Testing Results, Maximum Fan Speed (12 Volts)

Most of the stock coolers were tested with a maximum load of 150W, lest we start a fire. These products were not meant to handle thermal loads way higher than the stock specifications of the CPUs they were being shipped with.

Average thermal resistance, 60 W to 340 W

Looking immediately at the average thermal resistance and we see three main coolers out in front, and it is no surprise that these three are the beefiest - the EVO 212, the Wraith and the BXTS15A. The small Kabini cooler is designed for very low power, and our small test here pushes it outside of its window.

Core Temperature, Constant Thermal Load (Max Fan Speed)

As we move up the thermal loads, from 60W all the way up, the coolers by and large stay in their positions, with small differences becoming more pronounced as the load increases.

Fan Speed (12 Volts)

The EVO's large 120mm fan keeps the RPM down here, and it is interesting to see the RPM and noise of the BXTS15-A go far and above the other coolers.

Noise level

An interesting observation would be that Intel’s coolers meant for a specific socket have about the same absolute thermal resistance regardless of the core’s material. Taking socket 775 coolers as an example, the aluminum D75716-002 performs similarly with the copper C25704-002, most likely due to its solid core, and the tall copper D60188-001 also performs similarly due to the much slower (and quieter) fan. The same goes for the aluminum E97379-001 and the copper E97378-001 socket 1155 coolers, the former of which simply has a significantly more powerful fan attached. The E31964-001 performs significantly better but its high performance is not just due to its size and copper fins, as the fan is quite fast and loud as well.

In AMD’s camp, the simple and cheap FHSA7015B displays reasonable thermal performance at the expense of comfort, as the maximum speed of its fan is quite high. The more advanced AV-Z7UB408003 offers only slightly better thermal performance but noise levels were significantly lower. The Cooler Master HK8-00005 beats both of the aforementioned coolers in terms of thermal performance but its noise levels are rather high. This was to be expected, as it is based on the core design of the AV-Z7UB408003 but is significantly smaller, therefore a more powerful fan would have to make up for the loss of mass. Finally, the small 1A213LQ00 realistically has by far the worst overall performance of every cooler we tested here today, as the little cooler is designed with AMD’s power efficient AM1 CPUs in mind and cannot be directly compared to any of the other coolers in this review.

Both of AMD’s Wraith and Intel’s aftermarket BXTS15A stand out, pulling ahead in terms of performance the rest of the stock coolers. AMD’s Wraith is but a breath away from Cooler Master’s EVO 212 and the BXTS15A does not fall far behind. There is a catch though and that is the fans. Both the Wraith and the BXTS15A are making use of very strong fans, with a much higher top speed than that of the 120 mm fan that the EVO 212 is using. Strong fans are not just inherently louder themselves but the high air turbulence they create effectively multiplies the sound pressure level of the setup. 

Testing Methodology Testing Results, Low Fan Speed (7 Volts)
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  • SetiroN - Friday, July 22, 2016 - link

    Such a useful comparison!
    Let's see which other stock cooler that you will never get to replace your own stock cooler would be better.

    /s
    Reply
  • SetiroN - Friday, July 22, 2016 - link

    I mean seriously, the massive marketing campaign AMD has been doing for this wraith cooler is the epitome of their lack of R&D investments. Makes me so stupidly sad. Reply
  • JoeyJoJo123 - Friday, July 22, 2016 - link

    Makes you stupidly sad that they bundle the best stock cpu cooler out of any released ever? Why?

    It's a cooler that I wouldn't be shamed to choose not to get an aftermarket HSF for, as it's basically just as good as one, and it's one of the only things they can do to get people interested in their CPUs, as they know and you know and I know that their CPUs would be lackluster until Zen potentially comes out with potentially competitive value against Intel CPUs. In other words, they know they're stuck shipping slow CPUs right now, but the least they know they can do is bundle in a pretty neat stock cooler, and that might be enough to sway some buyers in their favor, which isn't a terrible thing, as AMD's already struggling to stay afloat.
    Reply
  • SetiroN - Friday, July 22, 2016 - link

    How much energy they have to put into marketing their stock cooler makes me sad, yes, because at this point it's the best part of the bundle.

    When a once great CPU manufacturer has to tell their customers that their CPU is better because... it has a better cooler, I think of the moment I first saw a K7 and tear up a little.
    Reply
  • looncraz - Friday, July 22, 2016 - link

    AMD hasn't put a lot of energy in at all, they made the cooler, they made a quick video, uploaded it, and everyone else did most of the work. Beyond that, they just list it as a value-add - and it is a very good value-add, indeed. Reply
  • close - Monday, July 25, 2016 - link

    Ignore him. He's a troll and not even a very good one. I bet he was hoping for some kind of support. He'll keep repeating the same "the best thing a CPU manufacturer's got going is their bundled cooler" because he somehow thinks that backing out from this stupid statement will make him look even dumber in other people's eyes than keeping it up. Reply
  • nathanddrews - Friday, July 22, 2016 - link

    Eh? The AMD Wraith is clearly a kickass stock cooler. I, for one, welcome the opportunity to not need to buy additional bulky HSFs. I've got 212s on most of my PCs. It's nice to know that I don't need to for an FX build. Reply
  • AS118 - Saturday, July 23, 2016 - link

    I agree. I can't say this enough, the Wraith is pretty much a 212 in terms of performance yet it is SO easy to install. Don't even have to put on a custom backplate. I really hope Zen CPU's have the Wraith or something similar.

    I'd never have to buy another 212 again if AMD keeps making these. (As long as I was buying an AMD CPU that had one)
    Reply
  • Samus - Sunday, July 24, 2016 - link

    Personally I like the direction Intel went in, by not including a cooler at all and reducing the price of the CPU accordingly ($10-$20 vs Haswell) Reply
  • TheinsanegamerN - Wednesday, July 27, 2016 - link

    the 6700k is $10 more then a devil's canyon 4790k. The price went UP, not down. Reply

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