Sub-$20 CPU Coolers: A Reader's Roundup

Cooling
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Gelid Solutions CC-Siberian-01

This is the other interesting cooler in this roundup. The Gelid Siberian is a seriously small, cross-platform HTPC cooler that I initially really, really liked. The fan looks serious and the fins have a cool dimpling on them that promises above-average cooling performance.

Unfortunately, it's promising more than it can deliver. In the detail shot, you can see why. While the dimpling is a great touch, and really could make this an impressive cooler, you can also see the bad part of the cooler's construction: those dimpled cooling fins are simply pressed into a too-large aluminum heat block.





Sound Characteristics

Initial impressions upon powering up the cooler are: "Wow, that's quieter than I thought it'd be" followed by "Oh no, it clicks!"

The fan produces a subdued humming noise, and there's a telltale whoosh of the air it's moving over those dimpled cooling fins. The worst part, however, is that the motor clicks. As fan speed is reduced, the humming and whooshing of the fan's blades subsides, only to be supplanted by the stupid clicking of the motor. Because of the intensity of the clicking noise from the motor, the "quiet" speed of this cooler was a ridiculously low 500RPMs. You can probably guess where this is going. That said, the Gelid's fan can slow to an impressive 230 RPM, but given the cooler's terrible performance at its "quiet" speed, I can't recommend this cooler at all.

Performance

Well, the Alpine GT has been dethroned. We have an even more terrible cooler.

Again, maybe with a better fan this could've been a contender. Who knows?

Gelid Solutions CC-Siberian-01
Quiet
Max
RPM
Idle
Load
Rise
RPM
Idle
Load
Rise
500
31°C
81°C
56°C
2100
28°C
57°C
32°C


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