We reviewed the smaller single radiator version, the 120L prestige back in June 2013 and it's fair to say we weren't overly impressed with it. With all thoughts of it out of our mind we approach the larger version, the 240L Prestige with unsullied thoughts and a spring in our step. As you might have guessed this is a double width version of the 120L, coming as it does with 2x120mm 1600rpm fans. Double the surface area should make for improved performance and of course the Eisberg range offer what conventional AIOs do not. Although at point of delivery the 240L is essentially and AIO it can be taken apart, added to and expanded. This flexibility though comes at a price. At £131 It's a lot more expensive than traditional AIOs. To see what we're getting for our money let's take a look at the technical Specification.
Copper Micro Channel CPU Waterblock
2 x 120mm
280 x 124 x 30mm (without fan)
2 x 1600 rpm Coolermaster Fans
All In One CPU Cooler
1 x Coolermaster Eisberg
Up Close: Packaging and Contents
The 240L Prestige comes packaged in an attractive Black and "Cooler Master Purple" box. The exterior has shadowy images of the Eisberg along with features and specifications
Inside the Eisberg is wrapped in polythene and cossetted in egg box style cardboard. As the Eisberg comes pre assembled the main unit is actually in one long sausage of a polythene bag making if quite hard to extract. Also in the box are a pair of Cooler Master badged fans, a set of instructions and all necessary fixings.
When we reviewed the 120L we commented that the instructions were comedy small. Well as Cooler Master have stuck with the same instructions we thought we'd show you just how small they are. The picture below left is an exploded view of how the assembly goes together. It's about 15mm x 10mm, as are the other diagrams. Real nose to the paper job to see what's going on
Thankfully all the required screws and brackets come in their own packs and although not labelled it is relatively easy to work out which bits you need for which CPU.
Up Close: Radiator and Tubing
At just 280mm long the radiator is quite compact, having a small end tank at the port end and a slight bulge at the distal end. The Radiator shroud like the pump/contact plate housing is finished in Satin Black which is nicely counterpointed by the high gloss black tubing and anti kink coils.
As well as looking the part the tubing is also highly flexible regardless of the anti kink coils. The only other connection to consider is the 3pin fan type power lead which is hard wired into the pump housing. This can either be connected to a motherboard header, directly to a 12v supply as we do for our testing, or if you wish to slow things down a bit via the speed reducer that comes included.
The general level of finish is quite high, as we've come to expect from Cooler Master. The Radiator was clean and blemish free with no bent fins or channels. As with the pump the narrow bore tubing is attached via matte black knurled finish compression fittings which blend perfectly with the shading of the other hardware.
At 30mm thick the 240L radiator should fit into the roof of most cases where a roof mounted rad is an option, not forgetting to factor in the 25mm needed for fans should they need to be mounted inboard. the 15mm spacing of the fans is also something of an industry standard now for 120mm fan based radiators, but there are a still a few exceptions out there.
The Radiator and pump are connected by a generous 330mm of tubing with the power and reducer cables being 250mm and 230mm respectively
Up Close: Pump/Contact plate
The 240L Prestige shares exactly the same pump/contact plate as the 120L model and is also available for purchase as a stand alone item. Roughly cuboid in shape the pump is considerably more chunky than those found on stand alone AIO systems, the reason for this being a more powerful pump and that the pump/contact plate assembly also doubles up as a small reservoir, having as it does a fill port on the top.
The Inner workings can be seen through a small window in the side of the unit with the clear fluid inside affording an unobstructed view of the impeller.
The Copper contact plate is a highly polished affair and although not devoid from imperfections and blemishes they are not so serious thet they will affect performance.
We saw when we looked at the package contents that fittings are provided for pretty much every contemporary AMD and Intel fitting. Whatever flavour your CPu the steps are the same. Simply clip together the requisite mounting bracket via the channels that run along the base of the contact plate. Couldn't be easier could it, which is just as well as the instructions are next to useless.
We found it easiest to mount the fans to the Radiator using the supplied screws and rubber baffles/anti vibration mounts, before trying to attach the Contact plate to the cooler, simply letting it dangle while we screwed the rad into the roof.
Specific double threaded pins are required dependant upon your socket type. Here we're chosen the ones for the 2011 socket we have in our test rig. And yes, just like before we got the wrong ones first because they all look identical. With the pins in place, the contact plate, followed by a small nylon washer and a spring are placed over each of the four fittings
Finally blind ended bolt caps are placed over the springs and tightened down. The blind ended nature serves to give a clean look to the fixing where a plain bolt would not.
With everything in place we can have a look at the Eisberg 240 Prestige inside the Cooler Master "Test Trooper" case that we use for all of our heatsink testing. The 330mm of tubing means that the set up neither looks stretched or over stuffed with tubing. We're not convinced of the need for the anto kink coils as their appearance is largly an aesthetic one, at least it's easily removed should you feel you fancy a cleaner look.
Performance and Testing
The test set up consisted of the following
Intel i7 3960X Stock@ 1.1v (undervolted) 4.0GHz @ 1.25v 4.4GHz @ 1.35v 4.6GHz @ 1.45v Gigabyte X79 UD3 Corsair Vengeance LP Memory Corsair HX850 V2 Corsair Force GT 60GB Coolermaster Storm Trooper.
As usual we'll be testing our coolers at varying levels of overclock and increasing levels of voltage. this in turn of course means increasing levels of heat which the coolers need to dissipate. To begin with we start with the undervolted stock speed. Why undervolted? well if you have things set on "Auto", you may well be using more volts than are actually required to run at the chosen frequency, for example our 3960s will run quite happily at just 1.1volts, solid as a rock, 24/7, and as such we use this as our starting point.
Continuity is very important in testing, and for this reason we keep as many of the potential variables as locked down as possible. We will be using OCCT in Linpack X64, AVX compatible with all logical cores tested and 90% free memory utilised. The test is set up to run automatically with just a few clicks to set it going. A 10 minute idle followed by 30 minutes of testing and a 5 minute cool down is the order of the day and brings the total test time per clock speed to 45 minutes. So as to remove subjectivity in determining whether a CPU has failed, OCCT is set to stop the test and register a fail should the max temp exceed 80 degrees. In testing we noted that if even just one of the cores exceeds 82 degrees OCCT halts the test and a fail is recorded.
Although the Pump also had a 9v speed reducer we have conducted all testing of the pump at the full 12 volts. We have though conducted all tests at 3 fan speeds corresponding to 12v, 7v and 5v, making for a potential 12 tests which at 45 minutes per test makes for a grand total of 9 hours of testing. If you want to run at the lower pump speed, expect a 2-3 Degree increase in temps across the board. As you can see from the chat below, you can expect a 2 degree step in temp as you decrease the fan speed. Even with the fans on their lowest speed the temps are quite reasonable, and comparable to other systems. This is what we'd expect as there's really not a lot going on at 3.2GHz with just 1.1v trickling through the circuits
Turning now to the 4GHz test we up the voltage to 1.25 volts, this is what is deemed normally as stock volts. Something we are always harping on about on the forums is AUTO does not mean stock volts, and normally if you overclocking with "auto" volts the motherboard will be upping the volts much more than needed if you were to do it manually. By whichever means it happens, upping the volts (especially from our 1.1v undervolt) does have a big impact on temps, with an average increase of 10-15 degrees seen in the results.
As the Eisberg is essentially a hybrid, falling somewhere between a 240mm rad AIO and a custom system we'll be comparing it to both. Unfortunately it seems not to be coping too well with the increased voltage the 4.0GHz brings, being about 4 degrees warmer than most 240mm systems. More worryingly it's actually fallen behind the Noctua NH-D14 which as we all know is a conventional tower type air cooler. Ok, it's pretty much the best out there but it's still an air cooler and it costs only half as much as the 240L
Upping the volts still further we achieve a stable 4.4GHz overclock at 1.35 Volts. It's here we start to separate the wheat from the chaff, with lesser coolers not able to disperse the increased heat effectively. Again we see a jump of 10 degrees or so from the figures at 4GHz. Both the H100 and the well-respected D14 are creeping into the 70s here, indicating that only the cream of the crop will excel at this level.
Dropping the fans to their lowest setting saw the gap widen still further, with the Eisberg now lagging some 5 degrees behind the custom kits and 7.5 degrees behind the X60. Again the 240L prestige is bettered by the NH-D14.
We have to admit that we were hopeful the 240L would make it to the 4.6GHz test, although we suspected it would be by the skin of its teeth. Sadly it was not to be, even giving it best of 3 it failed to make it through the test with the temps maxing out after 18 mins and automatically bring the test to an end.
This isn't going to be the usual long conclusion. You see, the Eisberg 240L Prestige suffers from the same fundamental flaw as the 120L. The pump noise is hugely intrusive and wholly unacceptable. Yes it's a little less disturbing with the speed reducer in place but really all this seems to do is alter the pitch as opposed to the volume of the buzz that emanates from the unit, and don't forget the 2-3 degree hit in temps you'll have to trade for a slightly less annoying noise. There are positives here, let's not forget that, the build quality finish and usual Cooler Master attention to detail are there, right down to the gloss black tubing counterpointing the satin finish of the hardware and the colour matched compression fittings. The performance although acceptable is not stellar, especially when compared to other much cheaper units. But even with all that considered we really couldn't live with the noise.
It's rare to write a negative conclusion as pretty much everything we test and review has good points and bad points. For the most part these can be subjectively weighed leading to an overall impression. However when looking at the Eisberg 240L Prestige it's hard to find anything positive enough to outweigh the negatives. Cooler Master have known for a good long while now that there are issues with the pump noise, in fact even at pre release it was brought to their attention with vows following that it would be sorted for the production models. We ourselves raised the matter when the 120L was tested, but still the issue remains. Cooler Master have a pretty much pristine record, but the Eisberg series is a definite blot on their copy book. Thing is, even if the pump was quiet as a paedo in a play ground we'd still find it hard to recommend it. £130 is a lot to pay and that sort of money buys you a decent genuine AIO with money left over, or for that matter, if you want to go down the custom route gets you damn close to two of the 240mm kits we reviewed last month.
As you'd expect the Eisberg scores low, very low. Come On Cooler Master, Perfect it or Pull it.
Thanks to Cooler Master for the 240L, you can discuss your thoughts in the OC3D Forums.