Alphacool OTC Flat 8800 Water Block

Introduction

Introduction

It is a well known fact that in the quest for faster processors and the subsequent increase in performance, there is an unfortunate by-product...heat! Heat is the absolute enemy of the overclocker and performance enthusiast, period! Heat not only reduces the effective overclocking headroom of a particular component, but it also, if left unchecked, can lead to failure in the long run.

With the introduction of ATI/AMD and NVIDIA's latest generation of graphics cards - the 2900 and 8800 series particularly, heat has now become a real issue for graphics card manufacturers and no longer remains a problem exclusive to CPU's. There is a clear need for better cooling.

Subsequently water-cooling is really beginning to become a viable mainstream alternative to traditional air-cooling measures. No longer is water-cooling purely the domain of the hardcore overclockers, but increasingly, it is beginning to make its way into more and more regular users homes.

The thirst for for faster graphics hardware, and consequently, the said hardware having to play catch-up with software developers (read: next gen games); alternative cooling methods are needed to tame the heat. So how do we look towards cooling these GPU's more efficiently...With water-cooling of course!

Alphacool website image
 
Alphacool is a name synonymous with water-cooling hardware. The German based company made a name for itself by producing quality, well-performing hardware for the PC enthusiast. However, in recent times it seemed that they simply dropped off the radar, allowing competitors to muscle in on their hard-earned market share.

Today, a revamped Alphacool seeks to restore itself back to the position that it held in the past, and continue on with manufacturing high-quality hardware as a commitment to both their current dedicated fan base and you, the prospective customer. The effort being made by Alphacool to regain lost ground is evident. From the fresh and enticing web site, through to the updated product lines, Alphacool is on a mission!

Today I have been given the opportunity to review the new Alphacool OTC Flat 8800 full-cover water block. During the performance review today the Alphacool OTC Flat  will be going head-to-head with another full-cover water block - the EK FC8800 GTS.

Alphacool OTC Flat

Anyway enough of my rambling, let's get acquainted with the review specimen...

Specifications

Flowrate: 3.4 to 3.5 L/m (204 to 210 L/h)
               4.8 to 4.9 L/m (288 to 294 L/h)

Connections: G 1/4"

Dimensions: 178 x 118 x 4 mm (21mm including connections)

Weight: 0.555kg

The OTC Flat's specifications certainly look good on paper, however, there are 2 areas that really stand out. Firstly, the OTC Flat weighs in at a mere 555 grams. That is one lightweight water block especially when compared to the 800 gram NVXP-G8.

Secondly, the OTC Flat boasts an incredible 4mm thickness which is great if you decide to have 2 of them cooling an SLI setup.

However, according to the supporting literature, it looks as if the OTC Flat really suffers when it comes to overall flow rates. I guess we'll just have to wait and see when it comes time to test.

Let's head over the page and have a closer look at the Alphacool OTC Flat water block to see what you get for your money...
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Most Recent Comments

02-12-2007, 06:48:11

PV5150
Are you a meat and 3 veg kind of hardware junky or do you prefer the more delicate things in life? Today we tested the ultra-thin Alphacool OTC Flat 8800 full-cover water block to see how it performed.

http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...005840448s.jpg

Linkage

02-12-2007, 13:43:02

FarFarAway
Great well written review Peevs. I have been wondering how these will fair and in the very least they are an attractive solution offering a bit of choice. Bit of a shame about the overall performance but looks like I'll be happy with my EK block

02-12-2007, 13:57:54

Ham
I like the idea of this block tbh. Looks just so much nicer than the usual fat-topped ones. And for its size (or lack of), doesn't perform too badly.

Nice job Mr Pvs.

02-12-2007, 19:01:47

PV5150
Thanks guys, the feedback is appreciated. I'm glad you found the review a good read.

02-12-2007, 19:05:56

duke
I can't believe how thin it is!

Kinda disappointing about the conclusion, but that doesn't bother me as I bought the EK

02-12-2007, 19:46:07

NickS
Got flow?

Good review Peeves

02-12-2007, 19:54:23

llwyd
Nice review mate

Results were pretty much what one would expect from the offset

Looks like this has taken us up to 3000 live articles

02-12-2007, 22:35:41

PV5150
Thanks guys Yes the OTC Flat certainly looks the goods, and it is a valiant step away from the traditional. But yes, it's poor flow performance certainly makes it hard to recommend over better performing blocks. As far as temp's go it performed quite admirably.

06-12-2007, 06:40:51

JN
Oops I missed this one. Good review there mate. Certainly a block worth considering if you're tight for space (like my EK block getting in the way of my D5 pump on my old rig)

06-12-2007, 08:09:57

SuB
i can't believe how thin that is, its understandable how much flow is lost but the temps are reasonable at least i'm happy with my ek but if i was going for something different and wanted a sexy thin look i'd deffinately pick this, i bet it looks awesome mounted in sli although i imagine temps would suffer due the extreme loss of flow through 2 blocks?

perhaps there could be a review of this on 2 cards to see if there is any major temperature difference between the cards when used in sli?
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