|Processor:||Intel Core i7-3960X ES @ 3.6 GHz & 4.1 GHz OC|
|Motherboard:||ASRock Fatal1ty Champion|
|Memory:||4x 4096 MB G.Skill Ripjaws Z F3-17000CL9Q |
@ 2133 MHz 9-11-10-28
|Video Card:||AMD Radeon HD 5450 1 GB|
|Harddisk:||OCZ Vertex Plus R2 60GB SATA II SSD|
|Power Supply:||NZXT HALE82-650-M 650W|
|Case:||LIAN LI PC-T60B|
|Software:||Windows 7 64-bit Service Pack 1|
|TIM:||Arctic Ceramique 2|
All testing is done at a room temperature of 20°C (68°F), with a 1°C margin of error. The coolers are tested with Turbo, EIST, and C1E enabled, which will allow the CPU to clock down to a low 1.6 GHz while idle, or clock up to proper speeds under stock and overclocked conditions. With the use of XMP, the Intel i7 3960X ES chip I used for testing runs at 3.6 GHz under stock load. Overclocked, the chip is set to 4.1 GHz at 1.225 volts. During all these tests, fan speeds are set to run at 100% in the BIOS, with temperatures being recorded by AIDA64.
The idle test will consist of the CPU sitting idle at the desktop for 15 minutes. This will allow for a stable temperature reading that will be recorded at the end of those 15 minutes.
AIDA64 and its CPU stability test represent a typical multithreaded user load. It is run for 15 minutes before the highest reading during the test is recorded and taken as the result. This test lets enthusiasts know what temperatures they can expect to see with games and applications.
Prime95 is the multithreaded stress test I will use to find the cooler's temperatures at maximum load. This is done by using the "In-place large FFTs" setting to truly stress the cooler's ability at keeping temperatures in check. The test is run for 15 minutes, and the highest recorded temperature is used as the result.
Fan noise testing is done at 20%, 50%, and 100% settings, and the dBA level is recorded by a Pyle PSPL25 sound pressure level meter at a distance of 30 cm. Fan RPM results are taken at the same 20%, 50%, and 100% settings.
At idle, the Corsair Hydro Series H110 ties with the H90 and Coolink Corator DS for the top spot. When fully overclocked, idle temperature climbed by 3°C, which places the H110 in third place, behind the H100 and Corator DS.
At typical loads, we see the Corsair Hydro Series H110 come in second place behind the H100 at stock clocks. When overclocked, the H110 begins to show its class-leading performance, taking the number one spot for the first time.
The Hydro Series H110 falls back to second place, behind the H100, at stock clocks. However, once the system is overclocked, the H110 distances itself from the rest of the pack, beating the H100 by 4°C. This is an impressive feat considering its noise levels.
As the charts show, the Corsair Hydro Series H110 is a massive improvement over the H100 in terms of noise levels. Even though it usually falls into the middle of the pack, the fan noise, while audible, is not unpleasant. It is simply not a contest at maximum fan speeds: The Corsair Hydro Series H110 is a full 15 dBA quieter than the H100. This is a huge reduction in noise and even comes with better performance. This time around, Corsair has done a great job of balancing performance with noise.