Monsoon II Active TEC CPU Cooling System ReviewFri, Oct 20, 2006 - 12:00 AM
To test out the Vigor Gaming Monsoon II TEC cooler we ran it on our Intel Core 2 Duo test platform which was then run at default and overclocked settings. All the temperatures were obtained by using Core Temp Beta 0.9.0.91.
The test results at stock settings showed the three air coolers performing close to the same at idle. The Intel and Aerocool heat sinks performed the same, while the OCZ Tempest was 1C cooler at idle. When it came to the TEC cooler it came in 2C cooler than the best air cooler, but the Corsair Nautilus 500 stole the show with an idle temperature of 29C. Under load the Monsoon II hands down beat the air coolers by at least 5C, but the Corsair Nautilus 500 water cooler again took the cooling crown by performing 10C better than the closest air cooler.
We pushed the limits of our Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 processor by raised the Front Side Bus from 266MHz to 400MHz and left the multiplier at seven. This increased the stock frequency of 1.86GHz to 2.8GHz and required a slight voltage increase on the core to operate at such extreme settings. To obtain a stable processor we increased the voltage from 1.325V to 1.4125V in the BIOS and again tested both the five cooling solutions to see how they handle an overclock like this.
It seems that our overclock was too much for the Intel retail boxed heat sink as it hit 80C and maintained this temperature while the CPU began throttling. It was pointless to continue running our processor at 80C, so we stopped testing and recorded it as 80C. When compared to the reference cooler the Aerocool Xfire and OCZ Tempest were both 10C cooler at idle with the Monsoon II coming in 15C cooler and the Nautilus 500 an amazing 20C cooler. Once the processor became under full load the temperatures soared up to 76C on the Tempest and 78C on the Xfire while the Monsoon II managed to stay cooler at 66C at full load. The Nautilus 500 again took the spot light and managed to stay in the 50′s during load testing. None of the aftermarket coolers throttled and all of them completed full runs of Prime 95 and Super Pi on our Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 test system that was overclocked from 1.86GHz to 2.8GHz.