Thermochill PA140.3

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Thermal Test Results

Heat Loads

The table below is the main chart for bringing all of the logged data in and using this data to calculate Water Avg-Air In, and C/W. Another column you see in the table is Air Capacity Used, this column shows the rise in air temperature relative to the water temperature. Another way to look at Air Capacity used is a measure of efficiency, how efficient is the radiator at moving the heat load from the water running through the tubes to the air passing through the radiator. For reference, click here for the original PA120.3 data table and compare the numbers for yourself. Once again, no problems with water temperatures reaching my safety shutoff, which is always a good thing. This is where the lack of fan selection really limits the RPM range for testing, we only have 6 tests worth of logged data to use. Don’t fret, 6 tests gives us plenty for comparison. We will be using the PA120.3-15mm for comparison, the 120mm ThermoChill triple is probably the best comparison considering we have completely different fans due to the size difference. I’ll be keeping the PA140.3 out of the Triple Radiator Comparison for this very reason… unless the community accepts the difference in fans and calls for the PA140 to be included. With the lead in out of the way, time to pour over the data and charts.

With the data chart above we get to use all those mystifying numbers to build the charts that follow, hopefully these charts put the data into a form that makes sense to the majority of you reading the review. The chart below plots the Water Avg-Air In Temperature or Delta versus the Heat Load applied. This chart is the most useful in estimating the Delta for a given heat load (watts) to be applied to the radiator. Simply locate the wattage on the X axis and move up to find the Delta for a given fan speed. Add this delta to your ambient temperature, and that is what you can expect for a loop water temperature.

For information on calculating heat load for your loop here are two resources I have used in the past. Another method I have used in the past is to Google search TDP for a specific component, that should also help in estimating the heat load that will be in the loop for a specific component. The primary one for me is linked below, they take a lot of the google searching out of the equation and break everything down to just the numbers you need.

Please remember, calculating the power consumption and using that as heat load is not exact and is only an estimate. This estimate will be higher than actual heat load applied as you do transfer some heat to the air circulating in your case around the components. How much difference I cannot begin to speculate, but I just want to state that it is only an estimate and not an exact specification.

Applied C/W

Now that we have looked at the plotted results, lets apply the C/W results with a given Delta (Water Avg-Air In) to find how much wattage can the radiator dissipate. Below is the data table for calculations of Deltas of 15º, 10º, 5º and 2º. Here is my classifications for those deltas.

  • 15º Delta: Low Performance, an overloaded but capable loop.
  • 10º Delta: Average Performance, very capable of good temps and representative of an average system.
  • 5º Delta: High Performance, for those of you looking to achieve the best possible temps.
  • 2º Delta: Ultra Performance. extreme setups only, this would be an ultimate setup where you limit to dedicated block loops.

Moving to the charts now, I’m including the PA120.3-15mm for comparison. We should see scaling around 15% –16.67% to be more specific– with the increased surface area (linear scaling), but I think the visual reference helps to keep that in perspective. Moving to the plotted C/W results over the tested fan RPM range, as you can see the results do follow close to a plotted trendline. This trendline might not mean much to you, but to me the trend line helps me see that my testing and resultant data are accurate. Additionally, if you plan on running your fans at a speed other than the ones I tested here is another reference point to estimate the results you will see if you use your own C/W calculations. There have to be some of you out there that geek out for C/W, come on I know you’re out there…

With the C/W calculated, we can apply a specified wattage to give us the watts dissipated for our RPM range. Lets take a look at the plotted results for a 10º Delta or Average Performance from the data table in the beginning of this section. Keeping the scaling factor in mind, all the data points fall in line… obviously some slight variance from the 15%. When we’re talking heat dissipation, the extra wattage the PA140.3 can handle is mighty attractive. Again, the fan speeds are slightly different due to using two completely different sets of fans between the radiators, just remember that as you soak in the data.

Here are the plotted results for a 5º Delta or High Performance from the data table in the beginning of this section. If you’re following along with your Heat Dissipation slide rules, take a look at those 1350-1400RPM numbers. 1350RPM on the D14SM-12’s was still near silent, especially when compared to the noise produced by the D12SH12’s used on 120mm triples for 1400RPM… To my ear anyway.

Final stop on the charted data train is 2º Delta or Ultra Performance. This chart is purely to show what wattages and fan speeds are needed to achieve close to ambient water temps. A 2º Delta is rather tough to achieve, you have to make a choice of Delta, Noise, or Wattage of the loop. Although, looking at the high side of the X or RPM axis, I really wish there was a better fan selection. However, its no surprise how the TC PA series will perform across the wide range of fan speeds… that 10FPI just performs well no matter the fan speed.

And with the 2º Delta chart, that’s all the data we have from a thermal perspective. Follow on to the final page and take a look at the pricing and final words on the ThermoChill PA140.3…

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