Arctic claims that the Accelero Hybrid is twice as efficient as the reference GeForce GTX 680 cooler and nine times quieter. But does it mean anything to us? A liquid cooling system combined with air cooling must be far superior to any reference cooler, anyway! It is much more interesting to compare it against the best serially manufactured top-end GPU cooler, which is of course ASUS’s DirectCU II. No other solution has been able to outperform the DirectCU II in efficiency and noise level during our numerous GeForce GTX 680 tests. That’s why we’ll use that cooler to evaluate the performance of the Arctic Accelero Hybrid.
The following diagram shows you the results:
The Arctic Accelero Hybrid is just outstanding. At the maximum speed of the radiator’s 120mm fan (1350 RPM), the peak temperature of the GK104 chip overclocked to 1212/1277 MHz was only 45°C. That’s 15°C better than the performance of the DirectCU II at the maximum speed of its two fans (3390 RPM). We can also note that in the automatic regulation mode of the 120 mm fan (440 to 820 RPM according to our monitoring tools), the GPU is no hotter than 60°C, which is still better than the best the DirectCU II can do!
The Accelero Hybrid uses an 80mm fan and a plastic casing to cool the card’s power components. It doesn’t enjoy an overwhelming advantage over the DirectCU II in this respect, yet the VRM components of the overclocked ASUS card have a satisfactory temperature with it even when the cooler’s 80mm fan is regulated automatically. 80°C for an overclocked GeForce GTX 680’s VRM is quite a success.
So, the Accelero Hybrid is okay in terms of performance. Let’s see how noisy it is.
Covered by the plastic casing, the pump (the green dot in the diagram) is very quiet, producing no more than 33 dBA under our conditions. The 120mm fan remains quiet until 950 RPM. In other words, it is inaudible in the automatic regulation mode and remains comfortable enough up to 1110 RPM. The 80mm fan is good, too. It is comfortable even at its maximum speed. Our subjective impressions agree with the numbers. The Accelero Hybrid is just perfect in terms of noisiness.