The Scythe Andy Samurai Master HSF was tested on a red-hot Pentium 4 EE based test rig consisting of the components listed below. The ambient room air temperature was maintained at 23°C ±0.5°C. Four instances of CPUBurn were executed at the same time (two to load both physical cores, and two to load the two virtual HyperThreading cores), which resulted in 100% CPU usage. Tests were conducted with the bundled Scythe fan along with two other 120mm fans to see how the ASM performed with increased airflow.
- 120mm Scythe DFS122512L (1200 rpm, 49.6 CFM, 20.9 dBA)
- 120mm Antec TriCool 3-Speed (1200/1600/2000 rpm, 39/56/79 CFM)
- 120mm Delta SHE (3700 rpm, 152 CFM, 53 dBA)
Test Rig Configuration
- Asus P5N32-SLI Deluxe motherboard
- Pentium 4 Extreme Edition dual core 955 @ 3.46 GHz
- (2) Corsair CM2X512-8000UL DDR2
- NVIDIA 7800 GTX 512 MB video card
- Western Digital WD1200JD S-ATA HDD
- SilverStone Zeus ST75ZF 750W PSU
- Windows XP Pro with SP2
- nVIDIA 91.31 nForce driver
A small Omega thermocouple is attached to the side of the 955 IHS with Arctic Alumina thermal epoxy to provide accurate CPU temperatures. The measurement equipment used during testing included:
- CPU/IHS – Barnant Model 115 digital thermometer (accuracy +/- 0.4º C)
- Ambient air – Barnant Model 115 digital thermometer (accuracy +/- 0.4º C)
- Extech Model 407738 digital sound level meter (accuracy +/- 1.5 dB)
- Lavalys Everest Ultimate Edition 2006 (hardware monitoring)
- CPUBurn (load the CPU)
For comparison, I’m including the results from four other popular HSFs we recently tested on the LGA775 platform. All HSFs were tested on the same EE 955 CPU under the same conditions.
- Enzotech Ultra-X with bundled Delta 120mm fan
- Thermaltake Big Typhoon VX with bundled fan
- Thermalright Ultra-120 with Antec TriCool 3-speed fan
- Thermalright XP-120 with Antec TriCool 3-speed fan
The following data is presented for comparative purposes only. Your actual results may be different depending on the variables unique to your system (CPU, overclock, ambient temperature, case air flow, temperature monitoring, etc).
Amb – Ambient room air temperature
CPU – Temperature reported by Everest utility (internal diode)
Tc – Temperature obtained with calibrated thermocouple attached to 955 IHS
∆T – Fully loaded Tc temperature rise above ambient temperature
dBA – Sound pressure level recorded 3’ away (background ~29 dBA)
Note: My original P5N32-SLI Deluxe motherboard died awhile back and the CPU temperature reported by the replacement board is so far off (~20°C) its not worth mentioning – the thermocouple attached to the 955 IHS is much more reliable.
The Andy Samurai Master HSF did a good job of keeping the fully loaded CPU cool, but doesn’t offer the same level of performance as some of the larger tower style coolers. For example, when compared to the Enzotech Ultra-X (both using a 2,000 rpm 120mm fan), the full load CPU temperature runs 4.6°C warmer with the ASM.
When used with the bundled Scythe fan, the ASM is virtually silent. Changing fans to provide more airflow improved performance considerably at the expense of noise. As we suspected, the tightly spaced fins impede airflow and hurt performance a little when used with a low speed (low static air pressure) fan. But overall, the performance of the Andy Samurai Master HSF is very good and quite capable of cooling any modern processor with minimal noise.