Thermaltake ProWater 850i Liquid Cooling Kit
Author: Rutledge Feman
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 08-12-2008
Provided by: Thermaltake

Installing the water-block is pretty simple, but Thermaltake could have come up with a better system. For an LGA775 socket, first the back-plate must be prepared. This requires sticking the metal back-plate to a plastic interface plate, and attaching those two to a very thick pad. This plastic sandwich then attaches to your motherboard, pad side towards the board. The pad can be stuck to the motherboard, but this is a permanent decision, and therefore I don't recommend it. Once the back-plate is down, you slide the four 50mm screws through to the other side.

On the other side of the board, Thermaltake asks you to install standoffs on each screw, so that the screws are tightly and stiffly attached. This step is an entirely useless attempt to simplify the next step, and was a waste: if you tighten the screws to the standoffs too little, then the screws won't be stiff enough to hold orientation while you screw down the water-block. If you tighten the standoffs enough, there is an extreme amount of torque on the motherboard (resulting in a lot of bending), despite the big soft pad. Thermaltake should have just scrapped the standoffs. After everything is said and done, just use the thumbscrew caps to tighten the block to the screws. This system makes for a nice and tight connection between the IHS and the block in the end.

The radiator is a much simpler affair: just screw it in. One complaint I had, though, was that it came with some pretty short screws, which meant that I could not sandwich a fan grill between the radiator and the head of the screw. This is a petty complaint, but I would have liked to see a little more lenience in the screw length if not just to allow for different case panel thicknesses. It should also be noted that in all pictures, Thermaltake seems to suggest putting the cable threads on the bottom of the case. Putting the threads at the top is a much better choice, however, for bleeding air from the system, as it can rise to the top and escape this way. This will be a conflicting choice for those with smaller cases who cannot fit top-mounted threads in their case.

There are a few tips, like the right-side-up radiator one, that Thermaltake neglects to include in the manual. While it's called a ProWater, pros will certainly not be the only ones to use this kit. As such, I would have liked to see them also inform readers that the outlet on the water-block should be the higher one, describe how to trip a power supply for bleeding and leak testing, and go into detail about bleeding the unit (tipping it to different angles, turning it off and on multiple times, etc.).

After all was said and done, I had enough tubing for at least another installation, if not two, but I was almost out of coolant. The low amount of coolant was due to my full tower case installation, which meant for a lot of tubing and therefore a high volume loop. Also, you can see that the tubing and coolant really are UV reactive. This picture is one of the only ones in which I believe that the UV actually looked better in person than in the picture, usually it is the opposite case. The fan on the radiator is orange, and also lights up very nicely under UV light.

Testing is up nextÖ

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