Deepcool Fiend Shark CPU Cooler Review
By Rafael Coelho on July 10, 2012
The Fiend Shark is a huge CPU cooler from Deepcool. It has a horizontal heatsink, six heatpipes, and a 140 mm fan. Let’s test it.
The box of the Fiend Shark is huge and sturdy, using a minimalist graphic design, as shown in Figure 1.
Figure 2 shows the contents of the box: the cooler itself, a syringe of thermal compound, power adapters, and installation hardware. Everything comes well accommodated in plastic trays.
Figure 3 displays the Fiend Shark.
This cooler is discussed in detail in the following pages.
Figure 4 illustrates the front of the cooler. The heatsink is 2.1 inches (55 mm) high from the CPU. The six 6 mm heatpipes connect the base to the heatsink.
Figure 5 reveals the side of the cooler. Here you can see how the heatpipes connect to what seems to be the center of a one-piece heatsink.
In Figure 6, you can see the top of the cooler. The 140 mm fan doesn’t completely cover the heatsink.
Figure 7 shows how the heatpipes are distributed on the base. Here you can notice that the Fiend Shark has not one, but two independent heatsinks.
Figure 8 illustrates the base of the cooler. The heatpipes don’t touch the CPU directly; there is a nickel-plated copper plate at the base. The base surface does not have a mirror-like finishing.
Figure 9 reveals the Fiend Shark without the fan. Here it is clear that the two heatsinks are completely independent.
Figure 10 shows the 140 mm PWM fan that comes with the Fiend Shark. The blades are blue, and the frame is covered by a rubber coating.
Figure 11 shows the backplates for installing the Fiend Shark. The left one is for use with AMD processors, the middle one is for socket LGA775 Intel CPUs, and the right one fits socket LGA1155/1156 Intel CPUs. On socket LGA1366 systems, the cooler is installed without a backplate, and socket LGA2011 systems don’t require one.
You must install two brackets on the base of the cooler. Figure 12 reveals the brackets for use on Intel CPUs; there is another pair of brackets for AMD processors.
The next step is to install four thumbscrews/nuts on the solder side of the motherboard, as shown in Figure 13.
Put the cooler in, fastening the thumbscrews to secure it. The access to the screws is narrow, so you may have to remove the motherboard from the case. In our system, we had to remove the video card in order to reach the screws.
We tested the cooler with a Core i5-2500K CPU (quad-core, 3.3 GHz), which is a socket LGA1155 processor with a 95 W TDP (Thermal Design Power). In order to get higher thermal dissipation, we overclocked it to 4.0 GHz (100 MHz base clock and x40 multiplier), with 1.3 V core voltage (Vcore). This CPU was able to reach 4.8 GHz with its default core voltage, but at this setting, the processor enters thermal throttling when using mainstream coolers, reducing the clock and thus the thermal dissipation. This could interfere with the temperature readings, so we chose to maintain a moderate overclocking.
We measured noise and temperature with the CPU under full load. In order to get 100% CPU usage in all cores, we ran Prime 95 25.11 with the “In-place Large FFTs” option. (In this version, the software uses all available threads.)
We compared the tested cooler to other coolers we already tested, and to the stock cooler that comes with the Core i5-2500K CPU. Note that the results cannot be compared to measures taken on a different hardware configuration, so we retested some “old” coolers with this new methodology. This means you can find different values in older reviews than the values you will read on the next page. Every cooler was tested with the thermal compound that comes with it.
Room temperature measurements were taken with a digital thermometer. The core temperature was read with the SpeedFan program (available from the CPU thermal sensors), using an arithmetic average of the core temperature readings.
During the tests, the panels of the computer case were closed. The front and rear case fans were spinning at minimum speed in order to simulate the “normal” cooler use on a well-ventilated case. We assume that is the common setup used by a cooling enthusiast or overclocker.
The sound pressure level (SPL) was measured with a digital noise meter, with its sensor placed near the top opening of the case. This measurement is only for comparison purposes, because a precise SPL measurement needs to be made inside an acoustically insulated room with no other noise sources, which is not the case here.
Operating System Configuration
We adopted a 2°C error margin, meaning temperature differences below 2°C are considered irrelevant.
The table below presents the results of our measurements. We repeated the same test on all coolers listed below. Each measurement was taken with the CPU at full load. In the models with a fan supporting PWM, the motherboard controlled the fan speed according to core load and temperature. On coolers with an integrated fan controller, the fan was set at the full speed.
|Cooler||Room Temp.||Noise||Speed||Core Temp.||Temp. Diff.|
|Cooler Master Hyper TX3||18 °C||50 dBA||2850 rpm||69 °C||51 °C|
|Corsair A70||23 °C||51 dBA||2000 rpm||66 °C||43 °C|
|Corsair H100||26 °C||62 dBA||2000 rpm||64 °C||38 °C|
|EVGA Superclock||26 °C||57 dBA||2550 rpm||67 °C||41 °C|
|NZXT HAVIK 140||20 °C||46 dBA||1250 rpm||65 °C||45 °C|
|Thermalright True Spirit 120||26 °C||42 dBA||1500 rpm||82 °C||56 °C|
|Zalman CNPS12X||26 °C||43 dBA||1200 rpm||71 °C||45 °C|
|Zalman CNPS9900 Max||20 °C||51 dBA||1700 rpm||62 °C||42 °C|
|Titan Fenrir Siberia Edition||22 °C||50 dBA||2400 rpm||65 °C||43 °C|
|SilenX EFZ-120HA5||18 °C||44 dBA||1500 rpm||70 °C||52 °C|
|Noctua NH-L12||20 °C||44 dBA||1450 rpm||70 °C||50 °C|
|Zalman CNPS8900 Extreme||21 °C||53 dBA||2550 rpm||71 °C||50 °C|
|Gamer Storm Assassin||15 °C||48 dBA||1450 rpm||58 °C||43 °C|
|Deepcool Gammaxx 400||15 °C||44 dBA||1500 rpm||60 °C||45 °C|
|Cooler Master TPC 812||23 °C||51 dBA||2350 rpm||66 °C||43 °C|
|Deepcool Gammaxx 300||18 °C||43 dBA||1650 rpm||74 °C||56 °C|
|Intel stock cooler||18 °C||41 dBA||2000 rpm||97 °C||79 °C|
|Xigmatek Praeton||19 °C||52 dBA||2900 rpm||83 °C||64 °C|
|Noctua NH-U12P SE2||18 °C||42 dBA||1300 rpm||69 °C||51 °C|
|Deepcool Frostwin||24 °C||46 dBA||1650 rpm||78 °C||54 °C|
|Thermaltake Frio Advanced||13 °C||56 dBA||2000 rpm||62 °C||49 °C|
|Xigmatek Dark Knight Night Hawk Edition||9 °C||48 dBA||2100 rpm||53 °C||44 °C|
|Thermaltake Frio Extreme||21 °C||53 dBA||1750 rpm||59 °C||38 °C|
|Noctua NH-U9B SE2||12 °C||44 dBA||1700 rpm||64 °C||52 °C|
|Thermaltake WATER2.0 Pro||15 °C||54 dBA||2000 rpm||52 °C||37 °C|
|Deepcool Fiend Shark||18 °C||45 dBA||1500 rpm||74 °C||56 °C|
In the graph below, you can see how many degrees Celsius hotter the CPU core is than the air outside the case. The lower this difference, the better is the performance of the cooler.
In the graph below, you can see how many decibels of noise each cooler makes.
The main specifications for the Deepcool Fiend Shark CPU cooler include:
* Researched at Amazon.com on the day we published this review.
Because of its size and wonderfully crafted heatsink, we expected excellent performance from the Deepcool Fiend Shark; we were disappointed by the mediocre cooling performance it provided.
On the other hand, this cooler is quiet. And like any horizontal cooler, it can help cool the components surrounding the CPU, such as the memory modules, chipset, and the voltage regulator circuit.
It’s a shame that a big, beautiful cooler like the Deepcool Fiend Shark couldn’t deliver a good cooling performance.