Diversity is a large part of any company's ability to sustain longevity. One of the easiest ways to create some diversity within a product line are specialized products. SilverStone, best known for their variety of PC chassis, provided Futurelooks a specialized CPU cooler in the NT01-PRO. We will attempt to answer the question of did they need to sacrifice cooling potential for the unique design.
Features and Specifications
The Silverstone NT01-PRO is a specialized version of their NT01-E cooler from their Nitrogen Series. The NT01-P has a solid copper base with six heatpipes 6 mm in diameter attached to aluminum fins. This is a pretty standard material design, but the NT01-P is a half-height, offset CPU cooler. At 140 mm wide, 120 mm tall (40 mm from base to fins and 100 mm for fins), with the entire assemble offset by 35 mm, this gives the cooler an interesting profile. Each fin is also 50 mm wide for a fairly high surface area.
The NT01-PRO is designed to support a number of cooling configurations. It can be a passive cooler for processors with a 65W TDP or less as recommended by SilverStone. Adding up to two 70 mm or 80 mm fans will allow usage with a processor of up to 150W TDP. The mounting system also works with any currently available CPU socket design and mounts in four different directions. This versatility comes at a price of $54.00 at select e-tailers.
Lets get a better look at what you receive at that price with the NT01-PRO.
What's in the Box?
The included items with the NT01-PRO are exactly what you would expect. Once you get around the exceptional packaging you will find the NT01-P cooler, user instruction manual, mounting hardware, metal back-plate, and fan mounting hardware. While there is nothing new within the box, there was a lot of mounting and fan hardware.
I was also surprised to find no fans are included, but a dual PWM Y-cable is included for dual fan configuration. This is a little unusual but clearly shows that the focus of the NT01-P is for lower TDP processors. Please keep this in mind if you plan to use this cooler with higher TDP processors as you will need to purchase fans separately.
Now that we have the box open let's get a more detailed look at the cooler itself.
A Closer Look at the NT01-Pro
The NT01-PRO has a copper base housed within a rather thick aluminum block. Once installed the base acts as a counter weight to keep the entire assembly balanced through evenly distributed tension across the support frame. Upon closer inspection the block is divided into two pieces and the copper directly contacts the 6 mm heatpipes inside.
The aluminum fins are also interesting in their design by having slots cut down either side for fans to be clamped, but clearly cannot be. This is because SilverStone used the same design of the front tower on their HE01 CPU cooler. This in no way detracts from the NT01-PRO, but does create an issue we will address during installation.
Now that we have a better idea of how the cooler is designed, lets look at how testing will be done.
Test System Specifications
I based the selection of components for both consistency and a worst case scenario test. The NT01-P is designed with small form factor PC cases and CPUs with lower TDP (Thermal Power Design), but we want to see how well it would handle a higher powered CPU as specs state it can handle up to 150W TDP. As the cooler did not include fans, I selected two 80 mm Inland fans (1500 to 2500 RPM) for testing.
- CPU Cooler: SilverStone NT01-P
- Cooler Fans: 2x Inland 80 mm Thermal Control Fan
- CPU: AMD FX-8350 (125W TDP) || AMD A10-5800K (100W TDP)
- Motherboard: GIGABYTE 990FXA-UD7 || ASUS F2A85-V PRO
- Memory: G.Skill RipjawX 2133 MHz (9-11-10-28) @ 1866 MHz (9-10-9-27)
- Graphics Card: AMD Radeon HD 6850 1GB Reference Card
- PSU: Antec HCP 850 Watt 80+ Gold
- SSD: Patriot Pyro SATA III MLC 60 GB
- HDD: Western Digital 2 TB Black
- Case: SilverStone TJ04-E Evolution
- Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
- AIDA64 Extreme Edition
- HyperPI 0.99b
Now let's move on to installing the Silverstone NT01-PRO and get straight on to testing!