Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Review

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Introduction

Be Quiet Logo

Be Quiet is a German company making PC components which focus on silence and performance. The company has also become synonymous with superb build quality and stunning aesthetics. With over 10 years experience in noise reduction their products are some of the quietest on the market. Their product range includes power supplies, CPU coolers and case fans.

Today we are taking a look at their top of the range series fan the Silent Wings 2. This range of fans comes in two variations and a number of sizes; 80mm,92mm,120mm,140mm in both 3 pin and 4 pin PWM variations. Silence is the main factor with these fans intending to offer high performance while remaining quiet. This series of fans come with a 3 year manufacturer’s warranty and the 120mm 3 pin edition we are looking at today retails around the £16-£17 mark, so let’s get cracking.

Specifications and features

140mm

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 140x140x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 1000RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 60.4CFM / 102.6m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 0.81mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 15.8dB(A)

120mm

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 120x120x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 1500RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 50.5CFM / 85.8m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 1.63mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 15.7dB(A)

92mm

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 92x92x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 1800RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 32.6CFM / 55.4m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 1.98mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 16.9dB(A)

80mm

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 80x80x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 2000RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 26CFM / 44.2m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 2.25mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 14.5B(A)

140mm PWM

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 140x140x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 1000RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 60.4CFM / 102.6m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 0.81mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 16.4dB(A)

120mm PWM

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 120x120x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 1500RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 50.5CFM / 85.8m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 1.63mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 16.5dB(A)

92mm PWM

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 92x92x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 1800RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 32.6CFM / 55.4m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 1.98mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 17.4dB(A)

80mm PWM

Dimensions (L x W x D) – 80x80x25mm
Fan speed @ 12v – 2000RPM
Airflow @ 12v – 26CFM / 44.2m3/h
Air pressure @ 12v – 2.25mm H20
Noise level @ 12v – 15.5B(A)

 

Packaging and Accessories

Taking a look at the front of the box. The packaging design follows the same look as other Be Quiet products; the print has a matt finish to it and highlights key information about the fan such as the 1500RPM, use of Silent Wings technology and the fan size (120mm). The front of the packaging also features an image of the fan and highlights where the product sits in Be Quiet’s range (high-end).

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Box Front

On the back Be Quiet give the full specifications of the fan, along with some text in English and German explaining the features and highlights that the product’s conception, design and quality control were done in Germany.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Box Back

On the sides of the packing we see the same text as was on the reverse highlighting the key features but this time in Polish, French and Spanish and some awards that other fans in their range have been awarded.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Box Left

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Box Right

The packing also features a front panel which is fixed closed with Velcro and flips open to reveal a window to allow you to see the fan and the mounting clips. On the opposite side Be Quiet highlight a number of features of the fan including the fluid dynamic bearing, the use of a high quality IC motor, airflow optimised blades, removable anti-vibration mountings and rubberised fan frame and flexible mounting options.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Box Flipped Open

The fan and accessories comes in a black moulded plastic tray, with two different types of mounting clips in a separate tray. Beneath the mounting clips are some black fan screws, rubber pin clips, user guide and a multi-voltage fan adaptor.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Packaging

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Accessories

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Screws

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Multi Voltage Adapter

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Anti Vibration Pins

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Manual

There is a really good amount of accessories bundled with the fan. I really like the fact that Be Quiet have included black fan screws as opposed to generic silver screws and a multi-voltage fan adaptor; really nice touches that make this product feel exclusive and stand out from the crowd.

Closer look

Taking a closer look at the fan; once you feel the fan you can begin to tell the quality of it, weighing 180g. The fan’s framework is extremely rigid with virtually no flex when trying to twist it which is a great thing. The general build quality is superb; this fan is built to last!

The fan uses an advanced fluid dynamic bearing which helps to keep the noise down. The bearing provides a very smooth movement of the blades when spinning the fan manually. Be Quiet say the bearing uses industrial grade lubricant which eliminates direct contact between the rotor and frame, aiding its quiet and efficient running. The bearing uses a copper core which conducts heat away from the bearing more effectively, giving the fan a super-long life of up-to 300,000 hours which is equivalent to 12,500 days of constant use!

The fan uses a high quality IC motor controller which reduces electrical noise.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Bearing

The 120mm fan has 7 ribbed fan blades. Be Quiet say this ribbing helps to ensure the silent operation of the fans by reducing turbulence and improving the airflow. They are also dynamically balanced which helps to enhance reliability and reduce noise.

Feeling the blades, they are extremely smooth with not a rough edge on them at all. The blades are quite thick and have no flex in them which is due to the combination of thick blades and the ribbed design.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Ribbed Blades

The fan features a rubber edging around both sides of the framework to prevent noisy vibration from the fan being passed to the case.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Rubber Edging

The fan’s cable is 45cm long which is more than ample for most cases and is long enough for you to route the cable out of the way to keep your rig clean and tidy. The fan cable comes braided in black braid and while the quality could be better, the overall fan cable quality is very good and you can’t see the cables through the braid due to them being black.

In my opinion the heat-shrink could be shorter at each end, however the heat-shrink is very tight to the braid and cable which is nice to see. One thing I was impressed to see was the cable being clipped down where is comes out of the fan’s framework and the use of a black 3 fan connector. There is also 4 pin PWM editions of the Silent Wings 2 fans.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Braid

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Black Connector

The fan’s specific model number is (BQT T12025-MF-3) and it is capable of spinning at 1500RPM. At 12v the fan produces 50.5CFM and is 15.7dB(A). The fan is 25mm thick which is the same as most fans on the market. Something I did notice was on the side of the fan’s framework are two arrows showing the direction the blades spin and the direction of the airflow.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Front

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Back

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Embossed Direction

At each corner of the fan is a mounting point for the two different types of mounting clips. The mounting clips just clip in and are held very securely but are easy enough to remove and change should you wish. There is an audible click when you clip the mounts in which lets you know it is fixed firmly.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Mounting Clips

The first type of mount is one for the supplied fan screws. This mount is made of black plastic and you just screw the fan screws strait into the mount through the case.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Screw Mount

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Screw Mount Step 1

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Fan Screw Mount Step 2

The second type of mount is for the noise-reducing/anti vibration pins that Be Quiet supply. This mount is made out of a soft black rubber. To fit the fan using this mount you put a black rubber washer on the plastic pin. Then push the pin through your case and into the mount attached to the fan. I found this method to be very simple and it held the fan firmly in place.

This mount can be used in two orientations, one with the L side of the mount fitted towards the case and the other with the S side of mount fitted towards the case. Both of these are different configurations and provide different levels of isolation. The L side provides a 1mm gap between the case and the fan’s framework providing the best isolation whereas the S side relies on the fan’s frame work pressing against the case to provide the isolation.

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Anti Vibration Pin Mount

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Anti Vibration Mount Step 1

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Anti Vibration Mount Step 2

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Anti Vibration Mount Step 3

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Anti Vibration Mount Step 4

One thing I am disappointed to see is the lack of the ability to mount this fan to a watercooling radiator, you can only use the mounting methods supplied. I would have liked to have seen the ability to be able to mount this to a radiator.

Performance

Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm Testing

5v

The noise performance at 5v is nothing but staggeringly silent. Even with my ear up against it there was no bearing noise, motor whine, electrical noise or airflow noise. In terms of airflow there was a mild breeze coming from the fan with my hand about 10-15cm away from the fan.

7v

The noise performance at 7v is great as well; still remaining silent. There was a slight bit of airflow noise but that could only be heard with my ear right up against the fan. Again there was no bearing noise, motor whine or electrical noise. Airflow wise there was a good breeze coming from the fan with my hand about 10-15cm away, I was pleasantly surprised at the airflow if I am honest.

12v

The noise performance at 12v is very good and whilst it is no longer silent it is the quietest fan I have heard at 12v to date. There was naturally some airflow noise but putting my ear up against the motor/bearing area I heard no bearing noise, motor whine or electrical noise and there was good airflow coming from the fan from about 10-15cm away.

Overall the Silent Wings 2 120mm offered superb performance in terms of noise and noise reduction. Be Quiet have used specific parts for quiet performance and they work! I was pleasantly surprised by the force of airflow as I was expecting less. Naturally there is an obvious difference in the airflow between the different voltages so Be Quiet leave the choice in the hands of the user as to whether they prefer performance or true silence.

Conclusion

The performance of this fan is outstanding in terms of silence and I would say Be Quiet is one of the companies leading the way in terms of silence and noise reduction. This fan is by far the quietest fan I have heard to date at any voltage. They really have done a superb job. Although there are other brands which offer better airflow albeit not at the same noise level.

Be Quiet do offer multiple variations of this product. With most cases now opting for 120mm and larger fans, Be Quiet offer a full range of Silent Wings 2 fans from 80mm up to 140mm sizes in both PWM and 3 pin configurations. I would maybe like to see a 200mm added to the line up in the future with some cases opting for a 200mm at the top, front or side of the case.

The aesthetics of the fan are really good. I like the dark look which is then carried out throughout the cable and accessories. The ribbed design on the blades offer a unique look when spinning. Some users may also like to use LED fans although currently Be Quiet do not offer this option as part of their range. This again would be a nice addition in the future, even if it is only a single colour like white, which would go with most systems.

The mounting system I found to work well, whichever option is used. The anti-vibration pins were very secure and provided a firm mount. I am disappointed not to see support for mounting the fans to a radiator, especially with the all-in one units becoming more popular and enthusiasts using custom watercooling loops. This is something I would certainly like to see added.

The fans are professionally presented in very good packaging which suggests from the outset that it is a premium product. There is a wealth of accessories including multiple voltage fan adapters, lots of mounting hardware and a user’s guide.

Moving onto the cost, this 120mm Silent Wings 2 model comes in at around £16-£17 at the time of writing. Obviously the product is designed to be a premium product and as such a premium price tag is expected however to kit a case out with three fans you are going to be looking at about £50, which may be a lot of money.

My opinions at a glance:-

Pros:

  • Stunning acoustic performance at all fan speeds
  • Good build quality
  • Loads of accessories
  • Excellent mounting
  • 3 year warranty
  • Airflow to noise ratio is impressive
  • Cable comes braided and uses black connectors
  • Looks great
  • Fan has no flex in the framework
  • The parts used do what they should and help to keep the product silent
  • Superb packaging

Cons:

  • Price
  • Lacks the ability to mount on a radiator
  • Airflow could be better

In conclusion everything about this fan is designed with good build quality, durability and silence in mind. The three year warranty that comes with the product shows Be Quiet’s faith in the product and the components they use. If silence is your thing then look no further as this is the product for you. Either way this fan is brilliant, the engineering behind the fan and the execution of the end product is something to be admired; altogether a great purchase.

I am pleased to award the Be Quiet Silent Wings 2 120mm fan our Play3r design award.

awards-design

  • Performance
  • Design
  • Value
4

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  • Joey

    Is there another arrow there covered up by the watermark? I can’t tell for sure

    • Yes there are the usual fan / airflow direction arrows (almost) visible in the shot if you zoom in a lot.