Arctic Cooling VGA Silencer Rev. 3 Review 2

Arctic Cooling VGA Silencer Rev. 3 Review

Performance & Conclusion »


Last month we tested the Arctic Cooling VGA Silencer Rev.1 (see review here) and were really surprised by its quietness and performance. Today we bring you the review of the brand-new Revision 3, which has added support for all Radeon 9600 and All-In-Wonder cards.
I would like to thank Arctic Cooling for supplying me with the unit for review.

From the manufacturer Arctic Cooling:
  • First VGA cooler with selectable cooling and noise level
    absolute silence or uncompromising cooling performance
  • Unique mounting clip improves the heat transfer of the GPU to the heat sink significantly
  • DHES (Direct Heat Exhaust System) carries the warm exhaust air directly outward

Compatibility List

Video CardSilencer Rev. 1Silencer Rev. 2
(Feb. 2004)
Silencer Rev. 3
(March 2004)
Silencer XT
(March 2004)
Geforce 3 yesyesyesno
Geforce 4 nononono
9500 yesyesyesno
9500 Pro yesyesyesno
9600 Pro nonoyesno
9600 XT nonoyesno
9600 AIW nonoyesno
9700 yesyesyesno
9700 Pro yesyesyesno
9700 AIW noyesyesno
9800 yesyesyesno
9800 Pro yesyesyesno
9800 Pro 256MByesyesyesyes
9800 XT nononoyes
9800 AIW noyesyesno


Box contents:
  • VGA cooler
  • PCI Slot cover with Switch
  • Plastic mounting clip
  • Syringe of Thermal Paste
  • Arctic Cooling case sticker
  • Installation Instructions (these were still the Rev.1 instructions - but it's very easy to figure out which steps you have to skip) .
As you can see in the next two images, the surface of the cooler that makes contact with the core is very flat and has a nice almost mirror-like finish now, although a few concentric circles left behind by the milling tool are visible.

If you are familiar with the Rev.1 Silencer you probably have already spotted the milled out area on the backside. This is where Rev.1 and 2 didn't fit on 9600 cards. The sloped area has also been modified on both sides to make space for parts on the All-In-Wonder cards.


Arctic Cooling recommends the following installation procedure which takes about 10-15 minutes:
  1. Remove the power connection to the stock cooler
  2. Remove the stock cooler
  3. Clean GPU core
  4. Put thermal paste on GPU core
  5. Plug the fan power connector into video card
  6. Lay the heatsink on table facing down and put the video card on it, aligning the mounting holes.
  7. Screw mounting clip on backside of card.
Make sure that the cable to the switch which allows toggling between high and low fan speed is between your video card and heatsink while performing step 6.

Overall, the installation is even easier now and you will no longer have to remove the slot bracket from your video card as was needed in previous revisions.

The backside mounting clip which makes it virtually impossible to crush your core, or bend the card by overtightening the screws is still there, and I like it.

The small 7mm gap between the slot cover and the end of the heatsink is still present, I wonder why Arctic hasn't fixed that. Unfortunately, this gap allows a little bit of warm air intended for exhaustation to escape into the case. An easy fix is to use duct tape to seal it off.

Space for ramsinks is still 17mm - no changes here either.

The backside space is unchanged (3-4 mm on my Abit IC7) but there is not much Arctic can do to fix this.
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