EKWB has an automatic pressure-testing machine. The only interaction required is for an employee to place each block in the tester. The machine does the rest of the work by itself.
Seal Of Approval
The machine works by sealing around the block's inlet and outlet, forcing air into it. If the block can take EKWB's specified pressure, it passes the test. The machine was set to 0.207 megapascals, which is equivalent to about 30 PSI. That's roughly what's in most car tires.
Next, an employee places a "Leak Tested" sticker on the block, and sends it off to packaging. Should you ever dismantle the block, you'll have to go through that sticker first.
There isn't much to be said about packaging, except that the folks running this department are extremely efficient. At first, I told one of the workers to just do what she normally does as I took pictures. Right away, though, I had to ask her to slow down. The process consists of cleaning the block, bagging it, putting it in the right box with its bundled accessories, closing it up and labeling the box. For that last step, the team has a label printer.
There are two teams that handle distribution. One takes care of customer orders, and another handles shipments that go to EKWB's distributors around the world.
Perhaps the biggest surprise was how efficiently everything runs in EKWB's factory, and how good the working conditions appear to be. You're never really sure what to expect when visiting a company's headquarters, but I was allowed to browse freely. After spending just over a day talking to the employees and figuring out how everything works, it became clear to me why nobody was nervous about my presence -- they had nothing to hide.
Stay on the Cutting Edge
Join the experts who read Tom's Hardware for the inside track on enthusiast PC tech news — and have for over 25 years. We'll send breaking news and in-depth reviews of CPUs, GPUs, AI, maker hardware and more straight to your inbox.
Niels Broekhuijsen is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He reviews cases, water cooling and pc builds.
His name is the name of his company. Straight pimpin. I wonder whose name made google.Reply
These are the articles that make Tom's special IMO :)Reply
@ Tom's...I'd love to see more of these manuf/vendor tours en leu of filler reposts. A tour of EVGA one month, Sapphire the next/etc...
Cool. I wondered how they cranked them out fast. Seems like when a new GPU/top end MB comes out, they have a block in no time. I thought they had their own CNC setup to do it that fast.Reply
That's pretty cool! I always wondered how manufactuers made custom blocks.Reply
Thumbs up this was awesomeReply
This is such a great read! Very interesting and very informative of why these parts are rather expensive compared to other hardware.Reply
Is this supposed to make you feel better about all the product quality/recall issues?Reply
"After spending just over a day talking to the employees and figuring out how everything works, it became clear to me why nobody was nervous about my presence -- they had nothing to hide."Reply
A sign of a great company. :-)
Thanks for the lovely article Niels, I really enjoyed reading it and seeing the pictures. I agree with @toddybody, these articles add to the special feeling of Tom's Hardware. Keep them coming! :-D
Great tour. I'd like to see more of these tours at some of the top component manufacturers.Reply
Awesome, looks like they were genuinely happy to have you guys there! Going to do my first custom loop this year, can't wait now :)Reply