Thermaltake Golden Orb II


The original Thermaltake Golden Orb was one of the first CPU coolers to deviate from the established “aluminum brick” design, and it consequently paved the way for the onslaught of innovative CPU coolers that continues to this day. To celebrate its glorious past, Thermaltake has redesigned the Orb for today’s CPUs and added LED lighting to give the device a more modern look. The Orb II is not a high-performance CPU cooler; rather, it’s a totally silent cooler, and as such its performance is middling.
The new Orb features a copper core with aluminum fins. A 10cm blue LED fan at its center spins at a constant 1,700rpm. It pushes 35CFM of air and is virtually silent at just 17dBA.

Installation of the device was incredibly easy. Thermaltake’s inadequate instructions and teeny-tiny screws have always made its coolers difficult to install, but this one was a breeze. That said, the kit includes an adhesive backplate to install on AMD systems, and once applied to your mobo it’s practically impossible to remove. Thankfully, the stock backplate works just fine, so we recommend using that instead of the one provided by Thermaltake.

The Orb II is the first CPU cooler we know of to abandon older Socket 478 and Athlon XP processors. The unit is made exclusively for Athlon 64 and Pentium LGA775.

The Orb II’s cooling performance is decent, but not exceptional. We like that it’s quiet and easy to install, but we’re miffed about the adhesive backplate. We can easily recommend several other CPU coolers that are just as quiet and offer better performance.

+ GOLD ORB: Very quiet and easy to install.
- GOLD TEETH: Backplate is a bitch to remove; underwhelming performance.

Month Reviewed: October 2005
Verdict: 7

BENCHMARKS Golden Orb II Nitrogon NT02 Stock Cooler
Fan @ Low N/A 36 C N/A
Fan @ High 37 C 32 C 40 C
AMD FX-55 @ 100% LOAD
Fan @ Low N/A 52 C N/A
Fan @ High 52 C 44 C 54 C
Intel LGA775 3.6GHz @ IDLE
Fan @ Low N/A 42 C N/A
Fan @ High 44 C 38 C 44 C Intel LGA775 3.6GHz @ 100% LOAD
Fan @ Low N/A 65 C N/A
Fan @ High 66 C 55 C 63 C
Best scores are bolded. All temperatures were measured via the onboard sensors, using the utilities provided by the motherboard manufacturer. Idle temperatures were measured after 30 minutes of inactivity and full-load temps were achieved running CPU Burn-in for one hour.

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