Water cooled xbox: Xbox 360 Liquid Cooling Kit, Black [06mm, 1/4in ID]

Is the Xbox Series X Water cooled? – CareerGamers

Is my Xbox Series X really on?

That’s the first question I asked myself when first powering up Microsoft’s new console. Why? Because it was so quiet!

And I mean, I could have heard a mouse scampering across the floor next door, whisper quiet.

This made me think that a water cooling system, like the type you’d find pumping away in a high-end gaming PC, was responsible for keeping the Xbox frosty.

Being the “curiosity killed the cat” type that I am, I decided to dig out my Time to TamperTM console screwdrivers and opened up my Xbox Series X to see for myself.

This is what I found:

Is the Xbox Series X Water cooled? No, the Xbox Series X is not water-cooled. The Xbox Series X uses a vapor chamber cooling solution in tandem with a single fan active cooling method. The Xbox Series X’s Vapor chamber does use a small amount of liquid to transfer heat. But, this is not the same as a PC water-cooling system which uses a large amount of distilled water, along with a pump and fans, to remove large amounts of heat from a system.

Ok, now you know the Xbox Series X isn’t water-cooled. In the next few sections, I’ll explore in more detail what keeps your Xbox Series X so cool and quiet, why it’s not water-cooled, and if there’s any way to mod your Xbox Series X to use water-cooling.

What currently keeps the Xbox Series X cool?

This is a very basic heatsink. As you can see the fins not only vastly increase the surface area of the heatsink, but they also acts as conduits for cool air to pass through.

The Xbox Series X is sadly not water-cooled. But something must be cooling it, right?

Well, yes of course there is. A large amount of the volume of the Xbox Series X monolithic design is actually dedicated to cooling.

The Xbox Series X makes use of one large 130mm fan placed at the very top of the console. This fan is designed to pull cool fresh air through the system from the bottom and to spit hot air out from the top.

But there must be more to it than just 1 fan?

There is.

The Xbox Series X makes use of what is called a vapor chamber. For a full in-depth look at what a vapor chamber does, I recommend heading over to Advanced Cooling Technologies’ Vapor Chambers Explained article here.

But basically, a vapor chamber uses a liquid containing “wick” to aid in the transportation of heat from one side of a large cooling heatsink to the other.

One side of this cooling block is in contact with the components that heat up, such as the CPU. The other side of the block is in contact with a large heatsink made up of many fins. These fins are designed to increase the surface area of the heatsink to aid in the removal of heat by moving air.

The heat is then spread through the greater area and volume of the fin-covered heatsink. As the fan sucks in air, this air passes over and through the fins high surface area and wicks away heat.

For a very quick, literally 10 seconds, look at how a vapor chamber works, take a look at the animation below that shows how heat is transferred through a vapor chamber.

The Xbox Series X makes use of this vapor chamber design. One side of the console is dedicated to holding the massive fin-covered cooling block that sit’s atop the vapor chamber block.

Air can also move through two other routes through the console. But the vast amount of cooling is done by the large fin cooling block and heatsink.

Take a look at the image below to get an idea how cooling is done inside the Xbox Series X:

Graphic showing air being pull in from the bottom of the Xbox Series X and pumped out of the top. Thanks Microsoft for the image.

As you can see from the above X-ray image, half of the Xbox is dedicated to keeping it cool.

Why isn’t the Xbox Series X water cooled?

One of the questions that wagged on the tip of my tongue after realizing that Xbox wasn’t water-cooled was, why isn’t it?

After all, water cooling is the single best way to cool a gaming PC. Well, without resorting to extremes like liquid nitrogen, anyway.

There are a number of reasons why water-cooling was viewed as a washout by Microsoft. Let’s take a look at few of them:


The number one reason why the Xbox Series X doesn’t have a water-cooling system is cost. It would have simply not been possible to build a $500 dollar console and include a water-cooling solution.

Water coolers are far more expensive than traditional air coolers. For example a water cooler kit from renowned PC hardware designer Corsair will set you back around $530! That’s $30 more than the Xbox Series X!

Fancy taking a look at this, admittedly awesome, water cooling kit? Then head over to the Corsair Hydro X Series Xh405i sales page.


The fact is, consoles are not PCs. A PC is essentially a bunch of electronic components housed in heavy-duty steel armored boxes. These are often extremely large and heavy, making them hard to move. So, any water cooling solution is safe within the confines of the PC chassis.

This is not the case with the Xbox Series X. Though console is big, by console standards, it’s tiny compared to the vast majority of gaming PCs. This makes Xbox easy to accidentally kick over, nudge, and fall over. This would not be good for a water-cooling system. Any sudden jolt could cause a leak which would mean instant death for Xbox Series X and its delicate components.

It would be overkill

Microsoft didn’t include a water cooler in the Xbox Series X because it would be overkill. The machine is already superbly cooled by the cheap and readily available cooling part in the console. They have just been used in very creative ways. This would make adding a water cooler to the Xbox a completely needless expense. Especially given the mid-level components stuffed inside the Xbox Series X.

What benefits would water cooling ad to the Xbox Series X?

The main benefit of a water cooler is it dissipates far more heat than other cooling solutions. This gives you more headroom to run your components at higher clock frequencies, which generates more heat. As a rule the higher the clock rate of your components the more heat they will generate.

If the Xbox Series X did have a water cooler, Microsoft could have probably increased the clock speed of the Zen CPU to close to 5Gz, and the GPU to over 2.5Gz.

If Microsoft had done this it would have increased the GPU power from 12 Terflops to 16.5 Teraflops. A massive bump in computational power. That’s a roughly 35% increase in graphical power! But it would have come at the huge costs of including a water-cooler mentioned above.

Will there be a water cooled Xbox Series X equivalent in the future?

No console has ever been water-cooled. That includes the “pro” consoles such as the Xbox One X and a PlayStation 4 Pro.

And I personally think we will never see a water-cooled console. Well, at least not in the next decade or so. There’s just no need.

Even when Microsoft inevitably brings out its mid-gen Xbox Series X upgrade (The Xbox Series Z?) that console, though it will house more graphical power, will still be air-cooled.

For consoles that use off-the-shelf mid-range PC parts such as the Xbox Series X and PS5, there is simply no need to use water cooling. So don’t expect the next consoles to use water-cooling.

Can you buy after market water cooling kits for the Xbox Series X?

Unfortunately, no you can’t. However, that hasn’t stopped some DIY enthusiasts from trying to tear down the Xbox Series X and rebuilding it with a PC water cooling solution bubbling away inside it.

I’ll leave you with this video I found on YouTube by “Project Blog”. The water-cooled Series X does look bulky, but still, you gotta hand it to this fella, it looks fantastic! Take a look for yourself:




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Sorry Xbox Series X, this water-cooled PS5 oozes class – and it’s real

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(Image credit: Modding Cafe)

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Imagine a PS5 crossed between a Mr. Freeze-esque villain from Batman and something from the Transformers – what you’d get is something akin to this custom, water-cooled PS5. Unwind, put all the rumpus around ballot systems for the Xbox Series X to one side, and bask in this beauty of epic proportions.

Yes, thanks to a Vietnamese modding channel, Modding Cafe, there now exists this hulking, reengineered, and fully-functional version of Sony’s flagship console that will certainly turn a few heads. 

The Vietnamese hardware modders apparently took just two months to build the labyrinthine-looking machine. Water-cooled hardware is the darling of the gaming sector, as water transfers heat much more efficiently than air, besides making things quieter without the constant spinning of fans.

First, the modders deconstructed the PS5 console and then created an entirely new custom-made faceplate on both sides before reassembling. Easier said than done in T3’s estimation.

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It’s basically a whole new rig; if this sounds like light work, then a cursory glance at the modding video says otherwise. Even if you could pull this together, you’d still be panicked to try out entries from our best PS5 games for the risk of causing irreversible damage. T3 thinks it works better as a sort of museum piece, offered protected status, and exhibited as a gaming artifact in the decades to follow.

All of this water-cooling wonder is laid bare in the video from the Modding Cafe channel that delves into the nitty-gritty of building the liquid-cooling infrastructure, not only explaining each step in detail, but then putting the actual pedal to the metal and showing Sony’s water-cooled console in action.

The good news is that it works a treat and successfully runs with aplomb: those do-it-yourself steps may look appetizing, but we wouldn’t recommend trying this at home, especially with an intact warranty and at risk of wrecking a console that is devilishly hard to get even with the help of our PS5 stock tracker.

We think you’ve got more of a chance of actually beating the scalpers than taking this on as a lockdown DIY project, especially with recent reports of scalpers now falling back because of users’ rightful refusals to buy inflated stock. If you’re quite content with your current PS5, then check out our top PS5 tips for those hidden features that unlock your machine to further innovation.

Meanwhile, you can always pick up the matte-black custom darkplates from the Canadian console customizer, dbrand, which offers skins that can be picked up for $49.99 (roughly £40 / AU$60). Alas, there’s no word on an Xbox Series X version of this, but anything’s possible, especially through the gigantic collective brain of the modding community.  

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Luke is a former news writer at T3 who covered all things tech at T3. Disc golf enthusiast, keen jogger, and fond of all things outdoors (when not indoors messing around with gadgets), Luke wrote about a wide-array of subjects for T3.com, including Android Auto, WhatsApp, Sky, Virgin Media, Amazon Kindle, Windows 11, Chromebooks, iPhones and much more, too.

Waterblock for Xbox 360

The eternal question of many parents is “what is the main purpose of consoles?” Well, of course, for games — any gamer will answer, and it doesn’t matter if it’s a teenager or a person already aged. For a stable and reliable gaming experience, regardless of OS optimization, the presence on the website of manufacturers of original drivers for the video card, the presence of three or more patches intended for the original game, insufficient or too much RAM, insufficiently satisfactory processor performance, lack of free space in hard drive memory, and finally the temperature of the video card mosfets. Yes, whatever you say, but playing on a game console is much easier and hassle-free than on a PC. Among modern game consoles, you can also choose between the Xbox 360 and Play Station 3 (PS3) — both consoles are good in their own way, and disputes about their merits sometimes look like disputes of religious fanatics, so I will not praise my Xbox 360, but I will simply say that I, like many other gamers, after carefully reading many forums, chose the Xbox 360 as my gaming platform. However, due to overheating issues during long gaming sessions, heavy users of the Xbox 360 will benefit from a water cooling system. Although my Xbox 360 is based on a Falkon revision motherboard, which most experts say does not overheat much, I also decided to install a water cooling system in my game console, because what kind of modder would I be if I did not install dropsy? . I will talk about this in several notes on this site, but first we will talk about the water block — the main component of any water cooling system.

General view of the water block for the Xbox 360

XSPC Xbox 360 CPU/GPU water block

The XSPC Xbox 360 CPU/GPU water block is supplied in a small plain cardboard box — everything here is modest and to the point.

Water block XSPC Xbox 360 CPU/GPU against the background of the package

the two hottest and «dangerous» elements. The base of the XSPC Xbox 360 CPU/GPU water block is made of copper, as befits a modern CBO component, and the lid is made of black delrin-type plastic. On one side of the water block there are two holes with fittings where the hoses will be connected.

Water block with fittings

XSPC Xbox 360 CPU/GPU water block copper base contains a series of long channels through which water passes, which ensures effective cooling.

The base of the water block is separated from the cover

In the center of the base there is a thicker «wall» of copper, which divides the base into two parts. Thus, water enters the XSPC Xbox 360 CPU / GPU water block through one hole, passes through half of the channels in the base to the opposite edge of the water block, turns around and returns in the second half of the channels to the second hole, from where it exits back into the system. The corresponding wiring of the channels is also made in the plastic cover.

The base of the water block with close

The whole structure is held together with many small screws — reliably and simply. The water block itself is low enough to fit under the DVD drive of the set-top box. That’s it — I’ll talk about all the other parts of the water cooling system for my Xbox 360 later.

In July 2020, a teaser of a new game console appeared in an interview with Phil «Balabol» Spencer for the next gaming publication. The teaser turned out to be so successful that they found out about its existence only 2 weeks after the incident. Microsoft was forced to post a screenshot from the interview through controlled media and show the console «under magnification». She is so small that no one noticed her. Or unnecessary…


The budget console is very good. A device available to the mass user is very good. But what could go wrong? Very simple — an approach to optimizing games. From advertising banners, we were told about 1440p and 120 FPS. Beautiful slogans. New technologies. Impressive numbers… Until reality sets in.

It’s like the Xbox series X only for a smaller resolution


You remember this moment. The console has the same fast SSD. The console has the same fast 8-core processor. The console has a slightly weaker graphics card, but it does a great job with games in FullHD. Everything is exactly the same, only the resolution is smaller. For the first six months, I was horrified by bloggers who repeated such theses.

Xbox series S specs

What was not covered in commercials. This is RAM (system\video) memory. The new console has 10 GB of it. And there is a small caveat here. Its 8 GB + 2 GB. Moreover, 8 GB have a bandwidth of 224 GB / s, the remaining 2 GB have 54 GB / s. The old Xbox one X has one 12gb pool with 336gb/s bandwidth… 4 new Zen 2 parrots is like 6 old GCN parrots, they said. But they forgot to mention the extremely slow memory, which was not enough yesterday. Do you think this is not relevant with a smaller screen resolution? Is everything within the margin of error? Let’s take a test of the same video card with different memory bandwidths to show how performance in games can drop due to such an oversight. Legendary GT 1030 with ddr4 and gddr5

50 percent blank. It’s about the old Xbox one X and the old teraflops. .. The question is not only about them, but also about the memory bandwidth, which kills everything good and optimistic in the bud. Think it’s all memory problems? Nope. Marketers forgot to talk about its volume required by modern games. There are no measurements on consoles in the public domain, but there is a lot of data about eating video memory on personal computers. Presumably we are going to play in 1080p (even though the box says 1440p)

And this is only about video memory … In addition to it, RAM is also used … In consoles, this is shared access, but the conclusion is obvious — 8 gigabytes of video and RAM today are ALREADY not enough for many large projects.

Generation start in November 2020

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla in performance mode runs at 60 FPS 800p with drawdowns up to 720p

A Plague Tale: Requiem runs at 30-40 FPS at 900r with drawdowns up to 720r

Control: Ultimate Edition runs at 60 FPS at 900r with drawdowns up to 720r

The Medium runs at 30 FPS at 1080 with drawdowns up to 900r

90 002 At the start of the game come with lower settings to hold on within Full HD. In fact, there were no pure and massive games for the new nextgen framework. 4 parrots Zen 2 is an RX 6400-level video card that many are embarrassed to take with a plug. The RTX 3050 has 8 parrots and tensor cores.


Performance and picture is a double-edged sword… Many will say: «I’m fine. 900r in 2023 as in 2013.» I’ll add — I myself played Mass Effect Andromeda on Xbox one S at 900p and 30 FPS. As the saying goes — if you want to live (play) and you won’t get so upset. But salt is different. Just a week ago, Valve announced the end of support for Windows 7 and 8. It seems that the same personal computers are everywhere. Seems to be the same technology. What’s the problem with supporting older systems? Today they are used by about 2% of players. This is about the same as dozens of versions of Linux or Mac OS. With an average active base of 450 million people, this is 9million active users. More than Steam Deck will be sold in the next 3 years with a separate operating system. What is the question?

It’s trite — resources are needed to maintain additional devices. We need people and money. The effort that goes into maintaining unpopular devices goes nowhere. They don’t pay off. Now let’s think about Xbox one, Xbox one S, Xbox one X, Xbox series X, Xbox series S. All consoles have different hardware and different performance. For each of these consoles, you need to create your own build of the game, optimized specifically for it. It costs money. For large studios, hiring 10-15 people to optimize the game is not a problem, but for small companies, this is an unjustified cost.

Developers don’t want to optimize games

According to some folks, game optimization is moving the settings slider left and right. On the PC, this rolls. They have been playing this way for a hundred years and everyone is happy with everything. It is so? There is a small caveat. Moving the slider to the right and left works for performance systems. And you try to do this for a system unit bought in 2014 for $800 in the i5-3330\GTX 760\2*4gb\ssd 250 configuration on Cyberpunk 2077 or Far Cry 6. Together we will laugh at your optimizations and runners. The main difference between consoles and personal computers: if the system manager does not pull, this is the user’s problem. He will go and change the video card. If the console does not pull — get up with a stake, but solve the problem. And the solution to this problem costs money.

Baldur’s Gate 3

A prominent representative of the problematic Xbox series S. Many developers have expressed their «Fe», but with Larian Studios this issue has become more acute than ever. The company does not have free money to hire employees. She released Baldur’s Gate 3 into Early Access 2 years ago to partially fund the development of the game. There are many such developments. Making several builds of the game for several consoles is financially expensive. The Sony PlayStation 5 needs only one build, the release for Microsoft consoles requires the release of 2 variants at once.

Cyberpunk 2077

A patch that optimizes the game for next-generation consoles came out only a year after the release. It took CD Projekt a year to release the game «by moving a couple of sliders in the options menu». And that’s for the biggest game studio in Europe. The issue of optimization has always been acute and required a special approach. What do we see now? Effective managers made the best decision in the fate of the Xbox

Effective decision

Imagine that you have limited resources, you need to release a product. One market is 35 million users for which you need to create a single product. For a second market of 25 million users, you need to release 2 products. Which option would you prefer? Which one will pay off faster and begin to bring financial benefits? For many, the choice is obvious. It makes no sense to incur extra costs to release the game in a smaller market. Today, enough games from small studios have accumulated that they did not want to release on Xbox consoles …. Guess what

Perhaps in the future they will visit the Microsoft ecosystem and please the owners of the box. In one or two years, publishers will have the finances and take the risk.

But due to the lack of an advertising campaign for a re-release, the game may not pay off and fail in sales, especially if it is a small game from a little-known developer. The risk will not be justified and they will move on to the development of a new game.

Games for niche audiences Xbox release with two console variants initially ordered due to low payback and high risks. We’ve been discussing Atlus and its super-successful Persona series for almost a year… And how many great games in smaller caliber with sales of 50-100k copies? And all this is past …


In 2020, the covid and mining boom began. The Xbox series S was the only console available in stores. But the darkness has dissipated. Production chains have improved. How can a small console be of interest to potential buyers today? What does it have that it can’t be outshone by competing options? The untapped potential is starting to drag the older Xbox series X along with it.