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 Review, Asetek WaterChill Watercooler Kit
Waterblock and Radiator
By: Steffen Scheibler, August 29, 2003  Print this article


The water-block
The water-block looks very nice and is extremely compatible. Asetek have made this water-block with 3 different sets of holes, socket 478, Socket 462/A and Socket 754.

The interior is based on the half-moon design -- I won't go into technical details in this article, but it is a proven design and a good choice. The transparent acrylic top allows you to see into the water-block, which is very useful for checking if there are any air pockets and also looks nice.

The push-fit connectors make installing the supplied hoses a very simple task, especially for the less dextrous people. After all, not everyone is a very good D.I.Y. professional.

Waterblock 4

Waterblock 4

The water-block was shipped with a protective plastic cover and the base was unscratched and completely smooth and flat. This is exactly what we would expect from a company with Asetek's reputation.

Waterblock 3

Waterblock 3

The retention mechanism for the entire water-block is also quite nice -- it requires your motherboard to have 4 mounting holes around the socket and is affixed using 4 metal bolts. 4 regular screws go under the motherboard and 4 thumb-screws allow you to adjust the pressure of the waterblock on the CPU. The entire mechanism is extremely stable.

The springs between the water-block and the motherboard are optional (but recommended) and by putting the weaker springs between the thumb-screws and the CPU you can fit a cold-plate and a moderately sized TEC/Peltier element on your CPU. It is a tight squeeze, but I managed to get a 226W TEC sandwiched there. This is, of course, a massive bonus for those of us who like to live on the edge.

The radiator
The radiator is of the single-channel type with a narrow-bore pipe of 7mm which are cross-connected with a large number of very fine aluminum lamellas. The pipe crosses the entire radiator assembly 14 times. This should be fairly effective at removing heat from the water as well as being easy to manufacture. Asetek estimate the radiator can remove 400W of heat under "normal conditions" which means that it doesn't matter what CPU you have, this radiator will easily cope with it. There is no processor on the market today that you couldn't cool with this radiator.

Radiator 1

Radiator 1

The radiator comes with mounting holes for a standard 120mm fan, so if your case has a place for 120mm fans, then the radiator can be mounted there in a matter of seconds.

Radiator 2

Radiator 2

If your case, like mine, can only offer you a 92mm slot, then you are going to have to do some work. For testing purposes I mounted the radiator in the 5.25" drive bays, where it takes up 4 slots. For testing purposes this was an extremely snug and convenient fit and if like me you only need two CD-Drives then this is even a more permanent option. I simply put two screws through one of the plastic bezels and sort of wedged it between two sheets of sound-insulation I had left over from my noise-reduction kit. It is almost a perfect fit and took around 5 or so minutes. If you are unable to do this, then you will have to do some work if you want to permanently mount this inside your case.

Radiator Installation

Radiator Installation

For testing I removed the lower bezel which improved the temperature by approximately 0.5C to 1C.

The only criticism I could come up with is that it would have been nice to be able to mount the 120mm fan on either side to increase the installation options as not all cases are created equal.

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  First Impressions
  Waterblock and Radiator
  Pump and Small Parts
  The Assembly

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