Scythe Ninja 3 & Scythe Yasya CPU Heatsinks

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Scythe Ninja 3

While the Ninja 3's base is polished to an almost mirror-smooth finish, Scythe should focus more on its flatness rather than the visible shine. Its concave shape is likely the main cause of its lackluster cooling. Though not a poor heatsink, the Ninja 3 underperforms for its size/weight. It is possible that our review sample is an anomaly; if so, perhaps Sythe will see fit to send us another sample.

Not only is it a behemoth, it's a pain to install as well because bolting down the heatsink requires the motherboard to be out of the case, and flipped upside down. It's something that should've been addressed after the Mugen-2; Scythe still has a ways to go in this regard. It is a secure mounting system, though, and like all previous Ninjas, the latest incarnation is a symmetrical square so there are no orientation issues on AMD motherboards.

The stock Slip Stream fan has a higher maximum speed than we would have liked, but the included controller can bring it down to near inaudible levels and below if connected to a PWM controllable fan header. The current street price for the Ninja 3 is US$45, a little high considering there are a slew of better performing alternatives.

Scythe Ninja 3

* Symmetrical (proper orientation on AMD boards)
* Secure mounting system
* Quality stock fan with controller

* Poor concave base
* Annoying installation procedure
* Big, heavy

Scythe Yasya

The Yasya, despite its smaller size, managed to outperform the Ninja 3 by about 3°C consistently in our tests. Another 3°C and it would've challenged for champion status. Unfortunately it uses the stock mounting mechanism which isn't ideal because of the Yasya's weight. In addition, the fan points upward when installed on AMD motherboards; given its performance it really deserves something better.

The Yasya ships with the same stock fan and controller as the Ninja 3, so the acoustic quality and overall noise level simply isn't an issue. The Yasya can be found online for as low as US$35, a US$10 discount over the Ninja 3, making it a very solid budget cooler.

Scythe Yasya

* Great performance
* Quality stock fan with controller
* Affordable

* Blows upward on AMD boards
* Questionable mounting system
* Sharp

Our thanks to Scythe Co., Ltd. for the Ninja 3 and Yasya heatsink samples.

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