ThermalTake SpinQ: Unique Blower-fan Heatsink

Cooling
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TEST RESULTS

Cooling Results

Thermaltake SpinQ
Fan Voltage
SPL @1m
Temp
°C Rise
°C/W
12V
30 dBA
42°C
21
0.27
9V
27 dBA
43°C
22
0.28
7V
21 dBA
45°C
24
0.31
5V
16 dBA
48°C
27
0.35
Load Temp: CPUBurn for ~10 mins.
°C Rise: Temperature rise above ambient (21°C) at load.
°C/W: based on the amount of heat dissipated by the CPU (measured 78W); lower is better.

Fan @ 12V: Considering this is the fan's maximum speed, performance was not impressive at 21°C above ambient temperature. The fan produced a consistant hum but the sound profile was dominated mainly by broadband turbulence. The subjective noise wasn't as harsh or grating as most other 30 dBA fans we've heard.

Fan @ 9V: It was nice to see the CPU temperature increase by only a single degree when the fan was dialed down to 9V. At this level, the fan had a bit of a low-pitched whine with a somewhat subdued rattle coming from the motor/bearings. SPL dropped by 3 dBA.

Fan @ 7V: Thermal rise was an additional two degrees. At 7V the fan generates a very low-pitched hum. At 21 dBA, it is pretty quiet. We would consider this to be the SpinQ's sweet spot: the best compromise between noise and performance.

Fan @ 5V: Cooling suffered another 3°C. The fan exhibited audible clicking which became inaudible with a bit of distance — at 1m it was hard to pick out. The overall noise level was very low at 16 dBA.

We have no way of accurately measuring the airflow of a blower fan due to its geometry, but subjectively by feel alone, the SpinQ's fan is impressive. The flow felt all around the cyliner of fins is very high at 12V, and still quite good at 5V.

The SpinQ fan sounds smoother than almost any fan Thermaltake (and Zalman) has used on its heatsinks in the past. It is still a long way from the smoothness of the best box fans, though. Cooling performance is not in the highest ranks, especially at its sound levels. The fan itself seems to take up too much room, and as a result, the fins lack the necessary surface area to take advantage of the nice airflow.

The manual fan speed controller at its minimum puts the fan SPL at 18 dBA@1m, which corresponds about 6V. So, for those without a fan control system, the SpinQ can be adjusted to a fairly low noise level without any extra software or hardware.

Thermaltake SpinQ vs. Zalman CNPS9300 AT
at the same SPL
Zalman CNPS9300 AT
Thermaltake SpinQ
Fan Voltage
SPL @1m
°C Rise
Fan Voltage
SPL @1m
°C Rise
9V
30 dBA
17
12V
30 dBA
21
7V
25 dBA
18
9V
27 dBA
22
5V
21 dBA
23
7V
21 dBA
24
 
5V
16 dBA
27

The SpinQ produces noise levels similar to the Zalman CNPS9300 AT, the only heatsink with an integral fan we've tested in the anechoic chamber so far. At higher noise levels, the 9300 AT is superior, but when the fans are slowed down to approximately the same noise level, the SpinQ comes in about even. This suggests that the airflow across the SpinQ's fins remains very good even when the fan is slowed significantly. Whether it's the higher pressure of the blower fan, or more efficient distribution of the flow is hard to say.

SpinQ vs. Top-down Coolers
@ 16 dBA
Heatsink
°C Rise
Xigmatek HDT-D1284
20
Thermalright SI-128
21
Big Typhoon VX
22
Thermaltake SpinQ
24

Against other top-down cooler, the SpinQ disappoints. At 5V and 16 dBA, the SpinQ performs worse than older heatsinks like the Thermalright SI-128, and even the poorly reviewed Big Typhoon VX (both equipped with our reference Nexus 120mm fan, also at 16 dBA).



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