To test out the performance of the new Wraith Cooler I busted out our tried and true AM3+ testbench. For the CPU I went with the FX-8370 that AMD bundled with the cooler. My focus in my testing was just how well the new cooler cools as well its noise performance. For comparison I tested the older AMD D3 stock cooler as well to get a better idea of hopefully the performance improvement. I started with cooling performance testing. I tested both coolers in three situations, at idle, under load using Prime95, and under load using Prime95 but with the fan speed turned up to 100%. To read the CPU temperature I used the ASUS AISuite 2 software than comes with the Crossfire motherboard on our testbench. The first test I ran was idle performance and I was surprised right away that the Wraith Cooler was an impressive nine degrees cooler than the older heatsink. When I warmed things up with Prime95 those results continued with the Wraith at 56 degrees Celsius and the older cooler at 62 degrees. This was a smaller but still impressive graph. When I turned the fan up the Wraith Cooler dropped a full 7 degrees but the D3 only dropped 1 degree. This was because the Wraith Cooler was running even with the CPU at full load at around 50% fan speed. The old cooler on the other hand was running at nearly 100% fan speed when things heated up so turning the fan up didn’t make for much of an improvement.
For noise testing I used the same decibel meter that we use for GPU testing. I wouldn’t consider our results to be directly comparable to the lab tested numbers that AMD released for the Wraith Cooler. But the numbers tested are good to compare between the two coolers that were both tested on the same test bench with the same meter. Much like our GPU testing I ran through 100%, 50%, and idle noise tests to get a good idea of the noise range. What I found was that the Wraith Cooler is a significant improvement over the previous cooler in every single test. The results from idle and 50% fan speed were the same as well meaning the cooler runs quiet in almost all situations unless you intentionally turn the fan speed up. A few things that the numbers won’t tell you. For one, our older D3 cooler is just obnoxiously loud, it doesn’t really reflect in the numbers but it puts out a high pitched noise that drove me insane sure testing. The Wraith Cooler didn’t have any weird noises but I wouldn’t consider it silent as well. Coolers like the Noctua that we run on our test benches are still going to be quieter, but this is a big step for a stock cooler.