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Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:00 AM
As you might remember I did a review of the GTX480 graphic card in the past, but today I would like to give a broad and detailed overview of the different fullcover watercoolers for the GTX 570/580. In comparison to its predecessor the GTX 580 needs less electric power and is quite more silent. Although the stock cooler performance is better than the cooler of the GTX480, the temperature of the GPU of the GTX580 is much better with a watercooling solution and it offers as well a noiseless operating graphic card. If you take a look a back in the past, you might remember that I tested all common watercooling solutions for the GTX480 and I will follow this way as well in this review. I think you should not except any surprises concerning the temperatures (they might not differ in a broader context), but there are some improvements in detail. Most of the producers set the backplates aside and EK created a more filigree cooling structure. I know that someone of you might think, that the test might be a little be outdated, but I had to struggle with different hardware defects, but now you should take a look inside my review. Have fun with reading. I hope that I my review contributes to a your choice of a watercooler
Banchetto 101 Bench Station
Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD7 Mainboard
Kingston HyperX DIMM Kit 12GB
Watercool Heatkiller 3.0
i7 920 @4Ghz @1.40V (@Bios)
Cougar GX 1050 Power supply
EVGA GTX580 Graphic
Mora 3 / 9x Noiseblocker Black Silent PL2 (600 U/Min.)
Aquaero 4 VFD
Laing Ultra with Alphacool Acetal Top
Alphacool Cyclone Reservoir
Aquacomputer Flow-rate sensor "High Flow"
Koolance VL3N Couplings & CPC Metal Couplings
Masterkleer 16/10mm Tube + 13mm Nozzle-Fittings
Water-filter by Aquacomputer
3x Sensors for water temperature (2x T-Line, 1x in reservoir)
Thermal grease: Gelid Extreme
Water additive: Innovatek Protect convenience blend
I used ArctiClean for cleaning the CPU and the DIE of the graphic card.
I used Furmark v.1.8.2 for stress-testing the GPU in order to reach a high temperature (settings: 1280x1024, 8x MSAA). The stress-test ran for thirty minutes.
I used the Gelid Xtreme thermal grease. Every cooler was assembled for three times and the best result took part in my statistics.
After talking about the ordinary things, let us take a closer look and the test candidates:
Swiftech/EVGA GTX580 FTW Hydro Copper 2
The first cooler in this review takes up an exceptional position, because this cooler comes on a common way only assembled with the EVGA GTX 580. At present the cooler can be bought for 139€ plus shipping costs in the EU Online-Shop. The cooler is developed by the famous US producer Swiftech and is as well the stock-cooler for the EVGA Hydro Copper 2. The special advantage of this combination is, that you do not loose any warranty claims in case of dissembling the air cooler, which is almost the standard if you get your Graphic card from another producer. A (small) disadvantage in comparison to a single GTX 580 and a water cooler: you have to pay for the EVGA GTX580 FTW Hydro Copper 2 in combination with the Swiftech/ EVGA a higher price.
The chrom-plated copper cooler has an elegant black Acetal top, which is decorated with a blue patch. The scope of supply contains as well a backplate, which is already assembled.
The cooler has the same fine cooling structure (0,6mm) as the preceeding model of the GTX480 (fine cooling structure results in less water flow). The cooler has a very thin head, which contributes to kick-ass cooling results.
The cooler, which is produced by swiftech, comes in combination with the Graphic card and is well packed. The scope of supply contains as well two lock screws. Of course the cooler is SLI-Ready. Connection threads have the common G ¼ sizes, which allow a fitting-size up to 16/10mm. The distance between the screws is 31mm. The cooler has a weight of ca. 980 g. and the processing quality is on a high level.
If you purchase the single cooler in the EVGA EU Shop, the thermal pads are applied to the cooler, so you do not have to cut the pads by yourself. The scope of supply contains many different things: installation material, clamps, manual, thermal grease and a single-slot-blend. The cooler has the additional feature that the EVGA Logo can be enlightened by an integrated LED.
Material: Copper, Chrome, Acetal
Thread size: G 1/4"
Scope of supply:
1x Swiftech/EVGA GTX580 Cooler
1x Thermal grease
4x Fittings in two sizes
4x Clamps in two sizes
2x Screw plugs
Installation manual (french, english, spanish) with pictures
Weight: ca. 980g
Price: ca. 140 € (EVGA EU Webshop)
Watercool HEATKILLER® GPU-X³ GTX580/570 -Special Edition-
I would like to introduce to you the Special Edition of the HEATKILLER GPU-X³ GTX580/570 cooler from Watercool, which comes with a modified top in contrast to the normal version. As you might know the corpus consists of copper and the top of stainless steel. A good feature is the fix integration of the spacers into the cooler. The Heatkiller is sealed in foil and safely packed in a nice retail box. Besides the installation material you will find the installation manual, an allen key and two screw plugs. The thermal pads are already cut in the right size, which is a nice feature for the customer. As you might know the company Watercool, the processing quality is on a very high level (the cooler fits perfect to the Graphic card). Of course the cooler is SLI-Ready with special Watercool adapters and as well with the common adapters. The cooler is assembled that way, that it is your choice if you would like to use thermal grease or thermal pads to the RAM.
You can purchase this cooler in different designs, for example in the ‘hole edition’ and another design with a nickel plated top. So I think there is a great variety for any kinds of taste. The Watercool Heatkiller GPU-X³ cooler convinced me in any direction, see ‘Quality made in Germany’. The fine micro-structure of the cooler warrants best cooling capacities. The flow rates are on a standard level, not very good and not very bad, it just worksJ. The installation is as well very easy, but it would have been nice, if there would have been additional thermal grease in the scope of supply and the distance of the threads (22mm) could have been bigger. The cooler can be used for every GTX570 and GTX580 in reference design, as every fullcover-cooler in this test.
Material: Copper, Stainless steel, POM
Seize: (LxBxH) 172,0 x 117,0 x 11,5mm
Fittings: 4x G ¼ Zoll (DIN ISO 228-1)
Pressure tested: 5 bar
Compatible to: Nvidia GTX580 & 570 (reference design)
Scope of supply:
1x HEATKILLER® GPU-X³ GTX580
1x Installation manual/material
Price: ca. 85 €
Aquacomputer aquagraFX für GTX 580 und GTX 570 (GF110)
The aquagraFX cooler for the GTX 580/570 from Aquacomputer is nicely designed and well processed. The inner build-up is very similar to the cooler from Watercool and therefore it might not be very surprisingly to you that the testing results are as well similar. The aquagraFX is well wrapped in bubble-foil and comes in a simple white package with the essential installation material / manual. The scope of supply contains as well screw plugs and as a nice addition a small Torx screw-driver for the disassembly of the stock cooler. Unfortunately you have to cut the thermal pads to the correct size. The scope of supply does not contain thermal grease.
The cooler is made of copper and has a nice stainless steel top, which is installed with many small screws. For an additional charge you can purchase a nickel-plated version.
The cooler from Aquacomputer is well processed, fits perfectly and is as well easy to install for unexercised users. The spacers are just integrated into the cooler. The bottom of the cooler is 9mm thick, which results in combination with the fine micro-cooling-structure in very good testing results. The contact areas for GPU and Ram have a polished finish for optimal contact. As almost every fullcover-cooling-solution the cooler is SLI ready. Aquacomputer offers aedequate Twin Connect Adapters as component parts.
Under the following link you can watch an installation video of the cooler:
aquagrafx GTX 580 Installation - YouTube
Base body: Copper
Top: Stainless steel
Connection Terminal: Delrin
Scope of supply:
Cooler without Fittings (G1/4 Threats)
Installation material including thermal pads
Two screw plugs
Price: 92 Euro
Danger Den DD-GTX580/GTX570
Follow this link to watch an installation video made by the producer:
DD-GTX580 Install - YouTube
The GTX 570/580 cooler from Danger Den came a long way from the USA to my home in Germany. The scope of supply contains the common installation material and manual and thermal grease. My test-example is named “Black Chrome Top and Nickle Base” and costs 130 US Doller in the Danger Den online-shop Let us help you be cool!. At the moment it is not possible to purchase this cooler in Germany, but you can do a request on Caseking.de – the official Danger Den partner in Germany.
The cooler from Danger Den has a solid appearance with its dark chromed top, which is high gloss polished and looks therefore very noble. The corpus is nickel-plated and the spacers are already installed in the cooler. Concerning this cooler, you have to put thermal grease on the GPU and the RAM. The cooler is optimized for maximum water-flow, so it has a more rude cooling-structure. The cooling capacity is on a good level and the water-flow is, if you keep the rude cooling-structure in mind, on the highest levels. The cooler can be purchased in three different design-versions with nickel-plated and copper bottoms, so there is high chance that you will find your favourable design ;-)
Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:01 AM
NexXxos is back! Well, i suppose this is a good statement, if you take back in mind that the producer Alphacool has not produced many Fullcover-cooler in the past. Therefore I would like to present to you the watercooler for the GTX 570/580 as a re-entry on the market. The relation of price and performance is here very good. The cooler is the low-priced model in this review with ca. 68,00€. The scope of supply contains the common installation material, a pictured installation manual, two screw plugs and thermal grease / thermal pads. The cooler comes in a black retail box. The cooler from Alphacool uses thermal pads except for the GPU. You can purchase a black backplate for 16,00€, which contributes to a nice appearance of the cooler. In my opinion the cooler is not very nicely designed, it looks a bit old-fashioned and the ground level is not as good processed as the coolers from Swiftech or Koolance, which are quite more expensive. In relation to its price, the processing quality is okay. The cooling capacity is as well okay, but the cooler could not reach the top of the charts, because of its rough cooling-structure and the thick ground of the cooler. The cooler finds its place as a reference of price/ cooling-capacity-relation-model.
Material: Copper, Acetal
Seize (L x B x H): 175 x 111 x 16mm
Weight: ca. 1000g
Thread Size: 4x G ¼ Zoll
Compatible to GTX 580/570 except PNY570 design.
Scope of supply:
2x G ¼ Zoll Screw plugs
Multi-language installation manual (de. engl. fra.)
Price: ca. 68 Euro
optional Backplate - ca. 16 Euro
Koolance VID-NX580 (GeForce GTX 580/570)
Iam proud to present to you the cooler from Koolance, which is very well processed and has a good cooling performance. The cooler is nickel-plated and has a black acetal-top. The middle part is not made of acrylic-glass (which could have been enlightened by optional LEDs), which was a special feature of the coolers for older graphic cards. The cooler has a nice design and comes in decent black retail box. The box contains the needed installation material, screw plugs and thermal grease. The thermal pads have a great size, so you will have enough material to install the cooler a second time. The processing quality is on a very high level, which results in an easy installation and an accurately fitting. The needed spacers are already installed in the cooler. As you will follow the well pictured installation manual in English, you will not need much time for the installation. The cooler has a very thin micro-structure (0,5mm), which is accountable for the high ranks in the charts. The cooler can be purchased for a price of 130,00€ in the EU. In comparison to the other candidates, the cooler has a slightly higher price, because of the import fees from Non-EU-States. The cooler is SLI-Ready and because of the centered hole distance you have the option to use big size fittings with this cooler. The Koolance VID-NX580 is a very good cooler, which convinced me concerning all points.
Material: nickel-plated copper, acetal
Thread-size: G 1/4"
Size (LxBxH): 15.9cm x 14.6cm x 1.6cm
Scope of supply:
Koolance VID-NX580 (GeForce GTX 580/570)
Price: ca. 130 EUR
EK Water Blocks EK-FC580/570 GTX+
The FC580/570 GTX+ from EK Water Blocks from Slowenia can be purchased in different designs. I have tested in my review the nickel-plated version with an acrylic-glass top. EK Waterblocks and Liquid Extasy are the only companies, which produce designs with acrylic-glass tops. The cooling structure of the cooler has not been changed since the first EK-cooling-generation, which is designed as a wave. In contrast to the procedure of EK, other companies optimized their coolers in the last years. EK optimized the cooling-fins, which are now quite more filigree and contribute to a good cooling performance. The rest of the lovely design has not been changed for years, so the biggest part of the watercooling-community might be happy about this ;-)
The EK Water Blocks EK-FC580/570 GTX+ is well packed and comes in a nicely designed retail box, which contains everything you might need for the installation, except thermal grease for the GPU. Unfortunately you have to cut the thermal pads by yourself.
The installation of the cooler is a little bit tricky, because you have to glue the spacers with thermal grease onto the cooler. In hope that they fit in the right direction you have to put the cooler on your graphic card for assembly. I really don’t know why the producer did choose such a silly way for the installation of the cooler. You have additionally to install thin frame around the GPU, which should contribute to a stable fit of the cooler. In the further cooler-generations the spacers will be integrated into the cooler, as EK told me.
The cooler convinced me with its good cooling performance and processing quality, if you do not take in mind the silly installation ;-). Because of the filigree and big cooling structure around the GPU the EK Water Blocks EK-FC580/570 GTX+ is one of the top models in my review. Concerning its price the cooler can be located in the middle field.
Announcement: Actually you can purchase the new revision of the cooler with fix installed spacers, which makes the installation quite more easy.
Material: Nickel-plated copper, acrylic-glass
Threats: 2 x G1/4"
Weight: ca. 750g
Scope of supply:
Cooler without fittings (Threats G 1/4")
Price for nickel-plated version: ca. 90 EUR
XSPC Razor GTX580
The following candidate is produced by XSPC from England as a fullcover-cooler for the 570/580GTX.
The XSPC Razor is shipped well wrapped in bubble-foil and comes in a simple white box. The scope of supply contains almost everything you wish for, because you will find besides the common installation material as well a tube of thermal grease for the GPU. The rest of the components is used with thermal pads, which are already cut in the right size J
The thin and light cooler is easy to install by the pictured English installation manual. The interior build-up is equal to last coolers and therefore the cooler reaches the upper middle field in my charts. I have no information about any other design variations. The cooler is SLI-Ready and can be installed on GTX570 and GTX580 graphic cards with reference layout. In my opinion the cooler from XSPC is a good all-round-solution for a fair price. According to the other competitors the price could have been quite lower. The connection threads have a distance of 34mm between the screws, so the usage of big-size-fittings like 19/13mm is no problem. The spacers are already installed into the cooler.
Material: Copper (ground), stainless-stell (top)
Threads: G 1/4"
CNC milled copper
Size: 170 x 124 x 9mm ´
Weight: ca. 820g
Compatible with 580 & 570 GTX graphic cards in reference layout.
Scope of supply:
1x XSPC Razor GTX580
1x Thermal grease
2x Screw plugs
2x Distance washers
Price: ca. 90 EUR
Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:02 AM
So let us take a closer look at the Bitspower Black Freezer VG-NGTX580. I own the version with a clear top. The cooler feels very heavy and the processing quality is as well on a high level.
The Black freezer is well packed in an elegant black retail box.
The scope of supply contains beside the common installation material many additional component parts on a price level of 50 Euro. It contains thermal grease, different SLI-Adapters, alternative O-Rings and finally a backplate J. If you take the high price of 180 Euro in mind, the price for the cooler is not as high as you might have thought. The thermal grease is used for the GPU. For the rest of the components thermal pads are used.
A pictured installation manual makes the installation of the cooler easy to understand for the user. The spacers have to be installed by the user himself. You have the possibility to purchase the cooler with different coloured tops. After all the cooler has a very rough cooling structure, so the cooling performance is on a good level in relation to the stock air-cooling-solution. The middle-part, which is made of acrylic-glass, has LED-Holes for illuminating the cooler. At present the cooler can not be purchased in Germany.
Click on the link below for an installation video:
Black Freezer VG-NGTX580 - YouTube
•Size: 197 x 24,35 x 98 mm (BxHxT)
•Material: black nickel-plated copper (ground), acrylic glass (top)
•Threats: 2x 1/4
•Compatible to: NVIDIA Geforce GTX 580 (reference layout)
2x angle-adaptor 1/4 Zoll to IG 1/4 Zoll
2x Fitting ID 13 mm
Price: ca. 180 EUR
Liquid Extasy Narrow Line Geforce 580/570 GTX
Another cooler for the 580/570 GTX comes from the german producer Liquid Extasy. The Narrow Line Geforce 580/570 GTX is one of the products you can purchase including custom products for your game stations like xbox or playstation 3. Liquid Extasy is the only producer of a cooler, which is made of copper and has an acrylic glass top. You have the possibility to buy this cooler with a black or white top. The cooler comes is a simple box with the common installation material as screws, pressure springs and washers. Unfortunately the scope of supply does not contain screw plugs or thermal grease (the website says that thermal grease and screw plugs will be shipped at February 2012). The Narrow Line cooler does not reaches the best temperatures, which can be traced back to the rough cooling-structure (speedchannel-system) and the thickness of the cooler (see Bitspower or DangerDen). On the other hand the rough cooling-structure contributes to high water-flow-rates. Over all the processing quality is on an acceptable level, which means that you might find somewhere some little milling scratches on the top and on the ground as well. Concerning the processing quality please take in mind, that Liquid Extasy is a very small company, which produces its coolers with small financial budgets and older machines. If you like the design of the cooler, please buy it ;-). Of course the cooler is SLI-Ready.
Threat-size: G 1/4
Scope of supply
GPU - Cooler 1x Narrow Line GPU including mounting bracket
1x Installation material
Price: ca. 80 EUR
Delta-T – lower value is better
Flow-rate in l/h – more is better
Prices in Euro
Scope of supply
The Gold Award for the best cooling performance goes to the EVGA/Swiftech cooler.
The Silver Award for a good cooling performance and a well processing quality goes to coolers form Koolance, Watercool and Aquacomputer
The Price/Performance-Award goes to the Alphacool NexXxos for the lowest price.
In comparison to the coolers in the last years, there are not any big changes. Therefore the charts do not differ very much at all from the last testing results. There might be some little improvements in detail like the filigree cooling-structure of the EK-Coolers. Nice features are the thermal pads, which are already cut in the right sizes and additional installation-tools. The GTX480 cooler from Aquacomputer had a backplate to maximise the contact pressure. Concerning the GTX570/580 coolers they fulfil moreover an optical function and can protect the card from damage caused by water.
I am a little bit disappointed about the small scope of supply of the Liquid Extasy cooler (you have to buy additional screw plugs). Another point of critique is the copious installation of the spacers on the EK-cooler (which is only a criterion with the first cooler generation).
Unfortunately the cooler from Swiftech (produced for EVGA) can only be bought in the EVGA-Shop.
The coolers from german manufactures are well processed (like their coolers in the past) and you will not do anything wrong with this coolers. The different designs of the Watercool-coolers are a nice feature. The Liquid Extasy from the german manufacturer is located in the middle-field, which is a good position for the cooler, which is produced without any high-end-machines.
It is as well nice to see that the producer Alphacool is back on the market for fullcover-coolers with a low price in comparison to the other candidates. Unfortunately I had no testing-examples from the producer Innovatek, because they do not produce any watercooling-solutions for the GTX570/580.
The coolers from Bitspower and Danger Den could not reach higher ranks concerning the GPU-temperature, because the cooling-structure is too rough and the ground-plate is too thick. But please take in mind that this coolers are optimized for a maximum of water-flow. Both coolers are very well processed and the scope of supply of the Bitspower cooler is the best you can already receive as a customer.
I would like to advise you to flush every cooler before installation to clean them from potential residues.
Some GT580 graphic cards like the EVGA come without any heatspreader. These cards can not be used with the coolers that I tested in my review, because the GPU has no contact to the cooler.
I would like to thank the following companies for their support:
Aquatuning , Danger Den , Liquid Extasy , Koolance , EK Waterblocks , Bitspower , Swiftech , XSPC , leise PC Lüfter, entwickelt in Deutschland. | Noiseblocker , GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY , Alphacool - CPU Khlung und Wasserkhlung sowie PC-Cooling und Silent-PC Artikel von Alphacool , Aqua Computer Homepage - Home , cougar-world.com: Cougar-World.de , Startseite | Watercool - Wasserkühlung made in Germany , EVGA | Intelligent Innovation , Microcool.it - Chipset, Cpu Pentium M socket 479 and integrated coolers , Kingston Technology Company - Where To Go To Find Memory
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