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Face-Off: The Kraken X61, Reserator 3 Max Dual, And NH-D15

NZXT Kraken X61

Dual-fan radiators are typically visually obscured by either the top or front of a case’s frame, and most of those enclosures are now painted flat black on the inside. NZXT designs the radiator of its 2 x 140mm Kraken X61 to blend in, rather than stand out.

You’ll still need a chassis that accepts two 140mm fans side-by-side, with a little room to spare for the radiator’s tanks. We chose Corsair’s Graphite 760T.

Finding a compatible motherboard is even easier, since NZXT’s installation kit supports the entire LGA 115x series, LGA 2011 and 1366, and the four holes of AMD retention mechanisms.

The Kraken X61’s cooling head comes with factory-applied thermal compound and a factory-installed LGA 2011/1366/115x installation bracket. A variation of the familiar Asetek design, a plastic lock ring can be removed to install the AMD mounting bracket.

Using a single motherboard fan header for RPM feedback, the Kraken X61 gets its power from what looks like a SATA connector, which feeds the pump and four 4-pin fan headers. Meanwhile, a USB 2.0 connector allows software to control fan and pump speed.

Included standoffs take advantage of LGA 2011’s integrated support bracket. LGA 115x requires that you install a support bracket first, while AMD users get to replace the screws that hold the motherboard’s top bracket in place with those supplied by NZXT. Regardless of the hardware you use, protruding threads are the result.

The factory-attached Intel bracket fits over those protruding threads, and is secured using knurled nuts. AMD users must replace the bracket with a different, bundled part before accomplishing this.

The “Kraken” menu within NZXT’s CAM software allows users to pick between various cooling modes. Manual selection lets you set 100% fan speed, though our processor ran hot enough to get there using the “Performance” setting. We also used “Silent” mode to gauge minimum-noise performance.

  • tom10167
    Nice article, though the NH-D14 at only $75 seems like the best value.
    Reply
  • F0lterknecht
    Would have liked to see the numbers for push/pull on the AIOs :-(

    Take 4 reference coolers and you can stick 2 of them to the NH-D15 to keep the noise measurements fair ... .
    Reply
  • F0lterknecht
    I mean 4 fans ofc
    Reply
  • F0lterknecht
    I mean 4 fans ofc
    Reply
  • op8
    which is why I always use test bench style cases so you dont have to worry about warping during transport.
    Reply
  • Amdlova
    put another Fans on the noctua and blow away those water coolers. Noctua make good products. And you never will move your cage with this heavy weight 760T If wanna move something you will spend money on Alluminium (silver stone, lian li, etc).

    1 kg of cooler for 12kg of corsair monster.
    Reply
  • op8
    which is why I always use test bench style cases so you dont have to worry about warping during transport.
    Reply
  • Crashman
    14769014 said:
    put another Fans on the noctua and blow away those water coolers. Noctua make good products. And you never will move your cage with this heavy weight 760T If wanna move something you will spend money on Alluminium (silver stone, lian li, etc).

    1 kg of cooler for 12kg of corsair monster.

    It weighs less than the Aluminium case to which is was compared:
    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/atx-pc-cases-caselabs-merlin-sm8-corsair-graphite-760t-thermaltake-urban-t81,3865.html

    Reply
  • middlemarkal
    where is the thermaltake ultimate ?
    Reply
  • envy14tpe
    Not a fan of liquid cooling but results like these are getting me to come around. However, the noise and price are the last two things that need to be fixed.

    I mean Corsair's top coolers, H100i or H105, are getting fans replaced which adds $$$. I'd rather put more money into the mobo or consider a custom loop at that point. Really wish the H100i was included in trial. None the less, keep up the great articles.
    Reply