MetkuMods
Author: Jani 'Japala' Pönkkö
Published: 06.04.2003
Manufacturer: CoolerMaster
Product group: Cooling

Coolermaster's Aero 7 (ASB-V73) and XDream SE (HSC-V83) coolers

Now it is time to see what Coolermaster has cooked up for CPU cooling market. These latest high performance coolers feature all the best properties that are needed for a best performance and realiable operation. Judging only by their price, one might think that they are just regular coolers with nothing special but let us see how well these products actually perform.

 

Aero 7

When you see the first image of this cooler, most of you might be asking yourself: "What the heck is sitting on top of that heat sink?" Well, that is the latest thing on CPU cooler fans. With it's unique design it can deliver more air to the place where it is needed the most; to the center of the heat sink base. Read on to learn more about this new technology from Coolermaster.

Specifications:

Fan Dimension: 70 x 70 x 70 mm
Rated Speed:1900 - 4500 rpm
Air Flow:10.9 - 26.9 CFM
Rated Voltage:7 - 13.8 V
Heat Sink Dimension:71 x 71 x 38 mm
Heat Sink Type:Copper Skived Fin
Weight:600 g
Socket Type:A, 370, 462
Air Pressure:2.9 - 20.3 mm H2O

Here are the specs to get us going. From here you can see that the total height of the cooler is 108 mm. There are some cases that has the power supply unit mounted on front of the CPU so these users should check if there is enough room to install this system. With a standard ATX case there should not be any problems.

 


Package


What's inside?

Inside the package you will find the heat sink and the fan, PCI back plate, 3.5" bay cover, instruction guide and some thermal paste. It is nice to see that Coolermaster decided to include this new 3.5" bay cover with these new coolers. This way you don't need to buy a separate unit to control the fan speed of the cooler and it is easier to adjust the speed from the front of the case than from the back of it.

Power is taken with 4 pin molex splitter. This way there is no need to stress your motherboard. To allow rotation speed monitoring, Coolermaster has included a sense wire and a 3 pin plug for the motherboard so you can keep track on the speed of the fan. Some motherboards need this information that indicates that it is ok to power up the system and that there is a cooler present from the CPU.

 


Benefits of the new design

As the text on the picture says, the air flow is allowed to go where it is most needed; the center of the heat sink. I can imagine that this also improves the air flow all around the cooler so it is beneficial in many ways. Cooling is improved and because air is flowing in more orderly fashion, the sound produced by moving air is lower pitched and more silent.

 


Blower

It may look strange but let's not get fooled by it's appearance. There are many benefits in this new design and I believe that it will be shown on the benchmarks. The fan has dual ball bearings so the life time of then fan should be very long.

 


Copper base

The base has 30 fins on the both sides of the mounting clip. The clip uses all the six hooks on the socket so it will offer a firm and steady mounting from the cooler. The cooler uses skived fins and this means that the cooler is manufactured from a single block of copper. Many coolers use soldered or welded fins and this may affect the cooling abilities by not letting the heat pass to the fins in best possible way. Skived fin cooler doesn't have this problem because the fins are part of the block and there is nothing foreign between the block and the fins.

 


Smooth finish

Base of the cooler is really smooth. I took the image from an angle that shows the tiny scratch marks on the bottom of the base. You can't really feel them but they are still visible. Base is really flat so no lapping is needed and this ensures proper contact with the CPU core.

It is interesting to see how well this new fan and heat sink can manage against the others in benchmark. With solid copper heat sink the cooler is half way there so hopefully the fan can live up to expectations.

 

XDream SE (Special edition)

 

Specifications:

Fan Dimension: 80 x 80 x 25 mm
Rated Speed:2000 - 4800 rpm
Air Flow:24.6 - 62.1 CFM
Rated Voltage:7 - 13.2 V
Heat Sink Dimension:80 x 69 x 45 mm
Heat Sink Type:Copper Skived Fin
Weight:630 g
Socket Type:A, 370, 462
Additional:Limited Edition: Only available in selected countries!!!

 


Retail box


What's inside?

Items included with the package are the same that are included with Aero cooler. This is a good thing because you need only look at the specs and cooling power of the cooler when you are buying one.

 


Reqular fan

The fan icluded with XDream SE is more regular looking than one with the Aero. Blades are plastic and they are painted with copper color. The fan uses rifle bearings and this gives the fan a life time between sleeve bearing and ball bearing fans. Fan grill is similar to one found in earlier XDream cooler and it should lower the sound produced by moving air and to improve air flow.

 


Copper base


Fan mount

Heat sink is solid copper. This again to improve heat transfer from the base of the cooler to the end of the fins. From the top down photo you can see that the fan mount is a bit wider than the heat sink's base. This allows the usage of regular 80x80 mm fans so replacing the stock fan with, for example led fan is possible. By using a larger fan the sound coming from the blades is lower pitched and rotation speed of the fan can be lower. This again improves the life time expectancy of the fan so you don't have to worry about your fan dying on you right away.

 


Smooth finish

Smooth finish like with the Aero but those micro scratches are still there. With good quality thermal grease they don't affect the performance of the cooler in any way.

The clip is similar to older XDream model and Aero. It isn't the easiest clip to use if there isn't that much room around the cooler. For benchmarking I used Soltek's KT333 board and it had the socket located so that the clip faced the power supply. This made the installation very tricky. It is best to install the cooler before you install the motherboard to your case.

 

Details

 


PCI bracket


3.5" bay cover

User is given choice whether he/she likes to use frontal or rear adjusting. Wire coming from the fan to the potentiometer is quite long so you should be able to use this 3.5" bay cover option in most cases but there are some cases that has this floppy port located on top part of the case and the wire will not be long enough to reach that. Aluminum cover is great looking with Alu case and for people not willing to sacrifice looks over the usability will be really happy with it.

 


Protective sticker

I've seen couple of coolers installed with that transparent protective film still in place. Anybody should be able to notice this red sticker and remove it before installation. At least I hope so. :)

 

Benchmark

 

Coolers were tested by letting the system run idle for 10 minutes and after that the reading was recorded. After that 10 minutes with full load with help of CPUBurn and again recorded the readings. CPU temperatures were recorded by using processors own internal thermal diode and software used to read that value was Motherboard Monitor 5.3.0.0. Side panel was open and ambient temperature inside the room was ~22°C. Thermal grease was Arctic Silver 3.

Testing equipment:

CPU:AMD Athlon xp1800+ (palomino)
Motherboard:Soltek SL-75DRV5

 


Results

Low and High indicated on which setting the fan was run. Low on XDream and Low on Aero 7 isn't the same because the fans have different rotation speeds and design differences but they are here to show how well the cooler performs on its most silent mode. Same goes with High setting.

It is quite clear that the 1800+ CPU wasn't hot enough to stress these coolers to the limit where the differences start to show. Aero was marginally the most efficient as its peak temperature was one degree lower than others. Coolermaster's HHC-L61 cooler with heat pipe was left to dust and all other coolers beat it even with their slowest fan speeds. It is nice to see that these new coolers out perform these older designs that use smaller fans thus producing more noice and moving less air. I'll update this benchmark when I get my hands on some faster CPUs but I believe that Aero 7 and XDream SE are equipped to handle the promised 3000+, 3200+ and faster CPUs.

Sound produced by these fans with their slowest settings range from total silence to silent. On the other hand on the fastest setting the sound is really loud and I can't imagine anyone willing to use them with this setting for a longer period of time. Anything between these two depends on the person's ears. Others tolerate more noise than others but because these coolers are really good performers with their slowest fan setting, users should be able to find a good compromise between noise and cooling performance with ease.

 

Conclusion

Aero 7

 
+ Innovative fan
+ Great performance
+ Solid copper
+ Silent with low speed
+ Adjustable speed of the fan

- Clip design

MetkuMods Editor's Choice

A really good performer with great new fan design. Noise produced by the fan with low speeds is non-existent but with highest settings it is still quite loud. Solid copper heat sink is a great choice for this cooler and its thermal properties will handle these latest AMD processors with ease. I'm hoping that Coolermaster finds a way to improve the mounting clip so that it would be easier to use. It utilize all six hooks on the socket and this offers a steady and firm mounting but it is still quite hard to install.

With only this one property on the minus side of the scale this product really deserves Editor's Choice award! Like in many products, innovative new designs are always welcome and Coolermaster continues their tradition and offers them to us. This time in form of Aero 7.

XDream SE

 
+ Solid copper
+ Price (~35e)
+ Silent with low speed
+ 80x80 mm fan
+ Adjustable speed of the fan

- Clip design

After seeing this new Aero 7, XDream SE seems more like an old school cooler. Maybe that is true but it doesn't mean that it is not usable. Coolermaster promises that the cooler is enough to cool down the latest CPUs offered by AMD and it did a great job with our 1800+. With copper colored fan the cooler looks really great and the aluminum 3.5" bay contol unit matches nicely with these new ALU cases. No need to reach behind the computer to adjust the speed like with the old XDream.

As I noted, the price of this unit is a lot cheaper than others that perform equally as well. With all this in mind I can really say that this is a great all around cooler for many systems and users, including overclockers.

 

Additional information

Coolermaster

 
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