Watercool Heatkiller IV GTX 1080 Ti Water Block Review @ [H]

Discussion in 'Overclocking & Cooling' started by Kyle_Bennett, May 18, 2018.

  1. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    Watercool Heatkiller IV GTX 1080 Ti Water Block Review

    Watercool and its Heatkiller series of custom water components are well known for being some of the best in the world when it comes to performance and design. We give its Heatkiller IV water block for the NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti a good once over, and come away very impressed. Quality and performance all in one package.
     
  2. JosiahBradley

    JosiahBradley [H]ard|Gawd

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    This is a sign! I literally just bought this cooler THEN stumbled upon the review. I had searched for a Hard review of the Heatkiller after seeing the excellent performance on Threadripper and decided that was good enough recommendation for me to get their products. Both CPU and GpU blocks incoming. Glad this got gold or I'd have buyers remorse.
     
  3. Riccochet

    Riccochet Necrodancer

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    Shame it's not available for AIB cards. My only options are EKWB and Phanteks for full cover blocks.
     
  4. CAD4466HK

    CAD4466HK Gawd

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    If I'm not mistaken, you had the Razor on a 1950X system, correct?

    Anyways great review and I can share this with my buddy who has this block in his rig, and is always sprouting off about how much better it is vs. the EK blocks that he has had in the past.
     
  5. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    I don't think so, but I could be wrong.
     
  6. Napoleon

    Napoleon Gawd

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    Hmm, that's a pretty nice auto-boost just from improving the thermals. Really makes me want to stop being lazy and put the Heatkiller ni-acetal 1080 block I have sitting on my desk on my 1080 FE...
     
  7. CAD4466HK

    CAD4466HK Gawd

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    I'm pretty sure that you did. This is from the Razor article:

    And this is the reply to my post that I made in the Razor thread:

    https://hardforum.com/threads/xspc-...-waterblock-review-h.1948698/#post-1043336922

    Fuck I could be wrong as well, who knows? Don't lose any sleep over this. :confused:
     
  8. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    Buy the beer and come over, I will do it for you.
     
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  9. 86 5.0L

    86 5.0L [H]ardness Supreme

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    Best water cooling blocks imho, won’t corrode and flake even with using harsher coolants thumbsup emoji
     
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  10. JargonGR

    JargonGR Limp Gawd

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    Damn I wish it was available for my Asus Stric 1080Ti OC. I have bought a Phanteks instead and to be honest it also looks good in its box since I have also been lazy and have not installed it yet. I am still tuning the system though.

    On the other hand I have been extremely satisfied with the Heatkille Tube 200 reservoir I got and the MO-RA 420 Pro Stainless Steel + To SS Covers. These things are really top quality and PERFORM. The MO-RA is a beast.

    Next GPU round I might go for a founders edition.
     
  11. DarkStryke

    DarkStryke [H]ard|Gawd

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    Couldn't pay me to take Eddy's shit over a Heatkiller block. Had it since day 1 on this 1080ti and it's been flawless.
     
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  12. magictoaster

    magictoaster Limp Gawd

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    Great review (and in my case, hooray choice-supportive bias)! Seriously, it's an incredible block. My only regret is having to get a new one for the GTX 1180 once it's is available... :D
     
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  13. magoo

    magoo [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I'm a huge Heatkiller fan.
    I have CPU and GPU blocks. Latest Ive used is the Acetyl/Copper for my 1080 ti blocks. The fit and finish is flawless and unmatchable cooling to boot.
    Kits are very complete and install is always pretty easy.

    I'm not so much impressed by all the bling of nickle and plexi. In a standard case/ATX mount all the cool stuff is on the bottom where you can't see it anyway.

    That being said, I do have to add you need to do your homework before purchase as all GPU are not reference or "founder's editions".......The two sources I use are Watercool's own charts
    and also EKWB who also publish a pretty complete chart.
    I tend to always buy reference designs so I know the block will fit.

    Lastly, if you have a hard time finding these, Watercool does have a storefront, only downside is shipping costs from Germany.
     
  14. BitMaster

    BitMaster Limp Gawd

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    I honestly regret my decision for this asus poseidon and not going the FE way with HK-IV. Temps are 15-18°C lower on the HK-IV vs. Poseidon....worlds between...aka 50MHz top OC
     
  15. lostin3d

    lostin3d [H]ard|Gawd

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    Thanks guys for the awesome review and step by step installation vids. I've yet to take the plunge into liquid cooling but this thing looks like a work of art.

    Really awesome seeing a TI at ~2.1GHZ!

    Thanks to Kyle's tips on tuning I'm able to hold 2 with my Strix all day long in a around ~74 Fahrenheit. If crank my fans to full I can at least see the 2050Ghz breifly for about a minute or two but once it hits over 40c I see the drops to 2025>2012>2000 so you guys holding 2090 @ ~32c is awesome.

    Kyle, assuming NV doesn't fully push me over to AMD by the time a 1180TI comes out, and there's a heatkiller made for it, I may reach out to you for visit and help install. I'll bring some amazing beer from our local breweries.
     
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  16. JosiahBradley

    JosiahBradley [H]ard|Gawd

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    So the cooler arrived but unfortunately the backplate was out of stock. Can I reuse my existing backplate or am I screwed?
     
  17. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    IIRC not, the way the mounting screws work.
     
  18. WATERCOOL-Jakob

    WATERCOOL-Jakob Watercool Community Manager

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    FIrst of all: Thanks Kyle for that great review! I really enjoy the depth of your analysis and honesty. I feel like people will have a great ressource to make an educated buyer's decision based on this review :)
    I'd like to add two small details that you didn't talk about. It might be irrelevant to many people, but becomes massively relevant if it fails: the copper raw material of our blocks is rather thick. This means that the water channels are milled into the metal, not into the plexi. There is slightly more surface for heat transfer, and less stress on the relatively more fragile material. And the port terminal connects into the metal, not into the plexi - you will not be able to overtighten the connection screws and crack the material when installing an SLI connection terminal! Second part: we do not use extruded Plexi, but only cast plexi (and it's not a cheap copy, it's the "real" Plexiglas™ by Evonik, too) as raw material. It's more expensive, but isway more stable, doesn't crack as easily, and looks more even.

    We did support the EVGA 1070/1080 FTW. We plan to expand this for the next Nvidia generation. We aim to support the 1180 Strix, and potentially even the 1180 FTW. But it'll depend strongly on timing. If both cards are released around the same time, we'll most likely have to decide for one over the other.

    Great to hear you like your res and MO-RA! Thank you!

    That is correct. You can find our compatibility chart at http://gpu.watercool.de . We suggest to ONLY use this chart for compatibility questions, or to contact us directly at support@watercool.de if you can't find the card in question. EK uses different tolerances, and a few cards they deem as "compatible" with their blocks are incompatible with our blocks. And for the sake of completeness, you can find our store at http://shop.watercool.de/en_GB/

    That heavily depends on the card and block in question. Generally speaking, the stock backplates of most Nvidia cards are not compatible with our blocks. The backplates of EVGA FTW cards are compatible. And the stock backplates for AMD RX Vega cards are required for our block. So, please specify card and block in question, and I'll help you figuring it out :)
     
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  19. Aenra

    Aenra Limp Gawd

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  20. JosiahBradley

    JosiahBradley [H]ard|Gawd

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    WATERCOOL-Jakob Sent you a PM, but in case anyone else knows the answer I have a PNY 1080 Ti XLR8 OC which uses the reference cooler and has an existing back-plate that is longer than the PCB.
     
  21. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    I use an EK Fullcover block for my Pascal Titan X, and my experiences are similar (but my clocks are a little lower as mine is a poor overclocker, and my temps are a little lower, as I think I have a little more radiator capacity)

    I've always wondered why GPU waterblocks are so much more efficient than CPU waterblocks. For the longest time I thought they got the temps down so low due to the direct die contact, but after Kyle's deliding testing showed that to not be the case.

    I can, on a cool day with fans turned up to max, get my fully loaded overclocked Pascal Titan X to max out at about 24C. This just causes excessive noise. I have found that boost clocks on these cards don't suffer at all as long as you keep the GPU temps below 40C. 40C just seems to be the perfect number.

    So when I get a new game, I usually manually control my fans and dial them in so that they don't go above 40C on die, and then just leave them at that fixed speed.
     
  22. WATERCOOL-Jakob

    WATERCOOL-Jakob Watercool Community Manager

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    Do I? How is that?

    The PCB is reference, but the cooler absolutely not ;) Our blocks are definitely compatible with this card, but the stock backplate is not compatible with our block. You can easily install the block without the backplate, as Kyle did in his video first. PerformancePCs and ModMyMods both carry a lot of our stuff, but we have no control over what they stock. PPCs will receive some backplates pretty soon.
    You can also order directly from our own store, of course. We ship to the US for 29.95€, free shipping for orders over 400€.
     
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  23. VanGoghComplex

    VanGoghComplex [H]ard|Gawd

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    I remember seeing written that it's a combination of factors.

    1.) A typical CPU die is (guesstimate) 2cm². The 1080ti die, however, is 4.71cm². I don't have TDP info on the GPU, but I'm guessing it must be low enough that the ratio of wattage to surface area is in the GPU's favor for dissipation.

    2.) A GPU waterblock has a lot more metal than a CPU waterblock, and a full-cover GPU block is also pulling heat out of the card surrounding the core - those factors have gotta count for something.

    My experience mimics yours though. My 7700k gets cozy at about 65°c under stress test, whereas my 1080ti only tops out at 35°c.
     
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  24. Aenra

    Aenra Limp Gawd

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    ...

    It has nothing to do with die size, the differences are so minimal that whatever temp differential exists is too small to be of import.

    What does make a difference is that in GPUs you escape two whole thermal layers between the actual die and the block. That's why the temp decreases to such degrees.
    (pun intended ^^)
     
  25. VanGoghComplex

    VanGoghComplex [H]ard|Gawd

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    I find that hard to believe, given that direct-die CPU watercooling usually only seems to net a few degrees celsius less than a typical package with IHS.
     
  26. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    I would suggest that is not correct especially in terms of CPU vs GPU in the case we are talking about here. The GPU die has 2.5X more surface area than say a Ryzen and Coffee Lake.
     
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  27. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    But let's get back on topic of the review and PLEASE GO MAKE ANOTHER THREAD FOR THIS DISCUSSION.
     
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  28. Chimpee

    Chimpee [H]ard|Gawd

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    My god, that is one sexy block, makes me feel inadequate with AIB air coolers.
     
  29. DanNeely

    DanNeely 2[H]4U

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    I love this description: "Frag Harder Disco Lights", they're just as appealing to me and functional as the go faster stripes I see on some performance cars. OTOH there're plenty of them on the road painted in ways that indicate that the car makers also want to sell fast cars to people who have good taste.

    If HeatKiller resists the urge to blight their 1180 block with them, there's a good chance I'll but one later this year.

    Minimizing the amount of RGB chemotherapy I would need to do after unboxing is fast becoming a top priority in any future hardware selection.
     
  30. RogueTadhg

    RogueTadhg [H]ard|Gawd

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    That's one block that almost made me pull the trigger on a full blown watercooling setup.
     
  31. JosiahBradley

    JosiahBradley [H]ard|Gawd

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    Finally started to install the cooler and it's missing a thermal pad for the caps on the far right. I don't even know what to do now but my GPU is in peices. Should I buy a 1mm pad from Amazon or just return the block and hope the next one comes with the proper installation materials?
     
  32. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    I would just buy some 1mm pad. Not worth the hassle for the return. Or reach out to Heatkiller, but might have to wait from shipment from EU. TIM pads are cheap and easy though.

    https://www.amazon.com/Wathai-Therm...one-100x1-0mm/dp/B07BQMD1CW/?tag=hardfocom-20
     
  33. JosiahBradley

    JosiahBradley [H]ard|Gawd

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    I've got some extra 1.5mm pad from the old cooler. I'm going to wing it and see if it works. It's on the far right near the edge so it might work.
     
  34. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

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    You will be fine. That block mounts up so solid, once you get a good heat cycle on it, all will be just fine.
     
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  35. Ranger101

    Ranger101 I Love the Sound of My Own Voice

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    Thanks for a well written piece. Personally going to all this trouble and expense for an extra 5fps in games over a stock card seems like an exercise in futility though. Overclocking is a a dying art.
     
  36. magictoaster

    magictoaster Limp Gawd

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    I guess it depends if you like toying with PC hardware and getting the maximum out of it. Or if you enjoy a silent computer where water cooling would be beneficial (you could probably go with less expensive parts if it was your only goal).

    But it is HardOCP here, not FlacidOCP... :D But I agree with you that it’s not an inexpensive hobby...
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2018
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