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|
|CPU||3.2GHz Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9770|
|Chassis||CM Storm Sniper|
|Motherboard||EVGA 790i SLI FTW|
|Motherboard software||Intel 188.8.131.522|
|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|
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.