Scythe Ashura Review 16

Scythe Ashura Review

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Conclusion

  • The Scythe Ashura retails for $48.99/€42.90.
  • Decent cooling performance
  • Exceptional memory clearance
  • Quiet
  • Clear and easy-to-read instructions
  • Easy to install
  • Fan clips for second fan included
  • Blocks the first motherboard expansion slot
  • Packaging offers very little protection
  • Using wrench during install is tedious
Just to get it out of the way: Scythe's Ashura CPU cooler is definitely an exceptional choice. It doesn't offer class-leading performance, but what it does offer makes up for it. Its decent cooling performance won't dethrone any heavyweight contenders, but this cooler allows you to populate all four DIMM slots. The Ashura offers, simply put, the best memory clearance of any cooler I have tested thus far and is exceptionally quiet at low loads without becoming truly audible until the fan approaches its maximum RPM. Its clear and easy-to-read instructions and fairly easy install also help make Scythe's cooler an easy recommendation for first-time builders. Oh, and before I forget: Its extra set of fan clips are a nice touch, although including a second fan would have been nicer still.

There are a few things Scythe could improve upon—further offsetting the heatsink, but this time upwards and away from the motherboard expansion slots to ensure clearance of the top expansion slot, for instance. Those using a sound card in their top expansion slot or a motherboard with its primary PCIe x16 slot at the top will, as it stands, encounter compatibility issues. Scythe could have a real winner on their hands by only including a second fan and fixing said clearance issue in a revision. The lack of packaging is also a bit worrying; however, the use of some foam is an improvement over the packaging by some of the competition. The only other issue that comes to mind is the wrench as it is tedious to use, but users should be able to get the screws in most of the way with a screwdriver.

The only thing that comes to mind is the fact that a second fan would be a welcome addition. It would further improve performance while not impacting memory clearance on mainstream sockets, and this cooler would have truly been one of a kind had Scythe only offset the heatsink some more to improve compatibility with the motherboard expansion slots. Its price isn't half bad either considering all that is on offer, leaving me greatly impressed with the Scythe Ashura.

The Scythe Ashura is a fantastic choice for those that want good cooling, acceptable noise levels, and class-leading memory clearance. Add to that its affordable price and good looks and you just can't go wrong.
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