UK Price (as reviewed):£90.12 (inc VAT) US Price (as reviewed):$119.99 (ex Tax)
We were mighty impressed when we took a look at Corsair's new all-in-one cooler, the H80i, last week. It upgraded the original H80 in both design and performance for just a fiver more. With us today is the H80i's bigger brother, the H100i, which as you may have guessed serves as the upgrade to the H100. The price difference between the new and old models is slightly increased this time around, being £10. The £90 price tag puts the H100i right up there among the most expensive single coolers we've looked at.
Manufactured by CoolIT, the H100i is essentially the same piece of equipment as the H80i, only with a double sized, half height radiator instead. By default, this makes it a slightly less versatile cooler than the H80i, which only occupies a single 120mm fan mount, since not everyone will have the requisite mounts to house it (our test case, for example, does not support it).
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Bundled with the cooler are two of the fans that also accompany the H80i, which are based on Corsair's SP120 fans. The build quality of these as well as the cooler itself has noticeably improved over the older generation, especially the tubing which is flexible but very firmly attached. The CPU block, too, feels solid and a lot less likely to fall apart than that of the H100.
As both the H80i and H100i are now software controllable, the Corsair Link software enables you to monitor system temperatures and adjust fan speeds and the colour of the RGB LED that lights up the CPU block's Corsair logo. As we've said before, the software is intuitive and logical, and the ability to create your own fan profiles, with speeds controlled by the current CPU temperature, is a particular highlight.
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As well as the SATA and motherboard power connections, the CPU block has a micro USB port which connects to a spare motherboard header. Next to this is a Link connection, enabling you to connect other Link compatible devices (e.g. certain Corsair PSUs).
In its default setting, only one of the two fan ports up top are needed, as a single splitter cable will suffice to connect the two fans. However, though the second fan port is also found on the H80i, the H100i is supplied with two fan splitter cables, whereas the H80i is not. This means you can attach two more fans to the radiator for a push-pull configuration. However, a more sensible and useful option exists, whereby you could wire up two of your case fans, thereby enabling them to be controlled from within the Corsair Link software.
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The H100i boasts the same simple installation procedure as the H80i, thanks to the magnetic mounting plate, standoffs and thumbscrews. Though the AMD hooks, which fix to the standard AMD retention bracket, are a little fiddlier, on the whole it's still a simple and painless procedure. Pre-applied thermal paste saves you some time, but no extra grey goo is provided should you need to remount at some point.
As our CPU cooler test case cannot accommodate dual radiators, we were only able to test the H100i in the same way as the H100, with the radiator and fans mounted externally. We have thus been unable to provide separate results for the fans mounted in intake and exhaust positions as we did with the H80i.