Corsair Hydro Series H110 Reviewccokeman - March 14, 2013
Category: CPU Cooling
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Corsair Hydro Series H110 Introduction:
Cooling down the current generation of high performance processors is more of a challenge as die sizes drop packing more and more transistors into an ever smaller package. Cooling them down is much easier when running at stock speeds, as you might have guessed, as even the box solution can handle the thermal load, barely. Adding additional voltage and upping the clock speed effectively renders the box solution obsolete with even small bumps in voltage and/or clock speed. An improved air cooling solution such as those from Noctua and Phanteks help control the thermals but still have a hard time pushing higher, bringing rise to the need for something better.
Corsair has been at the forefront of manufacturers selling self-contained liquid cooling solutions over the past few years culminating with its latest creation: the Hydro Series H110. Over the past few years Corsair has built a market others have jumped into as it has proven fruitful, mainly due to the adoption of a self-contained pre filled liquid cooling solution by the masses. That in itself was a dynamic shift away from the fears of running a "water" cooling solution. Improving performance by spinning fans faster and pump revisions can only take you so far in terms of better thermals. Realizing that, Corsair stepped up and away from the traditional 240mm radiator and went with a 280mm radiator using lower speed 140mm fans along with the latest generation technology for the pump/cooling plate combo. Larger surface area and larger slower fans address the two main concerns, cooling improvement and noise reduction.
Priced competitively at $120, the H110 comes with a five-year warranty allowing it to potentially last well into your next build. Is bigger always better? Let's find out!
Corsair Hydro Series H110 Closer Look:
Visually different from the rest of the Hydro Series line-up, the packaging of the Hydro Series H110 features red accents against a black base rather than blue on white or silver. In other words more visually appealing when shopping in a retail location. The front of the package shows a picture of the H110 and illustrates that there are two fans with support for both AMD and Intel processors. The back panel illustrates in chart form the benefits of using the H110 over a stock Intel boxed cooler running on an Intel Core i7 3770K clocked to 4.6GHz. This message could not be any clearer. In case the pictures do not tell the whole story the text spells it out in a variety of languages for Corsair's diverse customer base.
The Hydro Series H110 is designed as a high performance liquid cooling solution supporting all of the current socket types from AMD and Intel. The accessory bundle is equipped to handle each contingency using parts specific to each CPU manufacturer. Included are the manual and warranty paperwork, the back plates, retention ring, mounting plate, and thumbscrews.
It's nice to see how the H110 comes from the factory, but what really counts most is just how well will it dissipate the thermal load generated by an overclocked and over volted processor? A quick run through the component structure will have to come first to illustrate how the H110 is put together.