The Bottom Line
Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
One thing we have found out about Cryorig is that they always seem to be up to something new. From the onset, they have done impressive things, not only for CPU cooler aesthetics, but they also have a knack for getting good performance from coolers you initially would not assume to perform as such. The larger coolers we have seen like the R1 and both of the H series coolers did well. Looking at the other end of the game, however, we also looked at the C1 and the M9i, which are either low profile or very compact in nature. These coolers, while small, still offered us with options we would have no issues with using in their niche environments.
Continuing with compact coolers, Cryorig now offers something, even more, compact. So much so that the overall height has been kept to just 47mm to fit in the tiniest of cases. On top of that, this cooler also offers some of the easiest mounting software found on CPU coolers, and also is designed not to interfere with anything around the CPU. While many coolers such as this have already passed through our labs for testing, if the past is any indication of things to come, we should have a solid 100W TDP cooler that can certainly hold its own with almost any currently offered processor in say a tiny HTPC or internet surfing and email box.
Of course, this cooler will not be for everyone, and is intended to be a stock cooler replacement, yet yielding better results than what the stock solutions do. Along with a cooling boost, also take into consideration that there is no comparison when it comes to noise levels in this latest offering either. In the Cryorig C7, which we are about to cover, near silence even in the hottest of conditions makes the C7 a pleasurable replacement to your ears, and as you will soon read, the Cryorig C7 ships for a very affordable price as well.
The Cryorig C7 will fit into any system supporting the sockets types shown across the top of the specifications chart. This is done with simple yet very effective adjustable mounting pre-installed to fit Intel sockets out of the box, and by changing a screws position and moving the standoff, it easily adapts to AMD sockets. Moving down slightly, we run into a trio of renderings of the C7, and these cover the dimensional aspects of the design, explain that the cooler is 97mm square and stands only 47mm including the fan mounted on top of it.
At the bottom of the chart, to the left side, is where the specifications for the heat sink can be seen. The C7 dimensions are shown again along with the 357 grams of total weight just below it. This design also incorporates four 6mm diameter heat pipes that run through 57 fins that are spaced 1.2mm apart. The base is made from C1100 copper, the pipes are copper as well, and both are plated nickel to fight corrosion. With this design, there are no limitations as to which height memory can be run next to it, and lastly we read that this cooler sports a 100W TDP.
In the bottom right corner of the chart, we then get into fine detail about the included fan that cools the heat sink. Cryorig offers up this 92mm fan that is 15mm thick and accounts for 62 grams of the overall weight. The fan will spin in a range of speed from 600 to 2500 RPM, with a rating of 30dBA for maximum noise level. The fan is also rated to deliver 40.5CFM and 2.8mmH2O of air flow and pressure, respectively.
Searching for this cooler turned up very little via Google. We had actually to search the sites to find listings. Pretty much the top five sites we frequent all offer a listing, and we found that the big two, Amazon and Newegg are both listing the C7 with identical offers currently. Both show the C7 with a $29.99 price tag, and both are offering free shipping in the deal too. As we alluded to earlier, for everything that this cooler promises, you have to look hard to find a way not to justify this minimal cost.
Cryorig sends the C7 along in a box with its likeness used as the background. We see the Cryorig name at the top, and closer to the bottom, we find the "cr" logo next to the C7 naming. In that same blue box, it is said that this is small, quiet, compatible, and is guaranteed to perform.
As the cooler image works its way around to the right of the box, we are shown three things this cooler offers ion its design. The use of copper heat pipes boosts the performance, the fit is guaranteed, and you can have this installed in under four minutes.
On to the back of the box where we run across all of the specifications of the C7 that we discussed earlier. It is just that in this image, the compatibility has moved from the top of the chart to the bottom.
As Cryorig tends to do with all of their coolers, they dedicate a single panel on the cooler to display just the product name. Nothing fancy, just a bold, easy to read signpost that says this is the cooler you are looking for.
Inside of the outer packaging, we find another plain cardboard box inside of it with a large round opening in the top of it. Once the lid is removed, you can then access the cooler inside that sits on a layer of cardboard to protect the base as well as offering space for the hardware to fit under it.
Cryorig C7 CPU Cooler
In the C7, this and the opposing side are identical. We have the base at the bottom with a pair of pipes that run out of the base and return into the fins ten deep into the stack. As the pipes run through the fins and protrude, they are pinched very close to the fins to keep the dimensions small.
The same is said for the sides, were both match each other. Here we find a set of 57 fins all arranged 1.2mm apart, with tabs bent between fins to keep the alignment. The leave the majority open so that memory or CPU power management can use the extra air flow from the fan.
We also find a row of tabs supporting the middle span of the fin stack. As for any tricks used in fin shaping, there are none in this design. Under the fan, the fins are completely flat.
Flipping the cooler to expose its underbelly, we get a look at the hardware and how it is mounted to the base for Intel sockets. We find that the base of the cooler is protected with a plastic sticker, more to fight oxidation than for protection.
With the sticker removed and some CP7 sitting on top of it, we find a reflection we can almost make out, but it not refined to a mirror polish. While it is slightly convex in the center, we do not see obvious milling marks on it either.
We also wanted to show how this universal mounting worked. Simply remove the back screw, twist the bracket, and take that same screw and put it in nearer the standoff. You also need to remove the standoffs from their inner holes and move them to the outer set. Viola, AMD ready.
Before we get into the hardware, we wanted to show the Cryorig C7 in its full form from a higher angle. This is more typical of what you will see of this cooler if not just looking at the top of it.
Accessories and Documentation
Since the mounting hardware comes already installed on the cooler, apart for the backplate, this is all you will need. There is a bag including four 8mm nuts to secure the standoffs, and Cryorig also includes an 8mm nut driver in the box.
While a large tube of CP7 Cryo-paste is included, there is enough paste for maybe five or six applications. The backplate is universal as well. On the right and left edges, we find AMD holes and the taps jutting out from the top, and the bottom is used for Intel sockets.
The installation manual is all folded up in the box and opens up into a large piece of paper that covers both AMD and Intel mounting. The text is basic but offers enough to get the cooler installed easily. If the text is not enough, there are good renderings along with it to be sure you can see exactly what they are trying to explain.
The fan and its mounting system are all one piece in this design. The frame of the 2500 RPM fan sits just above the fins on the heat sink, and there are tabs on the inside of two edges to clip into the open ends of the fins. Not in the image is the power connection, but this is indeed a 4-pin PWM driven fan.
Installation and Finished Product
Typically, this image would not be first, but in this design, with the hardware all ready to go for us. The first step is to apply some paste to the CPU and then set the cooler on it allowing the standoffs to go through the mounting holes in the motherboard.
We then flip the board over holding on to the cooler, slipped the backplate over the standoffs, and with the nut driver, secured the 8mm nuts.
On our test system, we find the cooler is sitting well below the memory, and the C7 stays well within the stock coolers footprint, with square corners of course. We have nothing blocking memory slots, and since it sits in the well of our thermal armor, we have full access to screws and wiring as well.
With the motherboard and Cryorig C7 mounted to it back in the chassis, we see that the cooler indeed clears everything. Even when it comes to PCI-E access for Mini-ITX motherboards, the C7 affords you all the room you need.
Test System Setup, Thermal Tests, and Noise Results
Chad's CPU Cooler Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Sabertooth Z87 - Buy from Amazon
- CPU: Intel Core i7 4770K - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Memory: G.Skill F3-2666C11D-8GTXD - Buy from Amazon
- Video Card: HIS Radeon HD 7950 IceQ - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Storage: Patriot Torch 120GB - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Case: IN WIN D-Frame - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- Power Supply: SilverStone ST85F-G - Buy from Amazon / Read our review
- OS: Microsoft Windows 8 Professional 64-bit - Buy from Amazon
- Software: RealTemp 3.70, AIDA64 Engineer 5.20.3400 and CPU-z 1.72.1 x64
To see our testing methodology and to find out what goes into making our charts, please refer to our CPU Cooler Testing and Methodology article for more information.
The stock results are exactly what the in-house testing from Cryorig showed us this cooler would offer as we peaked at 65 degrees. Also considering the company it keeps in the charts, it is right there in the mix with many low-profile and compact cooler designs.
As we expected before we even started the testing, the Cryorig C7 and its 100W TDP is not enough to tame our test system. While we did hit the throttle point of our 4770K, the cooler held on for a full seven minutes before giving up the ghost. It did try to hang in there at around 91 degrees, but saturation took its toll and the C7 failed to pass this portion of testing.
Noise Level Results
Limiting fan voltage for the stock run as we always do, we found the 92mm fan to be spinning at 1800 RPM at this point. At that time, we were delivered only 26 dB of noise, and outside of the two-foot range, it is hard to tell if the CPU cooler or the video card cooler is what you hear.
As we tortured both the C7 cooler and our 4770K, we found that with 12 volts running through the fan that it indeed does spin at 2500 RPM, but was still only delivering 40dB of noise at this time. Of course, there are more silent options, but rarely at this cost, and it blows the Intel stock cooler away in this respect too.
While we could come at Cryorig and complain that this cooler does not handle our balls out attempt to make their cooler submit to heat, at the same time, that is not the intention of this design, and at the same time, the stock cooler fails way sooner than the C7 does. This is indeed a niche cooler in the aspect of its compact and low-profile design, which typically end up in small form factor designs or HTPCs.
The reality is even though it stays well within the confines of the designated socket clearance area, this cooler is still able to handle its business, and hitting the exact result that the company offers with guaranteed performance, what else can we ask for. Cryorig set the bar, and we found their assessment to be on point, no fluff involved.
For those of you in the niche market of using the smallest of cases, opting for Mini-ITX motherboards, you are golden with a cooler like this. Even if opting for an AMD based system, switching the position of the mounting brackets and installing the cooler can be done in under four minutes without issue. Supplying the tools and simple to use hardware is a great start, but outside of push-pin clips, we can't think of many coolers that are this easy to install and use. Also in being so compact, it gives its users free roaming access around the CPU for memory, motherboard screws, and most importantly on Mini-ITX, full use of the one and only PCI-e slot on the motherboard. On top of all of this, we were handed a cooler that did exactly as expected thermally but audibly is barely noticeable even at full speed.
Many may scoff at a cooler like this and feel they have no use, but there have been many instances where we just needed a cooler to boot up systems with, and this C7 would be perfect for such things. For those of you currently still using a stock solution, with minimal investment, you can reduce temperatures near fifteen degrees, and cut noise levels by more than half.
It's great for an HTPC or another open environment PC where you don't want a cooler blasting across the room or down the hall. While we may not be discussing the best of the best, compared to its surrounding coolers, at $29.99, the Cryorig C7 is the most economical solution there. Anyone who fits into the three categories we covered, you should seriously consider this cooler, and even those without a current backup for when your AIO pump wears out, at this price, it is easy to justify having it around just in case.
|Quality including Design and Build||94%|
|Bundle and Packaging||93%|
|Value for Money||99%|
The Bottom Line: Everything you need is right there in the box! The C7 from Cryorig is simple to install, delivers on every promise Cryorig made, and is offered at a terrific price point.
PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.
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