Water-based cooling systems for personal computers first appeared about half a decade ago. Like in many “enthusiast-oriented” market sectors, everything was started by a few fans who were trying to improve the parameters of their own PCs. Water cooling was going to remove both heat and noise problems. Overclockers needed efficient cooling and relative quiet too, since multiple-fan monsters were unbearably noisy. So they had to turn to the high heat-conductive properties of water for the answer.
Early water-based cooling systems were hand-made out of car radiators, aquarium pumps and homemade water-blocks and reservoirs. This approach to water cooling still exists and is actively discussed on topical forums. Yet for a few years already ready-made solutions are available, too. A number of manufacturers are offering complete systems ranging from budget to the hi-end level as well as various components (water-blocks, pumps, radiators and so on) out of which you can assemble a custom-made system for your specific needs. Water-based cooling of the graphics core or of the mainboard’s chipset isn’t a sensation anymore and some companies even suggest that you cool your hard drives and power supplies this way, too, and offer appropriate kits.
The U.S.-based Swiftech is among the most prominent players in the market of liquid cooling systems for the PC. Founded in 1994, the company was at first involved in tech support of serious UNIX machines, but later changed its field of action completely. Swiftech was among the first companies to introduce serial water-cooling systems and has been constantly innovating ever since. They are realizing the newest technological advances in their products to ensure their maximum efficiency, reliability and cost-efficiency. To cut in short, Swiftech is a recognized leader of this market since its inception.
In 2004 Swiftech’s product range was complemented with the H20-120 series, and this kit became the first hi-end water cooling system that our test labs ever received. To adequately evaluate this Swiftech’s solution we compared it to two widespread systems, Aucma CoolRiver 3 and Titan Watercooler TWC-A04. Let’s see if Swiftech can show anything exceptional in comparison with these ordinary water cooling kits.