13 CPU Coolers Face Off

The Intel Core i7 platform includes a larger CPU socket that forces you to get a new CPU cooler. The task of picking out the right cooler can be daunting, so we figured that we'd give you all the information in one article to make the task of finding information and comparisons easy. This time around we are adding in 6 more coolers to the line up for a total of 13 coolers.

Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

The new coolers for this round are the Cooler Master V10, Spire TherMax II, Thermaltake ISGC-300, ISGC-400, and SpinQ, as well as the Titian Fenrir. First, let’s take a quick look at the entire line up and then we can take a little closer look one at a time. Like the last time, to keep things fair we will go in alphabetical order by manufacturer.

Cooler dimensions Weight Fan Size Price
Height Width depth
Asus Triton 81 144.7 117.6 120.5 695g 90mm $63.63
Cooler Master V8 161.1 120 128 866g 120mm $62.49
Cooler Master V10 161.3 129.6 236.5 1.2kg 120mm $121.98
Noctua NH-C12P 114 126 152 730g 120mm $66.98
Noctua NH-U12P 158 126 95 770g 120mm $64.99
Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 158 126 119 940g 120mm $79.99
Spire TherMax II 155 125 112 550g 120mm $44.95
Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme 1366 RT 156 90 120.5 1.02kg 120mm $65.99
Thermaltake ISGC-300 161 96 126 697g 120mm $49.99
Thermaltake ISGC-400 108 126 152 697g 120mm $53.99
Thermaltake SpinQ 151.8 124 132 667g 80mm $59.99
Titian Fenrir 156 90 120.5 720g 120mm $53.55
Vigor Monsoon III LT 160 120.9 131 855g 120mm $55.40

The heavy weight of the group is the Cooler Master V10 weighing in at a hair over a 1kg; the V10 is also the tallest at 161.3mm tall. All the coolers are pretty much 700g or heavier, so using "light" and "Core i7 cooler" in the same sentence will not be used much.

On to the first cooler, the Asus Triton 81!

Asus Triton 81


Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

The smallest of the coolers in our round up is the Triton 81 from Asus. This light weight was achieved with the use of aluminum fins and 90mm fans rather than 120mm. The Triton also has a very small base (more on that in a moment). Let’s take a look at the specs for the Triton.

Specifications

  • Cooler dimensions: 120.5(L)x 117.6(W)x144.7(H) (mm)
  • Weight: 695g
  • Connector: 4-pin
  • Material: Pure Copper base + Al fins + 4 Copper heat pipes
  • Acoustics: 18 dBA during normal operation
  • Fan dimensions: 90 x 90 x 25 (mm)
  • Fan speed: 800–2,500 rpm ± 10% (with PWM control and Blue LED)
  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking at the top of the cooler we can see the rather interesting X shape. This was done on purpose to allow for what Asus calls “4 way air flow”. This is a departure from what I have seen in the past where shrouds were used to keep air moving front to back and not go out the side.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    One of the other things that caught my eye was the base of the Triton. Aside from the stock Intel cooler the Triton 81 has one of the smallest bases I have seen in some time, ironic considering the size a Core i7 CPU. For a little reference for our non-US readers the US quarter is about ¾ inch in diameter, or 19mm

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Triton also uses dual 90mm fans that are wired together. So if one fails you’re replacing both unless you are handy and can splice the wires. To install the Triton 81 you will need to remove the fans to have access to the push pins, which is easy to do; remove 4 screws on the top of the cooler and slide the fan housings off the cooler.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Triton 81 comes with everything needed to mount up to not only the LGA1366 socket, but LG775 and all AMD sockets 939 and newer.

    Cooler Master V8


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    We had recently tested the V8 on our Intel Core2 Quad Q600 and it did pretty well, so I wanted to see how it would do on the Core i7 system. Cooler Master says the V8 will work for the Core i7 with the right mounting hardware. Cooler Master has a LGA1366 mounting kit that will allow for select Cooler Master CPU coolers to be mounted up to the new socket. The kit number is RR-ACC-1366-GP, and with a little digging in Google there are several online stores that carry the bracket kit for less than $10 +shipping. For those that didn’t see the last review of the V8, here are the specifications:

    Specifications

  • CPU Support
  • Dimension: 120 x 128 x 161.1mm
  • Weight: 1.91 lbs
  • Heat Sink Dimensions: 120 x 120 x 158mm
  • Heat Sink Material: Copper Base / Aluminum Fins / 8 Heat Pipes
  • Heat Pipes Dimensions: 6mm
  • Fan Dimension (W / H / D): 120 x 120 x 25mm
  • Fan Speed: 800 - 1800RPM
  • Fan Airflow: 69.69CFM
  • Air pressure (mmH2O): 2.94mm H2O
  • Bearing Type: Rifle Bearing
  • Fan Life Expectancy: 40,000hrs
  • Fan Noise Level (dB-A): 17 - 21dBA
  • Fan Speed Adjustment: Install on PCI Slot
  • Connector: 4-pin
  • Fan Control: PWM + VR Controller
  • Rated Voltage: 12V
  • Start Voltage: 7V
  • Operating Voltage: 10.38V - 13.2V
  • Rated Current: 0.12A Input Power: 1.44W
  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The V8 has a very unique appearance to it with its crazy looking heatpipe arrangement.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The V8 is the only cooler in our round up that uses a center mounted 120mm fan.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The fan for the V8 has a hardwired fan control, and this is mounted into an open expansion slot with the included bracket.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Speaking of mounting hardware, the V8 comes with everything required to mount the cooler to your favorite Intel LGA775 and LGA1366 or AMD 940/AM2/AM2+ sockets.

    Cooler Master V10

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Now we have the Cooler Master V10. This would be the biggest air cooler that I have had the pleasure of using. The V10 is also the only hybrid cooler in the roundup. We recently had a full review of the V10 back in March by Brian. With a little prying Brian let loose of the V10 long enough to allow me to test it for the round up. I knew the V10 was big, but once in hand it hit me how big it truly is.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    For a little fun and to put a little scale on it, I set a standard 12oz Dr. Pepper soda can next to the V10.

    Specifications:

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The V10 has a nice finish to the base and is nice and flat. It is not a perfect mirror finish, but I have seen worse.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The V10 covers most if not all of the motherboard's top half. So a large deep case will be needed.


    Noctua NH-U12P and NH-U12P SE1366


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Here is our reining low temp champ from our Core 2 cooler testing, the Noctua NH-U12P. This was the first cooler we looked at by the Austrian company and it became our favorite. Not only did it perform very well, its NF-P12 fan was pretty much silent at 100% speed. If its 19 dBA rating was too loud for your taste Noctua also included adaptors to throttle the fan to a very quiet (if not silent) 12.6 dBA.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Noctua says that the NH-U12P is very much compatible with Core i7 and if you already own the cooler you can go to their site and request an LGA1366 SecurFirm2 mounting kit for free, provided you can prove you own the cooler. If you don’t own one then you can purchase the NH-U12P SE1366 version. The coolers are identical except that the SE1366 model is LGA1366 only and sports two fans instead of one. Let’s take a quick look at the specifications for the NH-U12P and the NF-P12 fan.

    Specifications

    Fan specifications

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The LGA1366 SecuFirm2™ Mounting-Kit makes all Noctua CPU coolers compatible with Intel's LGA1366 socket for Core i7 processors. Those that have installed the original SecuFirm retention kit will instantly love the SecuFirm2; it is by far much easier to install. You will still need to loosen and remove one side to get your processor out, but it can be done with out removing the whole mounting system.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The cooler itself is built rather well. It's one of the few coolers that I can handle and not have the thought in the back of my head that I’ve got to handle it gently or I will bend up the cooling fins. Here we have the NH-U12P in the original configuration that we first received from Noctua.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Here is what you would have in the NH-U12P SE1366 configuration. I will be testing the NH-U12P in both the configurations so those that already own a NH-U12P will know if they need to pick up a second NF-P12 fan in addition to the SecuFirm2 mounting system.

    Noctua NH-C12P


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    This is the second cooler we received from Noctua, the NH-C12P. It’s a lowish profile down draft cooler design, and so far the only option (that we have in our lab) over stock cooling your new Core i7 in a narrow case. So far there is no LGA1366 version of the NH-C12P listed on Noctua’s site, but they did send us a SecuFirm2 mounting kit for it. Now, we did not see that great of a performance from the NH-C12P when we tested it on our Core2 platform, but since Noctua says it will work with Core i7, and I still have it in the lab I will be testing it. Let’s take a quick look at the specifications.

    Specifications

  • Warranty: 6 Years
  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    As you can see the cooler is rather short as compared to the coolers we have looked at so far, even though the top mounted 120mm fan, the NH-C12P, is only 114mm tall. So this makes the NH-C12P very attractive to those with narrow cases.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The design of the NH-C12P allows it to be the only cooler, other than stock, in our testing today that does not block or restricted access to RAM slots or the height of the RAM sticks. More on this issue in a moment.

    Spire TherMaxII

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Spire TherMaxII is the latest offering from Spire, and the first cooler from Spire we have looked at since the VertiCool III back in 2007. Let's take look at the TherMax II features and specifications.

    Features:
    Specifications:
  • Bearing Type: Sleeve bearing
  • Rated speed    2200 RPM +/-10%
  • Rated power    4.2 W
  • Noise level    34 dBA
  • Air flow    93.3CFM at 2,200 RPM
  • Current    0.35 A
  • Life hours    Sleeve: 30.000
  • Application
  • Thermal resistance    0.14 °C/W
  • Thermal type    Stars-420 white grease(Injection Tube,0.5g

  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The fins for the TherMax II are thin aluminum. The fins are easily bent; I felt I needed to take extra care with the cooler so not to bend them.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking at the base, we can see that Spire is using a universal clip mounting arrangement.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Spire provides a couple different mounting rings for the Intel platform; the clip is a direct fit to the AMD socket. Also included is an expansion slot mounted fan control, spring clips to mount the fan and a tube of thermal grease.

    Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme 1366 RT


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Next, we have for the first time in our labs the ever so popular Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme, but this one is the newest incarnation for Core i7. Thermalright calls it the Ultra-120 eXtreme 1366RT. I have heard many good things about the Ultra-120 coolers for a long time, so I’m looking forward to see how it stacks up to the other coolers I have in the lab. Let's take a quick look at the features and specifications of the Ultra-120 eXtreme.

    Features

    Specification

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The cooler itself is quiet heavy, but feels very solidly built. Weighing in at 790g for just the heatsink, the Ultra-120 is one of the heaviest coolers in our line up today. When holding the fan and cooler together is was quite heavy, so I weighed the fan and fan mount together to see how much they weighed. They weighed in at 8.2oz or 232.5g. That brings the total weight of the Ultra-120 eXtreme 1366 RT to a hair over 1kg. That, my friends, is one heavy cooler!

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Thermalright also says that you can install a second fan holder and fan assembly on to the Ultra-120 eXtreme 1366 RT to achieve the push-pull effect, as we can see in the image above from Thermalright's website. This would make the cooler top the scales at 1.26kg. We will be testing the cooler in the single fan configuration as that is how we received it, and that is how it would normally be purchased.

    Thermaltake ISGC-300

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Here we have the Thermaltake ISGC-300 tower cooler. When you first look at the ISGC-300 it looks like any other tower cooler. What sets this one apart is the ISGC 12 fan. The notches at the end of the fan blade make it almost silent. Finally, an option to the Noctua NF-12P fans; although not as quiet, ISGC fans are a whole lot easier on the eyes. Let's look at the specs of the ISGC-300.
  • Heatsink Dimension: 126(L) x 71(W) x 161(H) mm
  • Heatsink Material
  • Heatpipe        Ø 6 mm x 4
  • Fan Dimension        Ø 120 x 25 mm
  • Fan Speed        800 ~ 1300 RPM
  • Bearing Type        Hydro Dynamic
  • Noise Level        16 dBA
  • Max. Air Flow        58.3 CFM
  • Max. Air Pressure        1.4 mmH2O
  • Power Connector        3 Pins
  • Rated Voltage        12 V
  • Started Voltage        7 V
  • MTBF        50,000 Hours
  • Weight        697 g

  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking from the side I see that Thermaltake took some more design cues from the Noctua fins, although it is not as heavy. I'm interested to see how this new line will work out.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    One other feature of the ISGC fans is the built in speed controller. This regulates the fan from 800-1300 RPMs.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The base of the ISGC-300 is not that great; a little polishing, though, can fix that right up.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The ISGC-300 comes with all the stuff needed to mount the cooler to your favorite AMD or Intel socket.

    Thermaltake ISGC-400


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The second cooler in the new ISGC line up is the ISGC-400. This is a low profile down draft cooler. Like the ISGC-300, the ISGC-400 uses the new ISGC 12 fan and all the same mounting hardware.
  • Heatsink Dimension: 126(L) x 71(W) x 60(H) mm
  • Heatsink Material
  • Heatpipe        Ø 6 mm x 4
  • Fan Dimension        Ø 120 x 25 mm
  • Fan Speed        800 ~ 1300 RPM
  • Bearing Type        Hydro Dynamic
  • Noise Level        16 dBA
  • Max. Air Flow        58.3 CFM
  • Max. Air Pressure        1.4 mmH2O
  • Power Connector        3 Pins
  • Rated Voltage        12 V
  • Started Voltage        7 V
  • MTBF        50,000 Hours
  • Weight        697 g


  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking from the top we can see the nice spacing of the fins and all 6 individual heatpipes.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking from the side, I wasn't too sure if the cooler should sit like this, but this is how it came out of the box. After I tested it I tried to bend it level with no luck.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    On top of the base there is an aluminum heatsink.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The base of the ISGC-400 is just like its sibling 300; it is not that good but easily fixed with some polishing.

    Thermaltake SpinQ


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Legit Reviews began posting pictures of the SpinQ back in August when the staff saw it at NVISION 08, and we previously reviewed the SpinQ on our Core 2 test system. So, if it looks familiar to you on the site that might be why. Thermaltake has now asked us to test it on our Core i7 system. Due to its cooling fin arrangement this cooler is one of the more visually interesting coolers I have looked at in a while, but more on this in a moment. Let's take a quick look at the specifications for the SpinQ. 

    Features

    Specifications

  • Heatsink Dimension: 121.63mm x 90mm x 151.85mm
  • Heatsink Material: 50 Aluminum Fins + Copper Aluminum Base
  • Heatpipe: Ø 6mm x 6
  • Fan Dimension: Ø 80mm x 85 mm
  • Rated Voltage: 12 V
  • Started Voltage: 7 V
  • Fan Speed: 1000 ~ 1600 RPM
  • Power Input: 5.4 W
  • Rated Current: 0.45 A
  • Noise: 19 ~ 28dBA
  • Life Expectation: 50,000 Hours
  • Connector: 3 Pin
  • Weight: 667g

  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking from the side I still can't look at this cooler and not think of a comment from a friend that called it a "hamster wheel of death"

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The SpinQ still sports the hard wired speed control.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    It also comes with all the goodies it used to, along with the new LGA1366 mounting hardware.

    Titan Fenrir

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    New to Legit Reviews is Titan. Until now I had not heard of Titan; to my surprise they have been making aftermarket coolers since the early 90's. Only after trying to shop for other Titan coolers I found my reason for not having heard of them: no distribution in the US, but they do on other side of the pond. They are working on getting a presence in the US. Having never seen nor used a Titan cooler I have no clue what to expect from the Fenrir.

    Specifications
  • Thermal Material: 1 Syringe of Titan Royal Grease thermal compound

  • Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The name Fenrir roughly translated means "monstrous wolf." That would explain the tribal logo. The fins of the Fenrir are stamped aluminum.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Fenrir is a HDT or Heatpipe Direct Touch cooler. This style of cooler is getting more and more popular, as it's an easy way to cut weight.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Fenrir comes with a wide range of mounting parts to allow for you to mount it to your favorite CPU socket.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Fenrir makes use of a snazzy looking chrome plated 120mm fan. It's held in place with spring clips.

    Vigor Monsoon III LT


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Vigor is well known for their complete gaming systems, but they also sell the components from those systems like the CPU coolers and cases. The Monsoon III LT is the next incarnation for the Monsoon line of coolers. Compatible with just about any of the popular CPU sockets today the Monsoon III LT should work for just about anyone. Weighing in at 855g and standing 160mm tall the Monsoon III LT is not a small cooler, but is definitely not the biggest. Let's look at the features and specifications.

    Features

    Specifications

  • CPU Support
  • Dimensions: 131 x 120.9 x 160mm
  • Net Weight: 855g
  • Material: Polished Cu base, AI base, 4 Cu heat pipes
  • Heat Pipe Dimensions: 4 @ 6mm diameter
  • Fan Type: 2 x Blue LED / PWM controlled
  • Fan Dimensions: 120 x 120 x 25mm
  • Fan Speed: 2000 RPM +/- 10% max
  • Fan Airflow: 69.69 CFM
  • Fan Air Pressure: 2.94 mm H2O
  • Bearing Type: Long life sleeve
  • Fan Life Expectancy: 50,000 hours
  • Fan Noise Level: 20 dBA
  • Connector: 4-pin PWM
  • Fan Control: PWM
  • Rated Voltage: 12V
  • Start Voltage: DC 7.0V max
  • Operating Voltage: 10.8~13.2V
  • Rated Current: 0.35A(each)
  • Input Power: 4.2W(each)
  •  

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The Vigor Monsoon III LT was one of the first Core i7 coolers we received here at Legit Reviews, and to be honest, the snazziest looking cooler in the bunch. The dual 120mm blue LED fans and the fan shroud make the cooler look very nice. The fan shroud also helps the air flow stay in the front to back direction rather than out the sides.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    There are 4 heat pipes, with two separate fin towers. To direct air through the cooler Vigor has the fan mount and shroud.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Overall the Monsoon III LT cooler feels rather well built, is light, and despite using Cooler Masters retention system is not to hard to install. This may be due to the fact that the cooler can be turned upside down and due to its girth the motherboard can be balanced on it freeing up a hand for installing the retention plate.

    Intel Stock Cooler


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Ah, the lonely stock cooler. No enthusiast wants the stock cooler, thus the reason you’re reading this, but in order to know what you're gaining you need a common starting point. The Core i7 920 CPU we are using has yet another incarnation of the tried and true stock Intel design, just bigger. I will say this about the Core i7 stock cooler; it is much quieter than the coolers of the past. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still loud, but it won’t make your ears bleed under full load.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    To help those get a feel for the size of the stock cooler I lined up the stock coolers I had -- from left to right, stock cooler for Core2 E8200, Core2 Q6600 and the Core i7 920.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The design still uses the push pin retention system, aluminum fins and copper core. The base of the stock cooler is the same size as the base for the Core2 Q6600 cooler, the fins are just bigger. This is most likely why coolers that could handle Core2 CPUs can work with Core i7 with new mounting hardware. This is good; it saves money for those that already have a high end air cooler. That is as long as the manufacturer sells a retro fit kit for LGA1366 socket, and most do. Cooler Master, Noctua, OCZ, Thermalright, Thermaltake, Zahlman, and others have all released some form of LGA1366 bracket. So, if you have a high end air cooler and want to use it on your new Core i7 system then head over to your manufacture's site and take a look to see what they have. Chances are they have something for you.

    Cooler Clearance Issues


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    For our testing we will be using the Intel DX58SO motherboard. After installing a couple of the coolers in the round up a pattern started to appear. All of the coolers, except the NF-C12P, blocked at least 1 of the four RAM slots on the motherboard from being able to hold tall RAM. Some of you would have a hard time getting a stick of value RAM in, but you're thinking, “Well I’ll be running triple channel kits, I won’t need the fourth slot.”

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Not so fast: even then you would be a snug fit for tall and thick RAM like Corsair Dominator. I know that the heatsinks on Dominator RAM average 3/4 inch taller than ram without heatsinks. So, with the aid of my handy dandy quarter (which is approx. 3/4 inch in diameter), you can see where the top of the ram would be with the Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme 1366RT installed.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Looking from the side we can see that the first two banks are blocked. So, no fitting tall ram in there.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Even with the Noctua NH-U12P installed you can see in the above image not only would the heatsinks hit the cooler body, the spring clip for the fan would be in the way as well. Motherboards that have the RAM slots to the side rather than the top of the board should not have as many clearance issues. If your board is like ours for the test system you are going to want to research and do some measuring.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Other things that came up were getting to motherboard mounting screws and power connectors. This will be different from board to board for the power connector placement, but the mounting points will be across the board. 

    Legit Reviews Core i7 Test System


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    Here are the parts that make up the Legit Reviews Core i7 test system:

    Intel Test Platform
    Component Brand/Model Pricing
    Processor Intel Core i7 920 Click Here
    Motherboard Intel DX58SO Click Here
    Memory Kingston DDR3 3GB 1333MHz ValueRAM Click Here
    Video Card ATI X1950 XTX Click Here
    Hard Drive Western Digital 250gb SATA Click Here
    Power Supply PC&C Silencer 750 Quad Click Here
    Chassis Ultra M998 Click Here
    Operating System Windows Vista Ultimate (64bit) Click Here

    To test the coolers I ran them on our Intel Core i7 test platform, which was then set to run at both default and overclocked settings. As a baseline all coolers will be compared to the retail boxed Intel cooler.

    All of the temperatures were obtained by using Core Temp v0.99.3 after the system sat at idle for 30 minutes and then again under 100% load while running Prime95 (64bit) v25.8 for 30 minutes using the blended test. The room temperature was kept a constant 72 degrees Fahrenheit (22c) for all benchmarking. All of the coolers were tested with Arctic Silver Lumiere as the thermal interface material.

    Temperature Test Results


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    With all the new additions tested we can now see where the chips fell. With our Core i7 system running at stock settings we have a new king of the hill, the Titan Fenrir. Cooling our test system to a nice 54.5*C the Fenrir edged out the Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 by 1.75*C while under full load. The Cooler Master V10 was lagging in the pack, but it's a moot point, because if you just dropped the coin on the V10 you're not running stock settings. Well, you shouldn’t be, anyway. Now, let's see how things stack up with the system overclocked.


    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    With the test system overclocked to 3.5GHz we can shift the lineup with the added heat, but the top coolers still remain.  The V10 starts to shine with the added heat taking advantage of the TEC and jumps to the front of the line but only beating the Titan Fenrir by 2 degrees. The Fenrir beats out the Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 by a degree and pulled ahead of Ultra 120 eXtreme 1366 by 3 degrees.  

    Final Thoughts and Conclusion

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    With the addition of the new coolers to the roundup it made some changes to the lineup. The long standing Noctua NH-U12P has finally moved off first place and replaced by the newcomer (to LR anyway) the Titan Fenrir, and it was only beat out by the Cooler Master V10 when the Core i7-920 was overclocked. The $53.55 Titan Fenrir also wins the price versus performance crown since it costs less than half of the $122 Cooler Master V10 CPU Cooler is going for on the retail market.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    All of the new coolers we very quiet to almost silent. I was happy to see more companies starting to move to near silent fans. The new Thermaltake ISGC 12 fans are going to be very popular. They are not as uber quiet as the Noctua NF-12P fans, but very very close and they don’t have the funky color scheme. The price also seems right on the Thermaltake ISGC 12 fans as they run $21.99 shipped per 120mm fan.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    The top cooler over all is the Cooler Master V10, but at 1.2kg it is just a behemoth of a cooler and at $122 definitely not in most users' budgets or needs. Its sheer size will definitely limit the cases you can put it in that is for sure.  At half the price (or less) and almost as good of performance, any of the other top 5 air coolers will suit most enthusiasts’ needs.

    Core i7 CPU Cooler Roundup

    At first I had mixed feelings the new top air cooler, the Titan Fenrir. With never having used or seen a review for a Titan cooler before I didn’t know what to expect. When I picked up the Fenrir it didn’t have the “feel” of a solid cooler like the NH-U12P or the Ultra 120. I was pleasantly surprised when I watched the numbers come up, and I’m looking forward to see more offerings from Titan.

    The biggest, and only, drawback to the Fenrir is its availability. It's nonexistent in the US, this is mainly due to the lack of distribution. If you can go by what it goes for across the pond at £30, or roughly $47, it's one hella good price for a very good cooler. It has just as good performance as the Noctua and $30 cheaper. With the economy the way it is, that savings is a good one. The Titan Fenrir TTC-NK85TZ CPU Cooler is more than deserving of our Editor's Choice award now that it tops the performance charts!

    Legit Reviews Editor's Choice Award

    Legit Bottom Line: We have a new winner, the Titan Fenrir. It's got big bang for the buck... if you can find it.