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Zalman Z-Machine LQ1000 Design and Features

Three High-End Liquid-Cooling Cases Compared

We showed a run-down of Koolance’s component prices, so it’s fair to show the same information for Zalman’s LQ1000.

Zalman Component Cost
Component Part Number Price
Case Kit LQ1000 $700
CPU Water Block Included 0
Pump Included 0
Nozzles Included 0
Tubing Included 0
Coolant Included 0
Total Price $700

Zalman’s liquid-cooled case contains all the basic components needed for CPU cooling, and the company also offers water blocks for graphics cards and chipsets. Zalman’s selection of graphics coolers isn’t nearly as extensive or current as Koolance’s product line, but buyers are welcome to mix-and-match various brands of cooling components as desired.

Zalman produces its own cases, and this allowed the company a little more flexibility in design. Manufacturing its own designs also allows Zalman its choice of materials, and the biggest thing that sets these apart from other brands is the extensive use of aluminum plate, rather than thinner sheet.

At only 18 3/8” tall, 19” deep and with front panel ports near the center of its front panel, the Z-Machine is designed specifically for you to place it on a desk. Similar dimensions were common in traditional case designs, but we’ve not seen a performance chassis this slight in a while. Also traditional, the “Power On Top” layout eases cable routing while allowing the power supply’s fan to assist the exhaust fan in removing system heat.

Notice the finish, which is so matte that we had to use special lighting placement to get any reflection from it.

Four thumb screws hold hinged side panels shut. The screw holes are recessed for use with Allen screws, if desired. Deep fins on the rear door hide ventilation slots.

The right side has a matching door on its front portion for easy access to drive screws, but opening it requires an included Allen wrench. The finned rear portion is a removable motherboard tray, held by eight more Allen screws.

The LQ1000 radiator occupies around half of the left-rear door, while a reservoir above it consumes most of the remaining usable space. A 120 mm blue-LED exhaust fan is pre-mounted, while the radiator fan is boxed separately.

The LQ1000 includes a pump rated at a maximum of 300 liters per hour, which is mounted on a noise dampening pad. A support bracket over the top needs to be removed after shipping. Notice that the hose connector at the bottom of the radiator points directly away from the side panel, pushing any coolant line beneath expansion cards. Also notice the short piece of tubing, which is followed by a union and more tubing, but with one clamp missing.

The LQ1000 includes Zalman’s retail-boxed ZM-WB5 CPU water block and installation kit, a 220 mm blue-LED fan, a bottle of coolant and funnel, an Allen wrench, a power supply jumper wire for “burping” the system, installation hardware, and an extra length of silicon hose.

The bottom of Zalman’s ZM-WB5 water block is almost perfectly smooth and appears to be plated in black nickel.

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