I have built myself a very capable Home Theatre PC consisting of a Plextor M5P SSD, Radeon HD 7770 2GDDR GFX card with 16gb of Corsair 1866mhz memory using an AMD 705E processor. I choose this processor because I didn't need a lot of computing power for the tasks I do on the machine. But I decided it was time to upgrade, so I bought myself a FX 6300 i.e. moving from a 65w CPU to a 95w. Therefore the stock cooler just wasn't going to be enough.
So I opted for this water cooling unit. I also considered the closed loop water systems by competitors such as Antec, thermaltake and coolermaster. I chose this one based on the fact that I didn't need to pull my entire machine apart to replace the backplate (although you will have to do this with an Intel motherboard) therefore it would make life much easier. Also, having owned many items of corsair equipment in the past, all of which are still functional.. I had no problem putting my faith in them again.
Well the first unit was DOA!! But many thanks for amazon for their superior service as always in replacing it. The first unit made a constant clicking noise that sounded like a wire rubbing against fan blades but was coming from the pump unit itself. After much research, I found a thread about this on the corsair forums where they said it was a problem which affects up to 1% and it is due to faulty bearings in the pump. Corsair recommend that if you find this happening to yours, to return it for a replacement from the vendor.
Now that the new one has arrived, I can say that it is a good unit and has kept my CPU between 32 and 35 degrees constantly. I have played company of heroes 2 and increased the settings to give the CPU a good workout and it peaked at 35 degrees! The unit itself is quite quiet but if the fans were to go at full throttle, it sounds like an air raid siren, its rather impressive - but also unwelcome in an HTPC, thankfully it only lasts a few seconds at start up. I have read several people saying that they have replaced these fans with the "Corsair CO-9050006-WW Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition 120mm Low Noise" fans and I suspect I will also at a later date. I have owned these fans in the past with a different case and can recommend those too, although it surprises me that they didn't include these with the unit originally. For £75, I would like to think that the fans should've been included instead of the ones provided.
Also, I have seen reviews of this product on other websites where people have said that the Y cable which connects the pump head to the two radiator fans is wrong, and doesn't connect to the fans. Please bear in mind that the Y cable should have 4 pins on each end which insert into the fan connectors and are supplied with transit pin protectors i.e. there is a black plastic sleeve protecting the pins and these must be removed before use. This is not mentioned in the manual, so if you are reading this review prior to purchasing this unit, please remember about this as I feel some of the negative reviews that have been given are unjust.
And lastly the program, perhaps I should spent more time learning how to use the program but I cannot honestly say that I like it. Yes it has lot of features, including changing the corsair logo colour on the pump head unit, but its not the most user friendly, plus it seems to think that my CPU temperature is currently at 6.8degrees, which I know for a fact that it isnt!! I am using Asus motherboard software as an indication of temperatures instead, therefore because of this and the lack of silent fans this product loses a star.
All in all, I don't regret buying this unit. If it is as reliable as other corsair products have been for me in the past then I will no doubt continue to be delighted.
Thanks for reading this review.
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