Excellent beginners water cooler,
This review is from: Corsair CWCH60 Hydro Series H60 High Performance 120mm Radiator All-In-One Liquid CPU Cooler (Personal Computers)
I must admit, this is the very first water cooler I have ever bought. Up until now, thinking about getting the right type of water blocks, the right sized tubing, radiators and all that seemed too much of a risk for my expensive custom built rig (mostly along the lines of water leakage). Then I saw on YouTube about an American show which talked about pre built sealed water cooling units. So some research brough up this.
I was sceptical about the other reviews about this regarding the noise it made but I was a lucky one because mine makes no noise (I can't hear it over the case fan cooling my hard drives). Before I bought fan coolers and replaced the thermal paste with MX-4 but hear, I decided to just use what I got given.
The pro's: this arrived very quickly and includes fittings for Intel and AMD CPUs. I use AMD so when I started fitting it, to me it was a doddle. From opening my case, removing the fan cooler, cleaning the paste from the CPU, fitting the water cooler and replacing the cover took me about 90 minutes. The case fan for my hard drives is quiet, but its still louder than the radiator fan of the water cooler. I have an AMD Phenom II X4 AM3 3.6GHz CPU and playing demanding games like Crysis 2, GTA 4, Arkham City never pushes the tempurature over 45°C. Granted the weather is cold at the time of this review so yet to test it in hotter climes. The CPU is already more than a match for today's games but with this cooler I overclocked the CPU to 4GHz. Not a great speed increase I know but I don't want to burn out anything too quickly too soon. But this still only increased the average tempurature by half a degree. For a complete, pre built and sealed water cooling unit at this price? This is excellent.
The cons: it ships with a 120mm fan with same size radiator to boot. My case only had space for an 80mm fan. Boo! My first attempt to fashion a way to secure it failed miserably. It fell off which caused the air to mix with the air flow from the PSU so for a short time the CPU temperatures was HIGHER than the fan cooler. My next attemp was a lucky find. I took off the side panel and rested the radiator on the outside. It's pretty secure there now and helps to keep the CPU pretty chilled out now. This is okay for my standards because my two Nvidia GTX550 TI's still have their fans attached and they still kick up a lot of heat so keeping the side off helps cool them. When I'm brave enough I'll go for a true water cooling solution for both the CPU and graphics cards.
This cooler would have gotten 5 stars if there was an 80mm fan option. However for what you get in this is rock solid and will future proof your rig for a few years when you delve into overclocking your system as well.