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Discussion on Article:
0 Degrees Centigrade: APACK ZEROtherm CPU Coolers Roundup

Started by: nx | Date 04/03/08 02:44:01 PM
Comments: 17 | Last Comment:  12/11/15 03:14:04 PM

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It's nice article, but there are some issues that I've been wanting to point since quite a long time now:

First of all, what is the point of comparing 5 or more heatsinks, every one with its own fan, rotating at different speed? Even if all fans were set to rotate at the same speed, it still wouldn't have been a fair comparison, since - obviously - different fans move quiet a different amount of air at same RPM. Having the NV120 with a fan @ 2700RPM outperform the Ultra 120 with a fan @1900RPM by 2 degrees doesn't tell anything about the cooling efficiency of those heatsinks. Using a reference fan would be more difficult, but would render more comparable results.

Secondly, sound pressure measurements of a cooler in a case with 5 fans simply doesn't sound convincing to me. The 80mm fan of the power supply would be enough to mask the majority of noise generated by the different coolers - are you sure you need a 1000W beast for testing CPU coolers? Overclocked CPUs tend to be power hungry, but a far more quiet PSU would do a perfect job.

Furthermore, a 33 dB (A) is far too high noise floor to reveal any meaningful details about any cooler; it may allow the noise character of a cooler to be perceived (or measured) only when it is set to rotate at high RPM, which is an area where most heatsinks tend to behave more or less equally. Low RPM measurements are far more revealing for the quality of a heatsink design, I think.

And one more point: acoustic measurements presented that way are very much useless, they simply confirm what everyone around knows quite well: lower RPM means lower noise. After all, it is the fans that are being tested, and here we come to the first argument I pointed out (the heatsinks introduce some turbulence noise, of course, but given the similar design of modern CPU coolers I tend to believe that it isn't as important as fan quality itself).

I hope that some of my remarks were useful to you - the only point for me to provide them is to ensure that you publish even better reviews in the future, not that I'm a fan of a certain brand. :)

0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/03/08 02:44:01 PM]
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@ nx:

funny you would mention the inherent uselessness of fan speed as a performance metric and then in the very same sentence contradict this simple principle you pointed out by stating the TRUE and NV120 were tested with different fan speeds.

Also, the NV120's fan is NOT user replaceable, so an apples-to-apples comparison isn't even possible, other to match up the airflow of each HSF by tuning RPM.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/08 05:52:23 AM]

these things look gay....

I wonder who's the genius that said... lets make them look like butterflies, that would be cool... yeah, right

0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/08 01:03:39 AM]
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@ djklax:

My what an insightful comment. Thanks for contributing! BTW, these "gay" HSFs stomp just about every other HSF out there, and look pretty good doing it too, at least according to EVERY one of my 15+ friends that have seen the NV120 in my case so far.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/08 05:54:00 AM]
you only have had 15 friend see ur nv120?

lame, I had thirty ppl over a few months gawking at mine before I even put it in my comp.


love to the nv120.
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/08 06:07:55 AM]
What? Do you have anything useful to add to this conversation?
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/04/08 06:09:27 AM]

Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme is still the king better and less noisy then the apack zeroterm :)
0 0 [Posted by:  | Date: 04/06/08 09:47:49 AM]


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