The name Coolgate started surfacing around the watercooling circles in late 2010 when early images of their new product line were posted. Shortly thereafter we learned that Coolgate is the performance line from Magicool, a company that has been in watercooling since very early on. We have come to know Magicool as a primary radiator manufacturer and one that likes unique approaches, but again, Coolgate is their performance line so we would expect some great heat dissipation capability… With an expectation set, let us get this review moving and start with the features and specs of the Coolgate 360.
I first set my eyes on the Coolgate 360 on the show floor at CES 2011, and the colorful box started out my inspection. The color box looks ready for retail shelves and looked quite good on display in the CES booth. I did give the Coolgate 360 a good look while at the booth, but my tired, caffeine controlled eyes could only take in so much, back in to the box the 360 went and into a bag for me to take home and test.
Fast forward a few weeks from CES and it was finally time to get the Coolgate back out of its box and into the photo tent. At this time I instantly noticed the barb tanks, which have two ports per tank. One set of traditional perpendicular barb ports and another coming out of the top of the tanks giving you additional tube routing options inside your case. The Coolgate is the second radiator I have recently reviewed with two sets of barb ports, and I will repeat what I said previously, which is I am quite glad to see manufacturers realize that not all of us want our barb ports perpendicular, we like options. The other interesting part of the barb tanks is the slope on the back side and sloped down towards the middle, which is targeted at eliminating dead (or stagnant) flow spots in the tanks. I have to admit I never thought about this, but now that it is in front of me, I can certainly see the merit in the design. Keeping on the topic of tanks, flipping the Coolgate over we have a logo stamped end tank and a G1/4 port for filling and bleeding… which again is unexpected, but a very nice feature add. Just remember to make sure the plug is secure before filling if you are not using it as a fill port.
Moving to the center or working area of the radiator, but a short stop at the side panels. Again we have logo stamped side panels, sporting the Coolgate logo, which wrap around the core and have standard 15mm spaced fan/mount holes tapped for 6-32 screws. And yes, the Coolgate does come with 1.25″ screws for 25mm fans. Now to the radiator core… The Coolgate core is comprised of 12 triple row tubes (total of 36) made of 90% copper with the tubes measuring 2mm wide with 7.85mm spacing in between the tubes for the fins. The dual row tubes are arranged in a dual-pass or U flow configuration that is very common in our radiators and keeps restriction down. The fins are all copper and spread out to an average of 7FPI, some areas are tighter and show a higher FPI while other sections are more spread out and have a lower FPI as you will see in the traditional FPI photo below. I know for a fact I have one of the very first Coolgate triples so my guess is the manufacturing and fin folding process was still being fine-tuned which is why the fins are not a perfect 7FPI for the entire fin channel length. Regardless, the average is still 7FPI which means we should see some great low to medium fan speed performance from the Coolgate.
To close out our look at the features and specs, the Coolgate is covered in a matte black paint finish and comes with three black nickel G1/4 plugs. Also supplied are fan vibration pads, which also help create a seal between your fans and the radiator. A quick bullet list recap of the features/specs before you can feast on some photos.
That concludes the photo showcase and features/specs, time to move on to the Test Methodology and Specification before rolling into the performance details of the Coolgate 360. As a reminder, we are using a completely different test procedure this year, so it is definitely worth a read.