Thermalright Venomous X Silent Edition CPU Cooler

Cooling
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Heatsink Comparison Tables

Single Fan CPU Coolers (ref. 120mm fan): °C Rise Comparison
Heatsink
Fan voltage / SPL @1m
12V
9V
7V
16 dBA
13 dBA
12 dBA
Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme Rev.C
38
40
43
Thermalright Venomous X
38
41
43
Prolimatech Megahalems
38
41
44
Noctua NH-U12P
39
42
44
Scythe Mugen-2
39
42
45
Cogage TRUE Spirit 1366
40
42
45
Prolimatech Armageddon
40
42
46
Zalman CNPS10X Quiet
40
43
46
Scythe Yasya
41
43
47
Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme
40
43
48
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus
41
44
48
Thermalright Ultra-120
42
45
49
Titan Fenrir
43
46
50
Scythe Ninja 3
44
47
49
Noctua NH-C12P
43
47
51
Zalman CNPS10X Extreme
43
47
53
Swiftech Polaris 120
46
49
54
Zalman CNPS10X Flex
45
50
54
Cooler Master V8
46
50
54
Scythe Grand Kama Cross
45
52
57
Arctic Cooling Freezer Xtreme Rev.2
49
52
58
Scythe Kabuto
51
53
60

Compared to other large single fan CPU coolers, the Venomous X places a very close second to the Ultra-120 eXtreme Rev.C. Given how similar the heatsinks are constructed, this is not a big surprise. Both coolers are exceptional performers.

Dual Fan CPU Coolers (ref. 140mm fans): CPU °C Rise Comparison
Heatsink
Fan Voltage / SPL*
8V
7V
6V
18~19 dBA
15~17 dBA
12~14 dBA
Prolimatech Genesis
36
37
39
Noctua NH-C14
37
39
41
Thermalright Silver Arrow
37
39
41
Noctua NH-D14
38
40
42
Thermalright Venomous X
39
41
42
*Note: there are minor differences in measured SPL due to the variety of fan orientations offered by the compared dual fan coolers.

Venomous X also puts up a pretty good fight against the dual 14 cm fan monsters, coming close to matching the Noctua NH-D14 when using a pair of our reference 14 cm fans.

MP3 SOUND RECORDINGS

These recordings were made with a high resolution, lab quality, digital recording system inside SPCR's own 11 dBA ambient anechoic chamber, then converted to LAME 128kbps encoded MP3s. We've listened long and hard to ensure there is no audible degradation from the original WAV files to these MP3s. They represent a quick snapshot of what we heard during the review.

These recordings are intended to give you an idea of how the product sounds in actual use — one meter is a reasonable typical distance between a computer or computer component and your ear. The recording contains stretches of ambient noise that you can use to judge the relative loudness of the subject. Be aware that very quiet subjects may not be audible — if we couldn't hear it from one meter, chances are we couldn't record it either!

The recording starts with 5~10 second segments of room ambiance, then the fan at various levels. For the most realistic results, set the volume so that the starting ambient level is just barely audible, then don't change the volume setting again.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Though obviously unable to live up to its "silent" billing, the Thermalright Venomous X Silent Edition comes as close as an CPU heatsink can to this claim without resorting to passive cooling. As the included fans spin at a meager 600 RPM and employ fluid bearings, they are exceedingly quiet, being effectively inaudible even in our anechoic chamber. They also perform surprisingly well on the Venomous X, giving our reference Nexus 120 mm fans a run for their money. We aren't big proponents of the plastic fan mounts though — the metal clips work just as well and as a bonus, are compatible with most 14 cm fan models. The heatsink itself, being built from the same mold as the Ultra-120 series, has the same superb cooling proficiency as the Ultra-120 eXtreme Rev.C, thanks in no small part to its convex base and sublime mounting system.

If you're in the market for a potent CPU cooler that is extremely quiet straight out of the box, the Venomous X Silent Edition fits the bill better than any product we've tested in recent memory. Our only complaint is the current street price of US$70~$75. Larger, more capable coolers like the Thermalright Silver Arrow and Noctua NH-C14 can be found for about the same amount, though they both require some fan control magic to match the noise output of the Silent Edition. This isn't necessarily a bad thing as their higher fan speeds also make them more versatile — an 11 dBA cooler afterall is beyond overkill for many users.

Our thanks to Thermalright for the Venomous X Silent Edition heatsink sample.

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Articles of Related Interest

Prolimatech Genesis CPU Heatsink: Retaking the Crow
Swiftech Polaris 120 CPU Heatsink
Zalman CNPS9900 MAX & CNPS5X CPU Coolers
Thermalright Silver Arrow Dual 14cm Fan Cooler
Noctua NH-C14 Dual Fan Top-down CPU Cooler
Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme Rev.C & AC Freezer Xtreme Rev.2

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Discuss this article in the SPCR forums.



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