As with the CPU block, the packaging for the fittings is very well done. I have used many brands for fittings, and on some occasions, the fittings are just thrown into a pack; by the time they get to you, they're damaged. Admittedly, well-established companies such as EK and Bitspower put their fittings in plastic protective bags. Alphacool has recently started to package its fittings in boxes too, but this is the first foray into fittings for Phanteks, so it's nice to see things done right straight away.
The fittings are very nice to use; they have a similar feel to them as EK-HD fittings, if you are familiar with those. The barb is made out of brass that's been nickel-plated, and the outside ring cap is made of aluminium. The aluminium should never touch the fluid, so I don’t envision this as being a problem. The fittings use a dual O-ring system similar to other brands, however Phanteks is boasting about using Viton rubber for this. Viton rubber is an excellent material that's hard-wearing and can withstand more heat, but it doesn’t really add anything to the fittings; standard O-rings work perfectly fine, as computers don’t get hot enough to cause issues with them. It's nice to see a desire to use quality materials, though. There is one O-ring in the barb which holds the tube and then there is a removable one in the outside ring cap which goes over the tubing before you screw the ring down. This O-ring will compress as you tighten the ring to make sure that fluid can’t escape and ensuring a good, tight seal.
We are using 12mm PETG tubing with these fittings, but you are able to use acrylic, brass, stainless steel, and copper just as easily. The depth of the fitting is approximately 7mm. This means that if you have two fittings that finish exactly 100mm from each other, you'd need 114mm of tubing. Inside, the fitting is shaped like a dodecagon, which allows plenty of flow through the tube but also lets you use a hex key to tighten or loosen a fitting. If you do use a tool to tighten the fitting, however, don’t over-tighten, as this can ruin blocks and cause cracks in acrylic.
The other fitting is the 12mm Hard Tube Rotary Fitting 90°. Now, I really like these; everything about them appeals to me. I especially like how there is an integrated compression fitting. This can be especially useful when working in tight spaces, as you don’t need to add bulk with an extra fitting.
The 90-degree fitting works the same as a standard compression fitting; there is a ring and barb, and the tubing slots straight in. Two O-rings ensure a tight seal and keep the tube held in place properly. I wish more companies would use these types of 90-degree fittings. Okay, they are only able to be used with fittings rather than as part of a more complicated loop, but they work great.
March 25 2020 | 14:00