SilverStone FQ121 – Test and Review

So what is SilverStone FQ121?

A few weeks ago, the guys from SilverStone announced the latest 120 x 25mm performance fan part of the new FQ series made to provide the best possible performance/appearance/noise level balance. According to the official technical details the fan is made to operate in 1,000 – 1,800 revolutions per minute range, providing maximum airflow level of 67.5CFM, static level pressure range of 0.54 – 1.82mm H2O at noise level range of 16.4 – 24 dBA. Pretty serious technical details, which I am really eager to test, but that will be a bit later.

Now lets check SilverStone FQ121 itself…

IMG_9205

SilverStone FQ121 was provided to me for doing a test and review in a pretty typical package for the SUScool series included in the company portfolio, featuring a transparent plastic package with two parts connected to each other. On the front side of the package there are some technical details related with the product, a QR code leading to the official web page and a full view of the fan structure, showing some serious design and very stylish colour scheme…

IMG_9208

And of course all of the technical details regarding the product are located on the back of the package written in several languages. As you can see from the picture above the fan offers pretty nice airflow but the most important is actually the static pressure, which to be honest is pretty high.

So let’s continue with checking out the fan structure…

And this is what the fan looks like out of its package

The front side of the fan The back side of the fan
IMG_9209 IMG_9213

SilverStone FQ121 is made of a square P.B.T. (Polybutylene Terephthalate), very solid and reliable frame with dimensions of 120 x 25mm completely painted in white. The frame itself is made to be installed on a 120mm case fan slot or as a main cooling unit for a cooler radiator compatible with 120 or 140mm fans. The frame offers four pre-made holes on the four sides for LEDs. Unfortunately, the fan is not supplied with backlight LEDs, but maybe some future model will be.

Apart from the frame, SilverStone FQ121 features an entirely painted in light blue and very aggressively looking propeller also made of P.B.T. material with 9 not very wide but with very sharply angled blades made to provide the optimal airflow / static pressure balance. As you can see from the pictures above on every blade there are pre-made channels for focusing the airflow guaranteeing maximum efficiency.

The connection between the propeller and the frame is made with  P.C.F. bearing (Powder Copper Fluid Bearing) offering stable 1,000 – 1,800 revolutions per minute with maximum airflow level of 67.5CFM, static level pressure range of 0.54 – 1.82mm H2O, noise level range of 16.4 – 24 dBA and fan life cycle up to 150,000 hours. Pretty serious technical details I should say…

IMG_9214

The standard SilverStone FQ121 package features:

  1. 4 metal screws
  2. molex to 3 pin adapter for powering the fan directly from the power supply

After I spent some time describing the fan, I believe the time has arrived to check how it will perform.

The tests will be conducted in my standard way. I will mount the fan and test it at 5V/7V/9V/12V and my goal will be to check the performance of the fan in real conditions. The product will be tested under close-to-perfect conditions, not taking into account any external factors. The results achieved during the test can in no way be the same if the fan is mounted on a cooler or on the case fan hole of any modern computer case. I will measure the amount of air going through the fan for one hour and its speed. For this I use a fan controller, a voltage meter, an anemometer and a stand made specifically for this purpose.

And this is what the fan looks like installed on my test stand:

IMG_9217

And this is what the fan looks like when operating on the test stand:


The test results are shown in the following charts:

Airflow through the fan at 5V, 7V, 9V, 12V

SilverStone FQ121 A

Propeller rpm during the tests at 5V, 7V, 9V, 12V.

SilverStone FQ121 R

The anemometer showed the following air speed passing through the propeller:

SilverStone FQ121 S

 

After mounting the fan onto the stand, and leaving it to run for about 30 minutes at maximum speed, it was time for the tests to begin.

As with my other tests, again I started with a gradual increase of the voltage through the Lamptron FCT starting at 0V and SilverStone FQ121 made at least one full revolution at about 7.5V. To do the first test I had to decrease the operating voltage to 5V.

Test at 5V:

At the first test conducted at 5V, SilverStone FQ121 was rotating with stable 810 revolutions per minute, providing airflow level of 53.28 cubic metres per hour. At this test the fan was completely silent.

Test at 7V:

At the second test conducted at 7V, SilverStone FQ121 reached airflow level up to 84.48 cubic metres per hour while rotating with stable 1245 revolutions per minute. At this test the fan started generating a very tiny noise coming from the air passing through the propeller. Overall the fan could not be heard from a distance higher than 10cm.

Test at 9V:

At the third test conducted at 9V, the fan was rotating at 1560 revolutions per minute providing airflow level of 106.56 cubic metres per hour. Unfortunately the noise level increased and the fan was a bit noisy.

Test at 12V:

At the last test conducted at 12V, the fan reached its maximum performance providing airflow level of 135.36 cubic metres per hour while rotating at 1965 revolutions per minute. At this test the fan was pretty noisy but at the same time providing serious cooling performance. Very high airflow level plus pretty serious static pressure  will result in a bit higher noise level which is perfectly normal.

I believe  the time to share my conclusions has arrived:

Performance:

SilverStone FQ121 is the latest model in the SilverStone portfolio, first model of a new series entirely made to provide the best possible airflow level/ static level pressure / noise level balance, and to work with CPU coolers or water cooling radiators and from what I saw it will definitely handle its job. The fan was pretty well performing at all of the tests, unfortunately pretty noisy at the last two of the tests, but with these results no one really expects this fan to be quiet when it had to cool an overclocked processor working at high or extremely high frequencies. I believe the best purpose for this product is to be installed as a main cooling unit for a big CPU radiator or on a water cooling radiator and provide a cool and quiet operation. Of course, that depends on the processor frequency and the load on it…

Appearance:

SilverStone FQ121 is one really good looking fan featuring a light blue/white colour scheme combined with very aggressive propeller appearance which overall is one really eye-catching product.  Unfortunately, the colour scheme is not really well fitting in a modern, entirely painted in black case but I believe when installed on a cooler it will definitely be the first thing to be seen inside the system.

I think SilverStone FQ121 deserves the following reward:

Best-Perf-Visual

SilverStone FQ121 has been added to the 120mm fans catalogue.

Official price (MSRP): SilverStone FQ121  –10 euro

Warranty: 24 months

Special thanks to SilverStone for providing us with a test sample.

400x100_RVZ01

SilverStone FQ121 – Test and Review
8.9 Total Score
Very good performance/ noise level/ visual balance

Performance
10
Noise level
7
Additional accessories
7
Appearance
10
User Rating: 4.68 (2 votes)

Dobrin Krastev is the owner, reviewer and newsman of www.DVTests.com with more than 15 years' experience in personal computers, server and storage systems, UPS, peripheral devices and software. Passionate about testing and reviewing, AMD overclocking using AM3 990FXA and AMD FM2 A85X test systems and building modding projects.
1 Comment
  1. Reply Dimcho 19.05.2014 at 9:06

    The only thing I don’t like about this lovely and well-performing cooler is the warranty – for 10 euros and its size (12cm), you should get 36 months (even more, but I try to be objective here) 😉

Leave a reply

Search