Corsair H80 High Perf. Liquid CPU Cooler Review @ [H]

FrgMstr

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Corsair H80 High Perf. Liquid CPU Cooler Review - Today we are reviewing the Corsair Hydro Series H80 High Performance Liquid CPU Cooler. This cooler may look very familiar in that it is a step down from the flagship Corsair H100, but still carries much of the same DNA. Basically the H80 is about $10 less expensive with a lot less radiator to worry about.
 

SpeedyVV

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Great but the Macho man is just too much cooler for the price.

When and where will it show up???
 

Trimlock

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Macho is hard to beat for price/performance. These AIO coolers are not ment to match or be cheaper then those solutions. They are mainly for those who need more room or want less weight on their motherboard. Don't forget they also funnel the hot air OUT of the case where those big metal heat sinks do not.

These AIO coolers are amazing, I love how close to the H70 this thing is and is more quiet at the same time.
 

verteron

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Messages
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I am glad to see these finally boiled down to the merits. For so long I have not seen a reason to use water coolers at all. I had not seen comparisons. I am trying not to sound bitter, but I really don't see the need for water cooling for most users. I guess I am just not HARD enough. But cold HARD cash only goes so far...

Now we see what I think is important. Heat, noise, price, and size to some degree, although these are not ranked by physical dimensions. Heat is better when ducted out of the case, sure, but that is not necessarily required. Lower temperatures are also better, but CPU's are made to run nearly 100 degrees C! I don't see the differentiation between 46 and 48 degrees. Can you get a few more GHz out of the CPU if it is a few degrees lower? Good case ventilation helps keep other components from basking in CPU prop-wash.

All the water coolers are louder? Radiators must suck at efficiency. To move the most heat with the least noise, you need to move hotter air, slower. More transfer of heat at lower velocities. Slower air, over a broader area. Water coolers are still transferring that heat into the ambient air. They may be better at getting heat off the CPU, but the radiators are noisy compared to good air coolers. Also, more total air circulation means more dust that requires cleaning.

If you do not have the space for a large air cooler around the CPU, then do you really have the space for a large radiator in your re-purposed Gateway or eMachine? Because if you bought a case with CPU cooling in mind, you'd get one with the space you needed. Buying water cooling should be a choice, don't give out excuses. I happen to disagree with it, but that's just my opinion. As long as it is your choice, and not some argument over "this is better than that because it's just so uber!"

I think the best reason for water is to not only take the heat out of the case, but to also take it out of the room. Run pipes to the basement, it stays cool down there. I saw one guy run it outside, into the snow. These combo units lose that capability. As a packaged solution, when noise levels are compared, and price, then air coolers win easily. If those pipes are not pumping freon for sub-zero overclocking, they need to be pumping to a radiator elsewhere. Get the heat and noise out of the room and it becomes a big win in my book. But I don't see any pre-packaged solutions doing that.

Maybe if CPU's start pushing 4.5-5.0 GHz overclocks these will start showing a greater heat differential from air coolers. I have no doubt that these cool better, I just do not see much benefit from such excess.

Having the Corsair link accessory may seem HARD, but methinks it is more like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Am_Rich
 

Topaz

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253
Interesting. I hadn't considered it before, but having to open the case everytime to change the fan speed certainly would be a pain...and pay $100 for a glorified fan controller? I don't think so.

Maybe I'll take another look at the Antec 920 after all...
 

Bamboo

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Bah I pushed the trigger on one of these earlier today before the review was released. I chose the H80 because the H100 will not fit in my Antec 1200.

I'm sure I'll be happy with it's performance however, the price is stupid compaired to some of it's competators. I also chose the H80 because I read the Kuhler 920 was louder at the higher fan speeds and the Kuhler software only offers High/Low settings(no custom profiles).

I just skimmed over the conclusion I'm off to read the Article now. =)

Edit: $100 for the Corsair link kit? Are they smoking the shit they put in these coolers?
 

hierovision

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Messages
143
No testing at the medium setting? That's what I'm interested in... I plan on a decent overclock with a 2600k. I'd love to see where the medium setting lands on the chart. I'm sure it's not a direct average of high and low...
 

Redbeard

Official Corsair Rep.
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Corsair Link offers a lot more functionality than just a fan controller.

It can accurately monitor system temps (any reported by the motherboard - or with the three included thermal sensors you can place throughout the case) in various regions. In the lab, I use it for intake temp, exhaust temp, and northbridge heatsink temp for example.

Secondly, it can use any temperature in the case to automatically adjust the speed of any fan in the case. Want your intake fan to spin up to high RPM when your GPU gets hot? Or maybe you want the fans to automatically turn off when certain temperature criteria are reached? It can do that for you.

Most fan controllers rely on either user adjustments, or if it's motherboard based, they set a duty cycle for "case fans" or "cpu fans" as an entire category.

The functionality of Corsair Link is well beyond that. $99 isn't cheap, sure, but it doesn't just work as a fan controller for the H80 and H100 - it does a lot more than that.

The software will be up on our website for you to download for free - it'll run in a demo mode and you can use the functionality to see if you like it.

If all you want is a fan controller, there are tons of options out there, and they can be had for less than $10. They're so cheap we build them into some of our cases. Corsair Link is designed to be a complete control type of product - basically allowing you to dictate how you want to cool any component in your system - and set up automated rules to do it without having to reach down and tweak knobs or dials.
 

LoneWolf

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I saw the H100 as tempting, considering my new case would work with it.

Then I saw how it and the H80 compared to the Thermalright Macho. A lot more money for a tiny bit better performance, unless you have the fans at high (contrary to one of the primary reasons I'd see for having an H2O system in the first place --that is, low noise).

Then I saw reviews comparing the Macho to the Thermalright Ultra 120 Extreme, and the Archon, and really, there's not a huge difference there either.

So I decided to keep my Thermalright TRUE Black, and just buy the fan Thermalright uses for the Macho. Way cheaper, and I think I'll end up with something that performs within a fraction of the Macho.
 
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WarLust

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329
Personally, I'm done with air coolers. I'm not at the point of wanting or needing my NB/SB or video cards water cooled, but I will in the future if the air cooling solution becomes so huge and heavy. The CPU coolers are getting so huge and heavy now that it makes installation a PITA. I prefer to actually look at the open area around my CPU and see the spaciousness, especially through a windowed case. No more will I have to worry about what air cooler will fit on what motherboard - unless by some miracle they invent a passive air cooler the size of Corsair's pump assembly that cools just as well :eek:
 

Sikpupi

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I noticed that the fans have been arranged to bring in air from the outside of the case, I have set the fans in the opposite direction, sucking warm air out through the rad.
 

LoneWolf

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I noticed that the fans have been arranged to bring in air from the outside of the case, I have set the fans in the opposite direction, sucking warm air out through the rad.
Corsairs recommendation with most of their water-cooling kits are to use the fans as intake, rather than exhaust.

However, while doing it their way might offer better radiator cooling, it screws with the airflow design of a lot of cases. Probably the best bet (if you have space in your case) is to do push-pull fans in exhaust mode, so you can use your fans in exhaust, but improve airflow.
 

Bamboo

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Got mine installed. I have my fans blowing out(Antec 1200 case moves a lot of air). Very happy with it cooling my i7 2600k @4.7. max 74deg celcius under prime95.

I mounted it on my rear bottom fan. I am just using my antec case fan for the pull. I'm sure I could get a little better temps running it as Corsair intended however, this doesn't heat my case up, my dust filters still work as intended and I still get my pretty led fans in the back. Win win for me.

Edit: 74deg celcius(in Coretemp 64bit) on one core for like a few seconds in an hour long test. I keep the house at 75deg Farenheit fyi.

Hope this helps somebody...
 
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cwj717

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Jun 27, 2006
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How long is the tubing on the H80? I'm just asking because my case only has a 92mm exhaust fan but it has a 120mm intake (its a CM elite 342).
 

LoneWolf

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How long is the tubing on the H80? I'm just asking because my case only has a 92mm exhaust fan but it has a 120mm intake (its a CM elite 342).
I was going to say that perhaps you could pull out your handy drill and create some new 120mm mounting holes in the back, but after looking at Cooler Master's page, I doubt there is room to do so.

I don't see the tubing on Corsair or Antec's kits being long enough to go to the front of your case, and I don't see your case as being easily adaptable to an external radiator. You could attempt to re-size the hole on the side of the case for 120mm, but that would be awkward for maintenance, or you could create a 120mm blowhole in the top of your case if you have the right tools, but that would be a tight (maybe impossible) option when the power supply or an optical drive is figured in.

I think you're stuck with air cooling, unless you switch cases.
 

thesecond

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got my h80 installed last night, replaced the h70.

What i like about it:
for some reason the tubes are more flexible, and
at low speed the whooshing air noise is very reduced.
Also it was WAY easier to install than the h70.
And the rad is shiny black instead of matte black


what i don't like about it:
1. the out-of-phase warbling from the fans is slightly audible when my corsair ram fan is plugged in. woooa woa waowaowao waoooooa wooooa waowaowao yeah its funny. Once i put the door back on my case, and put a speed reducing resistor on the ram fan it should be better. Mind you, it does not warble at all with the ram fan unplugged.

2. On boot, it goes to jet engine speed, and you have to wait a bit until it ramps down.


Other interesting observations:
The fans weigh MUCH more, have 7 wide blades (h70 fans had 9 skinny ones), and a bigger motor area. Very interesting.
The radiator itself weighs less than the h70 radiator - likely due to the reduced fin density.

I'll post pics of the fan comparison later. ANd maybe a gutshot of my case. All in all i'm very excited to put it through its paces, and hopefully it achieves the reduced noise level that i wanted in comparison to my h70.
 

oshia86

Gawd
Joined
Jan 16, 2007
Messages
712
Hmm, interesting. Are they using the top USB ports? The deciding factor for me was that I would have had to take those out. Maybe I didn't fiddle with it enough.

I think ideally, I would have liked to use the H80 over the Silver Arrow, as I see the H80 getting better temps. This and the easier mounting and more room sound pretty good to me.
 
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hierovision

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Oct 18, 2010
Messages
143
How would it block the top USB ports? I have a P67A-UD5 and RV02-E and plan on getting the H80 as well.

I wonder if the guy on OCN has the top fan installed inside or outside of the case... I read in a review that it can install inside the case but it blocks a lot of the view (who cares??!) from the window.
 

oshia86

Gawd
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Jan 16, 2007
Messages
712
Basically it interferes where the wires that come out inside the case. I would have had to smash them to install the cooler. Do not want that.
 

Harry1969

Gawd
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Apr 12, 2009
Messages
565
I am glad to see these finally boiled down to the merits. For so long I have not seen a reason to use water coolers at all. I had not seen comparisons. I am trying not to sound bitter, but I really don't see the need for water cooling for most users. I guess I am just not HARD enough. But cold HARD cash only goes so far...

Now we see what I think is important. Heat, noise, price, and size to some degree, although these are not ranked by physical dimensions. Heat is better when ducted out of the case, sure, but that is not necessarily required. Lower temperatures are also better, but CPU's are made to run nearly 100 degrees C! I don't see the differentiation between 46 and 48 degrees. Can you get a few more GHz out of the CPU if it is a few degrees lower? Good case ventilation helps keep other components from basking in CPU prop-wash.

All the water coolers are louder? Radiators must suck at efficiency. To move the most heat with the least noise, you need to move hotter air, slower. More transfer of heat at lower velocities. Slower air, over a broader area. Water coolers are still transferring that heat into the ambient air. They may be better at getting heat off the CPU, but the radiators are noisy compared to good air coolers. Also, more total air circulation means more dust that requires cleaning.

If you do not have the space for a large air cooler around the CPU, then do you really have the space for a large radiator in your re-purposed Gateway or eMachine? Because if you bought a case with CPU cooling in mind, you'd get one with the space you needed. Buying water cooling should be a choice, don't give out excuses. I happen to disagree with it, but that's just my opinion. As long as it is your choice, and not some argument over "this is better than that because it's just so uber!"

I think the best reason for water is to not only take the heat out of the case, but to also take it out of the room. Run pipes to the basement, it stays cool down there. I saw one guy run it outside, into the snow. These combo units lose that capability. As a packaged solution, when noise levels are compared, and price, then air coolers win easily. If those pipes are not pumping freon for sub-zero overclocking, they need to be pumping to a radiator elsewhere. Get the heat and noise out of the room and it becomes a big win in my book. But I don't see any pre-packaged solutions doing that.

Maybe if CPU's start pushing 4.5-5.0 GHz overclocks these will start showing a greater heat differential from air coolers. I have no doubt that these cool better, I just do not see much benefit from such excess.

Having the Corsair link accessory may seem HARD, but methinks it is more like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Am_Rich
I dont have enough room in my SG05 case for a decent air cooler but the H50 and H80 fit beautifully even with a push pull fan config. I was a big critic when these AIO units started making the rounds, but they definately have their place.
 

LoneWolf

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I dont have enough room in my SG05 case for a decent air cooler but the H50 and H80 fit beautifully even with a push pull fan config. I was a big critic when these AIO units started making the rounds, but they definately have their place.
I think they have their place too, and the above is it.

Once you have the space for a tower air cooler, I find it tougher to justify, unless RAM clearance on your chosen mainboard is an issue.
 

oshia86

Gawd
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Jan 16, 2007
Messages
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How would it block the top USB ports? I have a P67A-UD5 and RV02-E and plan on getting the H80 as well.

I wonder if the guy on OCN has the top fan installed inside or outside of the case... I read in a review that it can install inside the case but it blocks a lot of the view (who cares??!) from the window.
Actually, I was wrong. It does not block the USB ports, but the area where the fan switches are. It bumped right up against those. Sorry it took me so long to notice my error.
 

Ruoh

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I see that [H] used a FD R3 in their review. Is there a negative to putting the Rad on the top rear vent vs. using the one on the rear vent? I'm wanting to set it up to vent air out of the case, since I don't need the extreme cooling with this current cpu.
Edit: Nevermind, installed it tonight, and no, there isn't enough room for the H80 in the R3 top vent.
 
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tnt3k

[H]ard|Gawd
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Dec 3, 2006
Messages
2,034
just got my h80 set up and idle i'm getting around 30c and max after 2 hours prime was 55c. Intelburntest i get 61c.

Around 8-10c lower than my previous h60.
 

apehangers

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Jan 20, 2011
Messages
209
I installed the H80, very happy with the temps. Looked into the Corsair Link, thought it had some pretty nice features but then I saw the price....:eek: cost/benefit just isn't there, especially when it is more than what I paid for my H80.

Hopefully the price will come down to something reasonable like the coolers are starting to do.
 

spotlight

n00b
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Sep 21, 2011
Messages
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1)What is the push pull configuration?
2)Is the lifespan of H60 and generally a water kit the same as an air cooler? I ask this because using water might reduce cooling efficiency after 5-6 years.
 

~ever~

2[H]4U
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In your guy's opinion, IS this cooler loud ?

I am building a system and im trying to keep all noise to a minimum.
 

Hailwood

Weaksauce
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May 21, 2007
Messages
113
In your guy's opinion, IS this cooler loud ?

I am building a system and im trying to keep all noise to a minimum.
I don't think that the pump is particularly loud, the rest would depend on what kind of fans / fan RPMs you decide to use. The fans that come with it are ok, but I'm sure could be improved upon.
 

~ever~

2[H]4U
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Well i bought it. I hope i made a good decision going with this one instead of the H80
 

KickAssCop

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Will this thing fit in a Zalman Z9+ case. I purchased it but am not sure if it is case compatible?
 

Ruoh

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BTW, this cooler also fits well in a Fractal Design ARC Mini, in the top rear fan slot.
 

cwest1

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I got one from amazon, and it started all well, great temps and silent, but after about an hour of operation the pump began to make a horrible grinding noise...which has persisted for two days now...it is time for a return i fear.
 

KickAssCop

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I got one from amazon, and it started all well, great temps and silent, but after about an hour of operation the pump began to make a horrible grinding noise...which has persisted for two days now...it is time for a return i fear.
Oh shit.
 

crackbone

Gawd
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Messages
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I got one from amazon, and it started all well, great temps and silent, but after about an hour of operation the pump began to make a horrible grinding noise...which has persisted for two days now...it is time for a return i fear.
Did you have the rad horizontal or vertical?

I noticed the same thing on mine when I had the case open , on it's side, to install some hardware.

Once I went vertical with the case, it cleared itself, no problem, and has been functionally flawlessly since.
 

cwest1

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I had it vertical, switched positions around to see if it would go away, nothing helped. It did disappear yesterday, completely, so I am going to wait a couple of days. I am happy now, but if it was air bubbles, running it for 3 days to get rid of them is entirely to long. thankfully my GF is at her family right now, or I would have not been allowed to run the computer while she watched tv or slept. :(
 

KickAssCop

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Keep us posted. My cooler arrived as well but wouldn't be able to get my grubby hands on it till 14th Dec as am out of country. Am quite excited since it is my first water cooling setup. :)
 
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