Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Review

Waco - 2013-06-16 13:39:11 in CPU Cooling
Category: CPU Cooling
Reviewed by: Waco   
Reviewed on: August 6, 2013
Price: $99.99

Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Introduction:

Cooler Master has a long history with its V-series coolers. Between the venerable V6, V8, and monstrous V10, it has a good line of serious coolers for serious overclockers. The new Cooler Master V8 GTS is the bigger, badder, and with-more-facial-hair version of the original Cooler Master V8 heatsink. Sporting dual 140mm fans, eight 6mm heatpipes, three radiator arrays, and a unique vapor chamber base, the V8 GTS sure looks like it has some serious cooling potential! The vapor chamber baseplate purportedly extracts heat from your toasty CPU much faster than traditional heatsink bases; keep reading to find out just how cool this new Cooler Master heatsink can be!


Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Closer Look:

If nothing else, Cooler Master has a great marketing team on hand. The box that the V8 GTS comes in is not only attactive, but extremely easy to read as well. All the features you care about are listed boldy along with a very stylized picture of the heatsink itself. Even from the outside of this relatively large box, you can tell something interesting lurks inside. For a full list of specifications and features, head on over to the Specifications & Features page!













Swinging open the lid on the box reveals a hunk of dark foam holding the heatsink securely in place. Thankfully the heatsink comes mostly pre-assembled so you won't have to hassle with obnoxious fan clips. Underneath the behemoth that is the V8 GTS is a box full of the various components you'll need to mount the cooler to your board of choice, as well as a small syringe of thermal paste. Instructions are also included, but in the strict traditions of manliness, I will ignore them until I get extremely confused or break something. Skip on to the next page to see the V8 GTS up close!

Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Closer Look:

Behold: the Cooler Master V8 GTS! Ditching the single-fan design of the prior V8, the new GTS version sports a pair of 140mm fans that should offer great airflow through the triple radiators without a ton of noise. The integrated shrouds direct airflow through the center of the heatsink with very little room for air to escape on its journey of cooling.















Even from the side of the cooler, you can tell that the V8 GTS means business. The dual heatpipes that feed each of the auxiliary radiators stick very prominently out the sides, with the shroud overhanging the top on each side. The whole assembly feels quite sturdy and, while not a super-heavyweight, this cooler is not light. Tipping the scales at over two pounds in full running garb, you can see quite easily why Cooler Master includes a fairly beefy backplate in the box. The top of the shroud sports the Cooler Master logo with a small inset "V8 GTS" stamped into the black plastic. As hinted at by the box, this cooler does indeed have integrated red LEDs to throw off a nice evil glow into your case while running.



Now we come to the most interesting part of the whole cooler: the vapor chamber. The entire baseplate is essentially a flat heatpipe that is more commonly seen on GPU coolers with monstrous TDPs. The sole purpose of the vapor chamber is to wick heat away from your CPU and direct it into the eight heatpipes as fast as possible. The machining on the base isn't great as you can see in the shots below. The machining marks are clearly visible and while the base is flat, the grooves are deep enough that they can easily be felt when running a finger across the surface. Even the Lego man had to scoot up closer to try and see his wonderful reflection. Ultimately he failed; the base of the V8 GTS just doesn't have the same smoothness usually associated with high-end heatsinks.



I'm going to apologize in advance here: this cooler is a pain in the ass to install and it makes me cranky just thinking about wrestling it into place. The test case, a Corsair 650D, is by no means a small case. Even with it being a larger case, the V8 GTS is terribly frustrating to install. After attaching the backplate (easy, by the way), you're forced to somehow place the cooler on your CPU and attach the four hex nuts that hold it in place. This sounds easy, but not only did I have to remove the video card and RAM to install this cooler (which really isn't too unexpected), but I had to remove the top fan in the case too! Even with everything cleared out of the way, just getting the small hex nuts onto the mounting bracket was difficult because of the placement of the heatpipes and the overall size of the cooler.




I've installed a lot of coolers in my time on this planet and I honestly think this is one of the few I'd rather not have ever touched. The included wrench is helpful in tightening things down, but would be entirely useless if the heatsinks surrounding your motherboard socket are tall at all. The only way I can imagine this cooler being easy to install is if you have an open-air testbed or if you install it with the motherboard out of the case (though I'm wary about moving my motherboard with two pounds hanging off of it).


Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Specifications:

CPU Socket:
Intel® LGA 2011/1366/1156/1155/1150/775
154 x 149.8 x 166.5mm (6.1 x 5.9 x 6.6 in)
854g (1.9 lbs)
Heat Sink Material:
Vapor Chamber / 8 Heat Pipes / Aluminum Fins
Heat Pipe Dimensions:
Fan Dimension:
Ø 140 x 20 mm (5.5 x 0.8 inch)
Fan Speed:
600 – 1,600 RPM (PWM) ± 10%
Fan Airflow:
28 – 82 CFM ± 10%
Air Pressure:
0. 3 – 1.45 mmH2O ± 10%
Bearing Type:
POM bearing – Cooler Master 4th Gen. Bearing (*POM = Polyoxymethylene)
Fan Life Expectancy:
160,000 hrs
Fan Noise Level:
36 dBA
Fan Weight
110g (0.24 lb) x 2
Rated Voltage:
12 VDC
2 years
UPC Code:


Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Features:


All information provided by:

Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Testing:

Testing of the Cooler Master V8 GTS will be accomplished installing the cooler into the test system mounted into a case, not a test bench. Most systems are built and mounted into a (relatively) sealed chassis, so this method will be used to generate the load and idle results from a real world view based on the test system listed below.

Of course, your results may vary, due to case design and ambient air temperature, by several degrees. The CPU load is generated by Prime95 version 27.7 running small FFTs for a period of two hours with a cooldown period of one hour after the computer has returned to an idle state. Real Temp 3.70 is used to log the temperatures over the time frame with the highest and lowest averages across the four cores of the Core i7 2600K test CPU. Ambient temperatures are kept at 22 ºC throughout the testing to minimize the impact of a variable temperature. The V8 GTS was tested using the included thermal paste to give an accurate depiction of the out-of-the-box performance.


Testing Setup:


Comparison Coolers:


Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Results :





Bah humbug. Even after the hassle of mounting this beast, I had high hopes for its cooling prowess. Alas, it is merely good instead of great. At stock speeds, it cools well and doesn't make much noise at all if you slow the fans down a bit. The real rub comes when you start overclocking and the much-hyped vapor chamber obviously works fairly well, but this is no water-cooling killer or even an all-in-one water cooler killer when compared to 240mm radiator-equipped solutions. I've deliberately avoided mentioning the price until now, but I have to mention it now that the performance has been revealed: the V8 GTS costs $99.99. The DEEPCOOL Neptwin that bests it costs about half that and is more quiet to boot! Look at the charts again and then jump to the next page.

Cooler Master V8 GTS CPU Cooler Conclusion:

Cooler Master has a history of great products that deliver great results at a reasonable price. I'm sad to say that the V8 GTS just doesn't follow in that tradition. While it is reasonably quiet at lower fan speeds, it just doesn't deliver the performance I'd expect from a $100 cooler, even when the fans are cranked up to 11. The performance per dollar ratio just isn't there and to be honest, it is one of the most frustrating CPU coolers I've ever had the displeasure of installing. The fact that it was beaten out by the almost-half-as-expensive DEEPCOOL Neptwin (which, in a funny twist, is also more quiet and far easier to install) just seals the deal.

Don't get me wrong here though: the V8 GTS does cool quite well and you won't have any trouble keeping your CPU cool should you decide that you want one. Just keep in mind that for $100 you can very nearly buy a self-contained water cooler that will outperform it in nearly every way. I really wanted the vapor chamber combined with eight heatpipes, triple towers, and dual 140mm fans to succeed, but it's impossible to ignore the lofty price tag and unspectacular cooling.