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"Hydro X" First Look


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Though I will spend hours now and then configuring a dream desktop setup, I rarely look at watercooling layouts, as the level of maintenance to clean is much more demanding than air only. However, with the launch of Corsair's new "Hydro X" range at Computex 2019, I thought I'd give each area of its marketing model an impartial review.

 

The products

I didn't expect so many updates in a system to be implemented Day One - it looks as though they had read what other companies have done; examined what users wanted improved; and then added all those changes to the template.

 

Working with a manufacturer like Bitspower was a bold decision, as their backbone are custom parts for all manner of cooling layouts; something which really shows in the C59/C79 CPU block. Sticking with what people know for a pump avoids huge bottlenecks down the road as well, so I am happy they have used the proven D5. Transparent nylon instead of glass for the reservoir chamber is an unusual move, however, and it will be interesting to see how this material holds up after prolonged use.

 

The Configurator

I've never bought a system with watercooling built into it, yet playing around with configurators to see what's on offer can be useful. Not every GPU imaginable has been (or probably will be) added to the tool; espcially given just how many 3rd-party cards there are for the Nvidia 20 Series alone. That said, I was surprised the GPU waterblocks offered so few choices.

 

The same cannot be said for cases and motherboards. A lot of effort has gone into possible permutations for a watercooling layout, and whilst what components you can have are not as customisable as I would like, users can select dozens of possible boards for a Corsair chassis. The app also neatly adjusts pricing in your currency as you make changes, which when compared to other configurators I've seen, typically happens at pre-checkout only.

 

Being able to choose from a selection of fans (tubing and fittings, too) is something I've wanted to see in other aspects of the website as well for quite a while.

 

Interim Verdict

I'm certain there is much more to come later this year for the platform. I only have to go on what I've seen from tech reviewers' channels, and very few I watch regularly are actually visiting Computex this year. That said, I am cautiously optimistic about the range, and would love to see what watercooling users do with Hydro X.

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Though I will spend hours now and then configuring a dream desktop setup, I rarely look at watercooling layouts, as the level of maintenance to clean is much more demanding than air only. However, with the launch of Corsair's new "Hydro X" range at Computex 2019, I thought I'd give each area of its marketing model an impartial review.

 

The products

I didn't expect so many updates in a system to be implemented Day One - it looks as though they had read what other companies have done; examined what users wanted improved; and then added all those changes to the template.

 

Working with a manufacturer like Bitspower was a bold decision, as their backbone are custom parts for all manner of cooling layouts; something which really shows in the C59/C79 CPU block. Sticking with what people know for a pump avoids huge bottlenecks down the road as well, so I am happy they have used the proven D5. Transparent nylon instead of glass for the reservoir chamber is an unusual move, however, and it will be interesting to see how this material holds up after prolonged use.

 

The Configurator

I've never bought a system with watercooling built into it, yet playing around with configurators to see what's on offer can be useful. Not every GPU imaginable has been (or probably will be) added to the tool; espcially given just how many 3rd-party cards there are for the Nvidia 20 Series alone. That said, I was surprised the GPU waterblocks offered so few choices.

 

The same cannot be said for cases and motherboards. A lot of effort has gone into possible permutations for a watercooling layout, and whilst what components you can have are not as customisable as I would like, users can select dozens of possible boards for a Corsair chassis. The app also neatly adjusts pricing in your currency as you make changes, which when compared to other configurators I've seen, typically happens at pre-checkout only.

 

Being able to choose from a selection of fans (tubing and fittings, too) is something I've wanted to see in other aspects of the website as well for quite a while.

 

Interim Verdict

I'm certain there is much more to come later this year for the platform. I only have to go on what I've seen from tech reviewers' channels, and very few I watch regularly are actually visiting Computex this year. That said, I am cautiously optimistic about the range, and would love to see what watercooling users do with Hydro X.

 

Thanks for providing your initial reaction to Hydro X.

 

Reviews should be coming not too long after media have returned home from Taiwan and gotten their hands on samples to build with.

 

GPU block selection is limited mainly to FE/reference PCB cards for now, custom PCB cards are very likely in the future as things get going (we did show off an ASUS STRIX block in our Computex display).

 

The Hydro X team spent a great deal of effort getting the configurator just right. Major props to them because what it does now, it does quite well considering the complexity of piecing together a fully compatible custom cooling loop.

 

Your feedback (and everyone else's) is much appreciated and will only help to improve Hydro X as a whole since this is a very new product category for us at CORSAIR (that said, many of us are fairly experienced with custom loops from a builder/enthusiast perspective). :)

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The Hydro X team spent a great deal of effort getting the configurator just right. Major props to them because what it does now, it does quite well considering the complexity of piecing together a fully compatible custom cooling loop.

 

Your feedback (and everyone else's) is much appreciated and will only help to improve Hydro X as a whole since this is a very new product category for us at CORSAIR (that said, many of us are fairly experienced with custom loops from a builder/enthusiast perspective). :)

 

I don't doubt the effort put into the configurator. It has a clean interface and, despite only reference cards are supported, it provides a good set of loop layouts...

 

I think, however, a lot of users may appreciate an update soon, so they can manually adjust the radiator and pump locations with longer GPUs. Fortunately, this stage can be skipped altogether, so it probably wouldn't be hard to attach another company's block to the setup.

Edited by Hyncharas
removal of 3rd-party waterblock name from thread
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