Once again, it's time for another review out of Bastelorakel's test laboratory. Today's review is about quad radiators: radiators that can be fitted with four fans on each side. Because of the increase in produced heat by CPUs and GPUs these models are getting especially more and more popular with users that don't want to use an external solution but still want a suitable radiator for their high end system. To show in which regions the quad radiators perform, I've also included the popular triple HTSF and the Mora 2 in this review. Even though radiators in this class can already reach an appealing performance at low fan speeds, I've also performed tests at several speeds up to 1500rpm. Up to 1200 rpm I used the among watercooling enthusiasts very popular Yate Loon D12SL12, even though the newer ones do have a lot of side noises. For the 1500 rpm tests I used Gelid Wing 12 fans, which worked very quietly at low rpm while still reaching a good airflow, which makes them a recommendation for both radiator and case usage. As I only had four of those, I couldn't use them on the Mora, though. Update 10/26/09: Thermochill 120.4 and HWLabs Black Ice SR1 480 added. Descriptions and new results added. Update 04/29/10: Koolance "High Flow" & "Low Flow", Swiftech MCR420 QP, EK Coolstream XT480, Phobya Xtreme Quad 480, Phobya G-Changer 480 V1.2 added. Descriptions and new results added. Test setup: Case: Microcool Banchetto 101 Bench Table Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-EX58-Extreme CPU: Intel Core i7-920 @4.2Ghz - 1,40V (Value set in BIOS) - Bios: F7 RAM: Corsair XMS3 Dominator DIMM Kit 6GB PC3-12800U CL7-7-7-20 Video Card: Sapphire HD 5850 (not part of the cooling loop) PSU: Seasonic M12D-850 850W CP-Block: Heatkiller 3.0 Nickel Edition NB-Block: Mips Fusionblock Nickel Controller: Aquaero VFD Flowmeter: Aqua Computer Highflow Thermal compound: GELID Solutions GC Extreme Thermal Compound Pump: Laing Ultra (Koolance PMP-400 top) Pump decouling: Noise Destructor V1.1 Tubing: Feser 16/10 Quick release couplings: CPC 9,5mm metal Reservoir: Alphacool Cyclone Temperature sensors: 3x inline + 1x inside of reservoir Water additive: Feser One UV Clear/Blue Ready-to-use Fittings: 10mm Perfect Seal + 11mm Bitspower fittings Fans: 9x Yate Loon D12SL12 + 4x Gelid Wing12 Gamerfan To stress the CPU, Prime95 (Small FFTs) was used in the newest version. Monitoring and logging of the temperatures was done by the Aquasuite in intervals of five minutes after at least 60 minutes. The most relevant value in my test is the difference between the room's temperature and the water's temperature when exiting the radiator. This value shows the radiator's performance by showing how well the radiator can use the room's temperature to cool the water. The smaller this difference, the better the performance. The results should be understandable easily for any interested reader, so I'll only present this value for various fan speeds in addition to the flow rate. The contestants in pictures and technical data: Phobya Extreme Quad 480 Technical data: Material: copper fins, brass antechambers Size: (L x W x H): 264x242x46mm Fittings: 1/4" Weight: ca 1567g Mountability: 16x M3-threads on top (for 4x 120mm-fans) Pressure tested: 2 Bar Scope of delivery: 1x Radiator 16x M3x30mm Phillips screws Price: ca 70 EUR (around 93 US $) Phobya G-Changer 480 V1.2 Technical data: Material: copper fins, brass antechambers Color: matt black Size: (L x W x H): 532x125x60mm Fittings: 1/4" Weight: ca 2100g Mountability: from both sides for fans or mounting Pressure tested: 2 Bar Misc: screw for deairing Scope of delivery: 1x Radiator 16x M3x30mm Phillips screws 4x decoupling 2x black screw plugs Price: ca 80 EUR (around 106 US$) Phobya provided two quad radiators for this comparative test. The first model, the Xtreme Quad 480, is a rock solid radiator that stands out for its uncommon design. Except for the Mora, on all the other radiators in this review the fans are mounted in a row, but on this one, they are placed in a 2x2 square pattern. Well, this design might seem odd to a few readers, but it's this way for a reason: the size fits most midi tower cases as it's made for mounting it on the side of one. Of course, separately placing the radiator away from the case will also work, even without an additional stand: the mounted fans provide enough stability for it to stay upright. The radiator features a fan grill, that four fans can be mounted using the included M3 screws. The grill's edges are a bit rough and one thread wasn't very well made, but you can't complain, concerning the low price tag, the good performance and the, apart from those issues, not bad quality. The second quad radiator by Phobya is called G-Changer 480 and comes with the usual fan screws, fan decoupling and another useful feature: As the radiator features 4 1/4" threads, the user can choose whether to use to threads on the front or on the top of the radiator. This is rather useful for mounting and putting the tubes in the system. This feature can also be used to connect a fillport to one of the threads, making an additional reservoir redundant. The workmanship of my test sample was good, there were no damages visible to the paint or the fins. This radiator also excels in its performance, as there are only a few products in this review that are insignificantly better, but cost a lot more. Overall a worry-free deal with enough performance for modern systems. Koolance HX-CU1320H (Low Flow) & Koolance HX-CU1320V (High Flow) Koolance HX-CU1320H (Low Flow / Horizontal) Material: copper fins, brass pipes Size: (L x W x H): 535x126x44mm Fittings: 1/4" Weight: 1700g Screw threads: M4 Scope of delivery: 1x Radiator 16x M4x32mm Phillips screws 1 pair of 6mm-fitting spacers Price: 76 EUR (around 100US$) Koolance HX-CU1320V (High Flow) Koolance HX-CU1320V (High Flow) Material: copper fins, brass pipes Size: (L x W x H): 515x126x30mm Fittings: 1/4" Weight: 1000g Screw threads: M4 Scope of delivery: 1x Radiator 12x M4x32mm Phillips screws 1 pair of 6mm-fitting spacers Price: ca 80 EUR (around 110US$) The American cooling company Koolance also provided two quad radiators for my review. The first one is the slim radiator HXCU1320V, optimized for high-rpm fans, which, obviously, bears HardwareLabs' signature. The threads for the fittings are on the front and it's also supposed to work well at low rpms. In Germany, the radiators cost between 76 and 80€ and come safely packaged with all required screws. Both radiators are of outstanding quality, that's for sure. Due to the low distance between the fins on the thin "High Flow"-model you don't have to be a prophet to predict a bad performance under 800 rpm, but at higher rpm the radiator really shows what it's made of. The second model already works well at lower fan speeds and reaches a good standing on my scoreboard. There're better alternatives for silentfreaks, but due to the price tags and for people, who don't really care for the volume of their PC, these radiators provide a solid alternative, as even the "low flow" one can keep up with most other quad radiators are speeds over 800rpm. Swiftech MCR420 - QP 480mm Radiator The company Swiftech, based in California, has existed for years. In the past, they were already able to win several tests, with the CPU-Block Apogee XT among others. Because of this, this quad radiator mustn't miss in my review. As usual for radiators made by Swiftech the antechamber looks rather strange and the body of the radiator is a bit more wide than most other radiators of this size. It comes with all required screws for mounting, which are in the, over here, very uncommon standard UNC 6-32, and a notice warning of too long screws. Overall, I liked this radiator a lot, partly because of the above-average quality and partly because of the good overall performance. EK Water Blocks EK-CoolStream RAD XT 480 This Radiator is based on the Eastar/Magicool Model, but has some new technical design and a enhanced Look with the new EK Logo. The workmanship of my test sample was good, there were no damages visible to the paint or the fins. This radiator also excels in its performance, as there are only a few products in this review that are insignificantly better, but cost a lot more. Overall a worry-free deal with enough performance for modern systems. HWLabs Black Ice SR1 480 Material: Copper, brass Color: black Size: (L x W x H): 517x133x54mm Fittings: 1/4" Weight: 1490g Screw threads: M4 Price: ca. 130 EUR (about 172US$) The company Hardware Labs is well established since years and offers a large range of high quality radiators in a lot of sizes and designs, though there is one thing that all of those have in common: superior quality. The new SR1 radiators are available from single to quad for fan sizes of 120 and 140mm. Up until now, the Black Ice radiators with their low distance between the fins were made for fan speeds beyond 800 rpm, so they couldn't really hold their own in the low rpm field that's so popular here in Europe. With the new SR1 series, this aspect is now a thing of the past - the new series are very potent products, which are now also and especially optimized for lower fan speeds. Another useful feature is the fact that the distance between the fins is different on the sides. On the side with the fittings, the distance is clearly bigger than on the other side, creating a built-in shroud, improving overall performance. Of course I tested mounting fans on both sides, resulting in a better performance on the side with "shroud", with a maximum difference of 0.7°C. In my results, I used the side with the best results. The SR1 series knows how to appeal to the customer: the matt black paint is flawless like all the threads and the distance between the fins is now ideal for lower fan speeds and a resulting lower volume.