The Swiftech H220 takes up considerably less space than the custom liquid cooling solution used in our personal PC setup. But does the smaller footprint impact performance on an overclocked Core i7 3930K? Logic would tell us yes, and hopefully the difference in price of the two would say yes as well.
*please note that the “Custom Setup” used in the graphs above and below included a 320mm triple fan radiator*
Idle temperatures for our custom setup sit 3-5 degrees cooler depending on which core we look at. Our logic and empty wallet were correct, at least when it comes to idle temperatures.
The load temperatures graph continues what we saw with the idle temps. The custom setup cools better, as expected. There is a delta of up to 7 degrees on one core. The difference in temps can be attributed to many things, mainly how the thermal paste was applied and how well the CPU heatspreader makes contact with the CPU water block.
Given the fact that the custom cooling solution does cool better, we have to recognize that the H220, with a price point of $139.95, cools much better from a cost analysis perspective. A simple comparison is to take the number of cores and spread the total cost of each setup over them. Starting with the Swiftech H220, we are looking at a price of $23.325 per core. Our custom solution runs $66.452 per core. That’s a difference of over $43 per core to get a few more degrees of cooling power.
Is a few degrees worth all that extra money? Well, that’s up to the end user. A custom cooling solution has its place. More personalization, better cooling and possibly more silent operation are reasons a custom setup would be desirable to some. We say possibly more quiet operation, because the fans used in the H220, along with the pump, make it near silent in its own right. There was no discernible difference in noise levels between our custom setup and the H220. We witnessed how quiet the new Swiftech units are at CES this past January when Gabe Rouchon gave us a personal tour.
The interesting bit about the H220 is that, yes, it is an all-in-one solution, but it is more than just that. This unit has been designed to be customizable. It is out of the box ready, but you can add in more cooling options. That means you can add a GPU water block or Mofset water block to the existing H220 CPU loop and still get the same cooling and silent operation you will find in our review.
Swiftech has marketed this unit as an all-in-one DIYer. It is easy enough to install and powerful enough to grow into a full system solution. With a low cost of entry, we find it hard to see why we would want to go through the time and effort of picking out and installing a custom water cooling solution. We applaud Swiftech for taking the steps to give end users what they want. And we recommend that you give this new all-in-one cooling solution a try. It’s time for something new and not a rehash of a rehashed product.
The H220 will be available at the end of February.