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Best GPU Water Block For Your Next Custom Loop

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With a GPU block, like most components, there are a few key areas to consider before buying. Compatibility is the main concern and a big thing to ensure you get right when planning your open loop, as specific models are only produced by certain brands. You need to think about the materials being used, the PCB compatibility, thread size, and of course, how it is going to look visually in your custom loop.

What Is A GPU Water Block?

A GPU water block is the water cooling equivalent of a heatsink that you find on top of the PCB layer of any modern gaming graphics card. The plate on the GPUs die transfers the fierce heat into your liquid loop, as opposed to a massive heatsink you would find on your standard gaming card.

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It works on a basic principle of thermodynamics, with heat moving from a warmer object to a colder object, and as the cooler object becomes warmer, the previously warmer object becomes cooler.

Is Water Cooling A GPU Worth It?

Well, let’s face it, the hottest and loudest component in many gamer’s systems is the graphics card. The GPU, when gaming at least, outputs a lot of wattage and while they are designed to handle high heat, liquid cooling one is a great way of not only pushing the performance further but prolonging their lifespan too.

That being said, the main reason most will water cool their gaming PC is more for the bragging rights and incredible aesthetics but there are some performance gains, though probably not as much as you would think.

The risks that are inherent to water cooling apply with a GPU water block but you should know that most manufacturers, if not all, test these blocks after assembly. If for example you were unlucky enough to get a faulty product and a leak that wasn’t through tampering with the block or poorly attached fittings, the damage that is caused should be covered by the manufacturer.

What Is A Full-Cover GPU Block?

The name kind of gives it away but it is a block that covers the entirety, or at least most of the graphics card. The coverage includes, but is not limited to, the processing unit, the VRAM modules, voltage regulators, and MOSFETs.

Some full-cover GPU blocks may not go the full length of the physical card but they will cover the critical components that need this level of cooling.

Most full-cover GPU blocks are based on the reference design, which can be thought of as a base model that OEM’s use and can then change the cooling solution on top. When talking about a card being “reference” what is actually being referred to is the PCB layer beneath that giant heatsink. If the manufacturer changes anything on the PCB layout, it is no longer considered reference.

GPU blocks that only work with very specific model GPUs are always labeled but otherwise, you will likely see “reference” but you need to make sure you check this before buying anything.

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