|Xigmatek Achilles Plus SD1484 Heatsink|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cooling|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Monday, 14 February 2011|
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Testing and Results
For this test, I used the following heat sinks in addition to the Xigmatek Achilles Plus SD1484 Prototype Sample:
For heat sinks without a stock fan (including the Achilles SD1484), I used a Thermalright TR-FDB-12-1600 fan, which puts out 63.7CFM at 28dBa according to Thermalright. This mid-range fan provides good air flow and reasonable noise levels. For "apples to apples" testing, where each heat sink is tested with the same fan, I used a Delta AFC1212D. This high-performance PWM fan is rated at 113CFM at a claimed 46.5dBa at full speed...which means that while it moves quite a bit of air, it's very loud.
The Intel Core i7-950 I used in this test runs much hotter than the Core i7-920 I'd used previously. At 1.35 volts, with a BCLK of 175 MHz, the 4,025 MHz CPU pumped out enough heat to stress the very best heat sinks. AIDA64 would report throttling once any single core reached 100 degrees Celsius; any throttling resulted in cancelling the test and recording a "FAIL". Although this overclocked and overvolted Core i7-950 represents an extreme, these are expensive, high-end heat sinks.
The chart below summarizes the results with the stock fans (hotter temperatures towards the top of the chart, and cooler temperatures towards the bottom). The twin-fan Cooler Master V6 GT and Corsair H70 have a real advantage here, since their dual fans move more air than the stock single fan of any of the other units.
Stock Fan Tests
With its dual fans providing an aggregate airflow of over 180CFM, the Cooler Master V6 GT takes the lead here, keeping the blistering hot Core i7-950 almost 8 degrees cooler than the Achilles Plus prototype. But the Xigmatec acquits itself pretty well here, coming in only 1.8 degrees hotter than the ProlimaTech Super Mega and 4 degrees cooler than the CoolIt Vantage A.L.C. This four-degree break is the largest difference between adjacent coolers in this test. Xigmatek's existing Achilles II SD1284 cooler comes with an 85CFM fan; if the retail Achilles Plus SD1484 comes with a similar fan, the temperature results in this test would be somewhat better than the ones I obtained with the 63.7CFM Thermalright fan.
Delta High Speed Fan Tests
With more airflow, courtesy of the Delta 113CFM fan, the lineup changes. The Corsair H50 and CoolIt Vantage A.L.C. betray their first-generation designs with bottom-of-the-pack performances, while the Xigmatek Achilles Plus prototype manages an 8-degree improvement, which brings it to within 3 degrees of the top-performing cooler in this test, and only 1.6 degrees short of the Cooler Master V6 GT. This is an excellent result considering the other air coolers are either almost twice the depth (the Super Mega and the Venomous X) or have two fans with much more airflow (V6 GT).