— Stren 8/9/2013
The Laing D5 is a popular pump. So popular in fact that you can buy just the basic vario model as the Alphacool VPP655, the AquaComputer D5, the Koolance PMP-450, the Swiftech MCP655 and the XSPC D5 Vario. Yes every water cooling company seems to rebrand the D5 and there are many varieties to consider. You can buy the vario with and without the default Laing top, or you can even buy the Laing top but with the ports threaded for regular fittings. You can also buy a different variant of the pump itself like the D5 Strong (24V capable higher speed version), or the PWM version, or the USB version or even the basic fixed speed version. Here is one such D5 with the standard Laing top:
So there are lots of options out there even if you have decided to go with the D5 family as your pump choice. This particular review doesn’t focus on the pump itself which we’ll cover in a separate review but instead focuses on the options for the pump tops for a single D5 pump. Each top will be tested for performance with the D5 Vario and the D5 Strong.
Why do pump tops exist?
The original Laing D5 comes with built in barbs for 1/2″ tube. Not every water cooler likes to use 1/2″ tube because it’s so large which makes it less flexible. However this has now been partially solved with the availability of Laing tops threaded for G 1/4 fittings. In addition the Laing top is not optimized for water cooling where flow is usually optimal around 1-1.5gpm. It’s also quite an ugly looking pump and water cooling for many has become about the aesthetic more than necessarily the performance or noise benefits.
In this roundup I’ll be looking at the following tops: