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OCZ Tempest Heatsink Review
OCZ Tempest Heatsink Review
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Abstract: After a long absence from all things heatsink related, OCZ is back in the game with a compact little multi-socket heatsink called the Tempest. The design relies heavily on copper components...

 Manufacturer  Category  Published  Author 
OCZ Technology   Cooling / Heatsinks   Jul 27, 2006   Max Page  

Home > Reviews > Page: Acoustic Comparisons and Base Surface Quality

Acoustic Samples: Listen to this Heatsink!

With the OCZ Tempest heatsink powered up, noise levels hover around the 50 dBA mark from its 95mm fan. To listen to this heatsink, click on the little headphones icon below and play the sample MP3 files for the heatsink running with its fan at full speed, and reduced speed.

frostytech acoustic sampling chamber - full speed
standard waveform view of a 10 second recording. click on the headphones icon to listen to an mp3 recording of this heatsink in operation. the fan is rotating at 1100rpm

Sound Level Measurements: Which Heatsink is Quietest?

Listening to the actual noise a heatsink makes allows you to hear what pure numbers alone cannot get across. To further emphasize FrostyTech's reliance on cold hard facts when evaluating a heatsink, we also take noise level measurements with a sound level meter.

FrostyTech.com Heatsink Noise Level Measurements
Noise level Decibel measurements of each heatsinks' fan in operation are taken with the aid of a sound level meter and sound isolating enclosure. The values may be higher than the mfgr's listed specs, but are directly comparable to one another. Measurements are made on the dB (A) scale. Information on Frostytech's test methodology is available here.
manufacturer: model no.: *fan speed: noise level (dba):

Arctic Cooling Silencer 64 Ultra TC low 27.6 dB Quiet
Verax Helado 36.3 dB
Gigabyte NeonCooler 8-BL 42.0 dB
Coolermaster Hyper48 43.6 dB
Arctic Cooling Alpine64 43.9 dB
Dynatron A22 44.5 dB
Zalman CNPS7000B-CU high 44.9 dB
Zalman CNPS7000A-Cu high 45.2 dB
Zalman CNPS7000-Cu high 45.2 dB
Noctua NH-U12 45.4 dB
Ajigo MF043-044 45.4 dB
Spire SP741B3 45.6 dB
Scythe Shogun high 45.9 dB
Scythe Kama SCKK1000 47.5 dB
Spire SP601B3 48.9 dB
Thermaltake Silentboost K8 49.7 dB
Zalman CNPS9500 LED high 50.3 dB
Gigabyte 3D-Rocket 50.7 dB
Arctic Cooling Freezer 64 Pro 50.9 dB
Evercool K802-715 51.5 dB
OCZ Tempest 51.6 dB
Scythe Samurai SCSM1000 high 51.6 dB
Apack Zerotherm BTF80 51.9 dB
Apack Zerotherm BTF90 52.1 dB
nPowertek NPH K8-1 52.2 dB
Zalman CNPS9500 AM2 high 53.2 dB
Jetart JAX801 53.5 dB
Coolermaster Hyper6 high 54.7 dB
Verax Quattro 1 high 55.4 dB
Arctic Cooling Silencer 64 Ultra TC high 55.5 dB
Evercool Magic Cooler 55.5 dB
Dynatron SK-V24 56.4 dB
Gigabyte 3D Rocket-Pro high 56.7 dB
Vantec Mach1 high 56.9 dB
Zalman CNPS8000 high 57.4 dB
EKL V8 high 57.5 dB
Noctua NH-U9 58.4 dB
Alpha PAL-8150 58.9 dB
Coolermaster Aquagate Mini high 59.2 dB
AVC Z7U3301001 high 59.9 dB
Ajigo MF064-074 high 60.3 dB
Cooljag SFO-Q high 60.6 dB
Cooljag SFO-H high 60.6 dB
Gigabyte 3D Cooler-Pro high 62.5 dB
Gigabyte 3D Cooler-Ultra high 63.0 dB
AVC Z7U7414001 (stock AM2) high 63.0 dB
Titan TTC-K8ATB/825/SC 63.1 dB
CoolJag SFO-D(18SC) 64.0 dB
ASUS Starice high 67.4 dB
Thermaltake Polo 735 high 68.0 dB
Thermaltake Venus 12 high 68.1 dB
Gigabyte G-Power Pro high 71.9 dB Loud
noise level (dba)
*unless noted, for reference heatsinks with variable-speed fans only the 'high speed' (12V) fan noise measurement is included in the comparison sheet; more detailed results for the low fan speed (~5V) tests reside in each specific heatsink review.

With the LED illuminated fan spinning at its stock speed of 2500RPM, the OCZ Tempest heatsink produces about 51.6 dBA noise. This puts the Tempest at about the middle of the pack for K8 heatsinks, and certainly there are a great many other models from other manufacturers which operate significantly quieter. For general computer users the Tempest will not be unduly distracting, but it's also just a little bit past the threshold of a 'lower' noise heatsink.

Surface Finish and Flatness

Surface finish is an important factor that we all look for when holding a new heatsink. Flipping a cooler over to see how well the base has been machined is a quick way to judge the attention to detail that was put into making it. The following test involves the use of a Surface Roughness Comparator, which offers a concise cross section common machine surface finishes.

The OCZ Tempest heatsink has a surface roughness of approximately ~4 microinches, which is considered excellent. Next, let's see how this heatsink handles the heat compared to a selection of other heatsinks!

 Previous Page ° ° Next Page 

Table of Contents:

 1:  OCZ Tempest Heatsink Review
 2:  360° View - OCZ Tempest Heatsink
 3: — Acoustic Comparisons and Base Surface Quality
 4:  Final Heatsink Temperature Comparisons

List all OCZ Technology heat sinks that Frostytech tested?

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