Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
Even though Scythe may not immediately come to mind when it comes to hunting down a new CPU air cooler, but in our tenure at TweakTown, they have kept us very busy, averaging a couple of coolers submitted to us each year. Names like Ninja, Grand Kama Cross, Big Shuriken, and FUMA come to our mind, but we left out the best-selling Scythe lineup. Those would be from the line of Mugen coolers!
We have seen this cooler from the original design, where Scythe packed in five heat pipes into a massive pre-cooler base, then using a single large tower of fins, and with it, Scythe was able to tame CPUs of that era, starting a brand that has yet to end. Along the way have been a few design changes here and there, some visual, and some more hidden features, but all the way through, constantly changing for the times!
None of the earlier designs have had the lifespan of the Mugen 5 coolers, though. While we may even be missing a couple, we know of the original released in late 2015 if our memory serves us correctly, with changes for the Rev. B version. Since then, we have heard of three more versions. There is the Mugen Black RGB, there is a Mugen 5 TUF which is similar to what we have, but in our version, Scythe took a full-on approach to put as much lighting into this design, while still keeping it what makes the Mugen 5 such a big name in the industry.
What we have, is the Mugen 5 ARGB PLUS, which is a bit of a mouthful, but easy to understand none the less. It is a much refined-looking version of the standard Mugen Rev. B, where a top cover has been added to cover exposed pipe tips and potentially bare aluminum, and now you see white and black plastic until it is powered that is. Along with the ARGB addition to the top, we get to the PLUS part of the name, and that is where Scythe sends the cooler with a second fan. Not only that, but both fans are also ARGB, work in sync with the top of the cooler, and can be controlled with motherboard sync methods or with use of the optional remote.
If the previous version of the Mugen coolers were your bag, but the rest of your rig has RGB LED lighting, it may be time to step up to what Scythe has to offer, in their efforts to stay relevant with what customers today demand of their CPU coolers. Sleek, attractive appearances, silence in operation, the ability for complete ARGB control, and a flood of light into the system, and hopefully, with all of that being asked, we still hope for exceptional performance and getting it at a reasonable price. Time will tell if Scythe has made the right move, so let's see what we are dealing with, and get to testing and see where she stacks up in our long list of contenders.
Anything you need to know about the Mugen 5 ARGB PLUS cooler can be gleaned from the chart we borrowed from the product page. At the top of the chart are four, dimensional, renderings, and is also where there is a description of the wiring which supports 5V ARGB, noting it is not 12V RGB! Below the dotted line, we run into the SCMG-5102AR model number, and a quick glance shows socket compatibility with any relevant CPU. The Mugen 5 ARGB PLUS, with its pair of fans, is square, at 136mm front to back, and side to side. The height of the tower is 157.5mm tall, and with concessions made for RAM support, unless your memory is overly tall, they should fit within this same height. All told, with the fans, the Scythe Mugen 5 ARGB comes in at just over a kilogram, at 1060 grams.
Both fans are Kaze Flex 120 ARGB PWM models, which top out at 1500 RPM. These fans are 120mm in size, of course, but they are shown to be 27mm thick, due to thicker rubber anti-vibration pads in each corner. At the lower-end of the PWM curve, these fans can get as slow as 300 RPM, with 1500RPM only seen with manual control methods. At top speed, we are getting 66.47 CFM of airflow from each of the fans as well as 1.67 mmH2O of pressure. With these 4-pin PWM fans, we do see that while lower speed is well below the range that can escape a case, at max, the can get to 29.75 dBA, which means things will likely get noisy! The last thing to know is that each fan has two leads, one 4-pin to power them, and the other leads are for ARGB control with the 3-pin design, and splitters are included to simplify installation!
The only slight problem with the Mugen 5 ARGB PLUS, is that with a bit of digging, we only found one place to grab one. While there is a listing at Amazon, they show as unavailable at the time of writing this, and it appears Newegg shows the TUF variant but has no idea what the SCMG-5102AR is. Where we did find it was at frozencpu.com, where it is listed at $89.99.
Price checking other avenues, with the conversion of different prices we saw to the US dollar, it is slightly more than the $87 our match works out to, but what is a couple of dollars in the grand scheme of things, when it is the only option to be had right now, on this side of the pond, at least until Amazon restocks. Considering a bone stock Mugen 5 Rev. B can be had for around $50, we will have to do some thinking on the $40 price bump, but the fact that a second Kaze Flex 120 RGB fan is at least $17 added cost, that price bump for all of the ARGB goodness does not look so bad!