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Introduction

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The first of our latest GPU water block reviews went up as a two-parter covering both the EK-Quantum Vector GPU block with the regular backplate and new-to-this-generation EK-Quantum Vector Active Backplate. Today, we take a look at the CORSAIR offering, which is part of the company’s Hydro X series of products that have massively shook up the DIY watercooling market within the ~2 years since launch. CORSAIR now takes up nearly a third of most market shares based on my discussions with vendors and is probably the biggest involved name brand here, too. Thanks to the company for sending a review sample to TechPowerUp!

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We previously took a look at the CORSAIR GPU block for the NVIDIA GTX 1080 as well as the RTX 2080. As I did then, I will shorten the product name to CORSAIR Hydro XG7 block for the RTX 3080/3090 reference PCB for convenience. It received a few updates to the design, but is still easy to make out as a CORSAIR product. Some things surrounding a PR issue worked out in favor of CORSAIR, and we will go over everything in detail in the review beginning with a look at the specifications below.

Specifications

CORSAIR Hydro XG7 RGB RTX 30-Series Reference
Top: Aluminium trim and polished acrylic
Cold Plate: Nickel-plated copper
GPU Compatibility: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 / 3090 with reference layout
Ports: Four, BSP G1/4″ threaded
Lighting: Integrated d-RGB LEDs controlled by iCUE or standard 3-pin LED headers
Warranty: Three years

Introduction

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The first of our latest GPU water block reviews went up as a two-parter covering both the EK-Quantum Vector GPU block with the regular backplate and new-to-this-generation EK-Quantum Vector Active Backplate. Today, we take a look at the CORSAIR offering, which is part of the company’s Hydro X series of products that have massively shook up the DIY watercooling market within the ~2 years since launch. CORSAIR now takes up nearly a third of most market shares based on my discussions with vendors and is probably the biggest involved name brand here, too. Thanks to the company for sending a review sample to TechPowerUp!

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We previously took a look at the CORSAIR GPU block for the NVIDIA GTX 1080 as well as the RTX 2080. As I did then, I will shorten the product name to CORSAIR Hydro XG7 block for the RTX 3080/3090 reference PCB for convenience. It received a few updates to the design, but is still easy to make out as a CORSAIR product. Some things surrounding a PR issue worked out in favor of CORSAIR, and we will go over everything in detail in the review beginning with a look at the specifications below.

Specifications

CORSAIR Hydro XG7 RGB RTX 30-Series Reference
Top: Aluminium trim and polished acrylic
Cold Plate: Nickel-plated copper
GPU Compatibility: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 / 3090 with reference layout
Ports: Four, BSP G1/4″ threaded
Lighting: Integrated d-RGB LEDs controlled by iCUE or standard 3-pin LED headers
Warranty: Three years

Packaging and Accessories

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I included links to the previous two Corsair GPU block reviews on the introductory page, and it would be remiss of me not to mention how much better the older black and yellow color scheme looks next to the newer sickly yellow CORSAIR thinks is better—yes, I still hate it, how did you know? That aside, the product packaging comes inside a plastic wrap, and the box itself has a similar design to the previous iterations. On the front is the company and product name, printed render of the block with the LEDs in action, and GPU compatibility to ensure no buyer’s regret in that regard. More renders, marketing features, and specifications in multiple languages greet us on the back and sides. The outer wrap is just that, as flaps on the side reveal a two-part packaging with an inner cardboard box.

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This inner box is more bare in design and uses thicker cardboard for further protection of the contents. The CORSAIR logo is on the front and certification on the back, which also tells us more about the source of said packaging, and more single flaps on the side keep the contents in place during transit. Opening the box, we see the GPU block packaged snugly between a shaped piece of thick foam, and two foam pieces on top further protect the block since there is no plastic wrap or foam over it otherwise.

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A cutout in the top layer also accommodates an extra accessory not included with the first round of CORSAIR GPU blocks. It addresses my previous complaint of the integrated lighting otherwise only being usable with CORSAIR iCUE despite logically available cable management with motherboard LED controllers. CORSAIR will from now on include an adapter cable for this very purpose, allowing you to use an onboard 3-pin 5 V d-RGB LED header on your motherboard and iCUE with a separately purchasable, compatible controller. The other accessories are all underneath this top layer, which makes for a nice unboxing experience, too.

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Everything comes snugly packed in cardboard cutouts, and CORSAIR includes a backplate we will take a closer look at on the next page. There is also a multi-language quick-start guide that goes over the installation and setup of the GPU block in good detail. You can find an online copy of the same over the product page download tab. A zip-lock bag contains the installation hardware, including a set of 12 metal mounting screws, two acetal BSP G1/4″ threaded stop plugs, and a plastic tool to install the stop plugs. The low-profile nature of the included stop plugs means there is not a lot of grip, but you may still want to try finger-tightening them before resorting to the tool.

作者 frank

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