Articles: Cooling

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Performance in Intel Core 2 Duo Platform

The highest CPU frequency at overclocking was limited by the weakest cooler. That’s why I only overclocked my Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 (B2 stepping) from its default 1866MHz to 3300MHz (a 76.8% frequency growth) with a voltage increase to 1.4V.

Here are the results:

The Cooler Master Mars is the weakest cooler in this test. In quiet mode and on the open testbed it allows the CPU to begin to skip clock cycles. And if there were no 120mm system fan on the side panel, the same thing would happen in the closed system case, too. When you increase the fan speed to the maximum of 3000rpm, the cooler becomes more efficient by 9-10°C, yet this only yields the same temperature as the other coolers provide in quiet mode. And even this max speed doesn’t lead to acceptable results on the open testbed.

The Cooler Master Eclipse is a more appealing model in terms of efficiency. It is about 6°C better than the Mars in quiet mode and 1°C better at full speed. The difference is somewhat bigger on the open testbed. Anyway, both new models are not good enough in this test and are defeated by a much humbler cooler.

It is the Hyper TX that has become a sensation of this test session because it not only delivers better performance at its not-too-loud 1800rpm than the Mars and Eclipse do at their full speed, but can even match the efficiency of the Thermaltake Big Typhoon, a model from the super-cooler category. Well, it is not exactly as good as the Big Typhoon because this sample of the CPU could be overclocked to 3350MHz at 1.45V voltage on the Hyper TX (setting the core voltage higher didn’t affect my overclocking attempts) whereas the Big Typhoon kept the CPU up and running at 3430MHz with a voltage of 1.485V under the Intel Thermal Analysis Tool.

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