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Thermalright XWB-01 Waterblock Review
Author: Dennis Garcia
Published: Tuesday, February 05, 2008
In the early days of watercooling everything was done by hand, waterblocks were nothing more than cross drilled chunks of copper and radiators were made from heater cores. We’d like to say that things have come a long way since then and for the most part it has. Heater cores have been replaced with specially parts from places like Black Ice, waterblocks can be purchased from places like Danger Den or Dtek and just about everything else was, and still is, readily available from a hardware store or aquarium shop. So, yes things have changed. In fact, on the surface you’d almost say watercooling has reached its limits and we’ve done all we can to squeeze every last bit of efficiency from our designs. or have we?
In this review we’ll be looking at the XWB-01 waterblock from Thermalright. This is a high-performance copper waterblock based on a supermicro-channel configuration.
The XWB-01 is a rather small waterblock measuring in larger than 2.5 inches on its longest side. In terms of size that is comparable to the OCLabs block pictured here or the Danger Den TDX. The block is plumbed for 1/2" ID hoses in a 2 barb configuration with the center inlet directly over the processor core.
The bottom of the block comes flat with no visible hills, valleys or tool marks. We have seen better polish jobs before however for our purposes this is enough.
4 Allen screws hold the XWB-01 together with pass thru the restrictor plate sandwiched in the middle.
After removing the top we can see how the liquid is designed to flow. The coolant enters thru the center barb and passes thru a 1/4" ID hole in the restrictor plate and into the micro-channel. The coolant then returns along the outer ring and out the secondary barb.
As you can see in the photos the micro-channels are extremely small and will act as a filter if you happen to have anything foreign in your water cooler. This reaffirms that you should always make sure your system is clean before you begin.