Articles: Cooling

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However, let’s continue our discussion of Scythe Orochi cooling efficiency. Now we will use it with a standard 140-mm fan. As a result, our processor overclocked exactly the same way but its temperature dropped by 11ºC, although it still remained dangerously high:

So, considering that we are now using an “active” cooler, 84ºC is a pretty high temperature for the hottest core of a not very dramatically overclocked processor under maximum workload. However, I put the word “active” in inverted commas for a reason. The thing is that you cannot hear the 140-mm fan of our Scythe Orochi cooler working at 500RPM at all. In other words, when you install this fan, nothing changes, only the processor temperature gets 11ºC lower, so I would strongly advise to use Scythe Orochi in this mode. I am sure you remember that the cooler doesn’t fit into a standard ATX system case when the fan is on top. However, we installed this 140-mm fan on one of the sides, while from the top the heatsink was cooled by a 120-mm case fan. This double cooling allowed lowering the CPU temperature inside a system case by 7ºC leaving us with 88ºC for the hottest processor core.

Now that we have finished our Scythe Orochi tests with a standard 140-mm fan, let’s check it out with high-speed Scythe Slip Stream 120 fan(s) rotating at two different speeds. Despite large gaps between the heatsink plates, the new cooler reacted very eagerly to increased airflow and with two fans installed on both sides of the heatsink for air intake and exhaust reduced its lag behind the super-cooler significantly. So, let’s sum up all the obtained results in the final chart:

Unfortunately, even when we switched from passive mode to active mode with two high-speed fans involved and lowered the processor temperature by 25ºC total, our Japanese dragon still didn’t get to win the super-cooler title (valid only for active mode).

We continued checking the CPU overclocking potential with Scythe Orochi with one high-speed 120-mm fan working at ~2020RPM, however, the tests showed that this cooler doesn’t allow QX9650 processor to fully reveal its potential. The maximum frequency we managed to hit was 3960MHz at 1.575V Vcore set in the mainboard BIOS (1.54~1.56V according to the monitoring data). The hottest processor core in this case warmed up to 91ºC:

In the same testing conditions ZEROtherm NV120 Premium at maximum fan rotation speed of ~2760RPM (since we tested Scythe Orochi in its noisy mode, too) provides 19ºC (!) better cooling:

We didn’t test the acoustic performance of our today’s participants for logical reasons. In passive mode as well as with the default fan, Scythe Orochi is practically silent. As for the level of noise generated by Scythe Slip Stream 120 fans and ZEROtherm NV120 Premium cooler, our regular readers should be very well familiar with these numbers. If not, please check out the corresponding links in the Testbed and Methods part of this review.

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