With the H70, Corsair brings a liquid cooling system to market that strives to address the challenges of liquid cooling while still exemplifying its benefits.
It relieves the user of the hassle of having to assemble individual components, which should appeal to those without much experience in liquid cooling. With a street price of around $110, it is reasonably priced compared to other liquid cooling systems. By pre-filling the closed loop system at the factory, it is ready for use immediately after unpacking, and does not have to be much more complicated to install than some air CPU coolers.
In addition, Corsair offers a two-year warranty, and the producer Asetek indicates that the average lifespan of the liquid cooling system is about 50 000 hours. Installing the liquid cooling system is easy, and the detailed installation instructions for the different supported processor interfaces should simplify the process for less experienced users.
There are a few weak points, however. We would have liked the tubing between the water block and the radiator to be a bit longer than 24 cm. The same goes for the fan cables, which are a bit short at just 21 cm. The fans included created mixed impressions. On the one hand, the radiator with its very dense fin structure requires a certain air throughput--something the fans handle just fine. But on the other hand, these fans are not exactly the most acoustically-friendly. Quieter fans with variable speeds would be something to hope for here. You could look around for alternatives, but then you'd only be adding to the cost of this unit, which already exceeds the upper range of the highest-end air coolers.
However, if you can live with the slightly elevated background noise level that comes with the Corsair H70 liquid cooling system, you get cooling performance in the good to very good range in the upper segment of CPU coolers.
In the light of air cooling alternatives like Zalman’s CNPS 10X Extreme, which costs roughly $69, Corsair’s new H70 remains a premium-priced product. It's perhaps best suited to environments where space around the processor is tight, and you don't have room for a cheaper, comparable-performing high-end air cooler.