6 High End CPU Water Blocks Tested and Compared

Cooling/Water Cooling by KeithSuppe @ 2008-02-01

In this group test we compare the performance of six high end water blocks from Koolance, Danger Den, D-Tek, Swiftech and EnzoTech on an overclocked Intel Quad Core Processor. Which one keeps the CPU running the coolest? Read on to find out.

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Danger Den Copper TDX

Danger Den Copper TDX


Madshrimps (c)


Danger Den is another established water-block maker and most definately a pioneer in the field. Their first truly high performance block was the RBX (reviewed here) and soon to follow the TDX. Danger Den also produces a Silver TDX (reviewed by Overclockers.com) which is missing from DD site. Today we test the Copper TDX included with the nVidia 4101 water-cooling kit, I have modified for our test system.

Madshrimps (c)


Copper TDX Specifications (features):
  • Complete Block Assembled with Top and O-ring
  • 100% Copper 110!
  • #1 Accelerator Plate
  • High Flow 1/2" or 3/8" OD Fittings
  • Universal Mounting Plate included with nVidia 4101 kit. Black powder coat Stainless.
  • Machined Lapped and polished beyond 1200 grit
  • Pressure tested before shipment to 85psi

    The TDX pictured is wearing its universal mounting plate; unfortunately this plate is only available when you purchase the nVidia 4101 kit. Below we take a look at the base plate. The block's base plate was not finished to a mirror image, however; it was flat. Looking carefully you can see the outline of thermal paste spread along contact areas, between IHS paste and block. The base plate was cleaned after each test using Arctic Silver ArcticClean.

    Madshrimps (c)


    Both the RBX and TDX were built around what has become one of the most effective designs on the market. The impingement area consisted of a combination of channels shaped as "waves" and pseudo cups described as "heat voids." Water entering the block impinges into the cups creating turbulence for thorough heat transfer and the waves aid in forcing the water (and heat) to the blocks larger chamber. TDX's overall shape then forces water to the outlet.

    Madshrimps (c)


    What made RBX and TDX unique were the inclusion of Danger Den's Accelerator Nozzles also seen here. The nozzles have various apertures varying water stream as it flows into the impingement zone.

    Madshrimps (c)


    Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c)


    Testing will use a Quad Core processor and it’s debatable whether this Copper-TDX version can make the cut. As stated in the first paragraph Danger Den has released a new water-block designed specifically for multi-core IHS surfaces. The MC-TDX is based on the extruded pin, direct impingement design. Still retaining side-walls Danger Den has eschewed the use of a flat base-plate (with pins or some other pattern machined into it) bolted to other materials. With the exception of the Lucite top The TDX has more copper and more copper surface area in its overall shape.
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    Comment from geoffrey @ 2008/02/01
    Love this article. I would expect less difference at such modest heat output, 4Ghz @ 1,5V CPU would definitely make the Fuzion even more worth its price.


    PS: 128W IDLE is huge, still... that makes 30W per core. Eat that Atlon 64!
    Comment from Rutar @ 2008/02/01
    Yes, why didn't he use more voltage and more OC?
    Comment from Kougar @ 2008/02/02
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rutar View Post
    Yes, why didn't he use more voltage and more OC?
    Not really needed? Would only be useful for showing performance scaling, which while I agree would be interesting to compare it is not as useful as showing results at 3Ghz. The vast majority of overclocks run Q6600's at 3Ghz, so this was the best scenario to test with.

    I have a great deal of testing to try on my own setup, I don't see results nearly as good as those. Throwing in the best air cooler (120 Extreme?) would be interesting to see included in that setup.
    Comment from Rutar @ 2008/02/02
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kougar View Post
    The vast majority of overclocks run Q6600's at 3Ghz, so this was the best scenario to test with.
    A water overclocker doesn't aim at 3 GHz and he won't stop below 1.5V either.
    Comment from jmke @ 2008/02/02
    a water overclocker will go for silence and performance, at 3ghz it's an ideal mix of both!
    Comment from Kougar @ 2008/02/02
    What JMke said. Neither myself nor any other watercoolers I know run their systems beyond the best mix of cost/performance, or overclock/voltage. Most of us tend to overclock to find the limits, then settle on using the sweet spot for 24/7 use. For Q6600 users that often is 3GHz.

     

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