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Review: Cooler Master Hyper N520 vs. Scythe Mugen 2 vs. Xigmatek Achilles S1284C

by Parm Mann on 15 July 2009, 16:51 3.75

Tags: Mugen 2, Achilles S1284C, Hyper N520, Cooler Master, Scythe, Xigmatek

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System setup and notes

Cooler Akasa AK-965 Cooler Master Hyper N520 Scythe Mugen 2 Xigmatek Achilles S1284C
Fan Single 92mm Dual 92mm Single 120mm Single 120mm
Price £13.79 £28.16 £37.94 £36.79
CPU 3.2GHz Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9770
Chassis CM Storm Sniper
Motherboard EVGA 790i SLI FTW
BIOS revision I790SZ13
Motherboard software Intel  9.1.1.1012
Memory 4GB Corsair XMS3 DHX, DDR3 1,333 CL9
Graphics card NVIDIA GeForce 8800 Ultra
Graphics driver Forceware 182.50
PSU Enermax Modu 82+ 825W
Operating System Windows Vista Business SP1, 64-bit

Setup notes

Our test system, specified above, features a Cooler Master CM Storm Sniper chassis with its pre-installed fans running at their medium setting.

The first set of temperatures are taken when the system is idle. To put the coolers through their paces, we then stress the system by running the Prime95 torture test for a period of two hours. The ambient, idle and load temperatures are noted.

What's the Akasa AK-965 doing in the mix? It's included for two reasons. Firstly, it performs almost identicallyl to Intel's reference HSF, and secondly, it'll show whether or not our trio of coolers are worth the premium when compared to a budget alternative.

Let's take a look at the contenders.