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Whaler_99

Aquacomputer Aqualis PRO 450ml Reservoir with LED Holder

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Posted · Original PosterOP
Aquacomputer Aqualis PRO 450ml Reservoir with LED Holder

Background

Recently, I have been having some issues with Bay Res solutions for my computer, having had two leak on me. Short story, the acrylic and glue can only handle sustained temps of less the 50C. I have a requirement for handling water temps in excess of 60C on a sustained basis – so after some looking and some help from Daz over at Dazmode.com I decided on the Aqua Computer Aqualis reservoir. This is borosilicate glass tubing with a nano coating. It has a wall thickness of 5mm and has excellent thermal resistance.

Initial Impression

Upon taking out the res from the packaging the first thing you notice is the sheer weight of this thing. It comes in at just over 1.2 kilos and just oozes quality. The base and top are constructed of Delrin and have an incredibly solid feel to them. A center, stainless tube for filling and the water after and two plates for inside the res to help control air ingestion back into the loop

 

My res is the PRO version which comes with an additional acrylic windows screwed into the base and has the option of mounting 6 x 5mm LED’s to help highlight the coolant, especially if using the water fall.

 

Now, if you notice from the pic, the res comes with all the accessories and the instructions in the res itself. So, I sat there wonder for a few minutes, how the heck do I get into it? I tried unscrew the top G1/4 plug but that didn’t do anything. I tried unscrewing the top and the base, but to no avail. This thing wasn’t letting me in. It wasn’t until I went on the Aqua site, found an online copy of the manual, which is in my res do note, that it says to unscrew the top in counter clockwise direction. After some more work on this I finally got it off. J

Installation

Installation looks pretty simply. They provide a nice mounting plate. Very solid for holding the weight of the res as well as the fluid. Depending on your case though, you will need to get the old drill out. I mounted mine and drilled out four holes. Once screwed in it was VERY solid.

 

One thing to remember, if you have the LED Holder, the LEDs need to be installed prior to mounting, otherwise you have no access to insert the LEDs. Now, one issue I came up with, not enough room. There is a channel on each side of the base for running the cabling for the LEDs through. There was nowhere near enough room for three per side and just barely room for two per side.

 

Now, a lot of what you do here for filling depends on what you do – if you want to use the water fall effect, the intake into the res is through the center port, and the outtake is through either of the side ones. Now, of course, to fill, you need to put coolant in through the top port, but that is supposed to be sealed, for the water fall effect. So, I installed a fitting and some tubing that was higher than the whole setup to fill. This worked out well.

 

Once all filled, primed and sealed up, the res looks really good. The LED effect is really nice. The water fall effect is a little “meh”. As per the video on Aquacomputer website, where it is really pouring out, even with me D5 at the 5 setting, I could not get anywhere near that. The fluid comes down and out a bit then down the center tube. Still looks cool, but quote a “water fall”.

 

One thing to keep in mind when screwing the top back on, make sure the o-ring at the base, that the glass res goes on, is in the right spot. Place the glass down, then hold it in place and the screw the top on, tight. I original screwed the top back on and the glass twisted a bit and kinked the o-ring. Which mean it leaked like a sieve when I started filling it and had to tear everything out…

Verdict

Overall, this is a great reservoir. Top quality parts and the glass itself is amazing. Installation was a bit complicated, just sorting out exactly where to mount it, drilling out custom holes. But otherwise pretty straight forward. Multiple port options, LED effects, all good!

 

In the next post I will add a bunch of the pics I took with some descriptions...

 


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Posted · Original PosterOP

First pics, the packaging itself. First thing you notice when you pick it up, is the weight!

 

post-765-0-30382900-1374356355_thumb.jpg

 

post-765-0-39045400-1374356358_thumb.jpg

 

post-765-0-79607800-1374356360_thumb.jpg

 

 

Now, we have the res, out of the packing...

 

post-765-0-73695600-1374356494_thumb.jpg

 

 

Shot of the instructions IN the res, along with accessories like screws and such...

 

post-765-0-36038800-1374356365_thumb.jpg

 

 

Remember, when I mentioned about trying to figure out the removal of the top? :) Also, you can notice, the 8 little holes surrounding the main one - that is where the liquid comes out in the water fall mode. Basically liquid gets pushed up the center tube, through the main hole, and with the plug installed in the top, gets pushed back out the 8 little ones, creating the water fall effect. (or lack there of as the case may be).

 

post-765-0-54739600-1374356367_thumb.jpg

 

And there are the instructions, telling me how to open it... which.. where, IN the res...

 

post-765-0-21388100-1374356373_thumb.jpg

 

 

Shot of the thickness of the res wall - 5mm... Very solid feel to it!

 

post-765-0-62652100-1374356369_thumb.jpg

 

 

Base ports on this model...

 

post-765-0-73217300-1374356375_thumb.jpg

 

 

See the acrylic piece that comes pre-installed - this is to stop air intake back into the loop when using the water fall effect...

 

post-765-0-50511500-1374356378_thumb.jpg

 

 

And a shot of the bottom. You can see the 6 "spots" for the LEDs to go in...

 

post-765-0-92611600-1374356851_thumb.jpg

 

 

And a shot of the res mounted in my rig...

 

post-765-0-79969700-1374356909_thumb.jpg

 

 

 

 


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can you post a pic of the res put together with nothing in it?

 

Im res shopping right now, want to see what it looks like :]


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Posted · Original PosterOP

can you post a pic of the res put together with nothing in it?

 

Im res shopping right now, want to see what it looks like :]

 

Pics posted...


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Pics posted...

 

 

thanks, when I looked before the one with the case wasn't there yet.

 

what I meant before was one on the desk without the plastic stuff inside, but the case one works too :D


Stuff:  i7 7700k @ (dat nibba succ) | ASRock Z170M OC Formula | G.Skill TridentZ 3600 c16 | EKWB 1080 @ 2100 mhz  |  Acer X34 Predator | R4 | EVGA 1000 P2 | 1080mm Radiator Custom Loop | HD800 + Audio-GD NFB-11 | 850 Evo 1TB | 840 Pro 256GB | 3TB WD Blue | 2TB Barracuda

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Very nice review. I have this res as well (without the nano coating) and had to

chuckle a bit when I read about your troubles opening it for the first time. I had

the same issue and also had to look it up (wouldn't want to break anything by

forcing it).

I have also encountered the trickiness with the O-Ring; had it leak on me too

after not assembling the res correctly.

But I do really like this thing, build quality is phenomenal IMHO, and build quality

is pretty much at the top of my list most of the time, or at least very close to it.


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Posted · Original PosterOP

Very nice review. I have this res as well (without the nano coating) and had to

chuckle a bit when I read about your troubles opening it for the first time. I had

the same issue and also had to look it up (wouldn't want to break anything by

forcing it).

I have also encountered the trickiness with the O-Ring; had it leak on me too

after not assembling the res correctly.

But I do really like this thing, build quality is phenomenal IMHO, and build quality

is pretty much at the top of my list most of the time, or at least very close to it.

 

Funny that you had same issues as I had. Wonder if anyone over there taking note?

 

Build quality when dealing with water cooling gear is just something that has to be at a top level.

 

Was interesting to read that XSPC just announced a problem with their dual-bay units, both of mine which leaked... that's when I really started looking and found this one.


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Funny that you had same issues as I had. Wonder if anyone over there taking note?

Who knows... although usually when there's a larger scale problem with AC products a thread

on their forums is rather quick to pop up and I haven't been able to find anything on there

yet. But maybe I just haven't looked hard enough, I don't really stop by there too often

anymore.

Build quality when dealing with water cooling gear is just something that has to be at a top level.

 

I have an absolute build quality fetish, not just when it comes to W/C gear. Sometimes I wish

I didn't, because it's a rather expensive fetish to have, but what can you do... :D

Was interesting to read that XSPC just announced a problem with their dual-bay units, both of mine which leaked... that's when I really started looking and found this one.

Yeah I saw the post on their blog. Since I've never really been a fan of bay reservoirs with

integrated pump mounts I never really had a closer look at those units though.


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Posted · Original PosterOP

Yeah I saw the post on their blog. Since I've never really been a fan of bay reservoirs with

integrated pump mounts I never really had a closer look at those units though.

 

I liked it because it was easy to place and XSPC are supposed to be good build quality. I know @Ghost is looking at a really nice bay res, but I don't believe it has a intergrated pump mount. Problem with something like the XSPC one, if you decide not to use it and go with say a tube res, your pump is useless. Finding the mounts for the pump from the bay res is almost as expensive as buying a new pump, which is what I ended up doing. :)


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I know @Ghost is looking at a really nice bay res, but I don't believe it has a intergrated pump mount.

Correct.

 

I have to ask what the metal tube in the res is for. It seems to go straight through?

 

And I would have thought the acrylic plate was anti-vortex rather than to filter air. But I have no idea.


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Posted · Original PosterOP

Correct.

 

I have to ask what the metal tube in the res is for. It seems to go straight through?

 

And I would have thought the acrylic plate was anti-vortex rather than to filter air. But I have no idea.

 

The metal tube is a) - what the top screws onto and tightens the entire thing together, and B) if using the water fall effect, the coolant coming into the res is pumped up the tube to come out the 8 holes in the top...

 

The plate is for when using the water fall effect, if you look at their video, you can see it working to stop water coming down and carrying air back into the outflow. If you don't use the water fall effect, you can remove the acrylic plate, and add a anti-vortex plate they also ship with.

 

http://youtu.be/Zpt9vtAib2w


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Ghost, on 21 Jul 2013 - 7:03 PM, said:

I have to ask what the metal tube in the res is for. It seems to go straight through?

Whaler_99, on 21 Jul 2013 - 7:14 PM, said:

The metal tube is a) - what the top screws onto and tightens the entire thing together, and B) if using the water fall effect, the coolant coming into the res is pumped up the tube to come out the 8 holes in the top...

Indeed. Borosilicate glass is rather hard to work with; I doubt they could just cut

threads in it as is usually done with plexi tubes, so they had to find a different

way of holding the hole assembly together. I actually think it's a rather clever idea.

The only downside is that you can't just unscrew the whole top because it would all

fall apart; you can only open the central G1/4" port in the top (or one of the ports

in the base).

As for the XSPC res: I do actually quite like the look of the D5 bay res they have,

I'm just not a fan of the fact that you can't really decouple your pump properly (at

least as far as I know) if you bolt it directly to the bay res. But maybe I'm not

completely up to date on that one.


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As for the XSPC res: I do actually quite like the look of the D5 bay res they have,

I'm just not a fan of the fact that you can't really decouple your pump properly (at

least as far as I know) if you bolt it directly to the bay res. But maybe I'm not

completely up to date on that one.

Their combos res' are the ones that suffer from the falling apart at 50-60C issue.


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Hey i know this is an extremely old thread but i had a question about a res like this.

 

I have a http://www.frozencpu.com/products/16771/ex-res-392/AquaComputer_Aqualis_ECO_Scratch_Resistance_Reservoir_34037.html?id=npeuCoUK&mv_pc=165

 

And I am kind of confused on to how to install this.

 

Is the thick glass outer part of the res just supposed to sit on the bottom? Like no screws? Mine just sits on it.

 

And how exactly would i install the silver bracket stuff that came with the res?

 

And is there any videos that show how to do all this :P?

 

Thanks a lot!

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Hey i know this is an extremely old thread but i had a question about a res like this.

 

I have a http://www.frozencpu.com/products/16771/ex-res-392/AquaComputer_Aqualis_ECO_Scratch_Resistance_Reservoir_34037.html?id=npeuCoUK&mv_pc=165

 

And I am kind of confused on to how to install this.

 

Is the thick glass outer part of the res just supposed to sit on the bottom? Like no screws? Mine just sits on it.

 

And how exactly would i install the silver bracket stuff that came with the res?

 

And is there any videos that show how to do all this :P?

 

Thanks a lot!

 

The manual does leave a lot to be desired.

 

So, the glass tubing "sits" on the base, but on top of an o-ring, to prevent leaks. The center post has a screw thread at the top, and top top screws down on this, tightening everything together. If you remove the top, the glass just does come out. It is pressure from the top and the o-rings which keep it all together and from leaking.

 

Now, to get the silver bracket, you do need to remove the top and the glass, then there should be a few small screws to screw it into the base, then re-assemble. Make sure the base of the glass is on the o-ring properly, or it will leak. I would fill it with distilled water after re-assembly, before putting it in computer, just to test. Mine leaked about 4 times before I got it together properly.

 

If you search the aqualis site, you can find a slightly better manual then what came with it, also, google for some videos, not sure what is out there...


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The manual does leave a lot to be desired.

 

So, the glass tubing "sits" on the base, but on top of an o-ring, to prevent leaks. The center post has a screw thread at the top, and top top screws down on this, tightening everything together. If you remove the top, the glass just does come out. It is pressure from the top and the o-rings which keep it all together and from leaking.

 

Now, to get the silver bracket, you do need to remove the top and the glass, then there should be a few small screws to screw it into the base, then re-assemble. Make sure the base of the glass is on the o-ring properly, or it will leak. I would fill it with distilled water after re-assembly, before putting it in computer, just to test. Mine leaked about 4 times before I got it together properly.

 

If you search the aqualis site, you can find a slightly better manual then what came with it, also, google for some videos, not sure what is out there...

 

 

Thanks a lot for the information. I can't for some reason take out the top stopper, lol. But I've been looking around and many other users also can't open it. I'm not sure what to do though :(

 

But thanks again!

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Thanks a lot for the information. I can't for some reason take out the top stopper, lol. But I've been looking around and many other users also can't open it. I'm not sure what to do though :(

 

But thanks again!

 

Honestly when I got mine, I thought I would break it, it was just on STUPID tight. Like it was ridiculous to get off... It twists off counter clockwise, pretty sure. Just get a good grip on it and the base and keep even pressure. Should come off. If in the end, you cannot, did you recently buy it? Ask for a return or RMA?


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Honestly when I got mine, I thought I would break it, it was just on STUPID tight. Like it was ridiculous to get off... It twists off counter clockwise, pretty sure. Just get a good grip on it and the base and keep even pressure. Should come off. If in the end, you cannot, did you recently buy it? Ask for a return or RMA?

 

Thanks for the response again!

 

Im not afraid of using too much effort :P but what did you use to get it off?

 

Im using this flat head screw driver thats just about the same size, that helps me with other stoppers too.

 

I might just ask for an RMA.

 

Thanks!

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Thanks for the response again!

 

Im not afraid of using too much effort :P but what did you use to get it off?

 

Im using this flat head screw driver thats just about the same size, that helps me with other stoppers too.

 

I might just ask for an RMA.

 

Thanks!

 

Oh, sorry, thought you were referring to the black top - I think you are referring to the silver plug in the top you need to remove first. :)

I have a torx key that fit perfect, so was able to pop that off no problem. My issue was getting the black Delrin top off as well...


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Posted · Original PosterOP

Ah thats what i needed :)

 

Thanks, and ill go pick one of those up!

 

Maybe take the res with you so you can get the proper fitted one. Then you can get some real tork on it. :)


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The selection of materials used is impressive, not their engineering. Aquacomputer makes pretty looking products, but IMHO they invest very little time in testing their products or getting feedback from Users before finalizing their designs for production. 

 

Unfortunately the DIY Liquid cooling market suffers from being niche. Our lack of choices forces us to tolerate poorly made designs and little time invested in Q/C or support. Luckily the online DIY community is active and vocal, so consumers can be warned about these problems, but most consumers don't research forums before ordering. 

 

I've used all brands over the past decade. I've been disappointed by both Alphacool and XSPC on some of their products, but can't really complain about 1st tier manufacturers, Their lower pricing allows people to step into this hobby. Both companies have suffered from poor quality control in their China factories. What happens frequently is that the company or CEO doesn't learn of these Q/C issues until after you've installed their product and notified their retailer. Shouldn't somebody from these companies be watching and checking their factory Q/C?....Well, that costs money. It's just easier to deal with customer RMAs.

 

A few years ago, one of my retailers told me he was approached about becoming main US distributor for one of the large liquid component companies. This would have been a very lucrative opportunity. Two things had him on the fence about doing it.

 

1. Having to invest in warehouse expansion and staff just to handle the product RETURNS.

2. The company required that he sign contract that he could never complain or reveal to the public the amount of returns they were receiving.  

 

Tell me that isn't ****ed up.

 

If you're looking for great value for your dollar, I highly recommend Koolance. They've really improved their design aesthetics and their factory quality control is very good. They offer simple designs that work because a majority of their sales is for OEMs. You can't screw over OEMs.

 

I've been working hard to expand upon the variety of custom parts we make for our webstore, which will include liquid cooling components. It's taking a long time, but we're in this market for the long haul. We just celebrated our 14 year anniversary. I believe the reason we've survived is that we won't compromise quality just to make higher profit. When you buy my parts, you can feel and see how your money was invested. I like products that are built to last. So please be patient as we work toward expanding and creating more unique products for everybody.

 

I shared this video of my opinion of the Aqualis with Whaler99 on Twitter

 


17 years of helping you void your warranty

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Thanks for the info and thoughts Bill. I haven't used any Koolance products yet but have been interested in their quick disconnect products. 


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The selection of materials used is impressive, not their engineering. Aquacomputer makes pretty looking products, but IMHO they invest very little time in testing their products or getting feedback from Users before finalizing their designs for production.

Unfortunately the DIY Liquid cooling market suffers from being niche. Our lack of choices forces us to tolerate poorly made designs and little time invested in Q/C or support. Luckily the online DIY community is active and vocal, so consumers can be warned about these problems, but most consumers don't research forums before ordering.

I've used all brands over the past decade. I've been disappointed by both Alphacool and XSPC on some of their products, but can't really complain about 1st tier manufacturers, Their lower pricing allows people to step into this hobby. Both companies have suffered from poor quality control in their China factories. What happens frequently is that the company or CEO doesn't learn of these Q/C issues until after you've installed their product and notified their retailer. Shouldn't somebody from these companies be watching and checking their factory Q/C?....Well, that costs money. It's just easier to deal with customer RMAs.

A few years ago, one of my retailers told me he was approached about becoming main US distributor for one of the large liquid component companies. This would have been a very lucrative opportunity. Two things had him on the fence about doing it.

1. Having to invest in warehouse expansion and staff just to handle the product RETURNS.

2. The company required that he sign contract that he could never complain or reveal to the public the amount of returns they were receiving.

Tell me that isn't ****ed up.

If you're looking for great value for your dollar, I highly recommend Koolance. They've really improved their design aesthetics and their factory quality control is very good. They offer simple designs that work because a majority of their sales is for OEMs. You can't screw over OEMs.

I've been working hard to expand upon the variety of custom parts we make for our webstore, which will include liquid cooling components. It's taking a long time, but we're in this market for the long haul. We just celebrated our 14 year anniversary. I believe the reason we've survived is that we won't compromise quality just to make higher profit. When you buy my parts, you can feel and see how your money was invested. I like products that are built to last. So please be patient as we work toward expanding and creating more unique products for everybody.

I shared this video of my opinion of the Aqualis with Whaler99 on Twitter

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAUaOmwsMJ4

I have also been disappointed in xspc's quality, but I got it because it was cheap. Now I see why.

The res has plastic threads, and the CPU block wasn't threaded completly properly


n0ah1897, on 05 Mar 2014 - 2:08 PM, said:  "Computers are like girls. It's whats in the inside that matters.  I don't know about you, but I like my girls like I like my cases. Just as beautiful on the inside as the outside."

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@Whaler_99  ...You won't be disappointed and their shipping rates are VERY reasonable too. The last two promotion projects out of my shop all used Koolance components. My current build is triple SLI and using all Koolance components, http://linustechtips.com/main/topic/432065-phanteks-enthoo-luxe-star-trek-case-mod-asus-3-way-sli/

 

@spwath ...My father has a sign in his workshop that reads "The Bitterness of Poor Quality remains Long after the Sweetness of Low Price is Forgotten"


17 years of helping you void your warranty

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