ASUS Silent Knight II CPU Cooler
Let's see how Silent Knight II performs in the silence mode (conditionally noiseless domain, reference noise - 23 dBA).
Chart 1. Temperature readings (CPU core temperature, conditionally noiseless domain)
Chart 2. Thermal resistance (conditionally noiseless domain)
As you can see, the noiseless Silent Knight II demonstrates acceptable results, considering its compact heatsink and semi-open installation of the fan. Nevertheless, it seriously lags behind the leading coolers (Noctua NH-U12P and Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme). Performance of its impeller in this mode is apparently insufficient for effective ventilation of two fin-stacks. Non-optimized thermal contact ("dry") between the pipes and fins may also play some role in this. This dry contact may additionally weaken cooling capacity.
Now let's have a look at the situation in the low-noise domain, where we selected not only High-End products, but also several Mid-End products -- Cooler Master Hyper TX2, GlacialTech Igloo 5750 PWM, and Scythe Mine Rev. B.
Chart 3. Temperature readings (CPU core temperature, low-noise domain)
Chart 4. Thermal resistance (low-noise domain)
Now this is much better -- Silent Knight II moves forward in this test, demonstrating competitive thermal results, and snaps at the heels of such serious rivals as Thermaltake MaxOrb and Scythe Mugen. However, if the cooler had been more attentive to its configuration, it might have achieved more interesting results, befitting the true High-End product class.
Now let's have a look at the results demonstrated in the ergonomic domain (noise reference mark -- 31-32 dBA).
Chart 5. Temperature readings (CPU core temperature, ergonomic domain)
Chart 6. Thermal resistance (ergonomic domain)
Silent Knight II has completely rehabilitated itself and its thermal status here -- it manages to enter the leading group of coolers in our today's review, reaching the performance level of such serious competitors as Scythe Mugen and Zerotherm Nirvana NV120. It also comes close to results of our champions -- Noctua NH-U12P and Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme. To all appearances, this cooler benefits in the ergonomic mode from the on-board fan -- at the rotational speed of 2000 rpm, it actually reaches its optimal performance, providing intensive ventilation of the fin-stacks with proper heat transfer coefficients. And its noise level is kept at the ergonomic level at that. Well, not bad at all.
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