• Welcome to Overclockers Forums! Join us to reply in threads, receive reduced ads, and to customize your site experience!

EKWB EK-XLC Predator Expandable/Upgradeable AIO Review

Overclockers is supported by our readers. When you click a link to make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn More.

cozumel

Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2014
Location
All over the place
Source: NiKKTECH

If i was to go out and visit any computer related store around where i live and i was to ask which types of CPU coolers they have available in their inventory right now chances are they will only have regular CPU air coolers and some AIO liquid CPU coolers. Unfortunately even now custom water cooling kits and parts are still considered niche hardware components in many places and that goes double for other types of cooling like waterchillers. Of course AIO liquid CPU coolers are reasonably priced, are easy to mount and offer very good cooling efficiency levels which in some cases can even compete with those produced by custom water cooling kits. Unfortunately however they don't support expandability and that has always been a serious drawback for enthusiasts, overclockers and even serious gamers. We did predict that eventually we'd see "hybrid" models designed after both AIO liquid CPU coolers and custom water cooling kits and shortly after Alphacool made their debut with the Eisberg line EK WaterBlocks just released their very own EK-XLC Predator line.

The EK-XLC Predator line of pre-filled CPU xpandable liquid coolers consists of two models (at least currently), the 240mm dual-fan model which we have here with us today and is already available by EK Waterblocks and the 360mm tri-fan one which will become available soon. Both models follow the standard configuration as most AIO models so once again we see a radiator with 2/3 fans connected to a pump and a waterblock via two long tubes. The two main differences between the EK-XLC Predator line and regular AIO liquid CPU coolers is that the first has the pump attached onto the radiator (less distance between them compared to the waterblock/pump combo of regular AIO models something which could improve performance) and its two tubes are secured in place via typical 10/16mm fittings thus allowing the user to swap them for longer ones, expand the entire loop by adding a 2nd radiator and/or a GPU waterblock and even swap the waterblock for another (future proof CPU compatibility). We all like the features of the EK-XLC Predator line but what about performance?
 
Last edited:

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
We will have a review up on this device soon enough... Keep your eyes out on the front page! :)
 
OP
cozumel

cozumel

Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2014
Location
All over the place
I just think it's great that a manufacturer is offering AIOs that are designed to be fully expandable and upgradeable. It makes it easier for someone to make a custom loop when dipping their toe in to the water[loop] for the very first time. Getting a pair of Vardars and a PWM fan hub is pretty nice. I wonder if they will have a version with the EVO block instead of the MX?

And yes, my eye is fixed on the front page for the overclockers.com review.
 

AnimeMania

Member
Joined
May 18, 2015
General question from someone who has never done water cooling: Does having black opaque tubing make it harder to tell if your loop is full (no air pockets)? Is there a reservoir window you can monitor?
 

Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Anything I have seen review wise, IMO depends on load how much "better" it does than the big air coolers.From what I see as the voltage goes up the gap widens between the coolers. TYhe air coolers tend to get overwhelmed. I will admit the difference isn't staggering but it's a good way to get a feel for water cooling before taking the plunge into a real loop.
 

Kenrou

Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2014
Yeah i noticed the temp/voltage jump on the 4.8ghz wall, good indicator there :cry: very curious to see how that would do in my system.
 
Last edited:

EK Luc

Registered
Joined
Nov 5, 2014
General question from someone who has never done water cooling: Does having black opaque tubing make it harder to tell if your loop is full (no air pockets)? Is there a reservoir window you can monitor?

Since it's an Closed loop AIO, it's already bleeded so no air pockets in it. :)
 

AnimeMania

Member
Joined
May 18, 2015
It is not exactly closed loop since it can be upgraded/expanded. They also make a similar type of loop that can be expanded with quick disconnects. I was just wondering if you can't see the water in the dark tubing is that a huge disadvantage when refilling a normal water cooled system.
 

EK Luc

Registered
Joined
Nov 5, 2014
It is not exactly closed loop since it can be upgraded/expanded. They also make a similar type of loop that can be expanded with quick disconnects. I was just wondering if you can't see the water in the dark tubing is that a huge disadvantage when refilling a normal water cooled system.

I know it can be expanded but if you were to expand it then yes the opaque tubing would not be ideal but we used this specific tubing for it's high quality and durability. With this tubing, you won't experience coolant evaporation through the tubing like you would with PVC tubing over the course of time.

So to answer your question, yes it's not ideal in terms of viewing but it's the sacrifice we made to provide a better quality tubing. ;)
 

AnimeMania

Member
Joined
May 18, 2015
Is there a reservoir so that you can check the water level? Is there circumstances where you might need (fill/top up) the loop.
 

EK Luc

Registered
Joined
Nov 5, 2014
Is there a reservoir so that you can check the water level? Is there circumstances where you might need (fill/top up) the loop.

There's a small reservoir in the unit right next to the pump but there's no visual indicator. Other than the fact that you can open the fill port above to check the level.

Our Predator's, should not need any maintenance at all (unless you modify it by adding extra components other than our pre-filled GPU's) for a period of at least 3 years and I would believe that this might even be used for an easy 5 years without maintenance.