At this point, the main question that stands out above the rest is: Was all the ingenuity and trademarked processes worth it? At this point there is no denying that some, or the combination of all of the processes used, does have its advantages. At its current price tag, this cooler is the obvious choice when using a dual-tower cooler on your CPU. Adding the third fan may not be as cost efficient as the initial purchase of the R1 Ultimate on a dollar per degree angle of looking at it, but we were able to drop the temperatures more than a degree at both stock, and overclocked levels of testing. That is not to say you don't have to give some when buying a cooler of this nature though.
While the mounting was easy, this cooler does encroach on the memory, and if this is a real deal killer for you, this is the reason why they make the R1 Universal. The screws on the motherboard weren't blocked near as badly as in other coolers, but raising the fan on the front to clear the memory may also make it too tall to go into a lot of mid-towers, and even some full-tower cases; just something to think about.
In the realm of aesthetics and performance: the R1 ultimate has the Dark Rock Pro 3 beat hands down. I don't know exactly what it is about this design, but the combination of grey on black, with shiny and matte surfaces really made me appreciate it aesthetically a fair bit more than the brushed aluminum top we just looked at on the DRP3. Having a great aesthetic appeal, and being able to take on coolers like the TD03, and creep up into the top of the listings is no small feat. I applaud CRYORIG for what they were able to achieve, even if with a bit more noise than other, similar solutions.
It is a cooler like this that makes me think: Why take the route of buying an AIO? With an AIO, it takes a ton of noise to get these sorts of results, and the only real advantage is to get the massive weight of a cooler like this off the socket, if that is even still an issue. From what I have seen in my years of testing, since LGA1366, this really has not been an issue at all. Over multiple systems, I think sockets and motherboards are now stronger, and don't tent to warp or bend from 1282 grams of weight like they did in the past.
All around, I really like what the CRYORIG R1 Ultimate brings to the table. It is nice to look at, has a ton of features that our charts obviously shows made this cooler more efficient, it is quick and simple to install, and it is priced very well against its direct competition, as well as others like dual radiator AIO solutions that will cost a fair bit more. Considering they also make the XT140 fan (or the thin version), you can do away with the memory clearance issues we saw, but you also have to consider that fan produces 10 CFM less than the XF 140, so you would also need to take the original front fan and install it on the back to keep the level of performance we saw in our results.
I for one, think that as long as CRYORIG stays the course that they have set out upon, the R1 ultimate shows that they definitely have their head in the game, and have the team needed to take air cooling to the next level that we have all been waiting for.
PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.
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- Page 1 [Introduction]
- Page 2 [Specifications, Availability and Pricing]
- Page 3 [Packaging]
- Page 4 [CRYORIG R1 Ultimate CPU Cooler]
- Page 5 [Accessories and Documentation]
- Page 6 [Installation and Finished Product]
- Page 7 [The Test System and Thermal Results]
- Page 8 [Noise Level Results]
- Page 9 [Final Thoughts]
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