Cooler Master Nepton 280L Reviewred454 -
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Cooler Master Nepton 280L Testing:
Testing involved recording temperatures for the CPU during idle and load phases. The load was simulated by running Prime95’s small FFTs for one hour. The maximum temperatures were recorded using HW Monitor 1.21.0. Please note that the case is tested from its factory setup, including location of fans, unless otherwise noted.
- Processor: Core i7 4770K @ 3.9 GHz (100 MHz x 39)
- CPU Cooling: Cooler Master Nepton 280L
- Motherboard: MSI Z87-GD65
- Memory: Patriot Viper 3 Series Black Mamba PC3-19200 16GB
- Video Card: NVIDIA GTX 770
- PSU: Thermaltake SMART 750W SP-750P
- Hard Drive: Corsair Force GT 240GB SSD
- Optical Drive: ASUS DRW-24B1ST
- OS: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit SP1
- Chassis: Phanteks Enthoo Primo
Comparison Heat sinks:
The Nepton 280L is up against four CPU coolers that are air cooled. Idle temps were all close as expected, except for the BigTyp Revo, which ran a few degress higher than the others. But the Revo pulls air down on the radiator and pushes it over the motherboard. The higher temps for the Revo are likely more of an airflow issue. And for the most part, the air cooled units held up rather well. Under normal usage, the 280L is quiet. Load it up and you know it is there. Not overbearingly loud, but you do know that the fans are moving some air. Of course most new motherboards now have the ability to control your fans with custom profiles, so you can tailor your fan operation to your liking.
The cooling ability of the 280L is certainly adequate. It gets the job done. It does not run away from the air coolers or put them to shame, but one advantage with water cooling to keep in mind is the relatively small water block and significantly lower stresses it imparts on the motherboard. I also factor in the ability to access things like RAM and various fan headers and CPU power plugs that large air coolers usually all but cover up.
Overclocking on the 4770K was done at 1.248 volts, which held a solid 4.2 GHz.