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Thermaltake Tide Water All in One VGA Liquid Cooling Module Review
Page 6 of 6

TEMPERATURES AND CONCLUSION

crazypc.com

To say that I was impressed with how well the Tide Water cooled would be an understatement. It cooled far beyond what I had anticipated (as well as what some other sources are reporting). I believe that the cooling ability of the Tide Water is directly related to making sure the water block is as tight as possible against your GPU. This is common knowledge, especially amongst the water cooling community. You have to be very careful as you don't want to over-tighten...but, if you don't tighten enough, you will not achieve the full cooling potential.

The ambient room temperatures for all tests was 20°C  (+/- 0.5°C). The ambient case temperatures for all tests was 22°C (+/- 0.5°C). All tests were run for 30 minutes or longer until the maximum temperature had leveled off. The Half-Life 2: Lost Coast video stress test was run repeatedly in windowed mode so that the temperature could be monitored at the same time. Speedfan was not used as it was unable to detect the 7800 GTX's temperature sensor.

Stock 7800 GTX Cooling (Single Card)
Ambient Room Temp: 20°C    Ambient Case Temp: 22°C


Thermaltake Tide Water - 7800 GTX Cooling (Single Card)
Ambient Room Temp: 20°C    Ambient Case Temp: 22°C


The Tide Water cooled the single 7800 GTX an average of 31.1°C better than the stock cooling solution. Breaking that out to the low fan setting, we get an average reduction of 29.8°C and 32.5°C average reduction on the high fan setting.
 
When two 7800 GTX cards are involved in an SLI setup, the temperatures of the top card will be lower due to the shared load with the second card. The top card is always* going to run hotter than the second card. Why did I put an asterisk (*) after "always" in that previous sentence? I thought I would just show the two screenshots below. Remember, the Tide Water is cooling the first card denoted as GeForce 7800 GTX-GPU1 in the NVIDIA Control Panel.

* Thermaltake Tide Water - SLI Cooling - First Card:  42°C

Thermaltake Tide Water - SLI Cooling - Second Card:  67°C

So, the top card of an SLI setup is running 25°C cooler than the second card. Nice! This delta remained consistent throughout the other benchmarks and games while in SLI mode.

CONCLUSION

No question about it, the Thermaltake Tide Water offers some very impressive cooling capability. It is a very well-built piece of equipment with a lot of attention to detail.

The ultimate question always comes down to whether or not it is right for you. If you want to really cool your video card, aren't too picky about some minimal fan noise (on low) and substantial fan noise (on high), then the Tide Water might be a perfect fit. Small form factor case owners will likely find the Tide Water's size, and especially tubing to not be a good fit for their case size limitations. Also keep in mind that you'll need two free (adjacent) PCI slots in order to install the Tide Water.

Thanks as always to the great folks at CrazyPC.com for providing us with the review sample.

PROS

  • Excellent cooling
  • Low and high fan settings
  • Great design for large component
  • Great build quality
  • Attention to detail
  • Good photos in printed manual
  • Decent price at around $80USD

CONS

  • High fan setting is louder than most power supplies
  • Fan switch not externally accessible
  • Terse, incomplete directions in printed manual
  • Requires two empty (adjacent) PCI slots
  • Only room to use one of these per case
  • Memory is not cooled
 

Post any questions or comments in this thread of our forums.

Back to nV News

Last Updated on March 21, 2006


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