Friday, October 29th 2021

EK Water Blocks Announces Several New Products and ASUS ROG Collaboration

The EK-Quantum Ultrablock for the ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme Glacial is the apogee of PC hardware and liquid cooling engineering. A custom-engineered EK cooling solution for the 12th generation of Intel Core processor, power delivery system, network controller, all onboard M.2 drives, and the all-new Z690 chipset. With the release of the latest Intel Z690 chipset-based motherboards, came also the ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme Glacial, the most advanced and sophisticated motherboard available on the market today.

Compared to a standard Monoblock cooling solution that covers the CPU and the VRM, the Ultrablock spreads across the entire motherboard and has several sensors that provide measurements of key system parameters. The custom-engineered EK Ultrablock cooling solution offers optimal cooling for the CPU, power delivery system (VRM), network controller, M.2 drive, and Z690 chipset. Each key component is cooled by the intricate water block design for maximum stability and performance. This smart, full motherboard Ultrablock has built-in leak detection sensors on the connection ports, an OLED screen to display the key parameters of the system, an integrated temperature sensor, and a sensor for real-time measurement of coolant flow.
EK-High Flow Tube
EK engineered High Flow Tube to ensure low drag and high-velocity coolant flow in severe space constraint scenarios. EK-HFT integrates a novel approach in connecting water block segments for coolant distribution. Integrated soldered tubes reduce the risk of leakage and improve product reliability. Low drag and high-velocity coolant flow are crucial for the health of the entire liquid cooling loop. Such a design reduces the risk of clogging and performance loss. By the standards of EK-Quantum, performance is considered in the context of the entire liquid cooling loop, not just its individual parts.

EK-M.2 Active Contact Cooling
The massive copper cold plate is in direct contact with all three front-mounted M.2 SSDs, providing active cooling to unlock your SSD's full potential. The cooling solution is integrated into the Ultrablock design, hence it does not require additional fittings or an intricate tube routing. For the first time, active cooling of all onboard M.2 slots is possible, maximizing storage performance.

High-Quality Raw Materials
The Ultrablock cold plate is CNC machined out of 99% pure electrolytic copper, which is subsequently nickel-plated to protect it from corrosion. The top CNC is machined out of a thick piece of high-quality, glass-like clear cast acrylic that reveals the entire cooling engine. A total of 57 microfins cover the main CPU cooling engine surface while custom-made, high-quality EPDM 70 O-rings are used for sealing the Ultrablock.

ROG Water-Cooling Zone
Full implementation with ROG Water-Cooling Zone for crucial readout of parameters. All the relevant information is at your fingertips! An integrated temperature sensor allows you to precisely monitor coolant temperature. By measuring the coolant flow and rates, you can accurately set up your fan and pump speeds to achieve the desired performance and acoustics.

A Visual Masterpiece
The ROG Maximus XIV Extreme Glacial features an intricate array of Aura Sync supported addressable RGB LEDs across the entire motherboard and the very first of its kind, matrix display array. The additional OLED screen can display crucial motherboard and CPU parameters in real-time.
Safety First

Not only do the soldered HFT flow channels eliminate the risk of additional failure points, but both the In and Out ports also feature leak detection sensors. These make sure that the fittings are properly connected. Every Ultrablock that leaves the EK production line is pressure tested at 14.5 PSI (1 Bar) to ensure the quality of the product.

Match Made In Heaven
Premium hardware manufacturer - ASUS ROG - and premium liquid cooling gear provider - EK - have teamed up to deliver this market-winning gaming tool. The recognizable premium quality ROG motherboard design combined with EK's thermal engineering solution is set to move the boundaries of performance to new heights.

The EK-Quantum Ultrablock for the ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme Glacial is sold exclusively only with the ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme Glacial motherboard and is not sold as a standalone product.
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23 Comments on EK Water Blocks Announces Several New Products and ASUS ROG Collaboration

#1
Valantar
Wait, how thick is that acrylic on that monoblock? With that volume they could have made it into a reservoir while they were at it ...
Posted on Reply
#2
Tigger
I'm the only one
ValantarWait, how thick is that acrylic on that monoblock? With that volume they could have made it into a reservoir while they were at it ...
That's why it's 2000 dollars
Posted on Reply
#3
Valantar
TiggerThat's why it's 2000 dollars
Hey, if you give me $2000 I can get you a lot more acrylic than that! I can even stick it on a motherboard with tons of RGB attached. How much acrylic do you want? I could probably fill your whole case.
Posted on Reply
#4
Ferrum Master
ValantarHey, if you give me $2000 I can get you a lot more acrylic than that! I can even stick it on a motherboard with tons of RGB attached. How much acrylic do you want? I could probably fill your whole case.
Also put some fish in it xD
Posted on Reply
#5
Valantar
Ferrum MasterAlso put some fish in it xD
For $2000 I'll fill your case with fish too if you want! (Maybe not bluefin tuna, that would get expensive.) I'm not sure how I'd encase the fish in acrylic, but I'm sure we could come up with something :D
Posted on Reply
#6
Ferrum Master
ValantarFor $2000 I'll fill your case with fish too if you want! (Maybe not bluefin tuna, that would get expensive.) I'm not sure how I'd encase the fish in acrylic, but I'm sure we could come up with something :D
I am with you about the frustration about the price. Things should not cost that much. It is a machined piece of plastic and metal... it costs peanuts actually when doing on industrial scale. Such small metal parts could be made from leftovers also if you are smart, then they are for free.

They are kinda approaching a line... that piece of crap costs around a price a usable used car. In any grown up mans reasoning it cause a red flag and immediate foobar sign towards the the makers.
Posted on Reply
#7
Tigger
I'm the only one
Seems i forgot the /s for sarcasm. It's a combination of high end dumb priced board, and EK who seem to think they are the gods of water cooling stuff. either way, it's for rich fuck nuts to impress plebs.
Posted on Reply
#8
Valantar
TiggerSeems i forgot the /s for sarcasm. It's a combination of high end dumb priced board, and EK who seem to think they are the gods of water cooling stuff. either way, it's for rich fuck nuts to impress plebs.
Honestly, for $2000 I could most likely buy a $500+ motherboard, design my own acrylic parts to pair with off-the-shelf CPU block and VRM blocks, have it all made at a high end CNC shop, make a sheetmetal board cover and have it painted at an automotive paint shop, and still turn a profit, including design time. That price is completely ludicrous.

I guess that's the lesson the pandemic and shortage has taught PC makers - that PCs have been far too cheap for far too long and that once prices get crazy enough, people become more willing to pay up, not less.
Posted on Reply
#9
Steamroller
Ferrum MasterI am with you about the frustration about the price. Things should not cost that much. It is a machined piece of plastic and metal... it costs peanuts actually when doing on industrial scale. Such small metal parts could be made from leftovers also if you are smart, then they are for free.

They are kinda approaching a line... that piece of crap costs around a price a usable used car. In any grown up mans reasoning it cause a red flag and immediate foobar sign towards the the makers.
Let me try and explain.
Integrated flow meter.
Integrated temp sensor.
The board and the water block are somewhere 8.8lbs.
Sourcing that size of copper is not easy or cheap.
Machining time.
RND time.
Imagine ASUS didn't make 10000 Glacial boards, so it's not on an industrial scale.
If you think it's so easy, why don't you see everyone doing it?
A 3090 is the price of a usable car, have you been living under a rock?
Posted on Reply
#10
Berfs1
2000$ (not including a CPU) for a Z690 is outright stupid. You can literally get a TR 3960X + a HIGH END TR board for that money.
Posted on Reply
#11
Berfs1
SteamrollerYou can also get a Honda Civic to get you from point A to point B.
Even that! With a car, you can make money driving for doordash and uber eats. But with a 2000$ motherboard alone you can't really do anything lmao
Posted on Reply
#12
Ferrum Master
SteamrollerLet me try and explain.
Integrated flow meter.
Integrated temp sensor.
The board and the water block are somewhere 8.8lbs.
Sourcing that size of copper is not easy or cheap.
Machining time.
RND time.
Imagine ASUS didn't make 10000 Glacial boards, so it's not on an industrial scale.
If you think it's so easy, why don't you see everyone doing it?
A 3090 is the price of a usable car, have you been living under a rock?
That thing costs peanuts. They are on an industrial scale, it doesn't differ if you feed a machine code for this or some GPU Waterblocks, that are same sized etc and that are in the line with all purchases made as a whole for all batches they need. All you arguments are very off and not the case this time. You are assuming that it is made like a single product like a DIY project by some lone guy. During the milling they put together tiles of various products and consolidate them.

And people DO make these things on their own.

And you see many people having really a 3090 unless they mine and re-earn the price they paid? No I see much more people having a car and skipping this whole price jump generation as a whole.
Posted on Reply
#13
Steamroller
Ferrum MasterThat thing costs peanuts. They are on an industrial scale, it doesn't differ if you feed a machine code for this or some GPU Waterblocks etc that are in the line with all purchases made as a whole for all batches they need. All you arguments are very off and not the case this time. You are assuming that it is made like a single product like a DIY project by some lone guy. During the milling they put together tiles of various products and consolidate them.

And people DO make these things on their own.

And you see many people having really a 3090 unless they mine and re-earn the price they paid? No I see much more people having a car and skipping this whole price jump generation as a whole.
So point me in a direction of a motherboard and a monoblock that can do the same, for the price you are imagining?
No?
Though so.
That's how much you know about the industry, CNC machining, costs, and running a business.
Posted on Reply
#14
Ferrum Master
SteamrollerSo point me in a direction of a motherboard and a monoblock that can do the same, for the price you are imagining?
No?
Though so.
That's how much you know about the industry, CNC machining, costs, and running a business.
Dude, you are toxic.

You are not grasping the real cost of parts that this product uses and attack people.
Posted on Reply
#15
Valantar
SteamrollerSo point me in a direction of a motherboard and a monoblock that can do the same, for the price you are imagining?
No?
Though so.
That's how much you know about the industry, CNC machining, costs, and running a business.
Dude. Nobody here fails to understand why this board is so damn expensive. That doesn't take away from how utterly and completely ludicrous the price is. Not whatsoever.

Now, it does have some neat features:
- The conductive rings around the ports for leak detection are pretty nice. I'm guessing those are graphite-covered stickers, alongside some wires leading to a motherboard header looking for shorts.
- The integrated flow sensor is also pretty nice - it replaces a $30-60 component, and integrates it into the design, which is a nice bonus.
- The temperature sensor is also nice - another $10 component built in (and one that every good AIO has).
- The OLED display is nice, but something that many, many motherboards have today, at 1/4 the price of this or less.

It also has:
- probably >1kg of copper. With the current massively inflated prices, that's $10.
- A lot of CNC work. But not significantly more than a CPU and GPU block put together, and those are $100-150 each, including all materials and everything else.
- A somewhat customized motherboard - though it looks to be the same as the Z690 Maximus Extreme (though possibly with extra headers populated for leak detection and flow sensors - I haven't checked the manual to see if it has them).

But ... are you seeing a trend here? Lots of small features, adding up to a 4-5x price increase - or at best a 2x price increase over the (already ridiculous) $1000 Maximus Extreme. Even when accounting for R&D costs for a low volume product like this, does that make sense to you? Even when accounting for "premium, flagship-tier hardware" tax on top of that? 'Cause that's where the disagreement lies. Not in our understanding of the costs involved, nor in our understanding of what the product brings to the table. So, please stop assuming that the people disagreeing with you are idiots and incapable of understanding the thing in question. Then we might at least start to approach baseline levels of courtesy. Then we might have something resembling an interesting conversation. Until then? I'd suggest you stop posting.


Oh, and comparable motherboards: The ASRock X570 Aqua was $1000 (alredy ridiculous; based on a $500 motherboard), and the Z490 Aqua at $1100 followed just after. They're not $500, but they were already ridiculously overpriced at half the price of this. A monoblock typically costs ~$150. This one costs $1000. And sure, it's an integrated unit with a very high end motherboard. But you'll be able to get 99% of the same functionality with a $300 motherboard, a $150 monoblock (chipset watercooling is ridiculously unnecessary, after all), a $40 flow sensor, a $10 temperature sensor, and possibly a $50 Aquacomputer Quadro to manage it all. That's not quite $500 for the same features, but it's really close. And then you'll get access to a vastly superior monitoring software suite as well. You don't get a single integrated unit with everything in one, nor the gigantic block of acrylic covering anything, but ... are those actually value adds? Sure, it's the type of thing that lets you say "nobody else has this", but ... does it bring any value to the table beyond the ability to feel superior? This seems like a pretty classic "luxury for the sake of luxury" product. Ridiculing its pricing is the only sensible response, as it is consciously ridiculous. It's a price that says "if you care about the price, this is not for you". And ridiculing that, when the thing in question is a motherboard? That makes quite a bit of sense.
Posted on Reply
#16
Steamroller
ValantarOh, and comparable motherboards: The ASRock X570 Aqua was $1000 (alredy ridiculous; based on a $500 motherboard), and the Z490 Aqua at $1100 followed just after. They're not $500, but they were already ridiculously overpriced at half the price of this. A monoblock typically costs ~$150. This one costs $1000. And sure, it's an integrated unit with a very high end motherboard. But you'll be able to get 99% of the same functionality with a $300 motherboard, a $150 monoblock (chipset watercooling is ridiculously unnecessary, after all), a $40 flow sensor, a $10 temperature sensor, and possibly a $50 Aquacomputer Quadro to manage it all. That's not quite $500 for the same features, but it's really close. And then you'll get access to a vastly superior monitoring software suite as well. You don't get a single integrated unit with everything in one, nor the gigantic block of acrylic covering anything, but ... are those actually value adds? Sure, it's the type of thing that lets you say "nobody else has this", but ... does it bring any value to the table beyond the ability to feel superior? This seems like a pretty classic "luxury for the sake of luxury" product. Ridiculing its pricing is the only sensible response, as it is consciously ridiculous. It's a price that says "if you care about the price, this is not for you". And ridiculing that, when the thing in question is a motherboard? That makes quite a bit of sense.
The asrock aqua launched more than two years ago. Remember those times when you had no supply chain issues?
The aqua does not have HALF of the features of the glacial! It's a full board block with some nice covers, something that EKWB made 5 years ago for the ROG rampage v edition 10 that cost around $200 if i remember well, and you probably didn't moan about the aqua price back then?
Regardless of the glacial, all motherboard prices went up. DDR5 went up, it no that the glacial got its price pumped, because "WHY NOT". There are a lot of factors here.

And it's incredibly dumb to take the price of one kg of copper and calculate the cost of the block!
It's like measuring the weight of an aluminum shell of a car and saying, well there you have it! It's half a ton, so it must be exactly the price of half a ton of aluminum.
Posted on Reply
#17
Ferrum Master
SteamrollerThe asrock aqua launched more than two years ago. Remember those times when you had no supply chain issues?
The aqua does not have HALF of the features of the glacial! It's a full board block with some nice covers, something that EKWB made 5 years ago for the ROG rampage v edition 10 that cost around $200 if i remember well, and you probably didn't moan about the aqua price back then?
Regardless of the glacial, all motherboard prices went up. DDR5 went up, it no that the glacial got its price pumped, because "WHY NOT". There are a lot of factors here.

And it's incredibly dumb to take the price of one kg of copper and calculate the cost of the block!
It's like measuring the weight of an aluminum shell of a car and saying, well there you have it! It's half a ton, so it must be exactly the price of half a ton of aluminum.
It is incredibly dumb to argue about the obvious. The thing does not cost 2K. It is a Aprils fool level novelty item.

Valantar even exaggerated the module prices as Temperature sensors and flow meters cost like that for a lot of 10+.
Posted on Reply
#18
Valantar
SteamrollerThe asrock aqua launched more than two years ago. Remember those times when you had no supply chain issues?
The aqua does not have HALF of the features of the glacial! It's a full board block with some nice covers, something that EKWB made 5 years ago for the ROG rampage v edition 10 that cost around $200 if i remember well, and you probably didn't moan about the aqua price back then?
Regardless of the glacial, all motherboard prices went up. DDR5 went up, it no that the glacial got its price pumped, because "WHY NOT". There are a lot of factors here.

And it's incredibly dumb to take the price of one kg of copper and calculate the cost of the block!
It's like measuring the weight of an aluminum shell of a car and saying, well there you have it! It's half a ton, so it must be exactly the price of half a ton of aluminum.
So, me actually breaking things down and looking at them in detail is immature, while your shouty, derogatory tone is not? Yeah, sure. Have fun with that.

And just to be clear: I didn't say that "this has $10 worth of copper, so that's the added cost for that". That is the most simplistic bad-faith reading possible of what I wrote. I mean, literally the next point down was "it has a lot of CNC work". That's what is done with that copper, right? """Equivalent""" to what is done with the metal in the frame of that car you're talking about? And no, I didn't give a set cost for that, but I did give some reasonable cost comparisons - CPU and GPU blocks. The reason I brought up the price of copper? This:
SteamrollerThe board and the water block are somewhere 8.8lbs.
Sourcing that size of copper is not easy or cheap.
I mean, you literally made that exact point yourself, in your listing of why this price is somehow not ridiculous. "Sourcing that size of copper" as its own point literally references the mass involved. But this is also an outright lie - when you're making 1000+ of these, you can go to literally any copper foundry and order custom sized blanks forged to your specification, and while you're obviously paying more than the gross copper price, it's not that much more. Casting blanks for milling is cheap. And if you don't want to do that, you can just buy off-the-shelf copper blocks for machining, cut to (rough) size. And yes, the next point for you as well was CNC machining time. But - news flash! - even in relatively low quantities like this these things are dirt cheap. The machines and the required skills to use them are far from cheap, but when that is already in place, running the machines for an hour or two to make this? Very, very cheap, especially when you're repeating the process many times over. At volume, you're essentially down to the price of electricity, lubricant, router tooling wear, and machinist salaries. Al preceding costs spread out over 1000+ units turn into nearly nothing. The design time and test runs to ensure the machine paths and everything are optimal aren't cheap either, but ultimately, this is not an expensive process.

Also, how do DDR5 prices affect this? This doesn't contain any DDR5. It has DDR5 slots. DDR5 might demand slightly higher quality traces and better PCB materials than DDR4, but likely nothing higher grade than what we've already seen for motherboards due to PCIe 4.0.

And "I probably didn't moan about the aqua price back then"? What? Did you miss the point where I repeatedly pointed out how ridiculous its pricing was? And yes, I absolutely said so at the time as well. I mean, you're not even trying here. Did you even read the post you responded to? I mean, you're just making stuff up at this point.

You're entirely right that motherboard prices have gone up. A lot of that is down to high speed I/O and its requirements for better PCB materials - PCIe 4.0 and faster USB both require more PCB layers and/or better PCB materials. This has lifted motherboard base prices by ~$30-50, while high end boards have started adopting server grade materials and layer counts and have gone from "from time to time there's a $500 motherboard" to "every motherboard maker has 3-4-5 boards in the ~$500 class". None of that in any way explains why this is $2000, nor why the non-Glacial version is $1000. Neither does supply chain issues, nor the increase in raw material prices (remember, that $10 copper price includes the more-than-doubled copper price over the past two or so years). Even if a bunch of the minor ICs - from VRMs to USB controllers to the heaps of SMD capacitors, resistors, diodes, transistors and whatever else is spread across the board - have doubled or tripled in price due to the supply crunch, this does not in any way match the increase in price compared to comparable previous boards.

And, I mean, you said yourself, there have been $200-ish monoblock boards. This is clearly more advanced and cost-intensive than those in many ways, from materials to production processes. But 10x more expensive? Nope. Not even close.
Posted on Reply
#19
Berfs1
SteamrollerYou can also do that with a bicycle, I still fail to see your point?
Fun fact, did you know that you can buy a bicycle that is triple the price of the glacial?
Your failure to understand how pricing works for products just makes me sad.
And your failure to actually read what I initially said makes everyone in this forum sad. I said 2000$ for a Z690 is stupid. I didn't say it's illegal to do that, I just said it's stupid because there's really no point in spending that much money for what essentially is a motherboard plus monoblock, since you can get that cheaper. Better yet, get an Apex board for less than half the price of the Z690 Extreme Glacial and with a monoblock/waterblock, and you already have a better combination overclocking-wise that's also cheaper. Even the Z690 Formula board makes more sense since that has integrated VRM liquid cooling, so you actually would end up spending less on that + CPU block vs Apex + monoblock. Literally any Maximus board is already top of the line compared to the other boards, all of them have great features and almost all of them have beefed up VRMs to the point they don't actually matter unless you do something extreme like sub-zero.

Imagine spending an extra 500$ for an ECU that just has gold plating on it, who the actual f*ck cares about WHAT THE ECU LOOKS LIKE??? There's really no justification for 2000$ for a Z690 Extreme Glacial. Not to mention, the PCIe layout of that board is stupid, who the actual f*ck designed this board to have only 2x PCIe x16 slots that are both from the CPU and just a PCIe x1 from chipset? Like at that point just make the second x16 slot from chipset so that you don't restrict your x16 slot to x8, not that it really matters for PCIe 5.0, but still having only basically 2 x16 slots on a 2 thousand dollar motherboard is one of the stupidest things I have ever seen in my life. Even the Apex board, the overclocker's dream board, has an x4 on top of the rest of the slots that the Extreme Glacial has. I won't pay 2000$ on that board, and 99% of the people that either have the money or would buy that for ROI for maybe content creation wouldn't either, because it is just a stupid price. And the people that actually would buy this board for art purposes, I'm sure they would rather get an Apex board and 3D print their own full cover motherboard shield and end up spending less for what would come out to be a cooler looking and better board. Then they can paint it or use sharpie and give it a super cool color scheme.

Ugh, can't wait to the point a consumer-platform motherboard reaches the cost of a brand new car... Actually I can wait, I would like to wait as long as possible, because I don't want that to happen.Sure, Z690 Maximus Apex. And it's better. Sure it's 700-800$, but it's less than half the cost.
Posted on Reply
#20
Ferrum Master
SteamrollerYou are just bitter because you don't have money for it. I don't have money for a Porsche, but I don't f*ckin hate on people who have it. Grow up, get over it!
The only one needing growing up is you. He said nothing you just mentioned. Obviously you are alone on your opinion here.
Posted on Reply
#21
Steamroller
Ferrum MasterThe only one needing growing up is you. He said nothing you just mentioned. Obviously you are alone on your opinion here.
The "only one" here vs the 5 of you who are complaining about the same thing. The "rest" is not concerned and just buying new hardware, because those are the prices.
Posted on Reply
#22
Ferrum Master
SteamrollerThe "only one" here vs the 5 of you who are complaining about the same thing. The "rest" is not concerned and just buying new hardware, because those are the prices.
Just don't embarrass yourself more.
Posted on Reply
#23
Ahhzz
Let me explain that personal attacks are not allowed, in case some of you (5+ year veterans) missed it in the guidelines. Find the topic, present your viewpoint politely, quit the attacks. Points to the next one who decides they don't care.
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