Koolance Nickel Plated CPU-340Koolance
has been around for over 8-years and recently they have been improving their product line to compete with other high-performance water-blocks and systems on the market. In the original round-up I tested their CPU-330
which is similar to the CPU-340
, with the exception of applied materials to the metal surfaces. The CPU-330 was and is an impressive block featuring a hefty amount of copper in its base. Mass in any cooler can be used to good effect, although in a water-block it is sometimes a delicate balance. At the very least the CPU-330 out-weighed the other contenders at 198g in our 6-way Round-Up
. Below we see the Gold coated copper base on CPU-330.
The CPU-340 is intended as an improvement over the CPU-330. Changes are primarily the application of materials used to coat the critical areas of the block such as the copper base-plate. As a comparison the photo below also shows a dollop of the preferred thermal paste for this addendum, Tuniq TX-2
Looking at the blocks from a top view you can just make out Koolance utilized the Nickel coating on the innards of the CPU-340 as well. Although difficult to see from this view the CPU-340 is slightly smaller then the CPU-330. Why Koolance chose to replace Gold with Nickel perplexed me. Considering Nickel is pretty far down the Fourier based thermal conductivity scale
. Perhaps their decision was based on an attempt to prevent dissimilar corrosive effects. However when looking at this anodic index
Gold is about the best material out there?
As we peer into the blocks the extruded Pyramid pin design has been left in tact. The only difference is the Nickel plating or coating over the gold coated innards in the CPU-330.
In the original Round-Up I found Koolance mounting back-plate a bit strange in its absence of any material behind the socket? Just about all motherboards will flex provided enough tension is excreted and the reason these back-plates were introduced was to ensure tightening the mounting nuts increased mounting pressure. It almost looks as if Koolance back-plate might have the opposite effect?
My other criticism was the thickness of both the rear plate and rubber insulation? The back-plate is very thick at 3mm as is the rubber insulation at 2.5mm. It's intended to insulate the board from the hefty back-plate, however; it may also trap heat which would normally dissipate from the back of the socket. Seen below with the CPU-330 mounted note the gold coating on the base.
At first I found Koolance mounting hardware to be quite impressive, as time passes, testing with these blocks has shown their mounting hardware may actually sabotage their ability to perform optimally. Also included are several squares of thin copper "tape" for mounting thermistor, or thermo-probes.
I measure flatness using a metal drafting ruler/slide which has a very flat edge. The CPU-340 just like the CPU-330 passed this test and from the photo below the finish is excellent.
Onto the EK Supreme ->