For years, Intel continued to soar the skies in the desktop PC landscape almost unchallenged by a worthy competitor. AMD came close on many occasions until they finally churned out the Ryzen, creating a severe dent in Intel’s customer base and its confidence (A little maybe?).
Gaming enthusiasts can’t stop drooling over the performance and the price (less than half of Intel’s Core i7 range) of the AMD Ryzen 7 series. The 1800x, which is the top of the line has been well received amongst gamers.
But, for Ryzen 1800x to kick into the extended frequency mode, you need a bloody good cooling system.
For more information check out this comparison on amd fx vs ryzen.
One of the recent entrants that shows a lot of promise is the Thermaltake Contac Silent 12.
Did we ruffle some feathers? We know that you are probably looking at your swanky liquid cooling system that cost a pretty penny and wondering if the Contac can take on it. It probably can’t. But the Contac also costs a fraction of what that rig cost you.
This AMD and intel-compatible 120 mm heat-tube type cooler is reasonably priced, extremely efficient and is ready to use right out of the box avoiding the add-on expense and hassle of getting a mounting kit.
Let’s take a closer look.
Out of the box, the Thermaltake Contac Silent 12 CPU Cooler looks pretty innocuous. The 153x12x100.3mm form factor does little justice to the efficiency of the system. There’s a bunch of chrome plated aluminum fins that are 0.4mm thick and are spaced apart by 2.2 mm.
It has a direct contact design which means that the four 0.6mm copper pipes are placed under the bottom of the aluminum cold plate. These are connected to the integrated heat spreader of the CPU allowing the cooler to transfer heat away from the CPU even when you are constantly overclocking. Read AAA gaming titles at max res.
The Fan is the High Airflow design model no TT1225 from Thermaltake with white blades. The design of the blades allows extremely good quality airflow through the heatsink irrespective of the angle at which it is mounted.
Also, the fan features a hydraulic self-lubricating bearing which increases its lifespan as well as cuts down on noise. Well, so far we have had no complaints. But it’s too early to comment on the improvement that this brings to the table.
Easy Mounting with universal socket compatibility
Now, we have tested a lot of CPU coolers that were better than the Thermaltake Contac Silent 12. No qualms about it. But, to be able to find a cooler that’s ready to attach to the motherboard without conflicting with any of the pre-existing components is a tall order. That’s the USP of the Contac Silent 12.
The contac silent 12 has a preinstalled clip that relies on AMD’s proprietary mounting system. The clip is similar to all of AMDs sockets including the recent AM4 ones that are highly modified and require a mounting kit on normal CPUs.
The back plate design comes with a customized adapter that’s similar to the push-pin design used in Intel’s heatsinks. All that you have to do is attach the adapter and the Contac Silent 12 can be mounted on any Intel Socket board.
Fan installation is simplified by the specially designed fan clips that secures the fan to the cooler.
Despite the reasonable sized tower being installed on the memory modules, there’s a sufficient clearance that allows even airflow. None of the DIMM slots on the socket board are obstructed by the cooler.
Coming to the performance, we tested the system with the PC at idle mode, running a AAA title at maximum settings and once again at idle mode for the cool down.
During the idle phase, temperatures never exceeded 62 whereas it went a tad higher when running the game titles. But it didn’t exceed 70, which is excellent for a cooler at this price point.
Oh, almost forgot to mention that we ran the tests on a Ryzen 1800x, a Ryzen 1700 and lastly an Intel i7.
When used without the ‘low-noise cable’, the temperatures rise quickly to almost 73. But surprisingly, the cable, which I consider to be a noise throttling mechanism, fails to reduce the noise by much.
While overclocking, the system was able to touch 3.8GHz across the cores without any problems whatsoever.
- Universal compatibility with most AMD and Intel sockets
- PWM fan
- Low noise cable
- Reduces temperature as compared to any on-board stock cooler
- Easy installation
- Side flow design with evenly spaced aluminum vents
- Great price tag
- To be honest, we couldn’t find a nit to pick with the Contac Silent 12. However, we were a little unsatisfied with the Low-noise cable that does little to reduce the din. Thermaltake claims a 24% reduction in noise and about 27% in RPM. That’s not a deal breaker though.
All in all, the Thermaltake Contac Silent 12 offers excellent cooling at a pocket-friendly price. It is a much better choice as compared to most stock coolers and even some aftermarket ones.
It is silent, efficient and has a very streamlined design that does not conflict or interfere with any DIMM slots or memory modules. The mounting system is excellent and you will be ready to power on your CPU in less than a few minutes at best.
If you are looking for a cooler for your AMD Ryzen that works flawlessly at stock speeds and allows you to overclock, without spending an arm and a leg for it, then this one is one of your best bets.
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