Koolance 400A-S TR4 Threadripper CPU Water Block Review

Koolance is a well known name in the mainstream water cooling market but over the years it has paid more attention to the enterprise market. Koolance is however dipping its toe into the Threadripper cooling market, when others aren't yet, with an enthusiast water block for the TR4 socket. Let's see how it stacks up the rest of the current TR4 water blocks.

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Koolance 400A-S Installation and TIM

This is the entire mounting kit that comes supplied with the 400A-S. You get 4 mouthing posts, 4 springs, 4 thumbnuts, 4 metal adhesive patches, 1 Torx wrench, and 1 tube of Koolance TIM. As mentioned previously, the wrench could be used to open the block, but the wrench did not fit the Torx screws very well, so we used our own T10 Torx wrench to make sure we did not damage those. The metal tape is for mounting thermocouples should you have those on hand. The Koolance TIM is rated at 1w/m-C thermal conductivity and I do not suggest you use it unless in a pinch. The Promlimatech PK-1 we use for testing is 10.2w/m-C thermal conductivity.

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The springs on this kit are extremely strong, and have been used in a two reviews lately (here and here) because of the high spring rate those exhibit. I very much like the thumbnuts that Koolance supplies. These have a lot of surface area and are easy to grip and turn with your fingers. These are also slotted on top so that you can use a flat head screwdriver to get those threaded all the way down after torque on springs starts making those tough to turn.

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The mounting feet are doubled drilled on each end so that you can fit the block turned in either direction. Given that this block has a directional flow this should accommodate plumbing your lines in either direction needed without having to take the block apart in order to move the inlet to one side or the other.

The mounting feet do have an issue that made it a bit difficult to get installed. The holes in the feet that the mounting posts install into are incredibly tight. The posts on one end did not line up exactly correct which required us to put a lot of force on the block to bend the posts over to fit into the holes on the feet. Now, this socket TR4 has been used and abused with plenty of water block mounts, and it is very likely that everything is not perfectly in-line as it would be when new, so the issue may not lay fully at Koolance's feet. However, I think it would behoove Koolance to widen these holes by a millimeter or so in order to make it easier to get the block's feet down over the threaded portion of the posts.

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At first glance the 400A-S water block appears to be "flat," and checking with a small razor blade initially I thought it was. After checking the TIM on my first mount, that did not seem to be the case. Below you can see a flat edge laid across the coldplate in both directions. While it is not pronounced, you can clearly see that the straight edge is not touching close to the outside edges of the coldplate. The coldplate is certainly convex, not by much, but a little bit makes a difference with Threadripper. As we have seen in the past reviews, getting a good mate between the coldplate and the IHS is not always an easy thing to pull off and can greatly hamper performance when the mounting is less than optimal.

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The mate shown below is our best mount with our TIM. The same method we used last in our Swiftech Apogee review paid off here again when it came to performance. We spread an extremely thin layer of Prolimatech PK-1 across the entire surface of the IHS then placed a small dot of TIM over each of the active Threadripper cores.

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