- Unboxing and Overview- 1
- Driver and Lighting
- Individual Component Testing
- Thermal Performance
Unboxing and Overview- 2
The cooler unit has two separate plastic wraps around it, one for the radiator and the second for the CPU block with both extending further to cover the tubing and wiring as well. Removing both, we can see the Hydro H150i PRO is a svelte looking unit with a monochrome color scheme going on from a quick look, and also a lot of cables that are hard wired to the CPU block as well. Let’s go through the unit then, beginning with the CPU block, which reveals a CORSAIR logo and working on a black glossy top cover under yet another plastic wrap, and a silver colored metal (presumably aluminum) surrounding it on the outside in a beaded finish. This is purely for aesthetics and does not come in contact with the coolant, although galvanic corrosion is really going to happen regardless considering the mixed metals used here as with most CLCs. The rest of the block is composed of plastic, and it comes off light and cheap to the touch if I say so myself.
On one side is a female micro-USB port where the cable we saw before plugs in, and this is how you get software control over the cooler using CORSAIR Link. We can also see from the side that the cooler comes with the Intel mounting bracket installed out of the box, fair enough given the market share Intel still enjoys. The cold plate is decidedly Asetek with the round shape and the eight screws holding it in place, and we see a single application of thermal paste on the cooler. This circle does not have a big diameter, and is smaller than the IHS of Intel HEDT platforms, but such is the way of the world to where the actual dies underneath are well within that circle area of the thermal paste. I want CORSAIR, and really every other CPU cooler brand, to provide a tube of thermal paste and a spreader instead of going with these single applications that really can be improved. On the flip side, the stock paste used is one of the best ones in terms of thermal conductivity (I can’t say which one specifically, unfortunately) so if all you need a single usage then you should go ahead and use this over just about any other on the market.
The CPU block has a pump integrated in it, and this is a new Gen 6 design that was made by Asetek to CORSAIR’s specifications. Contrary to most beliefs, the OEM customer does have a say in more than the aesthetics of the unit, especially if you are a customer that has a large market share in the industry. There are two rotary 90° barbs on another side of the block to which the tubing is connected to, and this is also where the hardwired cables come out of. We can see a total of two cables and five connectors here. The first is a SATA power connector to power the pump and also the RGB LEDs integrated under the cover. This goes to an available SATA power connector on your PSU, and it also powers the three female fan headers on the other cable. Thus, CORSAIR intends for the customer to plug in the three fan cables to these headers instead to both power and control the fans via CORSAIR Link rather than an onboard or similar solution. The final connector is a fan connector to plug into your CPU_FAN header in case the motherboard needs a fan RPM signal and there is no option to disable it. The tubing is similar to what we have seen before from the company, making use of a low permeability compound with braided sleeving on top for aesthetics. The tubing terminates in barb fittings on the radiator as well, thus finishing the coolant journey in the pump->CPU block->radiator->pump cycle.
The radiator is a slim, triple 120 mm version designed with case compatibility in mind. There are a total of 12 coolant tubes in a single row, dual pass (U-flow) configuration for 6 tubes per direction. The coolant tubes, as with the rest of the radiator, are made of aluminum and given a matte paint finish. The cold plate used was copper, so we presumably have some form of propylene glycol-based anti-corrosive coolant in use here based on previous Asetek cooler history. The fan holes are threaded well and placed a standard 15 mm apart. Between the tubes are louvered, serpentine fins at 20 FPI on average. Build quality was decent, although some of the louvering seemed to be at a more extreme angle than the others.
Let’s now take a look at the cooler installation on the next page.