While there is a lot to brag about for Zalman in this design, things like a quad-pass system to give the coolant four chances to be rid of heat, rather than just two. There is the uniqueness of the design, and you will for sure not see another AIO like this from anyone other than Zalman. It looks good once it is installed, and with PWM control of the fans, the Reserator 3 Max Dual is fine for just about anyone, even while gaming.
The real issue here is that for every "pro" there is a "con", and that just doesn't work out well for the Reserator 3 Max Dual. While the head unit is sleek and attractive, the centralized location of the tubing in the radiator blocks that view anyways.
The radiator is super thick and looks like a beast, but with all the hardware and offsetting, combined with the fact that all the naming that is visible on the side of the radiator is upside down, it really takes things down a notch. Then, of course, even if you could deal with selling out the highly priced cost, the lackluster performance we got in our testing sort of kicks the whole thing right in the grapes.
While there is always the chance of getting a bad unit, since this is a retail sample, it can only go two ways. Either this particular cooler just isn't up to the job at hand by design, or there is the distinct possibility that there are more, identical coolers that out in the wild waiting for someone to buy them.
For over $200 we expected great results, and with naming like the "Ultimate Liquid Cooler," maybe your marketing and engineering team should meet each other. From what we see in this design, Zalman may have been better off sticking to air cooling designs.
PRICING: You can find the ZALMAN RESERATOR 3 MAX DUAL for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.
United States: The ZALMAN RESERATOR 3 MAX DUAL retails for $219.50 at Amazon.
- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging]
- Page 3 [Zalman Reserator 3 Max Dual CPU Cooler]
- Page 4 [Accessories and Documentation]
- Page 5 [Installation and Finished Product]
- Page 6 [Test System Setup, Thermal Tests and Noise Results]
- Page 7 [Final Thoughts]
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