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  1. #1

    Kingpin F1 Extreme Dark Cooling Pot Review


    Overclockers have always been a bit extreme we take hardware many people are perfectly satisfied with and then push every last MHz we can out of it within our cooling limits. Some choose air cooling, some choose water cooling. Then there are the crazy people.
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  2. #2
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    Excellent write-up that is easy to follow even for first timers!
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    Don't forget the $20 of shipping from the far east on the cost of the mounting hardware!

    Looks like a really nice pot, and a nice review as well.
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    Glorious Leader I.M.O.G.'s Avatar
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    Happy with mine.

    I still have the dragon as well, and I use either when benching currently - sometimes if one gets frosted and I'm switching rigs, its easier to get a new good mount with the one that isn't already frozen. The difference in performance isn't enough to easily be able to tell between the F1 dark and the Gemini.

    Another perk of the extension:

    When you are done benching, you can leave the pot mounted, disconnect all the cables, and turn the motherboard upside down - it stands up securely resting on the square top of the extension. This is a great way to let the ice melt and drip away from the motherboard, point a fan at it so it dries out, and then the next time you are ready to go cold with it again everything is mounted - no remounting, reinsulating, or other prep work. If you don't turn it upside down and just let everything melt, you'll have puddles of water on the board - I've tried that as well, shaking off the extra water before I start using it again... Sometimes it works, but I've had more problems related to moisture that way. I insulate using vaseline though, which is different than jeremy's approach - I only insulate to restrict contact with water, not to restrict the spread of cold.

    You can also turn it upside down without the extension, but it usually doesn't stand upside down as stably on the mounting rods as it stands on the extension.
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  5. Thanks!

    hokiealumnus (01-30-12)

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    When you're doing that you have to hope that there isn't ice under your insulation somewhere, that's what killed TJuan's M4F.
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  7. #6
    Glorious Leader I.M.O.G.'s Avatar
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    Good point, it can be riskier to do that.
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  8. #7
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    Great writeup! Might make a good first pot...
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    Thank you hokie; a good primer for me. You've just 'splained more about LN2 benching to me than I've ever known. Sounds a bit more simple the way you wrote it up, but I'm sure there a lots of hints still lurking around to get familiar with. Well, at least simpler than chilled water (what a pain in the .........)
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  10. #9
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    Thanks for the kind words everyone!

    I'm really glad people that haven't used LN2 found it useful, that was part of the goal. Benching cold isn't rocket science, even if it is a bit intimidating at first glance. Ironically, LN2 is easier to bench than its much warmer DICE counterpart.

    With DICE, you have to use Acetone as a medium. That's problem #1 - before it gets cold, acetone stinks (ok, really, it evaporates poisonous fumes). It's also highly flammable. Most people wouldn't have a problem with that, but some folks like to use a torch instead of a heat gun (my choice b/c of kid concerns) to heat the pot up when necessary. Can't do that when it's got a bunch of acetone in it!

    Then there is the problem of use. It's much easier to pour LN2 than spoon tiny bits of crushed dry ice (which you have to crush unless you get pellets...most comes in a giant block). That also makes temperature control more of a pain. If you can drop temps to DICE level and leave it there, it's not so bad...but having to control around a high cold bug like my Intel chip would be much easier with LN2.

    The biggest drawback is that you have to get a dewar to use LN2. Once you have that and a thermos, you're good to go. If you're good at negotiation, a lot of times you can get local suppliers to drop way off their first asking price for LN2. Currently I pay the same amount of money for 15lbs of DICE as I do for 30L of LN2, which makes it a total no brainer. If you find yourself wanting LN2 and can't get a great price, use the receipts in this thread to (hopefully) help.

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    Great review! Definitely a good idea to include the basics of insulation and installation for those of us who are not that familiar with the process.


    I bet this inspires a few of our members to go from water or air to extreme!

    Matt

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    I've found that it is remarkibly difficult to ignite acetone inside a pot at DIce temps. I certainly don't recommend trying, but I haven't had any luck in doing so!

    By and large, LN2 is much nicer to use.
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    Another awesome review!

    As for the DICE vs. LN2 debate... I know I'm happy I skipped DICE and went straight to LN2!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobnova View Post
    I've found that it is remarkibly difficult to ignite acetone inside a pot at DIce temps. I certainly don't recommend trying, but I haven't had any luck in doing so!

    By and large, LN2 is much nicer to use.
    It's also hard to keep torch lit inside a pot filled with LN2 - I assume lighting the acetone on fire and keeping a torch lit is difficult due to lack of oxygen from evaporation of dice/ln2. Just a guess, and as you said, probably best to try to avoid lighting fires near your PC - though it'd be good for the pictures.
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    I generally just use a heat gun anyway. Could smell better with the acetone (when it splashes, it warms up and evaporates right quick) fumes and such, but the fire risk is lower.
    Plus my torches like to go liquid and spazz out when I point the nozzle down anyway.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hokiealumnus View Post
    Thanks for the kind words everyone!

    Have you tried throwing the CO2 in a blender? I've worked on a few Biophysics experiments which require samples to be cooled by dry-ice. We chuck the block in the blender and dump the sample vials in it. Quick and dirty.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Super Nade View Post
    Have you tried throwing the CO2 in a blender? I've worked on a few Biophysics experiments which require samples to be cooled by dry-ice. We chuck the block in the blender and dump the sample vials in it. Quick and dirty.
    I've found it depends on the quality of the DICE. I had one brand that would blend up perfectly. The stuff was like fresh powder snow. But then I had a different brand that would just spin around and stay in big, hard chunks. I took the to those.


    Either way, I'm not a huge fan of Vince's latest lineups. It seems to me like his fame has caused him to constantly release new looking hardware without any real changes in the performance/internals. Not to mention his current prices are through the roof, ridiculous. I'll keep my OG F1EE+Ext, thank you.
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  18. #17
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    The prices are the only thing holding me back. There is no way I could afford a brand new pot at those prices, I'll be sticking to the used market.
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    Glorious Leader I.M.O.G.'s Avatar
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    What do other pots cost?

    For me, a storefront counts for something. I don't want to go to other sites, where I don't have classifieds access, to find a guy I don't personally know, to buy a pot that no one I trust has used, for a price that may only be quoted in forums posts somewhere. Time is an issue, sometimes more than convenience/money.

    The biggest part of my decision making process was where do I go to buy it, then do I know what I am going to get. I don't know that any top tier pot costs less than 200 bucks, so not something I want to gamble on unknowns with... and I had used an f1ee before and seen the Koolance struggle under load in comparison.

    Not saying kingpin is the only way to go, but these are the reasons it made sense to me. And I could get a gpu pot from the same place, which I also knew was good at holding temps.
    Last edited by I.M.O.G.; 01-30-12 at 07:46 PM.

  20. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by I.M.O.G. View Post
    What do other pots cost?

    For me, a storefront counts for something. I don't want to go to other sites, where I don't have classifieds access, to find a guy I don't personally know, to buy a pot that no one I trust has used, for a price that may only be quoted in forums posts somewhere. Time is an issue, sometimes more than convenience/money.

    The biggest part of my decision making process was where do I go to buy it, then do I know what I am going to get. I don't know that any top tier pot costs less than 200 bucks, so not something I want to gamble on unknowns with... and I had used an f1ee before and seen the Koolance struggle under load in comparison.

    Not saying kingpin is the only way to go, but these are the reasons it made since to me. And I could get a gpu pot from the same place, which I also knew was good at holding temps.
    The bold part is very true. But those guys are still in business for a reason. Here in the US, KP pots are much more common because he's from around here and we've all heard of him. In EU, guys like Otternase are much more well known and that's why their pots are selling like hot cakes over there. Both vendors are legit (and I believe Otternase actually does have his own website for selling pots), but the area that each vendor is from has pretty much decided how well known they are.

    Edit: He doesn't. But he is very active on awardfabrik forums... You just might bee to learn how to sprechen ze Deutsch... (LOL)
    Last edited by ChanceCoats123; 01-30-12 at 07:48 PM.
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    I'd imagine that material costs would make up the bulk of the price `($20/lb).
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