Swiftech Apogee XT
Tuesday, 20 October 2009 11:44
<p>Pardon me while I gush for a bit, but this block is amazing. With it you get the best performance of any block on the market, you get the best mounting system of any block on the market (with no extra cost or disassembly procedures to switch sockets), you get full compatibility with all G1/4 fittings (something that's increasingly rare with high performance blocks), and you even can get a little more performance out of it if you've got tinker-itis. The other amazing thing about this block is just how well it performs in low flow scenarios. Of all the blocks I've tested, it's the most resilient to low flow rates and when you add that to best-as-tested performance in normal and high flow scenarios, that equates to untouchable performance in low flow scenarios.</p>
<p>The mounting system is a carry-over from their GTZs and has been improved by extending compatibility to the three most popular Intel desktop sockets while only using one bracket. Usage of the mounting hardware is slightly clumsier than previous generation because the screws don't always stick straight out (because of the usage of a slot rather than a hole for the screw), but it's still the easiest and most consistent system to use of any mounting system on the market. This is especially true when you compare it to the mounting system of some of the European blocks (EK and Watercool come to mind first) that use off-the-shelf components. I said it in the GTZ review and I'm going to repeat it here: this mounting system should be mimicked by more manufacturers, it's a huge boon in usability of the product.</p>
<p>The other big thing that impressed me with this block is the modular inlet plate. Having a second configuration to allow the use of the largest compression fittings available is a great idea and it was implemented wonderfully. It has only a small knock on performance (very small increase in temperatures and a small increase in restriction), so it's an attractive option for those who need it. </p>
<p>Overall this is an incredibly well-rounded product with the best performance I've ever seen from a block and I'm exceedingly impressed. Without any doubt, it's the best block I've ever tested. In addition to the block itself being great, it's also pushed the GTZ to a lower pricepoint, greatly increasing competition in the $50 range. Swiftech has a winner here.