CPU Cooler Charts 2008, Part 1

MSI / Watercool HydroGen - The User Friendly Solution

The random number generator next picked a watercooling solution. A short while ago, motherboard maker MSI introduced the X38 HydroGen motherboard, which sports a water cooling solution for the northbridge and southbridge. It utilizes a small copper pipe that conducts water through all heatsinks on the entire board. MSI sells this board as a bundle with the Watercool HT Fusion Dual cooling solution. Since this cooler is also available separately, directly from manufacturer Watercool, we decided to add it to the list of candidates.

MSI / Watercool HydroGen

The external radiator also contains a pump, a compensating reservoir and two fans. The cooler can be set up on the top of the PC case, or on the floor.

The CPU cooler of choice in this case was the Heatkiller CPU LGA 775 Rev2.5, which is also available in an AM2/AM2+ version. MSI's bundle only comes with the Socket 775 mounting bracket, for obvious reasons.


MSI Logo

Installing the cooler is very simple, and can be quite elegantly done. With the motherboard removed from the case, four holding pins are screwed into the board. The CPU cooler itself is then mounted on these pins using four spring-supported hexagon-socket screws (an appropriate tool is included).The flat design of the heatsink gives you lots of space to work in, making installation a breeze.

Removing the motherboard from the case is not necessary for the AM2 mounting bracket.

CPU Cooler Top

CPU Cooler Bottom

The cooler is equipped with the four screw-connections (type A. 90°C, 10 mm) and a tube (3 meters). If you're buying the HT Fusion Dual as an aftermarket option, you'll need to buy the assembly components separately.

The radiator ships in a protective plastic adhesive film.

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  • Thank you, been wondering what cooler to buy for an OCed Quad, and high temps are good when dying :D
  • ... must be stupid ...! The fan is istalled at wrong side of the cooler ...
  • Thermalright FTW!! Every time.
  • I cant believe that photo...sorrii I am with you only a nutjob would use or test it in that configuration!!!
    Noctua clearly state orientation of their coolers and that is ass about.
    Every other review I have read rates the NH-U12F much more highly... always near best in class
  • your numbers of near 70C on every cooler is outrageous, if those numbers are true not a single one of these coolers would keep a computer stable in a closed case outside the northeast. and a couple minutes isnt a good measure of cpus final temp, if u look over a temp log after a long game session you know it creeps up. to many factors.
  • Bullshit article.I agree with wkornf.

    If my Artic silver 5 + Scythe Katana 2 cooler(for only a massive price of 25 USD! I can keep my outdated Pentium D under 100 degrees fahrenheit,infact around HALF of these tests,even under water cooling? Wow,according to this,I should actually worry about getting a quad core because of the heat.And no,I don't have any fans in my case,it's open,only fans are from my GPU,CPU,and my PSU.
    No extra 4 250mm performance fans.And an X38? That's just unbelievable.
  • Do you guys get the point? They maxed out everything, so the cooler could show off the best that it could do in the most extreme conditions.

    A good article, i especially like the tests for installation and sound, as those are what i would look into most when purchasing a cooler, and unlike CPUs, there are usually no charts to go along with.
  • eaglestrike... do you see mounting the noctua fan in the wrong direction as good testing???
    They have it on the top side of the sink flowing in a downward direction!!!
    it goes against basic laws of physics and logic.
  • alot of the coolers listed of a particular design are installed all goofy like, Of course on their open setup it doesn't make much difference(i think)

    but when installed in a normal ATX case, would be detrimental to the coolers performance. Especially coolers designed similar to the Noctua and Scythe Ninja plus.

    I can't be certain about others but Arctic Cooling's Freezer 7 Pro is supposed to be installed like this(one would assume others of similar design would be the same)
  • cliffro I think to some degree you are correct but it still does not follow good practice when supposedly collecting data to represent consumer products.
    As these have published manufacturer recomended installations why would you reverse it.
    I recently read a review of the latest Noctua cooler at Legitreviews
    where Noctua actually contacted them on this very issue... as a result they retested and found some improvement in cooling.
  • You guys might want to reexamine the Zerotherm Nirvana NV120... I just picked one up (after much research), and all of the problems mentioned in the review seem to be fixed in the newer models... no more metal base, no more metal shavings, and near silent operation except at full speed. I've been using Zalman CNPS coolers ever since the 7000 series, and will likely be switching to the NV120 for performance systems now. Just my 2c
  • Any cooler that uses the push pin system should get a zero for installation. That system completely sucks. I'd rather remove a motherboard and install a backplate than use that push pin garbage.
  • what exactly did they "max out" to achieve these temps. to me it looks like a qx6850 quad core running stock settings. which is a processor i know doesnt have load temps of 70c with those coolers.
  • what exactly did they "max out" to achieve these temps. to me it looks like a qx6850 quad core running stock settings. which is a processor i know doesnt have load temps of 70c with those coolers.
  • sorrii... must be stupid ...! The fan is istalled at wrong side of the cooler ...

    Nothing's wrong or stupid with that setup--two fans are used in a push-pull arrangement--the bottom fan is blowing into the cooler, the top fan is pulling air away from the cooler to exhaust it from the cooler.
  • @guyladouche... actually it all depends which cooler you are talking about,

    As said the Noctua is setup with the fan on top blowing down, which is the only config that Noctua dont support.
    The Thermalright has the fan in the middle blowing up so it looks like there is no real consistancy in the test methods... but I would like to hear from the testers in case they found some reason to use each particular setup.
  • I'm still looking for the chart!!!!!! Ummmm...Am I missing something? I keep clicking on these Cooler Chart links and keep getting lengthly articles. Would be great ...I mean if we are going to call this a chart... to have an "at a glance" single page so we can make easy comparisons.
  • page 17 click on index and scroll down...:o)
  • Thanks bro.....:-)
  • Well my Scythe Mugen (Infinity) does the job...and it`s cheap + it can be equipped with 2 120mm fans ;)
    Actually I`m wondering why it is not included in these tests!?