A New Take on the Budget Legend
It is not hyperbole to call Cooler Master’s Hyper 212 family some of the most important CPU air coolers in the industry, with the 212 EVO dominating sales in the DIY segment for years now based on Amazon rankings. In the last five years I have reviewed a number of coolers here at PC Perspective, and feedback from readers almost always includes mention of, and requests for comparison to, that Hyper 212 EVO. I have tested this venerable cooler more than once over the years, but it has proven to be such a vital part of any CPU air-cooling discussion that it demands to be part of every cooler review lineup. Today we will benchmark that cooler yet again using the current test platform, and compare it to a new generation of Hyper 212: the Black Edition.
The Hyper 212 Black Edition coolers, available with or without an RGB fan, add a level of style that had been missing from the 212 EVO, trading exposed copper heat pipes and bare aluminum heatsink fins for a polished, all-black finish. Naturally style means nothing without performance, and with the RGB Black Edition we are still looking at a single tower heatsink design with four heat pipes that are designed to make direct contact with the CPU, and air is still being moved via a single 120 mm fan.
Features from Cooler Master:
- Sleek Finishing - Anodized gun-metal black with brushed aluminum surface finish to the top cover for a more refined look
- Precise Air Flow with Nickel Black - Stacked fin array ensures least airflow resistance which allows cooler air flow into the heatsink. The nickel plated jet black also enhances radiation cooling performance
- Direct Contact Technology - 4 heat pipes with exclusive Direct Contact Technology providing effective and excellent heat dissipation
- The New SF120R RGB Fan - Certified to sync with Motherboard RGB software or controlled by our controller. The wide speed range can be fine-tuned for maximum cooling performance or silent operation
- Optional Push-Pull Fan Configuration - To avoid dynamic losses and help accelerate heat exhaust, an additional fan helps pulling heat away faster from heatsink
- RGB in the Palm of Your Hand with Included Wired RGB Controller - A compact size RGB LED controller that allows you to easily customize your RGB devices without the need for either an RGB capable motherboard or software. You can have the colorful rig you’ve always wanted with just the touch of a button
A Low-Cost Air Cooler for Intel and AMD
Scythe’s Katana 5 is a low-cost CPU air cooler that retails for less than $30, offers compatibility with Intel and AMD processors, and has a small footprint that won’t interfere with memory modules. Can this ultra-compact tower design and single 92mm fan cope with our test platform’s toasty Core i7-7700K? Let’s find out!
"The 5th generation of KATANA cooler, it has asymmetric design offering unlimited compatibility. Upgraded with E.C.M.S II mounting system and new Kaze Flex 92mm fan ensure simple installation and good thermal performance."
Katana 5 Specifications:
- Model Number: SCKTN-5000
- Intel: LGA 775, 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1366
- AMD: Socket AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, AM4, FM1, FM2, FM2+
- Dimensions: 105 x 104 x 135 mm / 4.13 x 4.09 x 5.31 inches
- Overall Weight: 560 g / 19.75 oz (including fan)
- Material of Base Plate: Nickel-plated copper 38 x 38 mm
- Fan Specifications
- Dimensions: 92 x 92 x 26 mm / 3.62 x 3.62 x 1.02 inch
- Air Flow: 11.46 - 83.04 m³/h = 6.75 - 48.878 CFM
- Fan Speed: 300 - 2,300 rpm (regulated via PWM)
- Static Pressure: 7.35～22.46 Pa / 0.75～2.29 mmH2O
Pricing: $28.45 USD list (returns to stock in USA this month)
Subject: Cases and Cooling | January 9, 2019 - 03:27 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: Shadow Wings 2, Dark Wings 2, Dark Rock Slim, cooling, cooler, ces 2019, CES, be quiet!, air cooler
The Dark Rock 4 from be quiet! is their highest-end air cooler, with a large footprint and distinctive sleek all-black aesthetic that has been a welcome alternative to more ostentatious designs on the market. But be quiet! is aware that this large heatsink, like many of this type on the market, can present clearance issues for taller RAM. Enter the Dark Rock Slim, a more compact single-tower cooler design that offers better RAM compatibility while still maintaining powerful cooling capabilities, handling up to a 180W TDP processor. The same stealthy aesthetic from the other Dark Rock coolers is retained with the new slim model, including a black brushed aluminum top cover and black heatsink fins and heat pipes.
The Dark Rock Slim poses for the camera (via be quiet! on Twitter)
Features from be quiet! include:
- 180W TDP
- Slim heat sink design for maximum RAM compatibility
- Silent Wings 3 120mm PWM funnel shaped front fan: Airflow-optimized blades, six-pole fan
motor and fluid dynamic bearing (FDB)
- Decoupled fan mounting
- Four advanced high-performance copper heat pipes maximize heat conductance
- Small dots on the fin surface increase cooling area
- Special black coating with ceramic particles for perfect heat transfer
- Brushed aluminum top cover with high-grade diamond cut finish
- Convenient top mounting
- Support for an additional 120mm fan – installation clamps for standard fans included
The Dark Rock Slim launches in Q2 2019 with a retail price expected to be around $50.
Also shown at the be quiet! suite was Shadow Wings 2, which are low-RPM case fans that feature a decoupled mounting system, airflow optimized fan blades, and a rubber frame and mounting system with optional push-pin installation. There is also a white version on the way which is made of white plastic, and not simply painted, and provides a unified look inside white enclosures such as the Dark Base 700 White Edition.
The Shadow Wings 2 fans launch this month beginning with the black version, with the white version slated for Q2 2019. Pricing will range from $15.90 - $18.90.
And finally we have the Pure Wings 2 high-speed fans, which spin at up to 2000 RPM in the 120 mm version, and 1600 RPM in the 140 mm version. The fans offer a rifle bearing with 80,000 hour operating life, and are available in both PWM and 3-pin versions. The fans will be available this month at prices ranging from $12.50 - $13.90.
The Ninja 5 is the latest in the line of high performance, low-noise tower air coolers from Scythe, building on the venerable Ninja 4 design (reviewed here back in 2016) with a new dual-fan configuration. The Ninja 5 (SCNJ-5000) ships with a pair of Kaze Flex 120 mm fans, which should provide very low noise output with their 800 RPM max speed. Does the combination of big heatsink and dual low-speed fans translate into high performance? Let's find out!
Let's get right to the specifications from Scythe:
- Model number: SCNJ-5000
- CPU Support:
- Intel 775 / 115x / 1366 / 2011(V3) / 2066
- AMD AM4 / AM3(+) / AM2(+) / FM2(+) / FM1
- Radiator size: (W) 130 x (H) 155 x (D) 130mm
- Fan size: 120 x 120 x 27mm
- Heatpipe: Ø6mm x 6
- Fan speed: 300±200～800 rpm±10% RPM
- Airflow: 16.6～43.03 CFM
- Statics: 0.0762～0.49 mmH2O / 0.75～4.8 Pa
- Noise: 4.0～14.5 dBA
- Weight (fan included): 1190g
Pricing and Availability: $59.99 MSRP (currently unavailable from known retailers in USA)
The Ninja 5 arrives nicely boxed with good protection, and the accessory pack has everything you'll need right down to a full-size screwdriver:
Subject: Cases and Cooling | October 29, 2018 - 10:27 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: tower cooler, RGB, Hyper 212, heatsink, cpu cooler, cooling, cooler master, black edition, air cooler
The legendary Hyper 212 series from Cooler Master has a stealthy new look, with the upcoming Hyper 212 Black Edition coolers. Not just a cosmetic change, these new Black Edition coolers (available with or without RGB lighting) offer what Cooler Master is calling an "improved installation process from previous models with the same best-in-class performance for an affordable price".
The Hyper 212 RGB Black Edition cooler (via Cooler Master)
"Designed with PC enthusiasts in mind, the new Hyper 212 Black Edition coolers keep with the familiar four heat pipe design of the original Hyper 212 and continues to offer direct contact technology for more thorough heat dissipation.
The updated brushed aluminum top cover, nickel plated anodized fins and heat pipes, and metallic heat pipe caps give the Hyper 212 Black Edition models a premium, aesthetic appeal. The Hyper 212 RGB Black Edition comes equipped with the new SF120R RGB fan and RGB LED controller for lighting customization, while the Hyper 212 Black Edition offers users a more simplified look via the all-black Silencio fan with exclusive Silent Drive IC technology."
A look at the hardware kit with revised mounting system (via Cooler Master)
The Hyper 212 RGB Black Edition will carry an MSRP of $39.99, with the non-RGB Hyper 212 Black Edition at $34.99. Both coolers go on sale November 5.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | May 23, 2018 - 09:10 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: M.2, heatpipes, CRYORIG, air cooler
Cryorig teased a new M.2 cooler ahead of its Computex debut this week. The Cryorig Frostbit M.2 Cooler is the first dual heat pipe cooler that uses a thin 1mm heat pipe that spreads heat across a small heat spreader and a thicker heat pipe that draws heat away to a larger external heatsink.
The Frostbit cooler measures 72mm x 26.3mm x 57mm (LxWxH) and weighs just over 0.12 pounds (56 grams). The angle of the external circular heatsink and heatpipe can be manually adjusted so that it can fit in systems with a large CPU or GPU cooler. Cryorig’s website notes that the Frostbit features 38 fins (19x2) and is rated at 12W cooling capability.
Cryorig's Frostbit certainly looks stylish and capable, but at the same time is definite cooling overkill. Allyn has noted in the past (mostly on podcasts) that while cooling or spreading the heat from the controller and cache can be beneficial, the flash dies themselves on the M.2 drives do not really need to be cooled and in fact a bit of heat can be good for them.
I can see this cooler being used for aesthetics especially in a hard-line water cooling build, but it is likely to come at a premium price. More information should be available on pricing and availability after Computex.
What do you think about this beast? Am I the only one thinking "Maximum Cooling" in a Crysis voiceover style when looking at this thing?
Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 26, 2018 - 03:52 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: tr4, Threadripper, MASTERAIR MA621P, cooler master, amd, air cooler
So far we have mostly seen reviews of watercoolers for Threadripper but there is an air cooler designed to tame this multi-threaded beast. The Cooler Master MASTERAIR MA621P is one such heatsink, a 1.2kg beast with two fans. [H]ard|OCP's testing shows this cooler to be capable of cooling your 1950X at stock speeds, but do not expect the overclocks an AiO watercooler allows. The installation is a bit of a challenge but this is the least expensive cooler for Threadripper, as well as being the only air cooler for it from CM. Check the full review to get a closer look at this large chunk of metal.
"The AMD Ryzen Threadripper is a beast when it comes to overclocking and cooling. Cooler Master steps into the ring with the first Threadripper-specific air cooler that we have come across. We have put it through the paces here on our highly overclocked and overvolted 1950X. Does the MasterAir MA621P have what it takes?"
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Noctua NH-L12S @ Modders Inc
- Aerocool's P7-L240 closed-loop liquid CPU cooler @ The Tech Report
- Enermax Liqtech TR4 280 AIO @ Modders-Inc
- NZXT Kraken X72 @ Guru of 3D
- Phanteks Glacier R160 Reservoir @ TechPowerUp
- Corsair Carbide 275R @ Benchmark Reviews
- Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic @ TechPowerUp
- VIVO CASE-V10G Review @ OCC
- Lian Li PC-O11 Dynamic chassis @ Guru of 3D
Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 12, 2018 - 05:12 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: be quiet!, dark rock pro 4, air cooler
The new Dark Rock Pro 4 is not messing around, 1.13kg of blackened aluminium standing 162.8x136x145.7 which makes it slightly smaller than Morry's mighty Noctua NH-D15 which helps when installing it in tight places. The performance does not seem to have suffered at all however, TechPowerUp's review shows it a match to the mighty cooler and it produces less noise as well. For just about $90 this is well worth looking into, as the mounting hardware has improved as much as the ability to move heat away from your CPU.
"be quiet! looks to recapture the high-end air-cooling crown with the new and improved Dark Rock Pro 4. It is a dual-fan, dual-tower design that will certainly turn a few heads. However, it won't be due to noise. Silent and powerful, this new challenger looks to dethrone Noctua's NH-D15."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Be quiet! Dark Rock 4 @ Guru of 3D
- be quiet! Dark Rock 4 @ Guru of 3D
- Be Quiet! Dark Rock 4 & Dark Rock Pro 4 CPU Coolers Review @ NikKTech
- be quiet! Dark Rock 4 @ Kitguru
- REEVEN OURANOS RC-1401 @ [H]ard|OCP
- ID-Cooling Dashflow 240 Liquid CPU Cooler @ Benchmark Reviews
- Fractal Design Focus G @ TechPowerUp
A Trio of Air Coolers
Scythe is a major player in the air cooling space with a dizzying array of coolers for virtually any application from the Japanese company. In addition to some of the most compact coolers in the business Scythe also offers some of the highest performing - and most quiet - tower coolers available. Two of the largest coolers in the lineup are the new Mugen 5 Rev. B, and the Grand Kama Cross 3 - the latter of which is one of their most outlandish designs.
Rounding out this review we also have a compact tower option from Scythe in the Byakko, which is a 130 mm tall cooler that can fit in a greater variety of enclosures than the Mugen 5 or Grand Kama Cross due to its lower profile. So how did each perform on the cooler test bench? We put these Scythe coolers against the Intel Core i7-7700K to see how potent their cooling abilities are when facing a CPU that gets quite toasty under load. Read on to see how this trio responded to the challenge!
Subject: Cases and Cooling | September 30, 2017 - 02:26 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: tower cooler, just delivered, FM2+, cryorig h5 ultimate, CRYORIG, air cooling, air cooler
Just Delivered is a section of PC Perspective where we share some of the goodies that pass through our labs that may or may not see a review, but are pretty cool none the less.
Find the Cryorig H5 Ultimate on Amazon!
I have been slowly rebuilding my wife's desktop PC following a failure of the all-in-one liquid CPU cooler that saw leaking coolant kill the motherboard and power supply (surprisingly the GTX 750 Ti survived despite getting a bunch of coolant on it). I recently replaced the motherboard and PSU (while discovering FM2+ boards are still pretty expensive on eBay) and today got in the last component: a Cryorig H5 Ultimate air cooler. I wouldn't mind replacing the TD03 with another water cooler (it was nice and quiet when it worked), but got a good deal on the air cooler. Anyway, the Cryorig H5 Ultimate is a monster tower style air cooler measuring 168.3 x 143 x 110.9 (HxWxL) with the included fan and weighing 920 grams (2.03 pounds).
I forgot to take an unboxing picture, here is what it comes with though (from Cryorig's website).
The Cryorig H5 Ultimate is rated at 180W TDP and features 38 aluminum fins in an interesting hive / honey comb design that allegedly reduces noise, improves air flow, and strengthens the fin stack. The fins are connected with four 6mm copper heat pipes to the nickel plated C1100 copper baseplate. A 140mm XF140 fan (76 CFM) pushes air through the fin stack spinning anywhere between 700 and 1300 RPM with rated noise levels of 19 to 23 dBA respectively.
There are no LEDs on this monster, but it doesn't need them to look good in my opinion. Fortunately, the fan height is adjustable and you are able to mount the fan on either side of the heatsink which will be important because it can and will interfere with your RAM modules depending on your motherboard and height of RAM heat spreaders! As you will see, I ran into this, but my PC chassis gave just enough clearance that I was able to move the fan up enough to clear the G.Skill RAM (which is on the shorter side). The fan is mounted using two wires and is fairly easy to take off and install.
Cryorig supports both AMD and Intel motherboards (including AM4 with a separate mounting upgrade kit) including FM1, FM2, AM2, and AM3 on the AMD side and LGA 775, 1156, 1150, 1151, and 2011 on the Intel side. The cooler has two mounting kits for AMD and Intel with both requiring you install a backplate.
In my case, I am installing the Cryorig H5 Ultimate on a FM2+ socket motherboard. I had to unscrew the default AMD mounting system and install Cryorig's backplate. There are four screws that screw onto the backplate posts with a slight bit of give which is normal (the backplate will not be tightly screwed to the board, it should be able to move a bit). Then another bracket is screwed onto the backplate screws until hand tight (tighten them using the X method going corner to diagonal corner).
Easy enough so far! However, now here is where I ran into some trouble with the installation. Much like the experience of installing RAM for the first time where you can sometimes feel like you need to use a lot more force than you think you should need to install them, the Cryorig cooler takes quite a bit of force to properly install. Learn from my frustration:
After applying your thermal paste, it's time to install the cooler. You will notice that there are two holes in the top of the cooler and two screw holes in the bracket you installed over the CPU socket. You will line the cooler up so that the spring mounted screws on the cooler are over the holes in the bracket. I found it easiest to put my finger by one of the screws and make sure that screw was lined up, then let down the other side of the cooler so that both screws are lined up. Now, you will need the special screwdriver Cryorig provides in the box. Using one hand push down on the cooler and use the other hand to stick the screwdriver in one of the holes. You will need to keep pressure on the cooler while turning the screw so that it can catch onto the threads in the bracket and start, well, screwing in. Make a few turns so that it is in, but do not fully tighten the screw down. Now, move your hand to the opposite side of the cooler where the other screw hole is and press down. You will need to push this side of the cooler down with quite a bit of force (again, thinking back to the RAM example, don't hulk smash anything, but don’t' be too gentle either). While keeping pressure on this side to hold it towards the socket, start screwing down this side of the cooler. (If you did it right the other side won't pop out, if you didn't screw the first side down enough it might pop out and you'll have to start over heh) Once both sides are partially in, just alternate screwing the screws down until they are hand tight.
Trust me, you might think you are going to break this thing or bend something, but it's just normal SOP. Finally, plug in the XF140 fan into the CPU_fan header and you're good to go!
The Cryorig H5 Ultimate dwarfs my GA-F2A78M-HD2 mATX motherboard leaving just enough room for two memory DIMMs and the graphics card! Heck it still looked huge installed in the old A88X ATX board!
Since installing it I have been playing around a bit with the PC trying to get some temperature readings for you, but am discovering that getting accurate temperature readings from AMD processors (especially older APUs) is not that easy. I am still testing things out and looking into overclocking, but best I can tell the Cryorig cooler is keeping the AMD A8 5600K processor somewhere around 55°C under load using AIDA64 stress testing. At idle the cooler is very quiet and while it does ramp up under load it is barely audible compared to the case exhaust fan! This is not a formal review but so far it has been an interesting cooler assuming you can find it at a good price.
If you are interested in a monster cooler like this, definitely double check your case and RAM clearances though. The install was not too bad the second time around (I first installed it on her old motherboard not knowing if it was dead yet as I did not have another cooler to test), but it is not as easy on this AMD FM2+ socket as their video (and others I found on YouTube) makes it look for the intel platform! With the knowledge that you can and need to use force to press it down to get the screws in it's a fairly quick install, I just wish that information was better spelled out in the instructions as it would have saved me a ton of time the first go around! I don't have formal noise or temp numbers as I am just starting to test it, but so far, I am happy with it.