CoolIT Domino A.L.C. System - Setup, Installation and More

Article Index
CoolIT Domino A.L.C. System
Closer Look at the Domino
Setup, Installation and More
CoolIT Domino A.L.C. Testing

Closer Look Continued:

While many cheap liquid cooling solutions have some sort of mechanical fan control and don't offer any pump, fan or coolant monitoring, the CoolIT Domino A.L.C. doesn't skimp on features.  The Domino comes complete with an LCD display that shows fan speed, pump speed, coolant temperature and mode indication.  This is handled by a few electronics that are right next to the pump - under the "Operation Modes" panel shown on the previous page.

Under The Hood
Under The Hood

 

Even though three speed modes are selectable, the CoolIT Domino A.L.C. will automatically ramp up fan speed if it is required to keep the system at a safe operating temperature.  By default, fan speeds were around 1150 RPM on low, 1800 RPM on medium and up to 2950 RPM on high.  However, as coolant temperature increased on the medium setting, we noticed fan speed increasing a bit to keep the coolant, uh, cool.

 

Installation:

Like many aftermarket HSFs and almost all liquid cooling kits, the Domino A.L.C. requires motherboard removal for installation.  If you are using this on an new Intel Core i7 system, the spring-calibrated bolts are already in the right holes and you simply have to put on the backplate, strap on the block, slide the vibration isolators through the 120mm fan mount holes on your case and you're done.  If you are using an older Intel system (775), you'll have to remove the "C" clips, and move the bolts to the inside holes on the same top retaining plate.  We decided to use the Domino A.L.C. on our toasty AMD Phenom X4 9950 BE CPU however.  This processor has a Max TDP of 140W and is downright hot.

 Block - Mounted
Block - Mounted
Domino - Installed
Domino - Installed

 

As previously mentioned, I had to rob a back stiffener plate off another motherboard as CoolIT doesn't include one with the kit.  While most AMD boards have this plate, and CoolIT is banking on this, I believe they should include a plate for those boards that don't have one.  Also, their plate would be guaranteed to work with the calibrated spring bolts for tightness and thread size.  I do appreciate the attention to detail though in the spring tensioned bolts.  CoolIT has placed black "cups" on the heads of each of these to help prevent the screwdriver from slipping off and damaging your motherboard.  That's a nice touch.  Lastly, you can see how small and tidy the Domino A.L.C. is when installed in a system.  It is so neat and tidy that it makes our motherboard cables looks horribly messy.  That's what you get with a bottom mounted PSU on a board that has a central located 24-pin connector though.

 

Displaying the Display:

As you can see in the previous pictures, the display is located on the side of the Domino A.L.C. and is designed for cases with side windows.  If you don't have a side window, you won't be able to see what is going on, but you'll be able to hear when the cooler is in "high" mode.

 Display - Low
Display - Low
Display - Medium
Display - Medium
Display - High
Display - High

 

As you can see, the display is bright, clear and crisp and shows you relevant information that you simply don't get in other $80 Liquid Cooling kits.  The performance mode is indicated by the graphic on the lower left of the display.  You can also see the fan speed RPM increase as the performance mode is changed.  How does it affect performance?  Take a look on the next page as we find out.