverStone’s Tundra series of All-In-One closed loop liquid CPU coolers has been a very exciting one for me. While quite a few of news sites falsely reported that the Tundra is based on a collaboration between SilverStone and Asetek/CoolIT, the Tundra series is unique because it is entirely in-house. That means SilverStone designed everything themselves from the ground up. The model we have here today is the flagship Tundra TD02, the 240mm radiator based version, and this unit (like the TD04) uses an aluminium unibody and has some rather unique aesthetics. Aluminium and alloy is are the materials of choice throughout the majority of the product’s construction making it both high quality and unique looking.

Furthermore, the pump head is fully aluminium too and uses a more durable screw-less design as well as integrated mounting brackets to make installation a lot easier. What is also interesting is the radiator which uses a unique patented design. It is certainly like no other radiator I have ever seen before and the main advantage is extra surface area though they’ve also equipped a very thick 45mm wide radiator which is nearly double thickness. Below you can see the SilverStone Tundra TD02 radiator design and then below that you can see a “traditional” radiator fin design.

So straight away before we’ve even delved into testing we can see the Tundra TD02 is very unique in its design, construction and styling. Below you can see the full specifications of the Tundra TD02 but now let us proceed onto the rest of the review.