Gelid Silent Spirit & Scythe Samurai ZZ CPU Coolers

Cooling
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TEST RESULTS

Stock Fan Measurements: Gelid Silent Spirit

Stock Fan Specifications
Manufacturer
Power Rating
2.76 W
Model Number
G12922524(M)-P
Airflow Rating
48.5 CFM
Bearing Type
Hydro Dynamic
Speed Rating
900~2400 RPM
Corners
N/A
Noise Rating
10~25.8 dBA
Frame Size
101 x 101 x 40 mm
Header Type
4-pin PWM
Fan Blade Diameter
87 mm
Starting Voltage
3.4 V
Hub Size
36 mm
Weight
70 g
Data in green cells provided by the manufacturer or observed; data in the blue cells were measured.

The Silent Spirit's stock fan is a clone of those used by Arctic Cooling, a 7-blade model with fluid bearings, minimal housing, soft-mounted to a plastic frame that clips onto the heatsink. The fan can start with as little as 3.4V, which is atypical for a PWM model.

Stock Fan Measurements
Voltage
Speed
SPL @1m
12V
2470 RPM
32 dBA
9V
2030 RPM
26 dBA
7V
1750 RPM
20 dBA
6V
1470 RPM
15~16 dBA
5V
1060 RPM
12 dBA
Measuring mic positioned 1m at diagonal angle from the intake side of the fan.
Ambient noise level: 11 dBA.

Acoustically speaking, the stock fan is fairly good. It is turbulent, buzzy, and generates a hum at 9V~12V. The hum disappears at 7V, and the character becomes mostly smooth. It is quiet at 6V with a slight rattle audible up-close. At 5V, it is practically inaudible.

Stock Fan Measurements: Scythe Samurai ZZ

Stock Fan Specifications
Manufacturer
Power Rating
2.04 W
Model Number
SY9225SL12M-P
Airflow Rating
6.7~55.55 CFM
Bearing Type
Sleeve
RPM Rating
300~2500 RPM
Corners
Open
Noise Rating
10~25.8 dBA
Frame Size
92 x 92 x 25 mm
Header Type
4-pin PWM
Fan Blade Diameter
86 mm
Starting Voltage
6.8 V
Hub Size
33 mm
Weight
90 g
Data in green cells provided by the manufacturer or observed; data in the blue cells were measured.

The Scythe fan is a Slip Stream, though their 92 mm variants have fewer blades and less curvature.

Stock Fan Measurements
Voltage
Speed
SPL@1m
Free Air
Mounted
12V
2440 RPM
26~27 dBA
34~35 dBA
10V
2080 RPM
22 dBA
29~30 dBA
9V
1810 RPM
17~18 dBA
25 dBA
8V
1460 RPM
13~14 dBA
18 dBA
7.7V
1300 RPM
13 dBA
15 dBA
7.5V
940 RPM
<11 dBA
<11 dBA
Measuring mic positioned 1m at diagonal angle from the intake side of the fan.
Ambient noise level: 11 dBA.

Like other Slip Streams, this 92 mm variant is very smooth, but buzzy at 9V and higher. Oddly, the fan is significantly louder when mounted on the heatsink than in free air, measuring about 7 dBA higher when the fan is set to 9V or higher. Thankfully the difference is much less at lower fan speeds, 3~4 dBA at 8V, and only 2 dBA at 7.7V. At 7.5V and below, the fan is inaudible in both scenarios.

The Scythe Katana 3, a slanted but mostly upright cooler, is equipped with the same fan model and fan clips but the noise difference was much smaller when we tested it. The increase in noise on the Samurai ZZ is mostly turbulent, and likely caused by the air bouncing off the motherboard. Taller downblowing coolers don't seem to be affected by this phenomenon.



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