Deepcool seriously impressed me with the AK400 Zero Dark Plus which I took a look at before this review, which had a good design, performance, and great price to boot. So the AK620 Zero Dark that is here for today’s review has some big shoes to fill. Let’s boot up and see how it gets on…
Deepcool AK620 Zero Dark: Specifications
Product page: HERE
Deepcool AK620 Zero Dark: Unboxing and Closer Look
A quick look at the front and back of the box, and were greeted with a brown box with green accenting which has a white cardboard sleeve clearly highlighting the model name and specifications, overall appearing clear and concise. This is taped to the brown box housing the cooler which gives it a nice contrast.
The cooler itself was packaged in this foam insert which was more than enough to ensure it arrived free of any damage. Across a range of components we now find cardboard inserts to support the product during its travels, unfortunately we are still waiting for manufacturers to swap to environmentally conscious packaging for heavier items such as the AK620 Zero Dark.
An additional brown box inside the package includes the manual and accessories bag, with mounting kits for Intel 115x, 1200 and 1700 sockets, and AMD AM4 and AM5 sockets. A nice right-angled screwdriver is also included along with a 4-pin fan splitter cable, and a small tube of Deepcool branded thermal compound.
The view of the front of the cooler shows off one of the two FK120 4-pin PWM 120mm fans. The FK120 is rated for speeds between 500-1850rpm.l
A view of the rear shows off one of the two separate towers the AK620 Zero Dark has.
We can see the dual towers of the heatsink with one FK120 fan attached to each of the towers. Measuring in at 160x138x129mm (HxLxW) it’s not a small cooler, which indicates good potential cooling performance. Note the bottom corners of the heatsinks are also cut away to allow for RAM clearance and the front fan can also be height adjusted to accommodate taller modules with RGB.
Looking top-down, the heatsinks are each covered with a plastic cap featuring a simplified DeepCool logo in each corner, on a pixel-like backdrop and grey edge. Exactly the same as what we saw in the AK400 Zero Dark Plus review. [Editor’s note: Looking at the top tower we can see Dave’s hands indicating that these caps are more reflective than they first appear.]
The rear of the cooler shows us 6 heatpipes in a u-shape that go to each tower for cooling. A sticker comes pre-applied to the base to protect it in shipping and shows us that the nickel-plated base is 52x42mm in size. Apart from the nickel base, every other part of the cooler is black in colour.
Deepcool AK620 Zero Dark: Installation
DeepCool pre-mount the screws into the backplate used on Intel 115x, 1200 and 1700 socket motherboards. You slide them into one of two positions depending on the socket being used, inner for 115x and 1200 and outer for 1700. This makes the overall installation very simple and easy to do.
Thumbscrews are used to fasten the backplate in place. Deepcool has applied a taped paper ring to the bottom to stop damage to the motherboard during installation. The mounting bar sits on the thumbscrew. Position 1 is used on Intel LGA115x/1200 and position 2 is used on Intel LGA1700 sockets.
Thumbscrews then lock the mounting bars into position.
Removing the fan in the centre of the cooler reveals the spring-loaded mounting screws on the base of the heatsink, one on either side, before fitting them back into place.
A final look at the cooler in its assembled form. Overall the installation was quick and easy.
A view of the base of the heatsink after installation. The milled base allows for a consistent thermal compound spread when tensioned correctly.
Deepcool AK620 Zero Dark: Thermal Performance
We have decided to update the testing method accordingly for better and more consistent results. It isn’t ideal running Prime95 for a prolonged period of time and if you get called away to do something, it could be left running for much longer than needed. Our new methodology involves running a multi-threaded performance benchmark called Cinebench R23.
It should also be noted that the reason we omit acoustic/noise testing is due to an inaccuracy within the readings and method. To provide truly accurate readings, you need a lab setting with the same ambient noise on an hour-by-hour, day-by-day and week-by-week basis. As ambient noise can increase at different times of the day, we believe that it’s pointless providing noise testing if we can’t measure consistent and accurate data due to our office being a busy setting.
We have also elected to use the “standard/normal” fan profile as we believe this is the typical fan profile that most users choose to use as default. This allows the fans to speed up and slow down automatically depending on the use case situation a.k.a load.
- CPU – Intel Core i7-10700k– 3.8GHz (1.1v) & 5GHz (1.3v)
- Motherboard – Aorus Z590 Ultra
- GPU – NVIDIA GeForce GTX1060
- RAM – Corsair Vengeance LPX 32GB (4x8GB) DD4 3000MHz
- PSU – Thermaltake Toughpower GF1 850w
- Case – Thermaltake Divider 300 TG Air Snow Mid-Tower
- OS – Windows 11 Pro 64-bit
In addition to keeping our test setup consistent for all CPU cooling tests, we also always use the same thermal paste rather than any that comes supplied or pre-applied. Our thermal paste of choice is NT-H2 from Noctua.
Idle Testing Methodology
To test each cooler at idle, the minimum temperature is taken after leaving the PC with only start-up programs being allowed to run for 5 minutes. The mean of three tests is recorded. This temperature is deducted from the current room temperature and our final delta temperature is provided.
Load Testing Methodology
To test each cooler under load, we run Cinebench R23 for 60 minutes using the multicore CPU test. The mean of three tests is recorded. This temperature is deducted from the current room temperature and our final delta temperature is provided.
Deepcool AK620 Zero Dark: The Verdict
It’s great to see amazing thermal performance results from the AK620 Zero Dark! It offers excellent cooling performance out of the box, topping our charts on all counts! It looks decent enough with a black aesthetic, and comes with two 120mm fans pre-installed out of the box.
As mentioned before, the presentation of the product itself is good, and that quality is evident throughout. The heatsink towers are well constructed, and the mounting kit Deepcool has included works flawlessly. It has to be said this one is also better than the AK400 Zero Dark Plus seen recently.
Noise levels were also acceptable, under full load with a 205w Intel core i7 10700k, with the FK120 fans ramping up to around 1750rpm, but by no means quiet. They’re definitely the loudest part of the computer in this instance.
Choosing a black colour theme on the heatsink and fans is always a safe bet and is, arguably, a preferred and more popular choice over the traditional metallic colour you typically find. This is especially true when matched with a predominantly black motherboard for overall aesthetic appeal. The heatsink covers on top are another nice aesthetic addition overall.
At 160mm tall, you’ll find that the AK620 Zero Dark will likely fit in most cases without a worry.
Adding to its overall appeal is the £64.99 price at the time of writing. That makes this a pretty affordable cooler and low-blows the competition by as much as £30 when you take its price to performance into account.
- Thermal performance is great.
- The build quality is decent.
- It’s priced to outperform the competition, and does!
- FK120 fans are certainly audible under high loads.
Making the AK620 Zero Dark a well-deserved winner of our…
Big thanks to Deepcool for sending over the AK620 Zero Dark for today’s review.