Corsair AF and SP Series Fan ReviewWaco - July 12, 2012
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Testing: Corsair AF120 and AF140
Testing the Corsair AF series fans required pushing my hardware to heat things up! Testing involved recording temperatures for the CPU, GPU, and chipset during idle and load conditions. Load conditions were simulated by running Prime95’s small FFTs and 3Dmark Vantage for one hour. The maximum load temperatures were recorded using HW Monitor and the idle temperatures were taken after a 30 minute cool down time.
Since we're taking a look at three different fans today I tested a few different configurations, all of which will be housed in the Corsair 650D chassis. As seen earlier on page two, each of the fan types (a pair at a time) will be swapped into place where the stock 220mm fan sits as an exhaust at the top of the case for measurement. The room temperature was maintained at 25 °C for testing.
- Processor: Core i7 2600K @ 4.4 GHz 100 x 44
- CPU Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE 1366
- Motherboard: GIGABYTE Z68AP-D3
- Memory: Mushkin 993997 Redline PC3-17000 9-11-10-28 16 GB
- Video Card: XFX HD 7970
- PSU: Antec TruePower New TP-750
- Hard Drive: Corsair Force GT 240 GB
- Optical Drive: N/A
- OS: Windows 7 Pro 64-Bit SP1
Before I even talk about the results at all… let me talk about what I heard during these tests. Or rather, what I didn't hear. These fans are QUIET. Even the AF120 Performance Edition was barely audible when running at its full speed of 1,650 RPM. The stock 220mm Corsair fan at the top of the 650D is a bit whiny at full speed so matching the performance of it while being quiet would be quite a feat… but that's something these fans did and exceeded. Every single one of the AF series fans matched or beat the stock Corsair fan in all measurements.
Out of all of these the AF140 Quiet Edition is the real winner though – it delivered the lowest temperatures and was essentially silent in doing so. The AF120 Quiet Edition would be a good choice if you only have 120mm mounting holes and are a serious stickler about noise, but on the other hand, you could always get the AF120 Performance Edition and use the included low-speed adapter to quiet it down. That's not saying the AF120 Performance Edition a loud fan by any means, but some are more sensitive to noise than others. All of these fans are impressively good at cooling while being quiet as well!