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Phanteks PH-TC14CS CPU Cooler

Cooler with multiple color choices

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Author: Jouni 'Jipa' Vasama
Published: 15.04.2012
Manufacturer: Phanteks
Product Group: Cooling - CPU
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Performance

For temperature testing we used the same Intel LGA1156-setup as earlier. The CPU is i7-870, overclocked at 3,8 GHz (19x200 MHz) using Vcore of 1,25 V (1,287 V measured). With these settings the test setup draws 70 W on idle and 277 W in 100% CPU-load. For fair testing se used the same Phanteks PH-NDC thermal paste with each cooler, and ran the cooling tests without any significant curing time. Ambient temperature was measured between each test and the temperatures in the graph are the results at ambient temperature of 20 C.

One of our readers was kind enough to donate a pair of Scythe Gentle Typhoon 1850 RPM fans (D1225C12B5AP-15) for reference use, so from now on we'll also be testing coolers using one or two of those GT's.

 

Phanteks PH-TC14CS CPU Cooler - Cooler with multiple color choices
 

Our normal testing settings proved to be too much for the two top-down coolers in this bunch. The CPU-temperature quickly hit 90 degrees, which caused throttling, but not instant crashing. Apart from the PH-TC14CS and Noctua NH-12L the coolers on the graph are really high-end versions, so the comparison isn't really fair anyway. Now lets lower the settings and run some more tests.

 

Phanteks PH-TC14CS CPU Cooler - Cooler with multiple color choices
 

We ended up running the chip at 3,4 GHz (18x190 MHz) at Vcore of 1,212 V (1,245 V measured) which lowered the heat output enough to provide proper results. The difference between the Phanteks and the Noctua NH-L12, which is the closest competitor we currently have around, ended up being 3,75 C. The Noctua can only fit a single 120 mm fan, so the reference fan comparison isn't fair, but in this test the difference was 4 C.

 

Noise

 

Phanteks PH-TC14CS CPU Cooler - Cooler with multiple color choices
 

The PH-F140 fans are already a familiar sight in our lab, and seem like very high quality fans. Since the first review the reference speed of these things has gone up from 1200 RPM to 1300, but in use I couldn't really tell the difference. They are still reasonably quiet as-is and can be ran even slower and quieter with the supplied PWM-adapter.



Conclusion


PROS 
  • Performance (for this type of coolers)
  • Fits low/narrow cases
  • Pair of good fans included
  • Five color options

    CONS 
  • Mounting could be easier
  • Award
    Silver Award!


    The Phanteks PH-TC14PE turned out to be one of the highest performance air coolers around, and I've been eager to hear again from the manufacturer. While I was expecting for a slightly smaller version of the TC14PE, a top-down cooler like this is also a great addition to their lineup. With a single fan the cooler stands 112 mm tall, which means it fits much narrower cases than its bigger brother. Anyway with both fans installed it still isn't exactly low, which limits its use in SSF-cases.

    For installation the cooler uses a method very similar to the PE-model, but with the exception that this time the mounting screws are annoyingly hidden under the heat sink. This is in fact the only real problem we could address, and even with this inconvenience the mounting still isn't too tricky. For cooling performance we didn't have much comparison in this class, so it's hard to really tell how the PH-TC14CS stacks up, but it sure looks like the CS is a good performance cooler of its type.

    If you're on the market for a top-down cooler, this could be it. Just don't let the design fool you, check the clearance before buying.

    You can buy the PH-TC14CS cooler with around 75 euros.


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    Phanteks

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