Xigmatek Dark Knight-S1283V ReviewCompxpert - July 29, 2009
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So down to business. Well for starters, let's talk about the heatsink specifics. The heatsink itself is about the size of a ThermalRight Ultra Extreme. It's also nickel plated just like the TRUE Anniversary Edition. The heatsink is driven by 3 total heatpipes unlike Thor's Hammer, which featured 4 heatpipes externally and 3 on the inside. Compared to Thor's Hammer this heatsink is also way smaller. There may be fewer heatpipes than the competition, but the ones it has are also way thicker. Of course due to its smaller size, it also weighs a lot less too. If one were to sit and think as to how this heatsink works, one could conclude that the larger heatpipes quickly draw away the heat towards the fins, whilst the fan pushes air over the fins to cool them. This allows the heat to dissipate at a quicker rate.
There is also the fan to talk about. Xigmatek chose to use a translucent black fin design with white LEDs, which add an overall cool effect when running. The fan itself is a PWM fan that plugs right into the CPU header on the motherboard. The fan uses a Long Life Bearing which has a lifespan of over 50,000 hours. What is really notable about this fan, is how much CFM it pushes - almost 90CFM. If that isn't interesting enough, the fan only reaches a noise level of around 30.1dbA. On a slightly disappointing note however, is the fact that the heatsink is only capiable of mounting the fan it comes with. If you want another, you're going to have to zip-tie it to the other side.
Of course where would we be without the usual spectacle of my H.D.T. reviews and the heatsink base? In the case of the Dark Knight, we have a surface that's pretty close to being as gap-free as it can get, so it looks as though Xigmatek put some work into a process that gets those heatpipes as close together as possible. Also notable is the fact that unlike with Thor's Hammer showing copper, the bottom of Dark Knight is left with its black nickle coating.
Finally we move on to the installation. As far as installation goes, it's the same as Thor's Hammer with one positive exception. Since the heatsink is smaller, it does not eclipse the screws and now I can get my screwdriver in to tighten them down. Unlike on Thor's Hammer where it was necessary to tighten the screws with a miniture wrench provided in the packaging, this heatsink is a much easier installation. I am yet another heatsink that can't clear the PWM heatsink around my motherboard and was again forced into a verticle mount.
Now that we are finally installed and ready to go, let's get onto the testing part of the review.