Corsair Launches the H5 SF Mini-ITX CPU Liquid Cooler

Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 3, 2015 - 04:38 PM |
Tagged: water cooler, SFF, mini-itx, liquid CPU cooler, H5SF, cpu cooler, Corsair H5 SF, corsair

Corsair has launched the ultra-compact liquid cooler from their Bulldog chassis as a standalone product, and it's a unique solution for mini-ITX CPU cooling.

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Originally announced at this year's Computex as part of the Bulldog DIY system, this low-profile liquid cooler is designed to allow users of some of the smallest mini-ITX systems to not only keep their CPU's cool, but even allows some serious overclocking with up to 150 W of thermal dissipation. The design uses a blower-style fan that pushes air accross a compact radiator, and the entire unit is only 84 mm high for use in spaces that wouldn't ordinarily be able to support a powerful CPU cooler.

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Corsair provides this chart comparing performance against SFF air coolers

From Corsair:

"Further expanding Corsair’s best-selling Hydro series line of liquid CPU coolers, the H5 SF is Corsair’s first liquid cooler designed specifically to meet the thermal demands of small form factor PCs. Easy to install and just 84mm tall, the H5 SF is compact enough to fit inside the most confined PC case, yet still offers up to 150W of heat dissipation, enough to cool today’s demanding high-end CPUs with overclocking headroom to spare.

The all-new design fits directly on top of any Mini-ITX motherboard with no need to attach the H5 SF to any external fan mounts or brackets, maximizing compatibility across a wide range of Mini-ITX and small form factor cases. A high-performance copper cold plate efficiently draws heat away from the CPU, where it’s then transferred into the integrated 120mm x 40mm radiator and exhausted by the H5 SF’s low-noise tuned 120mm blower fan. What’s more, the H5 SF’s blower fan also draws air over other heat producing motherboard components such as VRMs and chipset heatsinks, helping to keep your whole system cool.

Fully compatible with Corsair’s Obsidian Series 250D, Carbide Series Air 240, and Graphite Series 380T cases, the H5 SF is also critical to Corsair’s upcoming Bulldog chassis, allowing the new case to deliver low-noise, 4K living room gaming without compromising CPU choice. Now enthusiasts can take advantage of Bulldog’s H5 SF cooling for themselves and fit even the most demanding of CPUs, into the smallest of cases."

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The mounting system is unique, with a bracket that attaches inline with the screws securing the mini-ITX motherboard, requiring no additional contact with the enclosure. It's a clever idea that permits the installation of this liquid solution wherever an air cooler of up to 84 mm is possible.

Here are the specifications from Corsair:

  • Socket Support: AMD: AM2, AM3, FM1, FM2, Intel LGA: 115X, 1366
  • Cold Plate Material: Copper
  • Radiator Material: Aluminum
  • Radiator dimensions: 167mm x 40mm x 57mm
  • Total cooler height: 84mm
  • Fan dimensions: 120mm x 32mm
  • Fan speed: 1000 - 1800 RPM
  • Fan airflow: 12 - 24 CFM
  • Fan pressure: 2.5 - 8.3 mmH2O
  • Fan noise level: 36 - 42 dB(A)
  • Tubing: Low-Permeability Tubing
  • Warranty: Five years

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The H5 SF carries an MSRP of $79.99, and this cost (which is in keeping with Corsair's existing 120 mm pricing) seems pretty reasonable considering the unique implementation and thermal capability. Available starting today, the H5 SF is already listed for sale on Newegg.com for the $79.99 MSRP.

Source: Corsair

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December 3, 2015 | 05:28 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Would I be crazy if I bought one of these for my ATX case? No reason in particular, I just like the design and I had considered making something similar myself. Would it be an issue that there is no outlet for the air that has already passed through the radiator effectively just heating up the inside of my case along with the other components?

After re-reading what I wrote, I can see it looks like a jumbled mess but I cant word it any better.

December 3, 2015 | 06:34 PM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

I'm with you here. As I was looking the product photos over I couldn't help but want to try this in place of a standard air cooler inside a standard enclosure. Of course I'd have to use a mini ITX motherboard, but if it was pointed toward the rear 120mm exhaust I don't think heat buildup would be an issue. I'm curious to see how much airflow there is over the VRMs, as a standard liquid cooler provides nothing in that area.

December 4, 2015 | 11:57 AM - Posted by Ss3trnks2

^Pretty much this. It would also be interesting to me to know what it does with the cases' ambient heat given how small the radiator is even with the fan being right there. But she is awfully purrty and I hope it works well :D

December 3, 2015 | 06:25 PM - Posted by ImmenseBrick

Pretty cool cooler idea, not sure if it will land up being much better than a good low profile noctua but time will tell. Pretty sweet, and to the above poster, I would not put into an atx or matx case as I doubt it will handle temps that great vs high end coolers designed for larger cases. If you run stock and dont push temps and just want it for looks then go at it. I might ditch my h100i as it looks great but even with MUCH BETTER FANS (noctua nff12) it still gets kinda loud above 1200rpm to keep my cpu cool enough. (4790k, 4.7ghz @ 1.285 volts)

December 3, 2015 | 07:30 PM - Posted by Gumballdrop (not verified)

not sure if this is a new idea or a spin on it lots of product have this type of cooler just not water.

December 3, 2015 | 07:01 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Get this and Build a Steam Machine/testing rig for Mini-ITX HTPC systems. I'd love to see this stressed tested/benchmarked for Build it yourself Steam OS based systems using the various Steam OS/Vulkan API builds that will be coming online from Valve as they get the Vulkan graphics API out of BETA and into their stable Steam OS builds. Is there room for a Fury X/its cooler with this cooler in a Mini-ITX case?

December 4, 2015 | 12:47 PM - Posted by jimecherry

One of those pc express x16 riser cards with ribbon cable would probably work, and we know a r9 nano would work

December 3, 2015 | 09:39 PM - Posted by Tucker Smith (not verified)

I'd like a programmable Lite-Brite on the top of this so I can spell my name or make a light show triggered by the beats I produce.

December 3, 2015 | 09:41 PM - Posted by btdog

Several things:

First, I love it! I now want to build in a SFF just to justify buying it and trying it out.

Second, I'm curious under what conditions Corsair did their testing where they showed the Intel and Premium SFF air cooler failing. Just saying it was a 4790 @84w doesn't tell me anything. Was it OC'd? What kind of case? And 69C isn't that great of a number.

Third, when are you going to run some benchmarks? :)

December 3, 2015 | 10:22 PM - Posted by Matman (not verified)

It looks different and innovative at first glance but I can't see any market for this except people shopping for "superficially looks different and innovative" or possibly "if it ain't water cooled ur doing it rong". I expect all conventional heatpipe coolers of similar overall dimensions (e.g. NH-L12)to blow it out of the water.

It has a tiny radiator surface area, the most significant factor of overall heatsink performance. There's just no way it can perform as well as a larger radiator design if you account for all metrics: watts, temperature, noise.

It is not low profile. It's taller than the intel reference design, taller even than the intel reference keepout area for heatsink clearance.

Something that could make this design interesting would be to employ thinner, longer, more flexible tubing, openning up the possibility of interesting alternative radiator placements. Also using a crossflow fan could result in a more compact design.

December 4, 2015 | 12:46 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

It looks awesome I don't know how well it would work in my SG13 Case though. I can't believe not a single YouTube has a video of this yet.

December 4, 2015 | 01:12 AM - Posted by Cyclops

Looks like a Polaroid camera.

December 4, 2015 | 02:31 AM - Posted by Hakuren

Exactly!

December 4, 2015 | 02:16 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

It seems like a similar design could be built using heat pipes with the blower instead of water cooling. I don't know if that form factor is really that useful though.

December 4, 2015 | 06:22 AM - Posted by John H (not verified)

What mini itx cases will this fit anyway? Cooler master elite cases are popular but only have 60-65mm of CPU cooler room.

December 4, 2015 | 12:12 PM - Posted by tannji (not verified)

Would be interested in building a system around this design... but how would you fit a discrete GPU under that? As far as APU and CPU/GPU combos have come, I still wouldn't want to be limited to them.

December 4, 2015 | 06:19 PM - Posted by btdog

If you look closely at the first and second photo, you'll see that the cooler does not overhang where the GPU would go. It's snug but it looks like a regular GPU will fit next to it.

December 4, 2015 | 01:22 PM - Posted by jimecherry

A liquid cooler design that isn't patented by asetech this should be encouraged even if it doesn't perform as well as many of you commenters would like.

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