Custom water cooling is, and always will be something reserved for the wealthy few that can afford it. Or will it? As spotted by techPowerUp, Corsair just launched a new CPU block for just $60, called the Hydro XC5 RGB, making this one of the more affordable waterblocks you can buy.
The Hydro X Series XC5 features a cold plate that's milled from copper with a high-density fin array on the inside to aid heat transfer from the copper into the water. It comes with pre-applied thermal grease, along with a nylon top that should be cheaper to make and less prone to cracking than the acrylic in the XC7 and XC9 blocks (Acrylic is pretty, but difficult to work with).
Despite its $60 price point, the XC5 does still pack addressable-RGB lighting with 16 LEDs. But, those 16 are grouped in pairs, giving you a total of 8 RGB zones you can control -- less than the flagship blocks, saving a little bit of money in the controller.
To date, Corsair hasn't been very vocal about its custom watercooling components, seemingly inching into the market to test the waters over the course of the last few years while it builds a name for itself in the space.
Of course, we welcome competitors to this market -- especially when they compete this aggressively on price as although its practical uses are limited, custom water cooling is an extremely fun and rewarding way to cool your PC. The catch with Corsair's stuff appears to be less premium materials compared to the makes of EKWB and Bitspower, but as long as it's all good enough to be water-tight by the time a build is finished, none of that really matters.
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Niels Broekhuijsen is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He reviews cases, water cooling and pc builds.
i would let other people do the beta test.
a barrow waterblock on aliexpress seems a better idea to me than a cheap corsair waterblock.
or even better, don't cheap out on the waterblock and buy an heatkiller, an all-metal version. superior craftmanship. after all, it's one of the most critical parts of the loop, a single drop can fry the moterboard and/or the gpu beneath