There are a few downsides to this design that our specific test system exposed for us. Memory is of major concern with this design and requires a kit that comes without heat spreaders to make life simple. On top of that, with the overhang, swapping memory would require the cooler to be removed. Because of the tight confines of the thermal armor, we also found that the heat pipes ran into things and left us with only one orientation to use this cooler in. These aren't complaints that most users will run into, though, and is why products are sent out for review. Even if our instance is limited, these are things to consider and may help be quiet! with a later attempt at something similar.
Enough of the bad mojo, on with the good things the Shadow Rock LP delivers - surprising performance stands out on top. Even with a 130W TDP rating, looking at this cooler, you do not feel at first that it is up to the task that it handled here today, but it proved itself more than capable in our eyes. This solid design, dual fin stacks, and a perfect match with the Pure Wings 2 fan that is hard to hear once inside of a chassis, for such a compact and slim design, be quiet! does one hell of a job with the Shadow Rock LP.
The mounting is easy enough, and the instructions are on point with renderings and text to get this cooler onto any compatible motherboard socket. Even if you are not planning to build an HTPC, this cooler is a perfect fit for SFF cases, and if it can handle what we throw at it, it is fine to use in any gaming system.
Breaking the $50 barrier in low-profile CPU coolers tends to be a bit of a downer to most, but we did just see a $30 solution fail to do what this slightly larger cooler can. With the advanced performance, we are willing to lose some access around the socket knowing this cooler is ready to take on anything we throw at it. Even if you choose not to use the PWM feature of the Pure Wings 2 fan, 32dB may be audible in an HTPC if it is close by, but in normal circumstances, the Shadow Rock LP cooler will deliver everything we discussed, yet do so like children once were, seen but not heard. At $54.95, if you are in need of silence, or have special concerns, the Shadow Rock LP is one of the most solid choices in its category.
Last updated: Apr 7, 2020 at 12:34 pm CDT
|Quality including Design and Build||95%|
|Bundle and Packaging||92%|
|Value for Money||89%|
The Bottom Line: be quiet! packs in two fin stacks, four heat pipes, and a silent yet effective fan into the Shadow Rock LP. It is a touch expensive, but without all of the features designed into this, it would not have done as well as it has in our testing.
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