Testing results, low fan speed (7 Volts)

Average thermal resistance, 60 W to 340 W

Core temperature (60 W Load)

Core Temperature, Constant Thermal Load

Noise level

Fan Speed (7 Volts)

*Note: When the cooler has two different fans, the fan speed of the faster fan is recorded.

**Note: Some of this review's PWM fans will not start if simply powered from a 7 Volts power source. Electronic supervision is required to start the fan and then reduce the voltage down to 7 Volts, or a PWM source.

Reducing the fan voltage down to 7 Volts shifts the thermal performance charts a little but brings all of the coolers down to virtually inaudible levels. The sole exception is the Okeanos, which definitely improved vastly in comparison to having its fans running at maximum speed, but remains audible.

With the Okeanos losing its advantage of brute force, the Noctua NH-D15 and the Raijintek Tisis now lead the thermal performance charts, closely followed by Cryorig's R1 Ultimate. The Phanteks PH-TC14PE is a bit more complicated, displaying that it can do much better at lower loads than with high loads, hinting that the airflow of the fans is simply not enough for this design to cope with very high loads. Be Quiet!'s Dark Rock Pro 3 is now showing thermal performance comparable to that of the aforementioned coolers, especially when the thermal load is low. Still, the Dark Rock Pro 3 technically loses its acoustics performance advantage. It may be dead-silent, with our equipment unable to record anything about the room's noise floor level, but the rest of the coolers are virtually inaudible as well.

The Thermalright Macho Zero is at advantage in these tests, as the cooler is optimized for low airflow situations. With the TY147A at a dead-quiet operating level, the Macho Zero offers very good thermal performance, especially at lower loads.

The two coolers with the worst overall thermal performance at this test were the Deepcool Assassin and the SilentiumPC Grandis. As far as the Grandis is concerned, the company will definitely not worry about their product not being able to compete directly with the best air coolers available, as it can still offer very good performance for the price of the cooler. The Assassin on the other hand fails to compete as well as it should, falling behind all other similarly sized products and even behind the Grandis during most of these tests.

Testing results, maximum fan speed (12 Volts) Final Words & Conclusion


View All Comments

  • jenesuispasbavard - Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - link

    I've had great performance with the Spire Thermax Eclipse II for five years now, and for the last three years, even better performance when paired with two Corsair SP120's. It's still the highest rated heatsink on Frostytech; not sure why it isn't included here. Reply
  • jenesuispasbavard - Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - link

    Edit: Maybe too old? Released in mid-2010 I think. Reply
  • Iketh - Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - link

    did I miss the thermal medium? what paste is used? I've looked over the article twice Reply
  • Beany2013 - Wednesday, July 8, 2015 - link

    Whatever was supplied - it's a test of the product as supplied (for most of them) or as recommended by the manufacturer (as in the TR one, where they provided a suitable fan when requested, as the rest came with one).

    Thermal pastes are best tested on *one* cooled as a known quantity, really, which would be a separate test of it's own, I'd say.
  • Iketh - Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - link

    also, EVGA's cpu ACX cooler should be in a cheaper roundup Reply
  • creed3020 - Wednesday, July 8, 2015 - link

    Thanks for the review! This is certainly your best review since joining AT, kudos to getting a good spread of products from around the world. There were a few in there that I hadn't heard of so it was great that the final results would be a surprise.

    The results were somewhat what I expected and nice to see where each of the companies's products sit. I have to say that not having the Cyrorig on the final recommendation is a bit sad as their products are simply bespoke. I don't have the R1 Ultimate but I do use their C1 in my SFF case on an overlocked Core i5 4690k and the temperature to noise performance is unbelievable, especially compared to some SFF coolers I've used in the past from other vendors.

    Looking forward to more of these, perhaps a SFF cooler showdown could be next...?
  • JimmiG - Wednesday, July 8, 2015 - link

    I went with the Phanteks PH-TC14PE back when I built my Haswell system back in 2013. It and my (de-lidded) 4770K are still holding up fine.

    All those coolers are really close though, especially at full fan speeds. We've probably hit the limit of air cooling with heatpipe technology at this point.
  • PPB - Thursday, July 9, 2015 - link

    Why review the Macho Zero and not the True Spirit 140 Power or the IB-E Extreme? Those 2 are far a better match for the rest of the lineup that the one you reviewed from Thermalright. Reply
  • katinacooker - Saturday, July 11, 2015 - link

    Cryorig stock is availble in the UK from Alternate


    I got my R1 Universal from there
  • DPOverLord - Saturday, July 11, 2015 - link

    You can't do a real air cooling review without the Thermalright Silver Arrow, this review is lacking. Reply

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