Gigabyte 3D Mercury Water-Cooled Case Review

Cases & PSU/Cases by geoffrey @ 2007-12-03

Going deaf from all those noisy fans cooling your high end hardware? Not skilled enough to switch to water-cooling without turning your room into an Olympic swimming pool? Gigabyte has the solution: a case with build-in water-cooling. Just snap the water blocks in place and your ready to go cool & quiet.

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A look inside

Inside look

While the outside determines the main look of the housing, it is inside that the components have to be placed, the latter will often make the true difference between the quality products and those who are only *bling*. With the 3D Mercury I must say that Gigabyte still knows how to impress me, some stuff have not been seen anywhere else, at least not all together...

The PCI, PCIe and AGP expansion slots can easily be locked and unlocked via a metal leaver. Pull the leaver and you can slide in the card, installing expansion cards takes only few seconds and is much easier than using small screws, though if you are really keen on the old method feel free to remove the leaver and use those instead.

Madshrimps (c)
Madshrimps (c)
Installing CD-roms has never been this easy, the 5.25" drive bays come with a plastic slider with extra security lock to make sure that the optical drives stay in place. Simply slide in the 5.25" device, move the plastic latch to the right and secure the lock downwards, no screws needed.

With the 3D Mercury we found a black plastic box which seemed to be of no real value, but after reading the manual we found out that is nothing more then a simple tool box which can be slide in the 3.5" bay. The quality of this box is questionable, although that it does where it is made for, stacking tools, and we do believe that it can be handy at times, it's surprising that we don’t seen this more often.

Madshrimps (c)

Front panel connections: classic connectors, not hard to install in this wide housing. The white front panel connector from ASUS makes life even easier; this is not included with this case though. The top liquid cooling system is powered via one simple molex connector, while the front and back fans come all together in one 3-pin motherboard fan connector. With the fans at low torque, not too much current will be drawn from the mainboard, no dangers here.
Madshrimps (c)

Let's have a closer look at the liquid cooling circuit ->
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Comment from thorgal @ 2007/12/03
Very complete review Geof, congrats !

I completely agree with your conclusion though : hard to recommend such an expensive case/cooling system when equal air cooling annex nice case can be had for half the price or less. A bit alike Koolance products imho.
Comment from Massman @ 2007/12/03
Yeap, really good work
Comment from shaolin95 @ 2007/12/05
Nice job although I have to disagree on the performance been matched by air. At least with my OCed Opteron 165 (3ghz) it was able to beat my Scythe Ninja with a Delta Fan (136CMF and loud as hell) even at normal mode and low speed mode.
The price though is high but I got it cheaply as a local guy bought it to get the newegg rebate and then decided to sell it (got scared) essentially making it only $69 and he sold it to me fore $ the price, it was just a insane deal.
Comment from geoffrey @ 2007/12/08
Bargain indeed