In the past few years, closed-loop CPU liquid cooling systems have trickled down from tier- one PC makers into the DIY retail space. More recently, they finally succeeded in taking this market by storm by capitalizing on the high efficiency reputation of custom liquid cooling, while offering novice builders inexpensive, plug-and-play, and maintenance free solutions. The performance level of these kits has generally ranged from inferior to barely on par with high-end air cooling solutions, simply because they were originally designed for tier-one PC makers whose needs and performance criteria are substantially different from those of the DIY users.
Last year though, more robust solutions began to appear and give the monstrous high-end air coolers a good run for their money, and they subsequently enjoyed a resounding success. But up until today, all these products have sacrificed upgradability in favor of zero-maintenance, and the true performance potential of liquid cooling in favor of price.
Swiftech® has been making quality high performance liquid cooling products since the birth of this industry. Through the years, Swiftech® has always demonstrated its commitment to consistently improving user experience and product reliability by its designs, and by supporting as well as educating its customers.
This commitment is clearly evident in the work it has done to develop solutions that would bridge the gap between full custom and plug-and-play kits. Started in 2005, this work started to emerge in 2007 by the introduction of the H20-120 Compact kit using the Apogee Drive CPU cooler with its unique integrated pump design, followed in 2010 by the award winning H20-X20 Edge kit series, and finally this year with the release of the ApogeeTM drive II CPU cooler. What these three products have in common is the MCP35 pump series, a powerful, reliable, but very expensive mini pump ($100 at retail) developed and manufactured in Europe, and what this resulted into was a price level that was out of reach to many would-be liquid cooling users.
After 3 years of R&D, Swiftech is now proud to announce that they successfully developed and begun high-volume manufacturing -in their own production facility, of a new generation of Swiftech-made mini-pumps, specifically designed for the liquid cooling market. The pump combines a compact design, high-reliability and the high head-pressure performance characteristics required to drive multiple devices in a custom loop, at a fraction of their previous cost.
Thanks to this new pump, and to substantial economies of scale, the Company is now in a position to release the H220 CPU cooler, an all-in-one, entirely self-contained liquid cooling system focused on low to inaudible operating noise, and offering thermal performance that truly rivals that of the best custom kits at the price of an entry level product.
User convenience and the vast movement of novice builders towards liquid cooling was a critical consideration in the H220 design. It dictated that the kit would be pre-filled and completely plug-and-play. But with a 15 years heritage serving the enthusiast community, Swiftech® also wanted to eliminate some of the limitations of the existing low-cost sealed systems. In particular, their inability to accommodate add-on components such as VGA or chipset waterblocks because (a) they are sealed and offer no means to refill the system without voiding the warranty, and (b) the pump used is so weak that it cannot drive sufficient flow to efficiently cool more than a CPU.
The Swiftech® H220 kit addresses these issues by featuring a reservoir with a fill-port built into the radiator so that the system can be easily emptied or refilled by the user at will; the kit also utilizes enthusiast grade 5/8" OD black PVC tubing fastened to swivel fittings with an elegant clamping system that users can easily remove and safely re-install. Coupled with Swiftech's new pump, it means that the H220 can be expanded to support additional liquid cooled components such as chipset and graphics cards. These types of configurations will be demonstrated during CES.
Finally, the H220 CPU liquid cooling kit is maintenance free for the duration of its 3 year warranty period, and will be offered at a Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price of $139.95.