There we have it, all the testing and playtime comes to an end and what have we learned? Well, if you set the thermal ramp to start at around 50’C and you’re only doing office work then you’ll probably never hear the cooler. For a quiet office, studio or HTPC use with good airflow then you can’t ask for better performance.
If you do need better performance of course and run the fan at max like we do with all coolers when we test them then you actually have a rather good cooler. It might not be exceptional in terms of cooling performance when you’re pushing your CPU but it is better than some and it’s not really the aim of this cooler anyway. Saying that, I was still able to get my CPU to bench at 4500mHz with a reasonable amount of chill factor.
But remember those spare fan brackets and the splitter on the fan? If you’re going to push your CPU then you have the option of adding another fan to give push-pull which is bound to get you the kind of boost in cooling to around the level of coolers that are designed with an ‘always on’ fan in mind. The downside though is that this adds extra cost.
Still, this cooler is not designed to be a massive overclocker – it’s designed to be a semi-passive cooler and even though it is disturbing not to have the fans running at all, the Freezer i32 did its job well with light usage, and didn’t embarrass itself when pushed to extremes. If you really need a silent cooler, one that only turns on when you really need it and you aren’t going to do much overclocking, if any, then maybe this is the cooler for you. At £30, you are paying the price for such silence, and there are so many good coolers out there which cost the same or less and would do a similar job though you can still practice your overclocking skills on the side. If you are wanting to overclock to really high speeds then I cannot in good conscience recommend the Arctic Freezer i32; it’s not designed for it… not straight out of the box anyway, and getting the comfort zone of the extra performance by adding another fan makes it a bit too expensive too for overclockers.
We know that Arctic products are usually of good quality and well designed, after all, we have recently had the chance to play with quite a few of them, and this cooler is no different. Arctic started with an ideal use case and created a product that matches it perfectly. I struggle with the price though, if it was cheaper then it would make a viable alternative for a lot of other usage scenarios as well, but what you end up with is a specific silent cooler for specific uses.
A big thank you to Arctic for giving us the opportunity to test the Freezer i32.
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