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Maximum PC Staff Jan 01, 2009

Cooler Master V8

At A Glance

Gin

Nearly top-notch cooling performance, beautiful aesthetics.

Juice

Not that much of a cooling difference between low and high fan speeds.


Cooler Master’s V8 CPU cooler offsets  a somewhat time-consuming installation process with near-record-setting performance for an air cooler. The sleek aluminum cooler’s 12cm fan sits between two heatsinks on the device, sparing fingers from the accidental nip of its 800rpm-to-1,800rpm variable fan.

The V8’s installation process is similar to that of most other CPU coolers, but with a few more screws involved. On an Intel platform, you start by attaching two retention plates to the cooler itself. You then remove the motherboard from your case and flip it upside-down, matching the ends of the cooler’s four retention screws with the mobo’s holes. You balance this contraption in your lap while using four large nuts to secure this beast of a device in place. You can also use an included backplane to mount the device, but we found the nut method to be far easier.

The 16-centimeter-tall V8 emits a slight red glow when you power up your machine. You adjust the speeds of the included fan using a knob that you can secure to your PC using an included PCI bracket. At its lowest setting, the cooler easily outperforms a typical Intel stock cooler and comes within a few degrees of our top air cooler, Thermaltake’s DuOrb. Cranking the V8 to its highest setting makes for a bit more noise than the DuOrb but produces only a meager two-degree increase in cooling performance on both our idle and burn tests.

This performance, nevertheless, places the V8 in the top echelon of coolers we have tested—second place, to be exact. The installation process isn’t a picnic, but we’ve experienced worse. All and all, it’s a great addition to a machine—both aesthetically and thermally.

Benchmarks

V8 (low)
V8 (high)
Thermaltake DuOrb
Stock Cooler
Idle (C)
34.8 33.3
33.5
38.5
100% Burn (C)
58.8
56.3
52.3
66.8
Best scores are bolded. Idle temperatures were measured after an hour of inactivity; load temperatures were measured after an hour’s worth of CPU Burn-In (four instances). Test system consists of a stock-clock Q6700 processor on an EVGA 680i motherboard.
THE VERDICT

Cooler Master V8

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