Welcome to round 2 of our 2021 GPU water block roundup series. Round 1 saw entries from EK (thrice!), Alphacool (twice), and CORSAIR, and we now get to Watercool, Aqua Computer, Bitspower, and Bykski. We begin with Watercool, which had recently updated its radiator lineup to put out some very impressively performing and looking cooling solutions, especially as far as the Heatkiller Rad L series is concerned. But even before these were announced, the company was teasing its long-awaited GPU block update. For those unaware, Watercool is quite a small company compared to the likes of EK, CORSAIR, Bitspower, and Alphacool. As such, it takes longer between CPU and GPU block generations, so much so that the latest in the GPU block series for the NVIDIA RTX 30-series is the so-called Heatkiller V, as in the fifth-generation Heatkiller GPU block. A lot of promises are made by the marketing section, so thanks to Watercool for sending a review sample to TechPowerUp as we aim to test all of those ourselves!
The Heatkiller V GPU water block comes in a few different options even for the same PCB, including a copper or nickel-plated copper cold plate, acetal/acrylic/black+acrylic tops, or even an XL variant to cater to some PCBs that adopt the reference design but are slightly longer. At the time of this review, Watercool has the Heatkiller V available for the NVIDIA RTX 3080/3090 reference PCB, the XL reference PCB, and the EVGA XC3 as far as the green camp goes. AMD gets some love also with newly released/releasing blocks for the RX 6800/6900 XT reference PCBs. I have the ACRYL NI-BL ARGB version for the RTX 3080 reference PCB here, seen above with its acrylic top and the black anodized aluminium cover plate along with the nickel-plated copper cold plate, and the respective backplate. Let's go over all this in detail as we begin with a look at the specifications below.
|Watercool Heatkiller V for RTX 3080/3090|
|Top:||Acetal or Plexiglas®GS w/aluminium cover plate|
|Cold Plate:||Copper or nickel-plated copper|
|GPU Compatibility:||NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 / 3090 with reference layout|
|Ports:||Four, BSP G1/4" threaded|
|Dimensions:||230 x 119 x 21 mm|
|Lighting:||Yes, integrated ARGB lighting with 3-pin cable|