be quiet! Dark Rock 2 Tower Heatsink

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be quiet! Dark Rock 2 Tower Heatsink

July 20, 2012 by Lawrence Lee

be quiet! Dark Rock 2
CPU Cooler
be quiet!
Street Price
£50 inc. VAT

Given our purview, we take a keen interest in PC components that are marketed as "quiet" or "silent." Sometimes we exercise a little extra scrutiny on products that include the words in the name. When a manufacturer goes one step further and calls themselves something like be quiet! it perks our interest even more as it implies that everything they make has been and will be designed with noise reduction in mind.

be quiet! is a German company that produces power supplies and cooling solutions for desktop PCs. According to their website, "be quiet! sticks to its name: More than ten years experience in the field of noise reduction and silence make be quiet! products probably the most silent one on the market." It's an ambitious claim that we'll gladly put to the test.

The box.

be quiet! makes their CPU cooler debut at SPCR with the Dark Rock 2, yet another tower heatsink. The box claims it has the proficiency to handle an 180W TDP processor and they also made a point to advertise LGA2011 support. It's a non too subtle implication that it's suitable for a heavily overclocked Sandy Bridge Extreme. The heatsink is equipped with one of their signature SilentWings fan, which has a fairly unusual design.

Package contents.

The heatsink is packed in foam while a small accessory box holds the manual, thermal compound, and mounting hardware. The kit supports all of Intel and AMD's modern desktop sockets and includes a backplate, essentially mandatory for a cooler of this size. The mounting procedure requires the bolts to enter through the back, so the motherboard has to be turned upside-down to facilitate installation. The only way you can mount this heatsink with the motherboard already bolted in the case is if there is a large opening on the motherboard tray giving access to the underside of the board.

The Dark Rock 2.

The heatsink itself doesn't have a remarkable design, a six heatpipe tower resembling various offerings from many other manufacturers. The entire body is nickel-plated, a popular feature that gives heatsinks a menacing luster. The fan is very distinctive with ridged blades and oddly placed mounting holes (they stick out at the center rather being flush either either edge). It's also a weird size, 135 mm (137 mm by our measurements).

be quiet! Dark Rock 2: Key Features
(from the product web page)
Feature & Brief
Our Comment
Very quiet operation
135mm SilentWings® fan with PWM function for optimized fan speed throughout the entire working range provides the perfect balance between superior cooling and quiet. The specially developed wave shaped contour of the heatsink fins optimizes airflow and avoids noise generating turbulence.
Many manufacturers create a non-uniform surface for the fan to press against, but in our experience, it makes no difference, at least not at low fan speed levels.
Highly effective cooling
Six ultra-high performance heatpipes with an oxygen-free copper layer help to transport the heat directly to the optimal place of the heatsinks.
Standard for high performance heatsinks.
First-class materials
Dark nickel-plated metal surfaces and a solid brushed aluminum cover. A stable backplate ensures secure attachment, even when the computer is being transported.
Nickel-plating gives it a nice sheen and prevents oxidation. Backplates are a necessity for heavy coolers.
Product conception, design and quality control in Germany
3 years warranty
Nice, but how often to heatsinks become faulty?

be quiet! Dark Rock 2 Rev.A: Specifications
(from the product web page)
Overall dimensions without mounting material (L x W x H) (mm) 97 x 138 x 166
Total weight (kg) 0.86
TDP (W) 180
LGA2011 Yes
Socket compatibility

Intel: LGA 775 / LGA 1155 / LGA 1156 / LGA 1366 / LGA 2011
AMD: FM1, AM2 (+) / AM3 (+) / 754/ 939 / 940
Backplate Mounting Yes
Anti vibration fan fixing -
Overall noise level (dB(A)) @ 900/1250/100% (rpm) 8.7 / 13.9 / 21.2
Number of fins 44
Fin material
Base material Copper
CPU contact surface CNC machined
Heatpipe number, Diameter (mm) Heatpipe number, Diameter (mm) 6x 6
Surface treatment Aluminum / Dark nickel-plated
Fan dimensions (mm)
135 x 135 x 25
SilentWings Yes
Speed @ 100% PWM (rpm) 1300
Air flow @ 12V (cfm, m3/h) 57.9 ; 96.8
Air pressure @ 12V (mm H2O) 1.64
Bearing type Fluid Dynamic Bearing
Rated voltage (V) 12
Input current (A) 0.25
Input power (W) 2.64
Connector 4-pin PWM
Cable length (mm) 200
Lifespan (h / 25°C) 300,000

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