Well, after all the big talk about why this cooler SHOULD be at the top of the pile, it is time to take a look at cold, hard numbers. After all, there have been several coolers that have looked mighty good on paper only to fizzle when they were put to the test. Let's take a look at the test system first, though.
Xoxide modified Lian-Li PC60 Case
Abit KX7-333 Motherboard
AMD Athlon XP 1800+ Processor
512MB Crucial PC2700 DDR Memory
nVidia Reference Ti4200
Seagate Barracuda 40GB Hard Drive
Arctic Silver III
Since the heatsink doesn't come with a fan, I'll be using one of the more popular models for the tests. The Thermaltake Smart Fan II with a manually adjustable speed will be the power behind the cooling. It measures in at 80mm x 80mm x 25mm and will deliver roughly 75-CFM airflow at approx 48 dBA of sound output.
All tests will be conducted at my normal ambient room temperature of 21C. Testing will consist of taking the temperature at idle, then after a Quake III Arena Deathmatch and finally after a looping run of the 3DMark2001 Demo. But to make things even more interesting, we'll raise the FSB of the processor a bit to heat things up very nicely and run the tests again. I do an overclock of the FSB only so that the processor will be the only thing warming up. We do want to see how it handles the heat, don't we?
Temperature - Idle
It is beginning to look as though all those fancy reasons we talked about before are for real. Granted these are only idle temperatures, but to sit here at a full six degrees cooler than one of the Volcano 9 units is impressive.
Temperature - Quake III Arena
We don't have the same six degree spread as before, but we're still far below what this system normally runs at with a more standard type of cooler. In a world where one or two degrees is a big deal, these results are truly remarkable. Let's see if it can keep up the pace.
Temperature - 3DMark2001 Demo Loop
We may as well face facts; this cooler is definitely for real. Not only do we have superior cooling with the MCX462+, but we also have enough options in fans to make sure we get the best possible mixture of performance and quiet. Very nicely done Swiftech!