Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review

Billed as a high-end flagship air CPU cooler, Scythe gives the Fuma series another go with the Fuma 3 we have under the spotlight for testing.

Published
Updated
Manufacturer: Scythe (SCFM-3000)
11 minutes & 33 seconds read time
TweakTown's Rating: 91%
TweakTown award

The Bottom Line

You certainly get a lot of cooler for the cost with the Scythe Fuma 3. Along with a plethora of features and superb hardware, you get a dual-tower CPU cooling solution that fits where many others might not, but the performance isn't the best.

Pros

  • + Compatibility
  • + RAM clearance
  • + Low cost
  • + Fits Mini-ITX
  • + HPMS V

Cons

  • - Performance

Should you buy it?

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Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing

Looking to Scythe for information on what we have in our hands leads us to believe we have quite the cooler on our desk. With mentions of phrases like flagship model, high-end dual tower, higher fin density, better cooling performance, 100% RAM compatibility, and Z690I Mini-ITX compatibility, Scythe goes above and beyond what we see from the premium cooler manufacturers, and knowing the MSRP already, we almost feel like things may be too good to be true.

However, with a newer design, the asymmetrical layout, opting for a slimmer fan on the front for better RAM clearance, and things like Reverse Jet Flow and HPMS V, from what we have seen in previous Scythe coolers, we feel they may be onto something here. The product page even states this is optimal for high TDP processors. It has us on their side, willing to give it a go and see how well the hype stands up to scrutiny,

As the title alluded to, we are looking at the Scythe Fuma 3 today, which Scythe says takes the Fuma 2 and adds higher fin density to deliver better cooling performance. That said, if true, Scythe has one serious cooler to show the world. However, we still feel that everything is not adding up, but we digress for now, as we show you what we found with the latest from Scythe with their Fuma 3.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 01

We copied what we found from the Fuma 3 product page into this chart, which starts by mentioning the SCFM-3000 part number of this cooler. It is shown to fit Intel LGA 115x, 1200, 1700, 2011(v3), and 2066 sockets while offering AMD AM4 and AM5 support. With no mention of the copper base surrounded by a chunky aluminum pre-cooler where the crossbar mounting is attached, we do see that Scythe mentions the six, 6mm diameter heat pipes but does not say anything about them being copper, nor that they are nickel plated. The width of the Fuma 3 is 138mm, the depth is 128mm, and the height is 154mm, weighing in at 1095 grams. We also see no mention of the aluminum used for the fins. The front tower has fifty-two fins in the stack, whereas the back section has fifty-one fins, and both sets carry a different shaping and layout.

There are two fans to cool these towers, but one is the Kaze Flex II Slim PWM, which spins counterclockwise. The slim fan boasts a peak speed of 1500 RPM, delivering a maximum of 39.44 CFM with less than one mmH2O of pressure. The second fan is the Kaze Flex II 120 PWM fan, which is 26mm thick instead of 15mm. The standard version will top out around 1500 RPM, giving us 67.62 CFM of airflow with 1.5 mmH2O of pressure, which will spin clockwise. Both fans have exposed cables to power the fans, which terminate with 4-pin PWM connectors.

We should mention the two-year warranty, but we also saw the price and were taken aback by how affordable this cooling solution is. Whether you go to Amazon or Newegg, the cost is the same: a meager $49.99. If everything we have read before looking at the product and testing the Fuma 3 holds true, Scythe has something amazing to show the world. As for now, we will hold off on any judgment until we see all of the facts, but this is one cooler with many good ideas being implemented, and you should stick around to see how well it all goes.

Buy at Amazon

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler

TodayYesterday7 days ago30 days ago
$49.99$49.99$49.99
Buy at Newegg
$49.99$49.99$49.99
* Prices last scanned on 4/24/2024 at 1:32 pm CDT - prices may not be accurate, click links above for the latest price. We may earn an affiliate commission.

Packaging

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 02

The packaging for the Fuma 3 is typical of what we've seen from Scythe. Using a white backdrop with dark blue highlights, we can see the tower taking up much of the panel with the logo and product name at the left. We are told this is a CPU cooler in green, and at the bottom, we find LGA1700 and AM5 support icons.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 03

For your warranty coverage and four global links to reach out to, Scythe uses this panel to say you are backed for two years against defects and offers the SCFM-3000 model number at the bottom below the serial number, which will be needed for warranty claims.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 04

The back shows us some of the socket support, height, two fan descriptions, a mention of contra-rotating fans, covers the six 6mm heat pipes, and tells us of its excellent RAM compatibility in small boxes. Below is a chart covering much of what we discussed earlier, but it also shows that fans spin on sealed precision FDB bearings.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 05

The last side is blue, and the top half is covered with seven-dimensional renderings of the tower and the fans. Across the bottom are three images, one showing the HPMS V hardware, the second looking at the cooler head-on, and the third showing the bulk of the entire CPU cooler.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 06

Inside that box, we found the tower completely enclosed in another layer of cardboard, with dense foam pads above and below the tower and some cardboard slid in by the center fan to help keep it from damage while helping maintain spacing. The box under the tower has all the hardware and accessories, while the slim Kaze fan rides outside.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 07

The front of the Fuma 3 shows a stack of fifty-two aluminum fins stacked onto six nickel-plated heat pipes. At the bottom, the right side is notched to clear motherboard PWM covers, and the tower is topped with a thick plastic cap, which is louvered to allow air to pass through it.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 08

We laid the Fuma 3 on its back so that you can get a better idea of the fin shape and how the edges are highest, allowing that slim fan room to get up to speed before pushing what little airflow it offers through this set of fins.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 09

With the side of the Fuma 3 in view, we can see a much thinner fin stack at the front, and the heat pipes are bent over themselves to make alignment with the array. The back section is much thicker and heavier, so we have foam under it for support. The tower does not stand on its own. The bends of the pipes from the base to the back section are much gentler.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 10

The back of the FUMA 3 is slightly different than what was found at the front. The lower section of fins is notched, again for the I/O cover clearance with smaller motherboards. The shaping of the fins is different, but Scythe tops both towers with the same chinky black plastic covers.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 11

Lying on its face, we get a better look at the fin shapes and how much this differs from what we saw in the thinner tower. Every other fin is offset in depth as well, leaving the edges and every other fin for the fan to rest upon, but on the other side of this thicker tower.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 12

The left side of the Fuma 3 shows us a mirror image from the other side, with one major difference. On the left, the fins have extra clearance above the GPU, so Scythe takes them to the bottom of the arrays.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 13

As heat leaves the CPU, it first goes through the copper base of the cooler and is then sent to the heat pipes and the chunky aluminum pree-cooler. Scythe also mounts the crossbar hardware to the pre-cooler, using spring-loaded screws to secure the tower to the rest of the HPMS V hardware.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 14

No matter how many fins in the arrays the heat pipes go through, they are aligned well enough to have the fins press-fit around all six pipes. The pipes have similar spacing across the array in both stacks, but we feel if they were offset, it might help with performance eliminating dead zones.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 15

Using copper for the base of the Fuma 3, then machining it in a circular pattern while leaving it slightly convex, Scythe then nickel-plated it. Removable yet visible rings are from the air under the protective plastic, but the finished base is quite nice.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 16

At the opposite end of the Fuma 3, we can see what we will look at for this tower once installed on whatever system you use. The thick black plastic top covers have body lines at either end and Scythe logos in their centers, while the rest of the black has a textured finish.

Accessories and Documentation

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 17

Digging into the hardware box, we first pulled out the LGA1700 mounting brackets, the universal Intel backplate, and the set of universal brackets to the right. The brackets on the right fit the rest of the Intel sockets and are AMD-supportive.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 18

The plastic spacers at the left are for AMD sockets, and the long thumbscrews are used to secure hardware to the default backplate. We then find the four knurled nuts to secure the top brackets and a set of HEDT Intel socket standoffs.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 19

Even though the Fuma 3 comes with two fans, Scythe sends a third set of wire fan clips, as you could add a third fan to the back of the tower. Along with them, we see the Y-splitter fan cable, a tiny tube of Scythe thermal grease, and, while tough to see, there is a white plastic TIM spreader.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 20

At first glance, this pair of 120mm fans appear very similar, but if you look at the fan blades, you can see they are designed to spin opposite each other. Beyond that, the fan on the left is a KF1225FD15-P, while the one on the right is a KFS1215FD15-P.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 21

After unfolding what fits in the hardware box, Scythe ensures even the most novice CPU installer has what is needed. There is a parts list with identification, and each socket type has a personalized set of instructions to get the Fuma 3 installed in virtually no time at all.

Installation and Finished Product

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 22

Removing the top plastic portion of the motherboard hardware allows us to begin with the Scythe Fuma 3 installation. As the instructions stated, we set up the black plastic spacers over the protruding portion of the stock backplate with the rubber washers on top. We then aligned the brackets, screwed them into place with the provided screws, and were ready to mount the cooler.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 23

After applying MX-5 to the CPU, we set the cooler on it, making sure that the spring-loaded screws of the cooler align with the threads on the brackets below. The slim tower has grooves that allow the provided screwdriver to reach the screws on the crossbar.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 24

We mounted the fans to their respective towers and got our first look at the FUMA 3 peeking over the top of our RAM. We like that the fans ride low enough that you do not have to have them in front of the top covers but lower to cool additional components around the socket.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 25

When Scythe said 100% RAM clearance, they were not joking. The slim fan shipped with the Fuma 3 sits a few millimeters from the closest stick in our four DIMM motherboard. The fan is slightly lower than the RAM, which is of no concern, as it isn't in the way in the first place.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 26

Panning out to see more of the Fuma 3, we can see how the notches at the bottom allow larger covers around the CPU, which leaves room to tuck in the wires from the fans and the Y-splitter cable. A third fan could be added, but as you can see, it will ride quite high on the Fuma 3, increasing the overall height.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 27

The blend of the Fuma 3 with the rest of our system is perfect, as the matte, textured, black plastic fits well with the theme. There is quite a bit of weight on the socket, but the cooler is locked solidly in place using the HPMS V mounting hardware.

Test System Setup, Thermal Tests, and Noise Results

Chad's CPU Cooler Test System Specifications

  • Motherboard: ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII HERO [Wi-Fi] (AMD X570) - Buy from Amazon
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600X - Buy from Amazon
  • Memory: Corsair Vengeance LPX 4000MHz 4X8GB
  • Graphics Card: ASUS GeForce RTX 2060 6GB OC - Buy from Amazon
  • Storage: Galax HOF Pro M.2 1TB SSD
  • Case: Hydra Bench Standard
  • Power Supply: ASUS ROG Thor 850W - Buy from Amazon
  • OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64-bit - Buy from Amazon
  • Software: AMD Ryzen Master, AIDA64 Engineer 6.25.5400, and CPU-z 1.92.0 x64

To see our testing methodology and to find out what goes into making our charts, please refer to our 2020 CPU Cooler Testing and Methodology article for more information.

Thermal Results

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 28

At first glance, the 60.9°C average of our CPU temperatures seems lower than it is on our chart. You must realize it is less than seven degrees from the lead and is well ahead of some contenders at the bottom of the chart. Keeping company with the NH-U12A and the H150i Elite Capellix using quiet mode, you start to see the value, although the Scythe Fuma 2 Rev. B did slightly better.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 29

Less than eight degrees from the top, the Fuma 3 comes in at 68.5°C with the overclock applied. It is still keeping up with the Corsair AIO in quiet mode and just a few tenths behind the NH-U12A.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 30

If we let the fans spin at their maximum, we gained 3.7°C, which pushed the Fuma 3 slightly higher in this chart. Sadly, in both overclocked runs, the Fuma 2 Rev. B proved to be the better option, thermally.

Noise Level Results

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 31

As we took the fans from their idle speeds of 593 RPM and 757 RPM, when running this test, the 15mm fan spun at 961 RPM, while the 26mm fan sun at 1064 RPM. In open air, you will notice the 31 dB of noise, but inside of a case, it is inaudible.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 32

Adding the overclock, the 15mm fan topped out at 1178 RPM while the PWM signal controlled these fans. The 26mm fan spun at 1250 RPM while the slim fan offered what it could. The noise raised some, leaving us with a 36 dB reading.

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler Review 33

Applying 12V to the fan headers had our fans spinning at 1593 for the 15mm fan and 1524 on the 26mm fan. The noise level jumps significantly to 52 dB at their full speed.

Final Thoughts

There is much to appreciate with what Scythe puts forth with their Fuma 3. The 100% RAM clearance is real, even for those with HEDT systems. We like how they use differential spinning of the fans to help increase static pressure while stabilizing air flow through the towers. The asymmetrical design allows for complete RAM clearance, but the thin fan at the front is a major player in that regard. We have always liked all versions of the HPMS. While slight changes have been added, mainly for socket support, the hardware Scythe offers is tight and has not once been hard to use.

We also appreciate that you get everything you could need right in the box. From extra fan clips to the TIM spreader and the screwdriver to get your FUMA 3 mounted, every bit of it is an "extra" to other manufacturers. One of the best things is that the Fuma 3 weighs in at nearly 1100 grams and is so solidly mounted you do not need to worry much about socket or motherboard flex under such a load.

Regarding the meat and potatoes, the thermal performance and the noise levels were not great. We keep in mind that this is not a $100 solution, but implications on the product pages say that this is an improvement to the older Scythe Fuma 2, and our Rev. B sample is better in all tests. That is a tough pill to swallow, and while they never mention the Rev. B specifically, it is all we can go on in our charts. The thermals are not horrible, and considering the pair of coolers that the Fuma 3 keeps up with are $120 or more, it does put a positive spin on the overall view of these metrics. We do like the PWM curve set to this cooler, keeping it nearly silent under normal operations, but we feel it would have gotten similar results with a more powerful 26mm fan and no second fan.

All things mentioned are still floating through our minds, and while not the best in its price class, you get a fair amount of bang for your buck with the Fuma 3. Even though it may not have met our expectations, we can see the market where this cooler will thrive. At just $49.99, there are many advantages Scythe delivers that other coolers do not. RAM clearance is huge, and Scythe took care of that. Keeping a large CPU cooler in a mid-tower isn't easy, and at 154mm in height, Scythe fits more places than some. While the Scythe Fuma 3 is a bit niche to us, we feel they do well enough in all aspects to keep the average user more than happy.

Photo of product for sale

Performance

78%

Quality

94%

Features

100%

Value

93%

Overall

91%

The Bottom Line

You certainly get a lot of cooler for the cost with the Scythe Fuma 3. Along with a plethora of features and superb hardware, you get a dual-tower CPU cooling solution that fits where many others might not, but the performance isn't the best.

TweakTown award
91%

Scythe Fuma 3 CPU Cooler

TodayYesterday7 days ago30 days ago
$49.99$49.99$49.99
Buy at Newegg
$49.99$49.99$49.99
* Prices last scanned on 4/24/2024 at 1:32 pm CDT - prices may not be accurate, click links above for the latest price. We may earn an affiliate commission.

Chad joined the TweakTown team in 2009 and has since reviewed 100s of new techy items. After a year of gaming, Chad caught the OC bug. With overclocking comes the need for better cooling, and Chad has had many air and water setups. With a few years of abusing computer parts, he decided to take his chances and try to get a review job. As an avid overclocker, Chad is always looking for the next leg up in RAM and coolers.

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