EK-Velocity CPU Water Block Review 22

EK-Velocity CPU Water Block Review

(22 User Comments) »

Value and Conclusion

  • The EK-Velocity CPU water block comes in 14 different options with pricing ranging from $79.99 to $109.99 from the EKWB webshop and retailers, including Performance PCs for customers in the USA, as of the date of this article, when these start shipping out.
  • High degree of customization with many options to choose from
  • Availability of integrated RGB support in two types
  • Relatively high flow rate CPU block
  • Precise mounting mechanism
  • Good build quality and packaging
  • Expensive for nearly each available option
  • Thermal performance is lacking relative to the competition, although not by much
  • Socket-specific SKUs mean you have to buy conversion kits if you change from Intel to AMD, or vice versa
  • No installation manual included in the package
Things started off great with the many options to choose from, meaning there will be one EK-Velocity variation to please just about anyone. I also liked that EKWB allowed users to get the RGB versions separately if they wanted instead of forcing it on everyone and having a blanket price hike across the board. The new style is also different enough from their older CPU blocks while retaining the ID of the product line, and the subtle updates made with the new frames, lower-profile mounting bracket, and brushed finish badge all work well in unison to make the EK-Velocity seem fresh for 2018. EK says that this extending section we saw here with the product name will be a unifying feature across their future product portfolio with the goal to have a quick identifier that also helps their products stand out more. The RGB lighting has to be mentioned as a positive as well, with there being two different types so you can go flashy with the 24 RGB LEDs shining through the plexi top or more subtle with the white diffuser frame and acetal top combination. The retention of the already excellent precise mounting was a given, but is still appreciated nonetheless.

EKWB said that their goal with the EK-Velocity is to offer a higher flow rate CPU block relative to the older EK-Supremacy EVO while still improving on thermal performance. This meant that the cooling engine had to be changed, and they simplified it a lot. The new cooling engine reminds me more of the even older EK-Supremacy and Supreme HF, with user-replaceable jetplates the only things left to customize the block to the different CPU sockets it supports. In many ways, this is a good thing, making it easier and less confusing to the end user. However, they also lost the advantage they had on offer with the modular system and now, there is no quick solution anymore if Intel or AMD does something out of the norm again with the CPU IHS.

As it stands, the liquid flow restriction here is indeed lower than that of the EK-Supremacy EVO and many other blocks, both old and new, so they did meet that expectation. However, at least on my Intel X99 test system, thermal performance is not improved over the older block, and many others outperformed both samples I tested here. This could be a result of them basing the design on newer CPU sockets, and there is some merit to this argument with the IHS bow being slightly different, but at the same time, other newer blocks did not fare much different, so I can only go with the data available here.

To conclude then, if you were looking for the absolute best performer or least restrictive new CPU block, the EK-Velocity is not for you. I dare say that if you have the older EK-Supremacy EVO, you should hang on to it unless you absolutely need the new RGB lighting options we see here. That really is the main selling point, along with the other customization options, but the price points are higher than before too. An acetal or plexi top block should not cost $80–$85 in 2018, and the addition of RGB should not cost an additional $15. But it is still one of the best implementations of integrated lighting in a CPU block today, and the overall package is decent. We here at TechPowerUp are working on something to help better express our feelings for such products that do one thing better than others, but not necessarily the rest. Until then, I will still give the EK-Velocity a recommendation with the caveat that it is for specific applications popular in 2018.
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