We gave the Golden Orb II a mediocre 7 verdict back in October 2005, but the Blue Orb II is bigger and much, much better. It’s a massive cooler that squats over the CPU socket like a sumo wrestler, taking up every square millimeter of space.
It features a standard copper base plate with aluminum fins that separate into a cool-looking forked pattern. A silent (17dbA) 12cm fan blows down on the fins, cooling the CPU and everything around it. Motherboard removal is only required for LGA775 sockets—poor Intel users.
During testing, the Blue Orb II performed on par with the reigning champ—Zalman’s CNPS 9500 LED. The Orb is also incredibly quiet at all times. Our only gripe is that the cooler stretched out over the neighboring RAM slots, blocking our stick of extra-tall Corsair memory. A standard RAM stick fit just fine, however, as did memory with heat spreaders.
Month Reviewed: July 2006
+ COOLING: Looks sexy, has awesome cooling perfomrance, and is easy to install.
- HEATING: It's so big that it stretches out over the RAM slot, disallowing extra-tall RAM.