Well this is where all that hardware comes in handy, installation. As is typical CM has a set of instructions that must be followed to make sense of the gear, but is not quite clear enough to make you feel confident. Follow along with me to get this thing installed without any unnecessary headaches.
The first thing you should do is to set the retention plate screws to the correct hole position for your socket type. Checking with the diagram on the instructions we find that ours (1155) is the middle one. Pushing the screw up will allow you to slide it to where it’s needed. Do this for all four screws.
Now we will do the same thing with the backplate. I found this to be a nicely put together little piece. It has tabs that hold a plastic housing in place which hold the screw. No messing around with another set of screws, simply slide it back and forth and install.
Unfortunately for us the plastic pieces on one side are too tall to fit behind the cut out and motherboard. I had to take all the screws out of the motherboard and lift it to get the bracket into place. A larger cutout would have made this unnecessary, but so would a thinnler bracket.
Holding the bracket tightly against the motherboard hand thread two of the standoffs on the the threads of the backplate. With them started you can let go of the backplate and finish installing and tightening all four. CM includes their handy philips head nut setter to tighten them fully.
With the bracket and standoffs ready to go it’s time to attach the retention plates to the pump itself. Although it looks like you can attach these at any two locations around the outside of the pump you like, they can actually only be installed in one way. Line the retention plate up with the screw holes on the pump and push the plate into the grooves on the pump. This will allow the holes to completely line up and you will be able to attach them with the screws provided.
You are now ready to attach the pump to the CPU. Before you can do that you must apply a grain of rice size dot of thermal paste to the surface of the CPU. With the thermal paste applied, line up the four screws attached to the pump with the stand off’s and press the pump firmly down onto the CPU. Now you can hand start all four screws to make sure you are lined up and finish them with a screwdriver. Be sure to keep pressure on the pump until the screws are fully tightened.
You are halfway there, now you only have to install the radiator and the fans.
We installed the radiator in the front of our case, and had just enough tubing to do so. This was fairly easily done using the slightly longer screws going through mounting holes of the case, through the fans and attaching to the radiator. Repeat x 8 and you are all set.
Attach the fan splitter to the fans and then to the Chasis header on the motherboard. Make sure to attach the pump PWM wire to the CPU_FAN header on the motherboard. As you can see in our photo this was not ideal for our case. The result was a very ugly install with wires crisscrossing the motherboard. Unfortunately not only do you have wires everywhere, but you can’t remove the tags attached to the wires either as that will void your warranty.