|SilverStone SST-AP181 Air Penetrator Fan|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cooling|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Sunday, 08 August 2010|
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Air Penetrator Detailed Features
I'm comparing the AP181 fan to the 180mm fans used as the stock fans in an SilverStone Fortress FT02 case. These seem to be modified versions of the FM181 fan SilverStone sells separately. Since SilverStone doesn't sell a stand-alone version of the FT02 fan, I'll simply call it "the FT02 fan". The chart below compares the specifications of the three fans.
Compared to the FT02 fan, the AP181 seems very similar. The only visual difference is the integrated grille of the AP181. The FM181 sold separately has no grille, but the FT02 fan has a honeycomb grille (removed for this photo) that SilverStone makes available as an option for those buying the FM181 fan.
Given the amperage these fans draw, it's probably a good idea to run them directly from your power supply rather than from a motherboard header. But looking at the comparative specs of the FT02 fan and the AP181, there doesn't seem to be much difference: the latter draws significantly more power at maximum, but is specified to deliver the same 130CFM airflow. Your first clue might be the higher static pressures (especially at the high speed), but if you missed that, SilverStone provides a hint on the back of the box.
SilverStone claims the "Air Penetrator" design provides (for lack of a better term) a more "focussed" column of air from the fan. They've even prepared an interesting YouTube video showing the difference.
It looks like the Air Penetrator blows a much more coherent column of air than ordinary fans. But will this translate into better performance? Let's see...