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Review: Larkooler Extreme Performance G1/4″

As we told you in the preview of this product, it’s in the summer months that our processors suffer the most (due to the high temperatures etc). If we want […]

As we told you in the preview of this product, it’s in the summer months that our processors suffer the most (due to the high temperatures etc). If we want to keep the system cool, there is 2 main solutions that comes to our minds. Two factors enter into account at this point : implement an energy saving system or search an adequate cooling solution. A liquid cooling system appears to be as the best solution but there are so many options and it is important to consider those seriously before choosing the system. In order to help you in your choice, let’s see how this watercooling kit from Larkooler behaves…

Who is Larkooler?

It’s always good to have a little bot of history about a brand when you meet her for the first time, please check out these informations found on the corporate website:

GBU International Corp. was established in 2003 as a professional computer water cooling kit manufactuer in Taiwan. Products manufactured by GBU Taiwan include PC water cooling kit, CPU cooler and water blocks….etc. With almost 20 years experience in electronics product line, GBU Taiwan provides reasonable prices, premium quality and punctual delivery. GBU Taiwan proudly released Larkooler PC water cooling products in 2009.

Teamed up with professional and experienced PC cooling experts, Larkooler wants to create an innovative cooling solution for all PC users. The spirit of Larkooler is : Silent + Cooling + Artistic. We hope to bring tremendous fun of watercooling to all desktop PC users. Producing ultimate thermal solution is our job and our purpose is to make watercooling products affordable for everyone. We do care what users need and what we bring to the environments.

Source: GBU

First look

The overall package that we received contained the following boxes.

First, let’s take a look at the CPU waterblock. The inside of the box is well protected by a plastic foam that fulfills its function of protecting the hardware during the transportation.


The same for the pump (integrated with the reservoir), same box and foam inside.

Again for the radiator, same kind of box but it didn’t had the same destiny as the others. When I shacked it, I could slightly heard free objects moving inside the box …

Now you are asking where is the coolant and the tubes? No worry, they all were free in the box that contained all the additional components and accessories.

Let’s stop with the unpacking and come to the hot topic!

In-depth look

It’s time to display the technosexual side of this kit! From the previous pics, you would have observed the considerable potential, a simplicity and elegant curves that already makes this product different from some others.

The bundle is quite simple but efficient. There is also all adaptability support for every existing sockets.

The waterblock has a very good polished base that closely approaches the efficiency to reflect of  a mirror.

On this pics, we can see the position for the AMD based sockets and Intel ones.

Now lets take a look at the radiator. Look at the bundle that consists of:  brackets for the 2  possible positions of the radiator, a key type tool, connector 1 / 4 “, an adapter for fans and a slot for passing the tubes to case interior without damaging them.

Just the radiator and with the fins.

And now, the whole thing mounted with fans.

An interesting thing as I told you before is that you also have the possibility to install the radiator in a horizontal position. So let’s try this position !

The pump and the reservoir are here.

What else comes with it ? Well  … not much but just what is necessary.

Wanna see the color of your reservoir with the coolant? Here you go !

Tubes, liquid coolant and tools.

Some important information are written on the coolant bottle, so please don’t forget to read it carefully in order to not regret it later …

Now that we have walked through the appearance and details of the kit, it’s time for some more serious action with efficiency measurements and technical details first on the product.

Technical look

Find below the technical characteristics of the components from this watercooling kit.

Installation

Pay attention and enjoy this video about how install the watercooling kit.

The configuration that we could get the better performance for this kit is:

  • Pump – Waterblock – Radiator – Reservoir – Pump

Testing protocol

The platform for the review is:

For testing the kit in extreme condition, we’ll us the software “LinX 0.6.4” for 90 minutes. Why using this program and not another? Because this will be able to stress 100% of our processor cores, and generate as much heat as possible and find out how the kit is actually able to deal with intensive heating of the coolant.

The monitoring temperature of the processor will be with “CoreTemp 0.99.8” and “HWMonitorPro, and ambient temperature inside the case there will be monitored with a digital thermometer (normally used in the kitchens of our mothers).

The temperature delta in which the system stayed during the tests is about 20 ° C ambient, resulting in the case at 18 ° C.

Another important point to mention is that to measure the heat dissipation capability of the kit, we will increase the processor voltage (vCore) from 1.30V up to 1.50v. This will make the CPU to heat even more and have more heat to be dissipated by the kit.

Let’s see the results… .

Tests

We’ve got the following results:

The resulting temperatures look quite promising at this stage. The good results given shows that the kit was capable of supporting power consumption from 140 watts to 216 watts by the processor.
Of course this is an extreme case, and nobody is going to have a setup running under these temps or CPU stressing for a 24/7 usage.

Conclusion

It’s time to draw the conclusions after several hours spent on this kit to get a clear view of product quality. We can say that this company is new (despite its age) and probably now positioned to compete successfully in the market.

This kit has aspects that make it stand out from other solutions but there are still element that clearly should be improve. Let us explain:

The best :

  • Silence.
  • Performance.
  • Esthetic.
  • Compatibility with sockets.

Silence,I had the chance to try several thermal solutions and many of them have been uncomfortable (despite being attractive and efficient) by the noise they emit. They have even been able to disrupt such a dream (I mention this because many people like I, leave their computers at night) :p .

Performance, was able to support with ease a consumption of 216 watts of the processor. For example with the highest applied voltage (1.50v) we can easily achieve the 4.0 GHz or more on any processor, and being a little more ambitious with the same voltage can reach up to 4.5GHz (and maybe more, depends only on the experience of the overclocker) to bench.

Esthetic, The design of this kit is nice, simple and sober. Thanks to the color of the coolant and the fact that it is not UV reactive, end up making it a sober and elegant combination.

Compatibility with sockets, As we told earlier, this kit is compatible of course with all the existing current sockets, but there are only two outsiders from this list : “Intel 1155 and the future and yet undefined AMD AM3 +.”

Should improve :

  • Thermal compound more solid.
  • Flexibility in tubes.
  • Tools.

Thermal compound more solid, the thermal compound applied on my CPU was a little to liquid.

Flexibility in tubes, it is not easy to setup a WC kit whan the tubes tend to be rigid and take back there original form when bonded.

Tools, we always end up by thanking the manufacturer  that gives us the tools to instal. I want to emphasize this because the installation of the radiator is uncomfortable due to that one of the tools “not bite” well into the screw. We would have appreciated a little L-shaped adapter to facilitate the mounting of some screws.

Award

For the performance, quality and features that was able to deliver this kit all along the review, we would like to attribute the prize of “Ice” with a score of 7 out of 10.

Thanks

Finally, we would like to thank everyone who made this review possible, such as Armando Alvarez who cooperated in the transfer of the kit, and especially to Samuel Liu for his confidence in us and provided us the sample. Thanks a lot Larkooler!

About Martín Soria

This guy is the Editor-In-Chief at our South America & Spanish Division. Works hard doing guides, reviews, articles and a lot of things. If you want contact him send an email to el.os-17@overclocking-tv.com