Testing Results & Conclusion
Comparison of the Swiftech Apogee SKF-TR4 Heirloom and the EK-FB MSI X399 Gaming RGB Monoblock on the same system platform will provide us with the direct hardware comparison we need. The overclocked AMD Threadripper 1900X running at 4.10Ghz and a vCore of 1.40v provides plenty of thermal load while running Prime95 v27.9 with an AVX FFT length of 8k.
CPU load temperature differences show the narrowest of margins here, with less than a single degree Celsius separating the cooling performance of both CPU blocks at each full- and half-speed fan readings. Given that both manufacturers here are known for their high-performing cooling products, this honestly comes as no surprise. Performance watercooling is often a matter of fractional differences, and our testing further supports this.
Since both cooling tests were completed using the same exact pump and radiator fans, these two graphs effectively just show value of limiting our testing environment variables.
Without evaluating the exact same acoustic efficiency, we wouldn’t be able to do a direct comparison of each CPU block as overall performance value to unit pricing. The incredibly close cooling performance and lower retail price provides the Swiftech Apogee SKF-TR4 Heirloom CPU block a nice edge overall. With a retail price of $108, the Apogee SKF-TR4 could be seen as a nicely positioned alternative to the EK-FB MSI X399 Monoblock, primarily due to the fact that the EK block fits only specific motherboards, while the Swiftech Apogee SKF-TR4 fits any TR4 or SP3 socket board.
Testing numbers shouldn't be the only area of focus when choosing a CPU block. Since watercooling is an enthusiast cooling solution, great aesthetics are often a major part of the decision-making process. Swiftech absolutely does not disappoint with the Apogee SKF-TR4 Heirloom waterblock for AMD’s Threadripper platform. While the cost of the block might shock some-- it costs more than a complete AIO cooler system alone--the delivered performance and design speak for themselves.
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