Noise Results and Further Testing
Sound pressure readings were made with a noise floor of 34db in the room. All measurements have a +/- 1.5db margin of error, which is the limitation of my sound level meter. The meter was placed 12" from the front of the test bench for all results.
Noise Results – AMD System
The Seidon 120V was very consistent with its noise output on the AMD system, increasing slightly only at the 4.40GHz overclocked load from the 7850K APU. The signature of the sound is not harsh at these speeds, and most of the noise is coming from the pump (which actually measured at 36.9db itself in testing). Overall noise is not significant under stock loads, and the average video card would completely drown this cooler out in this situation.
The Hyper 212 was very strong here, taking the crown in both load and overclocked load testing. It increased in noise output only slightly under the hottest overclocks, and though not silent by any means it outputs mainly the whoosh of air through the heatsink – no whine or buzz. Not much to say here, just great results!
Stock cooling was actually very consistent from AMD’s solution, but it required quite a bit more speed and noise to cope with the overclocked workload on the 7850K.
Noise Results – Intel System
The Hyper 212 EVO continues to impress with the noise results as it manages to beat out the Intel cooler at stock frequencies, but it required much higher sound levels (and 100% fan speed) to keep the overclocked workload at safe temps.
The Seidon 120V was fairly noisy in the Intel testing, and required increasingly higher fan speeds to cope with the 4770K, reaching very high sound levels with the overclocked Haswell CPU.
The Intel cooler was nice and quiet for stock testing at idle with the 4770K, but did ramp up a bit at full load (again, no attempt at overclocking with the stock cooler here).
Taking things a step further…
So both the air and liquid coolers have had no trouble coping with some pretty high temps so far, and it made sense to see just how far these could be pushed! For a quick comparison I tried these two coolers out on the enthusiast X79 system with a 6-core Intel i7 4930K. This 130W processor can generate a lot of heat, but to make this more challenging the processor was overclocked to 4.50GHz using 1.4V, and all six cores were linked at this clockspeed on the ASUS Rampage IV GENE motherboard. For this test both coolers were manually set to 100% fan speed. Like the other tests, Prime95 was used at max stress/heat for a minimum of 10 minutes before temps were taken.
Very impressive! Both of these budget coolers managed to keep the overclocked hex-core loads within thermal limits, and considering these coolers cost <$85 combined, the results are even more outstanding!
While the Seidon 120V did an excellent job for an entry-level AIO liquid cooler here, the Hyper 212 EVO put up an incredible showing with a full 3 C cooler temps at full load. These results came with the same sound pressure readings as those above from the overclocked 4770K setup, and the 212 EVO enjoyed the same noise advantage over the 120V (48.3db vs. 53.7db) noted during the Haswell OC results.