Intel Core i7-3930K
Kingston HyperX 8GB (4x 2GB) 2400MHz kit
Kingston HyperX 120GB SSD
Zotac GeForce GTX 560 Ti
Cooler Master Silent Pro Hybrid 1300W PSU
Noctua NF-F12 PWM Fans
NZXT Premium Cables
Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Installation of the Water 2.0 kit can seem a little daunting at first but it's really pretty simple. The first step is to select the appropriate installation hardware. For me, it's the Intel LGA2011 kit.
With the correct hardware laid out, the first step is to connect the top and bottom plastic pieces seen in the first photo together over each corner of the mounting bracket. It's hard to see in the picture but the bottom plastic sections have writing on them. Make sure that the description for your socket is facing out then push the top plastic piece into the bottom.
Next, insert the screws through the top of the assembly and finally, attach the retention clip (not shown) to the bottom of the water block / bracket assembly. Then it's just a matter of lining the block up over the processor and screwing it down. It's best to hand tighten first in an alternating pattern then finish up the job with a screwdriver.
I made sure to align the cooling fans so they would blow air through the radiator and out the back of the case. As you can see, there weren't any installation issues in the Cosmos II chassis I'm using. Installation using Intel's new LGA2011 is extremely easy as you don't have to fool with a rear backplate on the motherboard. This means you can install the Water 2.0 kits (or any other cooler for that matter) without having to remove your motherboard from the case.
I will be testing the Thermaltake kits against the Noctua NH-D14 SE2011, perhaps the best air cooler on the market. Room temperature was kept at 73F throughout testing and all case fans were run at full speed. Idle temperatures were obtained after sitting idle at the Windows desktop for 20 minutes. Load temperatures were obtained at the 20 minute mark of running Prime 95's torture test and OCCT's PSU torture test. Temperatures were obtained using onboard sensors through Speed Fan. All power saving features were disabled in the BIOS.
The results speak for themselves as even the entry-level Water 2.0 was able to edge out the Noctua air heatsink by a small margin. Under full load, the Pro water kit was good for a full 4C cooler.
Let's move ahead and wrap things up with some final thoughts and a conclusion.