System Testing
The Aquaduct 360 XT was tested on a red-hot, dual-core Presler 955 CPU and NVIDIA 8800 GTX video card.  The ambient room air temperature was maintained at 23°C +/-0.5°C.  The CPU was loaded by running multiple instances of CPUBurn and the GPU was loaded by running Real-time HDR IBL (rthdribl.exe) at 1600×1200.

•    Aquaduct 360 XT water cooling system
•    Asus P5N32-SLI Deluxe nForce4 SLI Intel edition motherboard
•    Pentium Extreme Edition dual core 955 (3.46 GHz at 1.22 Vcore)
•    SilverStone Olympia 750 watt PSU
•    (2) Corsair CM2X512-8000UL  DDR RAM
•    NVIDIA 8800GTX 768 MB 575/900 video card
•    WD1200JD SATA HDD
•    Sony 16X DVD
•    Windows XP Pro with SP2

The Aquaduct 360 XT water cooling system was tested under four different sets of conditions (fan speeds).  The speed of all three internal fans was set using the Aquasuite software.
•    Hi        1,200 rpm
•    Med       900 rpm
•    Low       600 rpm
•    Passive      0 rpm

For comparison, I have included the results from previous testing with a Koolance CPU-330/VID-282 system, Zalman Reserator XT, Reserator 2, and the Koolance PC4-1025 liquid cooling systems.  The following data is presented for comparative purposes only.  Your actual results may be different depending on the variables unique to your system (CPU, GPU, overclock, ambient temperature, case air flow, temperature monitoring, etc). 

CPU Temperatures:

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Amb – Ambient air temperature measured with a thermocouple
H2O – Reservoir water temperature (digital thermometer)
Tc – Temperature obtained with calibrated thermocouple attached to IHS
Delta T – Fully loaded Tc temperature rise above ambient air temperature
dBA – Sound pressure level recorded 3’ away (background 29 dBA)

Aqua Computer Aquaduct 360 XT Water Cooling System - Cases and Cooling  2


Graphic Card Temperatures:

Note: The Reserator 2 and Koolance PC4-1025 systems were tested with 7800 GTX video cards instead of the 8800 GTX so I did not include them here.

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Amb – Ambient air temperature measured with a thermocouple
GPU – GPU temperature reported by Everest utility using onboard sensor
Mem – Video RAM temperature reported by Everest utility using onboard sensor
Env – Video card environmental temperature reported by Everest

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Analysis:

Loading both Presler cores with multiple instances of CPUBurn, while using the stock Intel HSF, resulted in significant thermal throttling of the CPU to prevent core meltdown.  However, with the Aquaduct 360 XT, the CPU cores ran much cooler, so no thermal throttling was necessary and the processors were able to run at a constant 100% load. 

The Aquaduct 360 XT lowered full load CPU temperatures by almost 27°C with all three fans running at 1,200 rpm and by 24°C with the fans set to a very quiet 600 rpm.  I am very impressed with how well the Aquaduct 360 XT can cope with a fully loaded Presler CPU and 8800 GTX video card!  The new Cuplex XT Dual Impact appears to be an excellent CPU waterblock.  However, like any of the waterblocks that use multiple, small orifices (nozzles) for jet impingement, you must be careful to keep your coolant free of physical obstructions (corrosion products, algae, etc.) that can clog up the holes over time.

The 8800 GTX video card also ran significantly cooler with the Aquaduct 360 XT as compared to the stock air cooler.  In fact the GPU full load temperatures while being water-cooled with the Aquaduct were actually lower than the idle temperatures on air.  One trend I have noticed is that VGA waterblocks that use the standard NVIDIA mounting hardware (screws and springs) don’t perform quite as well as coolers that use their own, more robust springs/screws (like the Zalman VGA waterblock).  Even though the waterblocks are very similar is design, the added clamping force of heavier springs appears to translate to better heat transfer performance.

The Aquaduct 360 XT is a low-flow water cooling system that is typical of most European designs (Eheim 1001 pump and 6mm ID tubing).  However, as you can see from the test results, you don’t have to have a big pump and large diameter tubing in a high-flow system to get good cooling performance. 

Overall, the Aquaduct 360 XT delivered excellent performance with minimal noise thanks to the ability to tweak all the various cooling parameters from within the Aquasuite program.

Edit 5-5-08: Added CPU and VGA temperature graphs.

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