When Zalman first burst onto the silent PC and Cooling markets a few years ago, many were surprised to find the company headquartered in South Korea. The kind of innovative thinking Zalman brought to the market in those early days usually came from Japan and then migrated to Taiwan. However, Korea was developing in many manufacturing areas and it was more logical than we first imagined finding an innovative new computer cooler company designing and manufacturing in Korea.

Today, a Korean headquarters is not as unusual as it was just a few short years ago. So it came as no surprise that a well-known case company headquartered in Korea, namely 3RSystem, has now entered the CPU cooling market. This is a natural extension of their work in case design and their first products are based on the latest design thinking in air cooling.

3RSystem was established in South Korea in 2000, with the goal of using creative design and innovation to become a competitive case manufacturer in a very short time. Evidence that this was achieved was the appointment of 3RSystem in 2001 as a "company of technological excellence".

From those beginnings 7 years ago the 3R Product Line has grown to include a full line of mini tower, full tower and mini/slim cases. 3RSystem also markets Poseidon brand water cooling systems, and they have just launched their iCEAGE CPU air coolers.

3RSystem products are now sold around the world, and frankly the company's presence in some Asian and European markets is much larger than their US presence. You can find more information on the availability of products in your area at the 3RSystem web site. According to 3RSystem, sales and distribution in the US are handled through JustPC (USA) located in Ontario, California. A quick click to the JustPC website shows a close link with 3RSystem featured on the introductory page.


The iCEAGE, which is the subject of this review, is an air cooler based on the capable heatpipe tower design. A full cooling test should provide a very good idea of the capabilities of the iCEAGE and how it compares to the best coolers tested in the AnandTech cooling labs.

3RSystem iCEAGE
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  • STL - Friday, June 22, 2007 - link

    A couple of suggestions:

    1. One of the most important things about any heatsink is its mounting system, but this article (like other AnandTech reviews) has no detailed photos of how the heatsink mounts to the motherboard.

    "That's like the only thing that matters!", I scream in agony.

    Such photos are somewhat difficult to take, but a few good macro shots can vastly improve a review.

    2. Will AnandTech ever review the Enzotech Ultra-X? It's a down-blowing 120mm heatsink with four 8mm heatpipes (larger than the usual 6mm). It also has a bolt-through-board-to-backplate mounting system with spring thumbscrews, making four points of contact with the base - i.e. ABSOLUTE HEAVEN, at least on Socket 775. (These three criteria don't seem to be satisfied by *any* other modern heatsink. The old Swiftech MCX-4000 was bolt-through-board, spring screws, four points of contact with the base - although it had no backplate, thus exerting bending force on the board.)

    I decided on the Ultra-X after reading horror stories about the Ultra 120 Extreme's tendency to not stay flush with the heatspreader, since it's held down by only one point of contact to the base.

    It would be nice to see an AnandTech review that acknowledged the importance of the mounting system, and that the Ultra 120 Extreme isn't perfect.
    Reply
  • strikeback03 - Friday, June 22, 2007 - link

    Technically, a plane is defined by three points, so adding a 4th is next to impossible without one point being out-of-plane. So a 3 point mounting system would be the most flat.

    IIRC the Tuniq uses 4 thumbscrews with springs to bolt through the board to a backplate.
    Reply
  • STL - Saturday, June 23, 2007 - link

    No argument there - however, a spring-loaded mounting system ensures that minor variations in height between the mounting points don't make a difference.

    When the base is held down by only two (or worse, one) points of contact, the heatsink can *tip* off of the core, because we use towers and not desktops.

    If you look at the Tuniq Tower 120, it indeed uses a bolt-through-board-to-backplate system with four spring thumbscrews, but what is bolted through the board is an H-shaped mounting plate that pins the heatsink down along a single line. The bar of the H looks too narrow to prevent the heavy heatsink from potentially tipping off of the CPU, although it might be wide enough.
    Reply
  • StraightPipe - Thursday, June 21, 2007 - link

    I've been looking for a quiet HSF to run in my living room, but these graphs can be hard to sort through.

    If you differentiated the low and high speeds by making them 2 different colors it would be much easier to read.

    It's pretty darn easy to find a fan that will idle silently next to a +500W PSU, but It's a whole nother story to find one that runs on high quietly.
    Reply
  • xsilver - Thursday, June 21, 2007 - link

    silentpcreview rates the scythe ninja as the best "quiet" cooler available right now - AT's graphs dont show that because they have a lower ceiling on their graphs.

    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Thursday, June 21, 2007 - link

    Actually the Scythe Ninja is not the quietest cooler, as coolers are basically noise-free. The Scythe Ninja FAN is among the quietest we have tested, but it is just average in cooling ability. The Ninja performs better with more air flow than the stock fan can provide. The Noctua fan is one of the quietest we have tested, and any of the towers will be quiet indeed with a Noctua fan. Higher output but still quiet is the Scythe SFlex SFF21F. We are working on a 120mm fan roundup to select a stock fan to use in all cooler tests - in addition to stock fan tests. Reply
  • erikpurne - Thursday, June 21, 2007 - link

    quote:

    The serrated fins increase the surface area of the cooling fins.


    What? That's absurd. Maybe the serrated edges of the fins help with cooling in some obscure way having to do with turbulence or something, but they most definitely do not affect the surface area in any significant way.
    Serrating the edges of the fins increases the amount of edge for a given surface area of fin. So yeah, technically, the surface area of the edges is increased. But the surface area of the edges of the fins is, at most, what... 0.01% of the total surface area of the cooling fins?
    Retarded, but I guess when you have to come up with 8 pages of filler, some of it is going to be stupid.
    Also, does anyone know how Anandtech compensates for ambient temperature? I'm starting to worry that they don't, since I haven't heard it mentioned, which would make their temperature readings worthless.
    Reply
  • customcoms - Thursday, June 21, 2007 - link

    "Room temperature is measured before beginning the cooler tests and is maintained in the 20 to 22C (68 to 72F) range for all testing."

    That is how the compensate for ambient...by keeping it the same for all tests. yeah, That is a four degree F range, 2 degree Celsius, but do you have a better system in your computer room?
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Thursday, June 21, 2007 - link

    We doubt those using the coolers we are testing have a heating/cooling system that maintains better than 2C in ambient temperature. This is very much in line with our philosophy of "real-world" component testing. We do agree comparisons of summer tests in Phoenix without air-conditioning to winter tests in Buffalo, NY in 4 feet of snow would not be a fair comparison, but we do monitor and maintain temperatures within reasonable limits as stated. Reply
  • Spanki - Friday, June 22, 2007 - link

    D'oh! I always hav trouble with this "comment" software... please see http://forums.anandtech.com/messageview.aspx?catid...">this thread for my comments. Thanks. Reply

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