If looks equals performance then the Cooler Master GeminII will certainly top our performance charts. The GeminII has stirred the imagination of our readers like no other new cooler that has been introduced. This is primarily the result of the unique design of this heatpipe tower that tries to address issues that some fear remain with current heatpipe tower designs.


The top-performing air tower designs we have tested, like the Thermalright Ultra 120 pictured above, have the heatpipes rising from the base that contacts the CPU, with horizontal cooling fins. The 120mm cooling fan blows from the side of this plate stack, directing air to the rear of the case. Performance tests have shown this to be a very effective air cooler design, but some still worry that motherboard components cannot be cooled as well with this configuration as they might be with a traditional down-facing fan.


Cooler Master's GeminII switches things around by moving six heatpipes to a cantilevered top array cooler with vertical fans attached to the pipes. In the process the Gemini II creates a massive top-mounting space that can accommodate up to two 120mm down-facing fans.

Cooler Master emphasizes that the idea behind the GeminII is efficient CPU cooling with good cooling for motherboard components provided by the fans blowing down. It all looks and sounds logical enough, but looks and logic have proven off-target before in our testing. We were very anxious to run the Gemini II through our cooling test bed to see if it improved on the performance of the best air coolers we have tested in our labs.

Features and Specifications
POST A COMMENT

44 Comments

View All Comments

  • acejj26 - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    Page 4...MHz, not GHz Reply
  • AnnihilatorX - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    I have a feeling that the size of CPU coolers is directionaly proportional to the trend of global warming

    Don't take this too seriously

    Though the CPU TDPs are relatively constant at ~110W for high end CPUs, the coolers have been more and more elaborate.

    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    While TDP (Thermal Design Power or Thermal Design Point)has not varied a great deal recently, the wattage demands of a CPU in overclocking are MUCH higher than at stock speed, and they increase as the overclocking goes up as it dramaticlly does with the current Core 2 Duo processors. The more elaborate cooler designs are to effectively cool in the highest possible overclocking configuration OR to more efficiently cool with less air volume (noise reduction).

    We evaluate coolers using both these criteria - overclocking and relative noise.

    Were we to evaluate coolers on just how well they cooled at rated CPU speed - which we do include in our reviews as "Stock Speed Performance" - our results table would likely look different and our recommendations would also be different.
    Reply
  • pannivas - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    Maybe I haven’t searched hard enough, but until now this cooler is the only cooler that can fit my Zalman HD135 HTPC case 130mm(H) and perform good as well as silently. Reply
  • stromgald - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    The Thermalright XP-120 is also a good option for low-profile cases. I saw a review where it performed better than the Thermalright MST-6775, which is in this review, so I think it should be in the ball park of the Gemini II. It's also probably cheaper since it's smaller, and quieter since it only uses one 120mm fan. Reply
  • yacoub - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    So basically if you're someone who is looking for a cooler that's average amongst the top aftermarket coolers in prowess, offers a lower height that should fit in just about any case, can mount twin 120mm fans, is practically silent in operation with the right fans, and directs airflow down over the board removing the need for an additional fan to do the that, it could be seen as a good product worth using? Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    If you need a shorter cooler this could be a good choice. It can definitely be "silent" with the right fan(s). It does cool much better than the Intel retail fan. Reply
  • thechucklesstart - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    If you set up the fans in a pull configuration if it would increase cooling?

    Most vehicles have a pulling fan on their radiator because it is more efficient than a pushing fan and this situation seems similar.
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    All Cooler Master diagrams and specifications show the fans mounted to blow air down toward the motherboard and components. We tested the fans mounted as Cooler Master specified. The fan wounting direction could be reversed if that is what you choose. Reply
  • BladeVenom - Monday, April 30, 2007 - link

    I think it's would be worth testing. He's not the only one wondering if it might be better that way. Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now