When you think of hard drive coolers, you immediately see a chunk of aluminum and a small 40mm fan that all fits into a standard 5.25" drive bay. While the Antec unit looks to fit this description, there are some added amenities that bear noting, so we'll take a quick tour of the cooler and see what they have to say for themselves. After all, good hard drives are going in at roughly US$150 and up, so we're not talking about a cheap component.
Beginning with the exterior of this unit, we see that it does fit the standard in that it has an aluminum shell to hold your precious data storing device. But one thing it has that isn't all that common is an outer housing that has fins on the top of it. Since we're talking cooling here, all of the normal rules apply when working in the area. This includes the fins that create a larger amount of surface mass to aid in the dissipation of the heat. As the heat rises, the larger surface area allows it to be dispelled at a faster rate, so will help keep the temperatures lower.
Looking at the fans...Oh, did I forget to mention that it doesn't have just a single fan installed? Silly me.
Now, as I was saying, the fans are of the 40mm variety, but both are measuring in at 40mm x 40mm x 20mm, so aren't the little small ones that sometimes show up in these so-called cooling devices. Each fan will spin at a maximum of 5000-RPM and will each blow at a rate of 5.7-CFM at only 22 dBA. While this might not seem like a huge amount of air, it does manage to work reasonably well when you consider that it is all being concentrated onto the hard drive. And in case you're interested, the fans are manufactured by YS Tech, so you can be assured of quality.
As we can see, the front of the cooler is an off-white color, so you may be limited in this regard if you're running an unusual case color. A few more choices in this area would have been a nice touch, especially considering all the options available today.
The design is very clean and doesn't overpower you with buttons, knobs and switches. What it does have is an LED display that monitors the temperatures of a pair of thermal probes that are connected to this cooler. One of the probes will be attached to the base of the hard drive and the other can be placed anywhere within the system to monitor interior case temperatures. It will switch between the two probes every five seconds and will even flash at you if the temperature of the hard drive gets to be higher than 45 degrees Celsius. This can come in very handy if you are concerned about the risks of damage to your data.
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