Watercool Heatkiller Rad 360-L Review 5

Watercool Heatkiller Rad 360-L Review

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Value and Conclusion

  • The Watercool Heatkiller 360-L radiator is available in multiple colors and finishes, and its launch is imminent as of the date of this review, for approximately $110 from the Watercool web shop, which I converted directly from the €91.50 before taxes I was given.
  • Great thermal performance at mid-fan RPM, and decent scaling with airflow throughout
  • Excellent build quality
  • Three finishes and colors to choose from
  • Relatively low liquid flow restriction
  • Increased compatibility inside cases as a result of the relatively low width
  • Expensive compared to most other triple 120 mm radiators
  • The core and fin geometry is not amenable to low noise/low RPM thermal performance
  • Heatkiller badge may prove divisive for customers
I was not sure what to expect when I first heard that Watercool is making new radiators, having tested their massive MORA3 PRO 420 before elsewhere. All the company's radiators to date utilized a different geometry for the core and fins compared to others today, yet there was something about those "old-school" radiators that appealed to me and many others. Turns out, at least for yours truly, most of said appeal had to do with the design and build quality Heatkiller products have in spades. The company is expanding in 2021, but still nowhere near the scale of the EKWBs and Bitspowers of this market. What that means is that Watercool product releases are few and far in between, with this and the Heatkiller 360-S the first Watercool reviews on TechPowerUp.

Or is it Heatkiller? The company has had an issue of brand confusion with many referring to these products as a Heatkiller offering more than the arguably generic Watercool. While Watercool figures out what to do about it, what was not confusing was the focus on retaining the same design language and excellent build quality with the new Heatkiller radiators. The subject of this review is the Heatkiller Rad 360-L, a 50 mm thick radiator that comes in black, white, and brushed steel finishes. It uses a boxy steel frame that does remind me of the EK-Coolstream and XSPC AX radiators, but Watercool uses the frame to good effect by providing brushed and powder-coated options that will interest many who care for looks primarily when it comes to DIY watercooling.

At ~$110, however, mere looks would not suffice. The Heatkiller Rad 360-L comes in at more than most radiators, so much so that you can get a competing radiator and three fans for the same money. Watercool had to get more than just aesthetics and build quality right to compete. Good thing then that the Heatkiller 360-L performs quite well too, especially around the medium airflow regime. The other item of note here is that the width of the radiator is the same as for the fans, if not slightly less, which will help case compatibility compared to the wider Black Ice Nemesis radiators that this directly competes against. I am also happy to see another radiator entry with a different core compared to the rest in what has become a stagnating field as of late. There is enough going on here, especially with the good thermal performance and relatively low coolant flow restriction, to where the colors and finish of the Heatkiller 360-L merit a recommendation.
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