Arctic Cooling Copper Silent 2

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Very quiet, low performance – Joe

SUMMARY: An excellent example of the noise/performance tradeoff.

Arctic

Size: 84 x 76 x 41mm; Weight: 395 gm

The good guys at Arctic Cooling were nice enough to send their Copper Silent 2 for a test spin. This heatsink features a 3 position switch to power the fan at High, Medium and Low speeds. I used a digital tachometer and measured speeds of 2775, 2195 and 1553 rpm during testing.

The fan is an 80 x 37 mm unit rated at 36 cfm, 24 dBA @ 2800 rpm, 28.5 cfm, 18 dBA @ 2200 rpm and 15.5 cfm, 13 dBA @ 1500 rpm. I found it to vary from very quiet to almost inaudible – I measured noise at High at 50 dBA¹ with a Radio Shack sound meter 8″ from the fan’s intake – I could not get a reading at lower rpms. It’s also safe to use a motherboard fan header – 3.2 watts.

The base is not particularly well finished:

Base

When I ran my nail over it, I could feel ridges. With such a low powered fan, improving the base finish would help performance.

One nice thing about this heatsink – there are four LEDs to light it up:

LEDs

THE TEST

The Copper Silent 2 was tested on the CPU Die Simulator which gives results that are unaffected by motherboard influences.

TEST RESULTS – CPU Simulator – 70.1 watts

Heatsink
Die Temp
Ambient Temp
Delta
C/W
Copper Silent 2, 2775 rpm, 50 dBA¹
52.3 C
21.8 C
30.5 C
0.43
Copper Silent 2, 2195 rpm, <50 dBA¹
54.6 C
21.6 C
33.0 C
0.47
Copper Silent 2, 1553 rpm, <50 dBA¹
62.5 C
21.7 C
40.8 C
0.58

Delta = CPU temp – Ambient Temp
C/W = Delta / CPU Watts

Interpreting C/W: For every watt (CPUw) that the CPU
consumes, the HSF will limit the CPU’s temperature rise to (C/W x CPUw)
plus the temperature at the HSF’s fan inlet. For example, at an ambient temp of 25 C, a C/W of 0.25 with a CPU radiating 50 watts means that CPU temp will increase 50 x 0.25 = 12.5 C over ambient temp, or 37.5 C. The lower the C/W, the better.

Die Simulator results place the Copper Silent 2 in the lower rank of heatsinks tested to date (Heatsink Ranking).

CONCLUSIONS

Arctic Cooling’s Copper Silent 2 is a low-noise, low-performance choice for Socket A cooling – if noise and un-demanding performance are your thing, then this is one to consider.

Overall, I remind readers there is no such thing as a free lunch – lower fan noise and lower performance go hand-in-hand.

Thanks again to Arctic Cooling for sending this our way.

¹Note that manufacturers measure fan noise usually 3 feet from the fan; I measure noise 8″ from the fan’s intake.

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