SilenX Effizio EFZ-120HA5 Reviewairman - May 27, 2012
Category: CPU Cooling
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The name SilenX may be a reminder to some of us of how long we have been in the world of computers. At Overclockers Club, it seems that we have had the opportunity to kick off maybe one SilenX review a year, so eat up — it might be a while before we get to see another one! SilenX has been in the business for about 15 years, and while rather small, it was founded here in the United States in 1995 with a focus on being a high-end systems integrator for silent computers. However in 2002, SilenX shifted its focus to manufacturing and soon thereafter established factories in the US, China, and Taiwan. Currently a manufacturer of fans, CPU coolers, and other accessories, the name SilenX is somehow related to PCCooler, though neither website mentions the other. However, the EFZ-120HA5 from SilenX is clearly identical to that of the PCCooler S120D. Even the packaging that I received has PCCooler written on it despite "Effizio" being a SilenX line. SilenX can be found in a tiny corner on the back. From what I can tell, no one actually knows what brand name this cooler actually is — we just know that the OEM sells to these two companies at a minimum.
The 120mm cooler features three 6mm direct-touch copper heatpipes (six effective) through a tower of aluminum fins. Its mounting hardware makes it compatible with all recent Intel and AMD sockets, including those as early as LGA775 for Intel and Socket 754 for AMD. Coming in at just over $30 at most online retailers, the SilenX EFZ-120HA5 appears to reach out to the mid-range builders, perhaps someone building a computer for a light power user or possibly one for themselves in an HTPC box or their own desktop with silence in mind. With the confusion of its branding aside, the EFZ-120HA5 from SilenX/PCCooler looks promising. It is light weight, uses direct-touch heatpipes, has a dimpled fin pattern for more surface area and turbulence, and has a fan that is specified to move 86CFM at only 24dBA! To me, it looks like something a little too good to be true. However, we will only be able to find out for sure when we get the cooler taken out, checked out, and mounted in the OCC test bed. This article will provide a thorough evaluation of the SilenX EFZ-120HA5 heatsink from its unboxing all the way to a performance test where its cooling capabilities will be compared to other coolers on the market.
At first glance, the cooler is not immediately identified to be of SilenX's creation as the box itself highlights the name PCCooler much more clearly. The SilenX name can be found on the top of the box underneath the handle and on the rear in a black stripe. When I first got the box, I was perplexed with the name PCCooler as I had not heard of it — but I located "SilenX" after examining it a little more closely. The box itself is very narrow and is about the same thickness of the heatsink itself. On the front is a plastic window that displays the heatsink and its characteristics as well as a right-angled photograph of the cooler. Underneath the window are icons denoting each individual CPU with which this cooler should be compatible, including Intel Core 2 processors and AMD processors dating back to the 754 Sempron. The rear of the box provides more compatibility information as well as performance characteristics, specifications, and a list of several features. Three features mentioned are its 6mm direct touch heatpipes, optimized fan blades for the greatest air-to-noise ratio, and a sub ten minute installation time.
Inside of the box we find the cooler, fan, and accessories all neatly placed in separate compartments. Underneath the fan is more mounting hardware along with installation instructions. Compared to other coolers, it seems like the mounting system looks rather complicated. There are a lot of screws, washers, brackets, nuts, pads, and more screws. I can usually infer what all is required for which socket, but I do believe that I will have to refer to the installation manual for this guy! Luckily, a lot of the hardware is individually bagged and labeled for AMD and Intel, but it still is a lot of hardware for a rather lightweight cooler.
With everything out of the box, it's time to start getting into the closer look of the heatsink itself and what all it has to offer.