be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 2 CPU Cooler Review

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Somewhere about ten years ago I did a build for a friend of mine for his 30th birthday. At the time, cooling was truly in its infancy. Thermaltake, Arctic and Zalman were just coming to market, Cooler Master had a few years under their belt, but not much more. The other thing that was just becoming a household word was “overclock”. Naturally the two went hand in hand. So, putting this system together, we wanted it to be cutting edge, but still had some budget restraints. Started off with a silver Chieftec Dragon full tower, simply because of its cooling rep and wicked (for the time) looks. Next came an Abit MB (first mainstream MBs geared to OC) with a Celeron 1.3GHz. Yes, I know that the Duron with the same clock speeds blew that Celeron out of the water, but he was an Intel fanboy. Then came the cooling. For the life of me, I can’t remember how many 80mm fans we shoved into that Dragon. Seemed like they were everywhere. And on the CPU was the newest, biggest Tt cooler….which probably also used an 80mm. The thing about high rpm 80mm fans is how incredibly loud they are…..

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Let me mention that my friend was a smoker, a pretty heavy one at that. This computer also wound up in a non-ventilated room, so you can just imagine the outcome. Upon opening the case a couple of months after the initial build it was worse than initially feared. Between the noise and what we found inside, the build was officially christened the “Lear Jet Nicotine”. Times have changed. Smoking is taboo, and little noisy 80mm fans have been replaced by larger lower rpm fans that move more air less quietly. Even enthusiast overclockers have taken to the idea of quiet computing. No company has made a bigger splash in the world of computer silence than be quiet!.

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After racking up awards and accolades throughout the international press, the be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 2 is set to hit US shelves in the fourth quarter of 2012. As a dual fan, dual tower cooler with seven 6mm heat pipes, the be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 2 might conjure up comparisons to other coolers, but it is decidedly different. At the onset, the Dark Rock Pro 2 embraces be quiet!’s goal of enthusiast level performance at absolutely minimal noise output. This may sound impossible, and their specs showing a combined 207 cfm output from the included fans at only 26.4 dB may look like a misprint, but it’s not. The Dark Rock Pro 2 uses 1700rpm 120mm and 1500rpm 135mm Silent Wings fans to move massive amounts of air with only a whisper like noise level. The dual tower fin array mates dark nickel plated sturdy aluminum fins and seven 6mm heat pipes for incredible heat dissipation. The nickel plated CNC machined copper base transfers the heat from the CPU to the pipes. But the Dark Rock Pro 2 is distinctive in looks, as well. A full sized black brushed metal plate with logo tops the towers giving a refined look that still means business. Fit and finish throughout is absolutely flawless. The reverse mounting system allows for mounting without so much as needing to unclip a fan, and the fan cables themselves have their own Y-Connector built in for single header connection. Top to bottom the Dark Rock Pro 2 is a flawlessly engineered and executed piece, and includes mounting hardware for all current AMD and Intel sockets.

 

 

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