Thermal Test Results

Heat Loads

Now that we have all of the methodology, specification and data explanation documented and detailed lets get on with what you all are looking for…the results.

Here is the main chart for bringing all of the logged data in and using this data to calculate Water Out-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.

Moving to the chart which helps potential users of the RX radiator, this chart plots the Water Out-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. Once again thanks to Martin for sharing these through his testing. 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.

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 Out-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: Uber Performance. extreme setups only and I really wanted to use the word “uber” somewhere in the review.

Here are the plotted C/W results over the 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.

This chart is just the plotted results for a 10º Delta or Average Performance from the data table in the beginning of this section. Given these numbers, even at 1000 RPM you could use the radiator for CPU cooling and expect good temps. Considering a Yorkfield TDP is specified at 95w. Take into consideration your overclock and I am sure you are still well within range to add a North Bridge block and have good temps.

Here are the plotted results for a 5º Delta or High Performance from the data table in the beginning of this section. Looking at the High Performance numbers, the RX120 would make an amazing Chipset and Mosfet loop radiator and take up only a single 120mm fan opening. Now all you have to figure out is where to put that pump.

Performance Comparison

Before going into this section, I need to thank Martin for the TFC Single 120mm and XSPC RS120 data. Without his testing and data this comparison would not be possible. As hard as it is to believe, I did not have any other single 120mm radiators in my resource pool.

This is the portion of the review where we stack the product up against others in the same product class. Looking at the chart we see the RX line outperforms the TFC 120 by roughly 12% at a 1000 RPM fan speed. The 8FPI design is truly optimized for low speed fans and is a true performer. If silence or quiet fans is your goal, the XSPC RX series is the clear winner. The RX performance margin only grows at lower fan speeds. As we increase fan speed up to the Medium range (1550-1800) the performance gap narrows to dead heat. The TFC 120mm starts to overtake the RX in heat dissipation above 2000 RPM, by less than 5% which is very small margin. That small margin stays consistent up to the top of our test range near 3000 RPM.

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