Showing Results: Most Recent
This review is from: DEEPCOOL Gamer Storm CAPTAIN 240 CPU Liquid Cooler AIO Water Cooling Ceramic Bearing Pump Visual Liquid Flow with Dual 120mm FDB PWM Fan Rubber Coating Deep Silent Support LGA 2011-v3
Pros: The DEEPCOOL Gamer Storm CAPTAIN 240 AIO is a pretty interesting piece of hardware for cooling your CPU. I have personally been an avid water cooler for at least 10 years and remember when these types of hardware started coming out (as clunky/ineffective as they were). It is amazing to see the move from clunky/borderline useless CPU AIO’s to sleek, stylish, efficient, and more importantly effective and price competitive offerings.
This particular AIO really ticks off all of the right boxes with me starting with the immediately obvious aesthetic that can be a bit aggressive to some but I find it to be classy gamer styling. The color of the fan is vibrant and rich while still complimenting the other accents on this piece of hardware. I don’t much care for the red theme but that is purely taste and I personally prefer the black and white design. I do really appreciate what they chose to keep matte black and what they chose to accent where it isn’t too overpowering so it still has a nice effect with the red accents and the red LEDs/liquid.
I was also impressed with the competitive pricing where you get a very good set of fans (PWM and sound dampened/dust proof), very competitive cooling performance (if you want performance numbers look it up on a review site but it is within a degree(s) of any other similar AIO), a 240mm radiator, some great eye candy, a pretty quiet setup, and seemingly reliable performance with a well known brand such as DEEPCOOL.
The noise is not a huge concern as long as you have a case that is reasonably sealed, anything open air the pump might be noticeable because it does have a bit of a different sound profile that is a bit higher than some AIO’s but it isn’t something to be too worried about as long as you aren’t going for a SPCR award.
The final thing I wanted to note as a pro was the corrugated tubing, which is often overlooked. I personally prefer the corrugated tubing because I find it to be more kink resistant, can be snaked into tighter places, it is less likely to be scraped/ripped (as compared to rubber), and opposed to what you might believe I find it easier to tuck away/fit through small areas than the non corrugated. This tubing isn’t unique to this AIO but I am happy they went with it.
Cons: I couldn’t really think of any cons that apply to this piece of hardware other than the pump being a little larger than other AIO’s but it is still very small compared to an air cooler. Another downside could be that there are only 2 fans included but I definitely understand why they made this choice since most people would only use the 2 and I would much rather have 2 high quality fans than 4 mediocre quality fans. I also wish they made a 280mm black and white one.
All of the other cons I can think of really apply to all AIO’s so it wouldn’t really be fair to take points for this AIO since it is inherent to the design such as no expandability, no customization after purchase, limited lifespan, when 1 part fails you replace the whole thing, tubing to short/long depending on application.
Other Thoughts: Before going through some of the bad reviews I was going to mention how DEEPCOOL does not have the longest track record for AIO coolers but that they do have a decent reputation for customer service and now that I have looked through some of the lowing scoring reviews I hope that it is evident.
After looking through some of the negative reviews it looks like DEEPCOOL had some quality issues (and that some people didn’t know what they were buying) but it does look they addressed them to the best of their ability.
On a side note the parts used in this AIO look like they came from a certain OEM but they have clearly been combined/modified in a unique way to produce a product that I feel is great for the enthusiast community where you might not want a boring AIO but you aren’t quite ready or have the time/money to dive into watercooling (pun intended). This AIO is unique enough and performs well enough at a very competitive price point to warrant its entry into the AIO market.
Pros: -Very price competitive
-small (2.5" slim)
-good aesthetic if you want to show it off
-Seems reliable in my testing
-performs consistently after a few tests back-to-back
Cons: -TLC makes me question the reliability but only because it does not have a proven track record like MLC and SLC.
Other Thoughts: I ran AS SSD bench and got 509.56 read and 409.67 write on an old test rig that supports SATA III but always seems to score a bit lower than expected. This was on an old install of Windows on relatively old hardware, and not optimized at all so this result is actually very good.
Unfortunately there is not a lot to say about this SSD without an endurance test or load testing over an extended period. I experienced excellent consistent speeds and this SSD is very competitively priced. Over the short amount of time that I tested this product I had good results and did not have any issues.
Pros: The gigabyte GA-990FX is a very nice motherboard at a compelling price on a not top tier platform. I will address this further in the other section but for now I will just say that considering it’s on an old platform it does very well for itself.
The first thing I noticed when I viewed this motherboard was how clean the PCB looks with its extremely consistent black finish with red accents and yellow?
I also appreciate it that this motherboard comes with USB 3.1, USB type C, an M.2 slot, and all of gigabytes abuse resistant technology such as the 2x copper PCB, metal PCIE slots, and the dual BIOS. This board also includes a reasonable amount of USB connectivity, USB expansion, and a PS2 port which some people don’t care about but for those of us who have needed it know how important it can be. I also like that they have the AMP-UP audio and swappable op-amps but do not personally use that feature.
This board also has an excellent software suite that is honestly becoming quite useful, unlike a number of years ago when all we got was bloatware from motherboard manufacturers. The EasyTune profile got within a few mhz of my manual OC (just did a quick boot/bench stability test on both) and I really enjoyed using the cloud station APP which worked flawlessly once setup BUT I did not have an opportunity to setup and test from outside of my network.
I’m very pleased with the included functionality of gigabytes apps and I still don’t like using them but the cloudstation and easytune have definitely won me over as far as bundled apps go.
Oh, and it comes with a Killer NIC and the usual packet prioritization software which can be useful and works but I prefer doing it through my router.
Cons: For cons I do not want to hold the platform against Gigabyte so I will not include those limitations.
Now for cons I do not understand why they included any gold/yellow in the bottom left hand corner… I mean come on!! The black and red looked good so they decided to mess it up with a 3rd not complimentary color? Maybe a few people will be happy about it but I think throwing yellow/gold into this mix hurts the aesthetic.
I also would have like to see an additional NIC or built in WiFi but this is a pretty cost effective board so I can’t hold that against them.
Other Thoughts: Now I’m as big of an AMD fanboy as anyone else but geez DDR4 and DDR3 are almost the same price and AMD still has not released a chipset that supports it. I know they will be releasing something this year BUT it is tough to compel people to get a new scratch system and go AMD since DDR4 is so cost competitive now and just because it performs similarly to DDR3 means nothing, in a few years I’m sure software will leverage the added speed/bandwidth of DDR4 just like when DDR3 first launched it was slower than DDR2.
And something else I would like to mention is that it is impressive that gigabyte crammed all of these features into a relatively old chipset at such a competitive price.
If you are already running an AMD rig and want to upgrade or you are looking for the best bang/buck system then this would be a great choice.