The clash of the Twin Towers

For the past few weeks the DVTests.com team released a series of tests and reviews of twin tower coolers recently released on the market from worldwide famous brands such as Thermalright, Noctua, Cryorig and be quiet! offering various dimensions, very interesting features and most of all outstanding performance. And since we have them on stock I decided to compare them one by one and check their performance when working in very serious conditions. And these are the main competitors in this comparison:

  1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E – Test and Review – a cooler which I’ve already tested and after I broke one of the fans, I had to replace the TY-141 pair with TY-143 pair, which made the cooler perform like Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E- Extreme.
  2. Noctua NH-D15 – Test and Review – the standard cooler setup featuring a pair of NF-A15 PWM fans.
  3. Cryorig R1 Universal – Test and Review – the standard cooler setup featuring 1 x Cryorig XT140 fan and 1 x Cryorig XF140 fan.
  4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 – Test and Review – the standard cooler setup featuring 1 x SilentWings PWM 120mm fan and 1 x SilentWings PWM 135mm fan.

And this is what all of the cooler packages look side by side.

IMG_9481

The clash of the Twin Towers Main technical details

After I enjoyed this awesome view for about five minutes I believe it is time to check the main technical details regarding the coolers and later compare them while cooling my overclocked AMD FX-8350 processor generating a huge heat, especially when it is fully loaded with calculations.

IMG_9505

  1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme  is with dimensions of 154(W) x 103(D) x 163(H) mm and overall weight of 1090g including the fans. The cooler is supplied with 8 x Ø6mm copper heatpipes with nickel coating and without direct contact with the processor and two towers with 45 absolutely identical nickel coated fins each with 2mm fin gap. The cooler is cooled by 2 x TY-143 fans with dimensions of 152(W) x 26.5(D) x 140(H) mm working at 600~2500 revolutions per minute, providing airflow level of 31.4~130 CFM and working at 21~45 dBA.
  2. Noctua NH-D15  is with dimensions of 150(W) x 135(D) x 160(H) mm and overall weight of 1320g including the fans. The cooler is supplied with 6 x Ø6mm copper heatpipes with nickel coating and without direct contact with the processor and 45 absolutely identical nickel coated fins each with 2mm fin gap. The cooler is cooled by 2 x NF-A15 PWM fans with dimensions of 150(W) x 25(D) x 140(H) mm working at 1500 (+/- 10%) revolutions per minute, providing airflow level of 140,2 m³/h and working at maximum noise level of 24,6 dBA.
  3. Cryorig R1 Universal is with dimensions of 140(W) x 128.5(D) x 168.3(H) mm and overall weight of 1181g including the fans. The cooler is supplied with 7 x Ø6mm copper heatpipes with nickel coating and without direct contact with the processor and 42 absolutely identical nickel coated front fins each with 2,4mm gap and 53 absolutely identical nickel coated back fins each with 1.8mm gap. The cooler is cooled by 1 x Cryorig XT140 –  a slim fan with dimensions of 140(W) mm x 13(D) mm x 140(H) mm and made to be installed on the front tower working at 700 ~ 1300 ±10 % revolutions per minute range, providing maximum airflow level of 65 CFM at 20 ~ 24 dBA noise level range and 1 x Cryorig XF140 –  a thick fan with dimensions of 140(W) mm x 25.4(D) mm x 140(H) mm made to be installed between the two towers working at 700 ~ 1300 ±10 % revolutions per minute range, providing maximum airflow level of 76 CFM, while working at 19 ~ 23 dBA noise level range.
  4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 is with dimensions of 150(W) x 137(D) x 163(H) mm and overall weight of 1197g including the fans. The cooler is supplied with 7 x Ø6mm copper heatpipes with nickel coating and without direct contact with the processor and 42 absolutely identical nickel coated fins plus 3 shorter ones each with 2mm gap. The cooler is cooled by 1 x SilentWings PWM 120mm fan with dimensions of 120(W) mm x 25(D) mm x 120(H) mm and made to be installed on the front tower working at maximum 1700 revolutions per minute range, providing maximum airflow level of 93.3 m3/h and 1 x SilentWings PWM 135mm fan with dimensions of 135(W) mm x 25(D) mm x 135(H) mm made to be installed between the two towers working at 1400 revolutions per minute and providing maximum airflow level of 113.8  m3/h.

And this is what all of the coolers look like next to each other. Pretty nice picture, to be honest.

IMG_9500

I believe it is time to describe the testing rig and the testing methodology and later show the test results from all four coolers.

The clash of the Twin Towers testing setup

CPU: AMD Vishera FX-8350

  1. At standard frequency 4.020 MHz (at 1.356V)
  2. At medium overclock frequency of 4.420 MHz (at 1.416V)

Motherboard: GigaByte 990FXA-UD3

Video card: 2 x Gigabyte GV-R927XOC-2GD

Memory: 2 x 4GB Geil Black Dragon 1866 MHz

Hard drive: Kingston SSD SV100S264G

Case: SilverStone Raven RV-03

Power supply: Antec HCP-750W

Thermal paste: Gelid GC-Supreme

The tests were conducted in a closed system with:

  1. 2 SilverStone AP181 – 180mm fans on the bottom panel putting fresh air in and spinning at about 1200 rpm
  2. 120mm fan behind the motherboard cooling the socket and spinning at about 1000 rpm.
  3. Room temperature of about 24 degrees.

Both SilverStone AP181 – 180mm fans were connected together to the chassis 1 connector and were rotating at maximum speed.

The clash of the Twin Towers testing methodology

And here I want to describe my testing procedure.

I will install all four coolers and do stress tests using Prime95 AVX software with constant load on the cooler  for 14:30 minutes with custom settings of minimum FFT size (in K of 128), max FFT size (in K of 128) and Run FFTs in place at:

  1. standard frequency of 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) using only the one of the fans provided with the cooler installed between the two towers working at maximum speed.
  2. standard frequency of 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) using both of the fans provided with the cooler installed on the cooler working at maximum speed.
  3. medium overclock frequency of 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) using only one of the fans provided with the cooler installed between the two towers working at maximum speed.
  4. medium overclock frequency of 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) using both of the fans provided with the cooler installed on the cooler working at maximum speed.

With the medium overclock frequency of 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) the coolers have to handle up to 250 W constant power for 14:30 while working at 24 degrees ambient temperature. Pretty serious load and pretty serious ambient temperature and I hope they will succeed.

After 8 hours of installing and testing these are the results, which all of the coolers achieved…

The clash of the Twin Towers test results

1. Test at standard frequency of 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) using only one of the fans provided with the cooler installed between the two towers working at maximum speed.

  1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme  – 1 x TY-143 fan
  2. Noctua NH-D15  – 1 x NF-A15 PWM fan
  3. Cryorig R1 Universal – 1 x Cryorig XF140 fan
  4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 – 1 x SilentWings PWM 135mm
TR SA IB-E Extreme 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) Noctua NH-D15 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V)
Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme 1FAN@4020MHz 1.356V Noctua NH-D15 1FAN@4020MHz 1.356V
Cryorig R1 Universal 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) be quiet! Dark Rock Pro3 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V)
Cryorig R1 Universal 1FAN@4020MHz 1.356V Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 1FAN@4020MHz 1.356V

All of the test results have been summed up in the following charts:

Results Temp

And the fan speed during the tests:

Results FAN SPEED

The clash of the Twin Towers test results

2. Test at standard frequency of 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) using both of the fans provided with the cooler working at maximum speed.

  1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme  – 2 x TY-143 fan
  2. Noctua NH-D15  – 2 x NF-A15 PWM fan
  3. Cryorig R1 Universal – 1 x Cryorig XT140 fan and 1 x Cryorig XF140 fan
  4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 – 1 x SilentWings PWM 120mm and 1 x SilentWings PWM 135mm
TR SA IB-E Extreme 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) Noctua NH-D15 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V)
Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme 2FANS@4020MHz 1.356V Noctua NH-D15 2FANS@4020MHz 1.356V
Cryorig R1 Universal 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V) be quiet! Dark Rock Pro3 4.020 GHz (at 1.356V)
Cryorig R1 Universal 2FANS@4020MHz 1.344V Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 2FANS@4020MHz 1.356V

All of the test results have been summed up in the following charts:

Results Temp

And the fan speed during the tests:

Results Fan Speed

The clash of the Twin Towers test results

3. Test at medium overclock frequency of 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) using only one of the fans provided with the cooler installed between the two towers working at maximum speed.

  1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme  – 1 x TY-143 fan
  2. Noctua NH-D15  – 1 x NF-A15 PWM fan
  3. Cryorig R1 Universal – 1 x Cryorig XF140 fan
  4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 – 1 x SilentWings PWM 135mm
TR SA IB-E Extreme 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) Noctua NH-D15 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V)
Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme 1FAN@4420MHz 1.416V Noctua NH-D15 1FAN@4420MHz 1.416V
Cryorig R1 Universal 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) be quiet! Dark Rock Pro3 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V)
Cryorig R1 Universal 1FAN@4420MHz 1.416V Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 1FAN@4420MHz 1.416V

All of the test results have been summed up in the following charts:

Results Temp

And the fan speed during the tests:

Results Fan Speed

The clash of the Twin Towers test results

4. Test at medium overclock frequency of 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) using both of the fans provided with the cooler working at maximum speed.

  1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme  – 2 x TY-143 fan
  2. Noctua NH-D15  – 2 x NF-A15 PWM fan
  3. Cryorig R1 Universal – 1 x Cryorig XT140 fan and 1 x Cryorig XF140 fan
  4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 – 1 x SilentWings PWM 120mm and 1 x SilentWings PWM 135mm
TR SA IB-E Extreme 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) Noctua NH-D15 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V)
Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme 2FANS@4420MHz 1.416V Noctua NH-D15 2FANS@4420MHz 1.416V
Cryorig R1 Universal 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V) be quiet! Dark Rock Pro3 4.420 GHz (at 1.416V)
Cryorig R1 Universal 2FANS@4420MHz 1.416V Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 2FANS@4420MHz 1.416V

All of the test results have been summed up in the following charts:

Results Temp

And the fan speed during the tests:

Results Fan Speed

The clash of the Twin Towers conclusions

After all of the tests are done I should say a few words regarding the coolers and their performance and give them the awards, which each of them deserves according to its performance in this specific comparison test.

1. Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme  – a pretty massive and obviously a pure performer cooler. The cooler showed the best cooling performance, unfortunately it was the noisiest of them all.  The cooler is meant to provide the best possible cooling performance, totally sacrificing the noise level with the idea to keep every processor up and running no matter at what frequency and how loaded it is. I believe it deserves the following award:

Best-performance

2. Noctua NH-D15  – a CPU cooler offering almost identical dimensions with the model above made to provide a very nice performance/noise level balance with extremely high build quality. The cooler is meant to provide the best possible performance when it is needed and at the same time keep a low noise level.  I believe it deserves the following award:

Best-Perf-Silence1

3. Cryorig R1 Universal –  a bit smaller and at the same time a bit taller CPU cooler according to the other competitors, offering a very high-tech structure, made to provide very good performance/noise level balance. A cooler, which will definitely handle various range of processors, working at all kinds of frequencies without a problem and at the same time offering a very interesting and stylish appearance.

Best-Perf-Visual

4. Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3 – a CPU cooler, offering pretty serious dimensions according to the first two competitors and at the same time pretty stylish appearance, totally made to provide the best possible performance/noise/appearance balance. At the last tests conducted at 4420MHz per core, the model was working at its maximum capability and still it kept the processor running stable and at decent temperature ranges. Even though the fans were working at 1700/1400 revolutions per minute, the cooler remained the most silent among all competitors.

Best-Visual-silence

And before I finish this comparison let’s check their prices and warranty time.

Official price (MSRP) for Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme:  euro

Official warranty: 24 months

I thank Thermalright for the test sample.

ibe

 

Official price (MSRP) for Noctua NH-D15: 89.90 euro

Official warranty: 60 months

I thank Noctua for the test sample.

 

Official price (MSRP) for Cryorig R1 Universal: 89.95 usd

Official warranty: 6 years with the extended warranty card

I thank Cryorig for the test sample.

Cryorig

 

Official price (MSRP) for Be Quiet Dark Rock Pro 3: 79 euro

Official warranty: 36 months

I thank Be Quiet for the test sample.

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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.
12 Comments
  1. Reply doyll 10.07.2014 at 13:15

    Wonder how the Silver Arrow IB-E performs at similar noise level to the others .. like in the 1100-1500rpm? ..

    Do you monitor cooler intake air temp or just room temperature?

    • Reply Dk_vr 11.07.2014 at 20:25

      To be honest IB-E couldn’t keep the processor running. I tried this test too but it was not possible to finish it. The cooler was not able to keep the VRMs cool with the fans and the processor was crashing.

      I measure just the room temperature.

      • Reply doyll 11.07.2014 at 20:48

        You’ll be surprised how much the air temp going into cooler differs from room temp. It often changes with fan speed. ;) TY-143s at speed move way more air then normal case fans can supply or exhaust. :D

  2. Reply Songo 24.06.2014 at 14:48

    There is no like high-end CPU cooler ;)

    • Reply Dk_vr 11.07.2014 at 20:26

      Personally I prefer a high end single tower coolers. It is much easier to operate with them and they provide a slightly higher temps, which are not really scary :)

  3. Reply Stuen4y 09.06.2014 at 13:39

    I did not understand which one is the editor’s choice? :)

    • Reply Dk_vr 09.06.2014 at 13:47

      All of them :D,

      They are my precious ! :P Every single cooler in this review is a very good product :)

  4. Reply Ogidogi 09.06.2014 at 12:21

    Very good review. For me the best CPU cooler is Thermalright Silver Arrow IB-E Extreme!

  5. Reply angelreaper 09.06.2014 at 9:58

    Great contest. Go ahead with next competitors Dobri!

  6. Reply Dimcho 09.06.2014 at 9:52

    This review should be titled “Clash of the Goliaths” (and patent the copyrights, I don’t mind) :D Personally, I love smaller coolers, but this titanic quartet really makes me happy – so much (cooling) power at one place. Once again, great jog, Dobri, I’ve really enjoyed the review, especially for including the “new big one” from Noctua – D15 :)

  7. Reply PepiX 09.06.2014 at 9:40

    That was meant to be ‘pure’ not ‘pre’ ;)

  8. Reply PepiX 09.06.2014 at 9:39

    That was good.. to be honest I prefer comparisons as opposed to pre reviews..

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