Swiftech H20-220 Apex Ultima Water-Cooling Kit Review

Cooling/Water Cooling by leeghoofd @ 2009-01-15

Swiftech´s latest water cooling kit comes with a brand new high performance water block (Apogee GTZ), a revised compact reservoir, a dual 120mm radiator and silent water pump. We test its performance on three different overclocked systems, going from a Dual Core E8500 to a 4Ghz overclocked Core i7 920 CPU. How does it compare a high end HSF? Is it worth the extra cost? Find out in this review.

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Closer look in the box

A closer look inside the box :

Opening the package revealed the following items:

  • A well documented manual, with nicely illustrated drawings, concise descriptions of how to install each component. By following this manual step by step (available in 2 languages ) even my grandmother must be able to install this kit. It might take her a bit longer, but she will definitely get the same end result : a perfect working water-cooling installation.

    If you want a look for yourself you can always grab the manual from the website here:Swiftech Ultima Manual (.pdf)

  • The Apogee GTZ water block : Packed in a nice blister with eye catching claims as : “the ultimate cooling machine” , “extreme performance waterblock”, etc…I think you get my drift. This is one mean lean water block designed for top performance. It looks absolutely gorgeous, in layman’s terms: pure hardware pr0n. The block is bundled with socket 775 (Core 2, Pentium 4/D) and socket 1366 (Core i7) support brackets. So where does that leave the AMD or other socket users? They can ask the appropriate socket adapter within 90 days of the date of purchase for free via Bacata.net (proof of purchase required of course).

  • MRC220 Radiator with RADBOX : yes radbox not rudebox . Still one of the more popular dual 120mm rads in circulation because it delivers the goods at an affordable price. I’m not going to bore you to death with flow charts and all sorts of graphs as the die hards will look for that themselves. The rad is preinstalled on the Radbox with 2 x 120mm fans and the whole seems very sturdy. A nice addition are the 5 and 7 volt fan adapters in the package

  • For the pump Swiftech included the powerful MCP655-B pump, including mounting hardware and hose clamps. This is the slightly cheaper version of the MCP655 as it doesn’t include the 5 adjustable speed option. If pump noise is an issue I might compare this pumps performance with the vario version in the review. Again don’t expect flow charts just temp results.

  • The MCRES-micro reservoir is the version 2. What’s different from V1 you ask ?

    One of the big complaints of V1 concerning the filling hole, which had a thread that was not compatible with normal adapters like G1/4, also the plug was of some sort of plastic and got damaged easily. This has been revised, so the thread is now G1/4 and the plug is made from chromed plated brass.

    Secondly the V1 made loads of foam or small air bubbles. A small vent should eliminate that phenomena.

    Third and last difference is that the V2 has got an extra port on the bottom, to be used e.g. with an additional temp sensor . I hope the pictures will tell more than a thousand words ever could.

  • Due to the pump choice, running small diameter tubing is impossible without modifying the pumps in and outlet. So 8 feet of 7/16” tubing is included in the package. To prevent kinking in tight bends Swiftech also included their famous Smartcoils. Proving again that this kit is includes everything you need.

    Madshrimps (c)
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    Comment from zerotol @ 2009/01/19
    nice review

    it may be interesting for the belgian readers to indicate where you can buy swiftech in Be/NL/DE. I have searched and found very little , too say the least.
    Comment from leeghoofd @ 2009/01/20
    All providing fast delivery to Belgium :

    Germany : www.aquatuning.de
    France/Belgium : www.bacata.net
    Netherlands : www.salland.eu, www.highflow.nl

    Just to name a few...