Swiftech: Low Cooling Capacity For A High Price
Swiftech's strategy looks a little bit different. This company has grown popular, thanks to its powerful conventional coolers, such as the MC462. The two kits we tested differ only in the size of their CPU cooling elements. Each kit consists of a CPU element, a water pump, a heat exchanger, a clutch of tubes, instructions and T-pieces with stop valves. Swiftech put some effort into manufacturing the CPU elements - the heat sinks are milled from whole blocks at the factory and can be used with both the AMD Athlon and the Intel Pentium III. The cooling set, which appears to have been just thrown together pell-mell, gets a definite thumbs-down. It seems that the manufacturer didn't pay much attention to any nifty detail work. Instead, the testing engineers had a sneaking suspicion that Swiftech's choice of the remaining components is the product of a headlong rush through the hardware store. Whereas Innovatek provides two useable heat exchangers to be installed in the PC case, the Swiftech installation kit comes with one large, passive heat exchanger. At this point, you might be wondering where in the world you're supposed to put this component. And to top it off, a fan is supposed to supply the heat exchanger with a sufficient volume flow.
The field test revealed that the larger CPU element's hefty dimensions prevented it from being installed on several motherboards. What's more, the entire PC system has to be disassembled if you want to install the cooling system in any event. The reason is that the CPU bracket attaches to the socket using special screws that can only be installed from the underside of the motherboard. The connecting tubes also turned out to be too stiff to be really practical. Even a slight kink is capable of preventing the water from circulating properly. The installation instructions, included with the cooler as a series of leaflets, are detailed enough for you to install the kit components relatively painlessly, even though you'll need considerably more time to install them than you would for the Innovatek sets.