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Arctic Cooling Freezer 13 Review

For testing today we are using an Intel Core i7 920 D0 stepping with an ASROCK X58 Extreme 6 motherboard (review forthcoming). While we tend to clean and reapply with Noctua NT H1 thermal paste, today we are using the preapplied MX4 compound which was a recent award winner on KitGuru.

We normally compare against a wide variety of coolers supporting a 970 or 980X Core i7 but this time we wanted to focus on a more mainstream, yet capable enthusiast configuration.

There is no point comparing this against a Noctua NH D14, we know the Freezer 13 will get destroyed, but it also costs over three times the price.

Test System:


Arctic Cooling Freezer 13
Thermaltake Contac 29
Arctic Cooling Freezer Xtreme (Rev.2)
Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro (Rev.2)

Chassis: Xigmatek UtGard (review coming soon)
Processor: Intel Core i7 920 (D0)
Motherboard: AsRock X58 Extreme 6
Memory: Crucial Ballistic Tracer 6GB (3x2GB)
Storage: GSkill 60GB SSD
Power Supply: Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 750W

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit

At reference clocks and voltages, the AC Freezer 13 is delivering the same performance levels as the larger Freezer Extreme Rev 2 which is impressive.

At our maximum stable overclock of 4.1ghz, the Freezer 13 performed slightly better than the Freezer Xtreme Rev 2 – if only by a single degree. The fact it is smaller, lighter and is using a 92mm fan however makes this achievement all the more impressive.

We now want to measure the return to idle state. This is an often missed aspect of a coolers performance. For instance the Noctua NH D14 takes much less time to return a fully loaded overclocked processor to idle resting temperatures than a reference cooler.

When overclocked the Arctic Cooler Freezer 13 was able to return the CPU temperature to the idle state in around eight seconds. This was repeated many times to gain an average. The Xtreme Rev 2 was often around a full second faster to achieve the same results, although this would not really be that noticeable under real world conditions.

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