be quiet! Shadow Rock 2 Reviewred454 - February 3, 2014
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be quiet! Shadow Rock 2 Closer Look:
The Shadow Rock 2 is a single tower design cooler using a single 120mm 4-pin PWM fan to provide the airflow for this cooler. Socket compatibility includes all of the most recent sockets from AMD: 754 / 939 / 940 / AM2(+) / AM3 (+) / FM1 / FM2 and Intel: LGA 775 / 1150 / 1155 / 1156 / 1366 / 2011 to ensure the largest possible coverage for this design. Measuring 147 x 122 x 160mm in size, it is not really a small or average sized cooling solution, but still should fit into a mid tower chassis. At 2.46 pounds the Shadow Rock 2 is no light weight and probably won't make it into your LAN rig. But on the positive side it should have the mass to deliver on that 180W rating.
Removing the PWM fan you get to the bare essentials of the Shadow Rock 2. It is a large single tower-style cooler that uses a cube-shaped fin stack connected to four massive 8mm heat pipes that pass through the contact plate of the copper base and up through the 51 aluminum fins. The unmistakable cube shape would certainly get the attention of Braque and Picasso if they were around today. I have seen 5mm and 6mm pipes, but 8mm pipes are huge and should work well moving the heat. Each fin has sawtooth edges that taper in slightly at the middle on all four sides. Without the fan, the dimensions shrink to 122 x 122 x 160mm and depending on your processor, running passively might be a possibility with the lower TDP parts.
At the bottom right I have installed the side brackets necessary for my LGA1150 socket. The base is polished mirror smooth and the symmetrical fin stack actually will allow a fan to be added to any of the four side faces, although you will have to supply any additional fans and fan clips.
The top plate on the cooler is decorative, but functions to contain the airflow in the fin array as well as cover up the tops of what typically is the most unattractive part of any tower design, the tips of the heat pipes. The CNC machined, nickel-plated base comes covered from the factory with a vinyl warning decal that protects the surface during shipping. Of course you need to remove this cover before installation as it is necessary for optimal contact and thermal transfer. There are no machining marks evident on the base. Those copper heat pipes really stand out.
The 120mm PWM fan is rated up to 1600 RPM using 12v. The pressure rating on the fan is 1.4 mm H2O at 51 CFM. A rifle bearing is used to help provide stability and improved airflow. One thing you will notice right away is that the fan blades use an airflow optimized design to reduce air turbulence and improve noise characteristics.
Installing this cooler into a chassis and onto a motherboard is much simpler than it looks due to the fixed mounting brackets and a rather interesting mounting system that uses a very robust backing plate. There are four plastic e-clips that hold the screws onto the mounting screws that slip through the backing plate and motherboard PCB. After the e-clips are on, there are four internally and externally threaded studs that are installed over the mounting screws. These serve as a base for the cooler to mount. Once tightened up by bottoming the screws out until they seat fully, it is going nowhere. And here is where any large cooling solution can get interesting. It is not surprising that memory compatibility may be questionable.
Finally, you install the four nuts to secure the cooler base to the PCB. If you are starting with a fresh build, then you won't really have any issues. If you are adding this cooler to an existing system, you will likely need to remove all your RAM modules and the GPU for clearance of the little wrench we talked about earlier. You really need the space for access to the fasteners. I highly recommend you lay your system flat during the installation.
Here I have the cooler installed without the fan so you can see the clearance on all the sides. The fin stack does clear the RAM slots and the way the fin stack has mounting provisions on all sides, you can mount the fan on top, left, or bottom. If you mount the fan at the bottom, you may need to relocate your graphics card to another slot.
The fan sits right above the RAM modules and my Patriot Viper RAM is fine. RAM with tall heat spreaders may cause some issues, although you can shift the fan up a little if necessary, but this will affect air flow through the fins.