The Cheaper Price of the H115i Over The Kracken Is Reflected In Quality Of Parts

A Review On: Corsair Hydro Series H115i Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler , Black

Corsair Hydro Series H115i Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler , Black

Rated # 112 in Water Cooling
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Price paid: $139.99
SightUp
Posted · 945 Views · 15 Comments
This isn’t going to be a review of the normal variety where I would give you benchmarks and compare it to other coolers. The purpose of this is to hopefully shine light on the quality of Corsair products, specifically the H115i and help someone else out hopefully. I have had a huge ordeal dealing with Corsair and their customer support and I have found it to be lacking.

I will start off by saying I have had a bad experience with Corsair in the past. When their first AIO H80 came out, I had to return about ten of them before I received on that didn’t rattle as loud. If you do not know what I am talking about, check out this YouTube link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ndk2RU1E5Q You may also Google “h80i rattle” (or any of their models of AIO) to find additional info. Eventually Corsair stopped replying to me and I forever had a H80i that I had to tap every once on the pump in order to make the rattling stop. This should have been a flag for me to never do business with Corsair again. For some reason I had put this out of my mind though when building my latest build. I should have gone with NXZT’s Kracken for my new build. Believe me, lesson learned, and I will never purchase another Corsair product again.

I regrettably purchased the H115i AIO. It looked fine taking it out of the box. I plugged everything in, just didn’t mount it, in my old rig, and one of the fans was not working. When examining the wires, I saw that some of the wires had melted! https://imgur.com/70VYn9z This was issue number one. It wasn't the worse part of the issues though.

In excitement for my CPU to come a week later due to back ordering, I prebuilt everything that I could. I put my motherboard into the case and put on the back plate. I screwed them down all the way that I could using just the force of my hand. I experienced some rattling with the back plate though. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5QWYFNGhT0 I asked two friends who also owned it. They said that they specifically remembered that but I shouldn’t have to worry. I just needed to make sure they were fully screwed in. I stuck my head into the case and I saw that the screws didn’t gone down all the way. In other words, I was able to still see the threads on the double sided screw that mounts your back plate to the pump on the other side of the motherboard. I attempted to unscrew them first because I was sure that I couldn’t twist any harder already. Low and behold it was too late. They were already stripped. I couldn’t remove the screws. I attempted then just to screw them in deeper with a wrench. Couldn’t do that either. I was tilted and knew I wasn’t going to get my new rig online on Monday.

The product was so cheap! Normally you would just grab a pair of plyers and hold the back and you would use your wrench on the front side of the screws. That wasn’t working. I will try to explain why. The back plate has metal holes that you screw into. These metal holes are covered in plastic that is very cheap as well and just turned because they two were stripped after attempting to loosen and tighten.

I called up Corsair and explained the situation completely. I worked with Jason over the phone for exactly 38 minutes. He knew the situation completely. I told him what I had done. He said not to worry and they would cover it. He assured me that the screws shouldn’t have stripped after the first use like this and it should be easy for them to be removed. He also claims this is a rare issue. There are several threads online about it. He proceeded to have me fill out a claim form and asked for additional pictures. I got this message back about an hour later.
Quote:
Hi *****,

I'm sorry to say that Corsair would not be liable to this kind of problem since installation of the product is a responsibility of the customer unless this was done by Corsair. Upon investigating, this issue occur in use of an excessive force resulting the screws and other parts of the bracket inability to be detached. As Corsair warranty policy our warranty does NOT cover accidental or physical wear-and-tear damage. Thank you

Jason

I didn’t know Corsair offered an install service! That’s neither here nor there. The product I received was defective if I am not able to unscrew something after the first time of using it. If I repeatedly for a hundred times screwed something in and out, that’s when I expect something to be threaded, after multiple screw ins.

In the process removing these screws, the motherboard is now probably shot and I am out $200, $340 if you include the AIO, and have to wait an extra 3 days for shipping from NewEgg for new parts. I am unwilling to even attempt to put in my CPU into this motherboard because if the stress I had put on it. I know, I am probably anal.

What I would have done differently is go with the Kracken AIO instead of anything from Corsair. That’s number one. After reviewing the YouTube videos of the Kracken AIO, you can see the better quality in the mounting brackets. With that, if you are intending to buy a Corsair AIO, which you shouldn’t do, here is my recommendation. Screw in the screws to the back plate before mounting it to your motherboard. Make sure they screw in and out correctly.

I really hope my failure convinces you from purchasing these terribly poor quality products. Thank you for reading!

15 Comments:

All AIO except for Swiftech/EK are terrible quality.....Kraken X62 rattles like crazy on high RPM and the flow is much lower than H115i's, probably because the tubing is much thinner than on the Corsair. On the other hand the overall feel of the X62 is better, so are the fans and cooling performance on lower RPM's.

In the end they are all almost the same, cheap plastic Asetek loops.
Well...I've had a different experience...I have installed a total of six Corsair AIO cooling systems and have never stripped a screw...I did have one of them with a couple bad fans, which they promptly replaced. All in all, I have been happy with Corsair products. Sorry you had a bad experience.
As Martin778 mentioned: It's an Asetek unit on the Kraken too, no?
Seems odd you would recommend a Kraken instead of a Swiftech H220x2 or H240x2 or even an Alphacool Eisbaer (weaker pump).
not sure if you're ok with spending the extra money, but EK's A240 kit is really nice. I'd recommend it wholeheartedly over any of Corsair's trash AIOs.
@AlphaC
Or even an EK Predator but I think the whole line is now EOL.
Even though the are like 5 or 6 various generations of Asetek, they all thave these cheap plastic low performance pumps.
As others have mentioned.....you are saying "I bought a piece of junk with a Corsair logo, but buy the same piece of junk with an NZXT logo!". Same Asetek unit. Just say no to the CLC bottom of the barrel units and buy a Swiftech or Alphacool made unit, or wait around to see if EK ever replaces the Predator. Bitspower has been teasing an AiO, as well.
Overall all I've had good luck with my Asetek units. I've have H50,H70, 2 H105, and a H110i GTX that still work great. No leaks, still works. Only CLC that broke was my Antec Kuhler 90 is making a rattling noise after a couple years of use. I bought a Cooler Master Seidon brand new because it sounded like ball bearings bouncing around inside it, much like how the Kuhler sounds like now. My main system uses a Swiftech, which I love because I can expand it later if ever put a water block on my GPU or most likely I'd just make a separate loop for it really. The fact that that you can change the water in the Swiftech is nice too. I haven't done tests to see if the H105/H110 perform better or worse. Seems like a lot of work and potential for breakage that I don't want to risk.
I too have had almost the opposite experience than you with Corsair. I have had a H60, an H80i GT, and now a H115i. All have worked flawlessly, and I have the H115i working away on my brand new i7 8700k rig for over two weeks now. Its working fantastic giving me great temps on this proc which has been known to run a tad warm. The H80i GT is still being used on a i7 7700k rig, and its working just as good as ever. I've not had any of these pump issues, or noise problems. Got to say I've been more than pleased with Corsair. But I guess I would feel similar to you if I had experienced your issues. But if you saw my current rig, and just how well the H115i runs (and how quiet it is), you just might give this cooler more than ~1 star. I'd give it 4.5 stars right now. Excellent cooler IMHO.
Guys, the H115i works great and may be one of the best AIOs you can buy. If you want more performance though, you'll want custom cooling. Almost all AIO units offer an aluminum radiator design and can only cool so much. I have tested and worked with just about ever AIO you can buy. I even have a review here on OCN for the H115i and RGB fans.

http://www.overclock.net/t/1632300/ocn-labs-corsair-h115i-hd140-rgb-fans-review-by-jeffrey-edson
Apparently quality has gone down? I purchased my H105 in February 2015 and haven't had any problems. But I have been a technician for 35 years and I wonder if my experience contributes to my success with 99% of the hardware I purchase and install. Meaning I don't cross thread screws because I have the experience to properly set a screw before threading it in. You know this is electronics right? "I used a wrench"? holy **** what the hell were you thinking. The "if it don't fit force it" philosophy of some pseudo technicians has caused me more grief than any amount of piss poor hardware I have dealt with. I think your problem is you and not the product.
Apparently quality has gone down? I purchased my H105 in February 2015 and haven't had any problems. But I have been a technician for 35 years and I wonder if my experience contributes to my success with 99% of the hardware I purchase and install. Meaning I don't cross thread screws because I have the experience to properly set a screw before threading it in. You know this is electronics right? "I used a wrench"? holy **** what the hell were you thinking. The "if it don't fit force it" philosophy of some pseudo technicians has caused me more grief than any amount of piss poor hardware I have dealt with. I think your problem is you and not the product.
I purchased a Corsair H105 in February 2015 and had no issues with installation or operation. I have been a technician for 35 years and this may explain why I do not have issues with 99% of the hardware I purchase and install. You do realize this is electronics and doesn't required more than a snug fit. You used a wrench? What the hell were you thinking, you had already cross threaded your screw(s) that is why it didn't seat and you could see thread showing. Instead of trying to work it out you tried the "if it don't fit force it" brutal method of installation. You guys have cost me more in time and frustration that any POS hardware. Next time let someone who knows what they are doing install it for you. You also said you returned 10 products due to rattling, as I said get someone who knows what they are doing IMO you don't have a clue.
If I had a company that sold a product that was generally well reviewed and I had a customer that brought back a unit ten times for an exchange before they were happy... I would blacklist that person and never sell to them again. The chances of you getting nine defective h80s is astronomical, and I have to suspect that you just have unrealistic expectations.

If you stripped the posts that fit into the mounting plate, it was user error (likely because you didn't push the little posts far enough into the mounting plate). I know because I've done it myself.
I have two second hand Aio's one first gen one second gen (One with the old dome pump housing, And the second gen has the flat apperance) And both work fine, Both are H80s or H50's one of the two so... I don't know what to say, I've got a TX 950 power supply that's still within spec after ALL these years of abuse...
I have to agree with a lot of the comments here. I have owned at least 3 Corsair AIO's over many years and none of them have ever failed. In fact, I have passed my older H100 over to a freind and it still works after 4 years...I more than understand that problems will occur and when they do, it is the customer experience that sets apart vendors from each other...