Test Configuration

As we've covered test configuration in detail in the past, we won't belabor it here. Our test bed remains the same as it was in March: a Rosewill R604-P-SL case with a Corsair HS620W power supply and a fanless motherboard/video card combination to eliminate stray noise sources.

Cooling Performance Test Configuration
Processor Intel Core 2 Duo X6800
(Dual-core 2.93GHz, 4MB Unified Cache)
RAM 2x1GB Corsair Dominator PC2-8888 (DDR2-1111)
Hard Drive(s) Hitachi 250GB SATA2 enabled (16MB Buffer)
Video Card MSI NX8600GTS (fanless) - All Standard Tests
Intel TAT Version 2.05.2006.0427
CoreTemp Version 0.95
Video Drivers NVIDIA 163.71
CPU Cooling Kingwin Revolution RVT-9225
Noctua NH-U12P
Arctic Cooling Alpine 7 (with PWM)
Arctic Cooling Freezer Pro 7
ZEROtherm Nirvana NV 120
Cooler Master Hyper 212
OCZ Vendetta
Scythe Kama Cross
Swiftech H2O-120 Compact
Corsair Nautilus 500
Thermalright Ultima-90
ZEROtherm BTF90
Xigmatek AIO (AIO-S800P)
Evercool Silver Knight
Enzotech Ultra-X
3RSystem iCEAGE
Thermaltake Big Typhoon VX
Thermaltake MaxOrb
Scythe Andy Samurai Master
Cooler Master Gemini II
Noctua NH-U12F
Asus Silent Square Pro
Scythe Ninja Plus Rev. B
OCZ Vindicator
Thermalright Ultra 120 Extreme
Thermalright Ultra 120
Scythe Infinity
Zalman CNS9700
Zalman CNS9500
Cooler Master Hyper 6+
Vigor Monsoon II Lite
Thermalright MST-9775
Scythe Katana
Tuniq Tower 120
Intel Stock HSF for X6800
Power Supply Corsair HX620W
Motherboards Asus P5K Deluxe (Intel P35)
Operating System Windows XP Professional SP2
BIOS Asus AMI 0501 (06/26/2007)

Room temperature is maintained at 74°F (23°C) throughout testing. We are still using the Far Cry River demo as our benchmark for the purpose of consistency, and thus we can include historical results for reference. CoreTemp is used for temperature monitoring.

Installation Cooling at Stock Speed
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  • brian_riendeau - Monday, July 21, 2008 - link

    I blame the push pin mounting. Push pins such enough as it is, and from the looks of it, they put the fan on first, then installed the push pins by wedging a finger between the fan and the pin itself. That is just not good form for mounting a cooler, probably just one of the pins is "locked" in place but not actually in all the way causing uneven pressure and ridiculous temps. Reply
  • flopsie - Monday, July 21, 2008 - link

    hmm... i got 2 of these cuz they were 15 bucks, and put on on my dual athlon 64 4200, and one on my core quad 6600. the athlon machine saw the cpu temp drop 9 degrees c, while the intel one only dropped about 3 degrees. it could easily be that those plastic tabs on the intel style mounts just dont supply enough positive pressure. Reply
  • Dark Legion - Saturday, July 19, 2008 - link

    Hmm...I see under test configuration that the ASUS silent square pro cooler was supposed to be included in this review, and yet it wasn't. The list in test configuration also seemed to have more coolers than the benchmarks, so I'm sure there were more that were skipped. Can we possibly see the benchmarks for the rest of these coolers? Reply
  • steveyballmer - Wednesday, July 16, 2008 - link

    This plus overclocking will really make vista Purrrr!



    http://fakesteveballmer.blogspot.com">http://fakesteveballmer.blogspot.com
    Reply
  • RamIt - Wednesday, July 16, 2008 - link

    Any way to ban this idiot from posting here?
    Reply
  • flashbacck - Wednesday, July 16, 2008 - link

    Are those ambient noise readings correct? Ambient noise of ~38 db is pretty loud. Reply
  • Bieszczad - Wednesday, July 16, 2008 - link

    Well, with the reported temperatures so high, the fan needs to spin really fast to remove the heat, hence the noise.

    CoreTemp misbehaving? Bad diode on the motherboard and/or processor?
    Flaky BIOS?

    Anyway, those temp and noise numbers stink.
    Reply
  • flashbacck - Thursday, July 17, 2008 - link

    yeah, but it says ambient noise was measured at 38 db which should be with all systems off, or with only a passive cpu cooler on the setup. Either way, it's too loud. Reply
  • Baked - Wednesday, July 16, 2008 - link

    From the charts it looks like the reviewer did a bad installation of the heatsink. It's very common for push pin heatsink to have improper installation, especially if people are too lazy to take out the entire motherboard for installation. I know, I did this with the arctic cooling freezer pro 7. You can't just slap the heatsink into position and push the pins in and call it proper. There's not enough clearance between the mobo and mobo tray for you to do that, and you'll just get the pins bent. You have to take the mobo out, make sure there's enough clearance behind the mobo, set the heatsink in place, and make sure the pins are properly threaded through the mounting holes, locked, and secured. You might need 3 hands for the installation if you're one of those clumpsy people.

    Even with the poorly finished heatsink surface, the temperature shouldn't but that bad. It's obvious one or more corners of the heatsink is lifted during testing due to improper installation. I suggest the reviewer redo the testing using the proper installation method I mentioned above.
    Reply
  • major_major - Wednesday, July 16, 2008 - link

    Who knows what went wrong with the testing methodology...but I think we can all conclude that there is no way those numbers are correct. Besides, any heatsink review where the Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro places 2nd place in load cooling temps is automatically suspect. Reply

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