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XSPC Raystorm 750 EX240 Watercooling Kit Review

Manufacturer: XSPC

Testing Configuration and Benchmarks Used

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To verify that the cooler kit operates up to specs, the Raystorm 750 EX240 kit was tested with the CPU running in both stock and at a known stable overclocking speed using a Z77-based system and at stock speeds using a Z87-based system, so that comparative results could be provided for both Ivy Bridge and Haswell-based systems. The results are presented for the cooling kit under review as well as the Corsair H100i water cooler and the Thermalright SilverArrow SB-E Extreme air cooler for performance comparison purposes. The benchmark tests used should give you a good understanding of the XSPC kit's capabilities so that you, the reader, can make a more informed purchasing decision. The comparison coolers were selected based on their superior performance capabilities.

Test System Setup

CPU

Intel Z77-based system
Intel Core i5-3570K
Stock - 3.4GHz, 34 x 100MHz Base Clock
Overclocked - 4.4GHz, 42 x 105MHz Base Clock

Intel Z87-based system
Intel Core i7-4770K
(3.5GHz, 35 x 100MHz Base Clock)

Motherboard

MSI Z77 MPOWER
MSI Z87 XPOWER

Memory

Intel Z77-based system
G.SKILL 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 modules
Stock - 1600MHz, 11-11-11-30-1T
Overclocked - 1960MHz, 11-11-11-30-1T

Intel Z87-based system
Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 modules
(1600MHz, 9-10-9-27-1T)

Hard Drive

Samsung 840 EVO 250GB SSD
Intel 520 240GB SSD
Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB SATA III HD

Sound Card

Onboard sound

Video Card

Intel Z77-based system
AMD Radeon HD 5870 1GB

Intel Z87-based system
NVIDIA GTX 570 1.25GB

CPU Cooling

XSPC Raystorm 750 EX240 Watercooling Kit
Corsair Hydro Series™ H100i Extreme Performance CPU Cooler
Thermalright Silver Arrow SB-E Extreme CPU Air Cooler

Video Drivers

AMD ATI Catalyst 12.8
NVIDIA 320.18

Power Supply

Corsair 650
Corsair HX750

Operating System

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thermal Paste

MG Chemicals 860-60G Silicone Heat Transfer Compound

Coolant

1 liter Distilled water
3 capfuls Redline Water Wetter
1 capful Iodine (10% solution)
1 drop PT Nuke

The 64-bit Windows 7 based test bench used for LGA1155 board testing includes an Intel Core i5-3570K CPU, 8GB of DDR3-2133 memory, an AMD Radeon 5870 1GB video card, and an Intel 520 240GB SSD drive. The 64-bit Windows 7 based test bench used for Intel Z87 LGA1150 board testing includes an Intel Core i7-4770K CPU, 16GB of DDR3-1866 memory, an NVIDIA GTX 570 1.25GB video card, and a Samsung 840 EVO 250GB SSD drive. Using the selected components gives us the ability to demonstrate the cooling system's capabilities rather than that of the system components.

Benchmark Tests used for evaluation:

  • LinX Intel Linpack Benchmark v0.6.4 (Intel Z77-based testing)
  • AIDA64 Extreme Edition v3.00 (Intel Z87-based testing)
  • Geeks3D FurMark v1.10.2
October 14, 2013 | 10:30 AM - Posted by brisa117

I love these bundled kits from XSPC, but I've had terrible experience with these specific pumps. I had one die after about a year, the replacement was DOA and the replacement replacement makes inordinate amounts of humming noise when it first starts, but then quiets down.

All of their other products have been wonderful though! Waterblock, radiators, fittings, etc. I wouldn't ever buy another pump from them (although the bay design is very handy!)

October 14, 2013 | 10:56 AM - Posted by razor512

Seems better to just get a H100i if all you need to do is cool the CPU. cheaper and more convenient.

With good sealed systems, I will only use a custom setup if I need to watercool multiple items and want to do a setup using multiple radiators (eg cooling the CPU, VRM, chipset, and GPU)

I wish they could make a compound radiator, eg a single 120mm radiator divided into 2 sections (essentially 2 separate radiators that are in a housing that can fit in a 120mm mount) this way I can do a neat setup of a 240mm radiator for the CPU, and 1 half of a single 120mm radiator for the VRM and the other half for the chipset, and finally another 120-140mm radiator for the GPU, and a good pump

October 14, 2013 | 01:06 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

One problem you run into with compound radiators is cooling ability.  In the case of serially-stacked radiators, you get only about 1.5x the performance compared to a single radiator because of pressure drop - serialization doesn't work as well with radiators as it does with water blocks.  With parallel radiators, you either need double the fans or fans with higher static pressure so that air can effectively pass through both radiators.  In both cases, you are using air that has been heated up passing through the first radiator to get to the second.

If you have two indendent chambers sitting side by side, you would effectively half your cooling performance in either loop because you have half the amount of space for the water to flow through as well as half the amount of surface area for heat transfer from water to air.

October 15, 2013 | 02:09 AM - Posted by razor512

The reason I would like a split radiator, is to cool lower heat components e.g., the chipset and the VRM's.

Mainly trying to make use of 3 top 120-140mm exhaust fans, as well as a rear 120-140mm exhaust fan, with no stacking of radiators, to cool the CPU, and GPU.

Will a powerful pump be able to handle a setup like that?

October 15, 2013 | 06:21 AM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Should be without issue.  In my main system, I have a Swiftech MCP-35X DDC pump running the following with good flow maintained:

XSPC RX360 radiator

Magicool 140 radiator

Koolance CPU-360 CPU water block

XSPC Razor GTX 680 full cover water block

October 14, 2013 | 12:13 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Well, i can not recomment bay res' at all. It's alyways a pain in the ... to fill them. and my xspc res is just bended from the pressure of my D5. If you want a save costum watercooled system stay with aqua computer, EK and bitspower fittings. I just had way too much trouble with ofer brands.

October 14, 2013 | 11:50 PM - Posted by Mateus Cunha (not verified)

Well they could. entrga do here in Brazil ... certainly buy one

October 15, 2013 | 11:46 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I'm looking at graph on Koolance.com stating that at a temperature delta of 15°C their 2x120mm 18-FPI aluminum radiator dissipates anywhere between 400 and 1000 Watts ( depending on the fans and coolant flow rate).
The delta they're referring to is the one between temperatures of the coolant entering the radiator and ambient air not the CPU and ambient air.
Considering that their radiator should perform roughly similarly to the one being reviewed and considering how high the deltas were for the reviewed processors ( neither of which consume anywhere near 400 Watts ) does that mean that the temperature of the coolant in no point in the loop rises to 5-10°C above that of ambient air ?
The radiator in question : http://koolance.com/radiator-2-fan-120mm-18-fpi-aluminum
The graph is under the 'specification' tab.

October 15, 2013 | 01:26 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

The koolance graphs measure coolant temperature only over time which can be used for theoretical radiator performance.  It tells you how well the radiator will cool the coolant flowing through the loop, which equates to how effective the coolant can absorb heat (the cooler the coolant, the more heat it can potentially absorb from the waterblocks).  However, this does not tell you how the entire system will perform.

The graphs in the review attempt to show you what type of performance you will get with the system against CPUs in various situations - a stock Ivy Bridge, an overclocked Ivy Bridge, and a stock Haswell.  The delta is a measure of the actual temp - ambient temp, to give you an idea of what the temperatures would based on your rooms ambient temperature (you simply take the reported numbers in the graphs and add it to you ambient).  Its more of an absolute working system temperature for the kit than the numbers that koolance reports.

Make sense?

October 17, 2013 | 04:38 AM - Posted by MtRush (not verified)

I don't see any strengths in this xspc wc setup compared to the thermalrights silverarrow except for sound levels.

but does lower snd lvls for xspc equal a plus if the cons are possible:
1. leakage & dmg to components.
2. cost of pump going bad vs fans.
3. $150 xspc vs. $90 thermalright arrow
4. arrow few deg cooler

i'd only give it gold award if it was fools gold

October 17, 2013 | 04:41 AM - Posted by MtRush (not verified)

you can use non conductive liquid still shit

November 1, 2013 | 01:02 AM - Posted by nobody special (not verified)

Any chance of you guys doing a review with the Arrow coupled with a fan you consider to be noiseless (or at least near the noise of the xspc) so we can see how good it compares to the others with less noise? It seems like you guys should throw in a reasonable air solution (fan I mean) to show how much difference there is between it and the one that drives you out of the room :) Maybe I missed it if you've already done that. But it would be nice to see the great heatsink with a less noisy version in every review. One fan tested for the crazy people or people with headphones and the other less noisy version for the rest of us.

If you only lose a few degrees doing this water seems pointless for most (I own a koolance, so it's not that I hate water, just curious how noise free fans work with the best heatsinks). I always see reviews with the worst fan, which I'd never buy :) I'd buy the monster heatsink to avoid the need for a noisy fan but get decent results (maybe that's just me).

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