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Silenx Effizio Extreme Review

ccokeman    -   August 16, 2010
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Conclusion:

While not the top performing heat sink in the performance category, the SilenX Effizio does quite well and certainly offers a decrease on operating temperatures in both stock and overclocked scenarios. When overclocked, it cools a scant 4 °C warmer than the vaunted Thermalright Ultra Extreme and is 5 °C warmer than the Noctua NH-U12P. When compared to the all-in-one liquid cooling solutions, it delivered performance on par with these solutions with a slightly better noise signature. The direct contact heat pipe design helps the Effizio reach these lower temperatures. The surface of a direct contact heat pipe design is usually one of compromise, with gaps between the aluminum base assembly and the heat pipes themselves. The surface, by design, has its positives and negatives with the alternating heights of the heat pipes and aluminum base that can reduce the overall contact patch size. The reduction of material the thermal load needs to be transferred through to get to the heat pipes offsets this problem to keep the thermals in check. A quick lapping of the surface should eliminate the offset heights, but not the gaps between the two materials. These problems are evident when you look at the base of the Effizio, but at least this is far from the worst example of this I have seen. Nevertheless, this one thing could bring the Effizio up to the performance level of some of the top players in the game. To get complete coverage, you will need to use a little more thermal paste or change your application method.

The performance of the Effizio should be able to be increased with the addition of a second fan. The heat sink is designed to have this capability and comes with rubber mounting studs that hook directly into the aluminum fins. The rubber mounting assembly has a distinct advantage over most heat sink fan mounting methods since the fan is completely isolated from the cooling fins, thereby eliminating any noise from the fan vibrating against the fins. The down side to this is that the fan sits roughly an eighth of an inch from the fins of the cooler allowing airflow to go over and under the heat sink fin array. I could reduce temperatures another degree Celsius just by covering this gap - a small improvement, but nonetheless an improvement. While most of this conclusion has centered around a couple of flaws, this cooling solution from SilenX does a great job when you get down to it, offering a solid 21 °C cooling improvement over the stock Intel cooling solution while keeping up with some stout company. The addition of the fan controller allows you to take the already silent fluid dynamic bearing equipped fan and drop the speed down to the dead silent range to keep the noise signature as low as possible. When it comes to looks, the Effizio looks like most of the other tower style heat pipe coolers on the market when you look at it from a front or side view. However, when you look at the top, as you will be when you look into the side of your chassis through the window (You do have a case window, right?), the heat sink has an almost tribal design that I find appealing.

When you put it all together, SilenX has put together a cooling solution in the Effizio that can tame the Core i7 processor for a more than modest price point. You also get socket compatibility with all the latest sockets from AMD and Intel, so there are no additional parts to buy. In addition, it runs silent and delivers excellent cooling providing a solid upgrade path from the stock Intel or AMD cooling solution, all for just shy of 40 bucks - a significant cost savings over some of the currently available heat sinks, making this cooler a great value for the performance it delivers.

 

Pros:

  • Good looks
  • Good cooling performance
  • Low noise signature
  • FDB fan
  • 5 heat pipes
  • 3 Year Warranty
  • Wide compatibility

 

Cons:

  • Base finish
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  1. Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Closer Look (Continued)
  3. Specifications & Features
  4. Testing: Setup & Results
  5. Conclusion:
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