I know it’s wintertime, but it’s never too late, or too early, to do an upgrade on your cooling. Plus there’s always somewhere on the planet that’s currently hot season, as it is always 5 o’clock somewhere.
Aaaaaanyhow, what I have here is two Scythe’s coolers, the Fuma 2 and Mugen 5, the all-out RGB version, which is a comparison in itself, between these two, both are really massive all-present tower CPU coolers, but one of them is a dual tower one, the Fuma 2 that is. The third is an underdog coming from a brand that I’ve mentioned already a couple of times, or better to say reviewed their products, chassis, for the most part, SilentiumPC, and their Grandis 3 model. Being a Polish brand, they’re not that present outside of Europe, which is a pity because they have very balanced products, as this one will again show you that.
I’m also going to basically a similar CPU cooler comparison, but in a bit lower price bracket, as well as with a smaller footprint, so be sure to subscribe for that one.
Big boy showdown – Scythe Mugen 5 vs Fuma 2 vs Grandis 3
Fuma 2 weighs in at exactly 1 kilogram, what’s interesting about it is that you’ll get one slim and one normal 1200 RPM Kaze Flex 120 mm PWM fan, so you get a better clearance on that side in case you use a 2066 socket, plus its off-center to begin with, and it also has a cutout portion on one side for more room for the surrounding components. It carries a total of 6 6 mm nickel-plated copper heat pipes, which lead you to the decently polished CPU contact base, and its two towers also have this cool overlapping fins design. We’ll see later on how it impacts the performance.
Mugen 5 is a bit lighter than its split brother, and because of that, it has more compact dimensions, although it’s still a beast of a cooler as you can see here, with a total of 5 5 mm nickel-plated copper heat pipes coming down to again a pretty nicely finished CPU contact base. It also comes with two Kaze Flex 120 mm fans, but obliviously those being the RGB version, and them together with the top cover plate make quite of a light-show. This makes quite a mess in regards to cable management as you have a lot of 5V A RGB headers, and although you can daisy chain them, it’s still a lot of cables that need to be tucked away.
SilentiumPC’s Grandis 3 doesn’t have that problem as it uses your plain and regular looking black and gray 1400 RPM 140 mm and 1600 120 PWM fans, two of them, which is why it comes in at a really affordable price. There’s also an RGB version of Grandis 3 you REALLY want to go for it. It has a total of six 6 mm copper heat pipes and a copper base that embeds them on the bottom. The aforementioned Evo RGB version actually has that nickel-plated, and it’s only 5$ more, so it really makes you wanna reach for your pocket to take make it so, you never know, maybe your opinion about RGB changes eventually.
Test system setup
All of these cooler can go on any of the ongoing major CPU platforms, except for the Threadripper as it has a very specific socket layout. Since we touched this topic, what’s cool about all of these coolers in relation to AMD’s AM4 platform, is that you can reuse the original motherboard back-plate, so it makes the installation process that much easier with just a few screws and a mounting bracket, and the same goes for SilentiumPC, I was done with everything in less than five minutes.
Speaking of AMD, as you’ll now see I’ve used a Ryzen 7 3700X with three different clock and voltage configurations, with PBO being off, so let’s just jump right into it without further ado, after all, you’re here for that and not for my blabbing.
Since every motherboard uses a different fan speed configuration, I’ve ditched using the default fan speed profile of my X570 motherboard and used three different levels of fan speed for my testing 30, 60, and 100%. I think this will give a good look into what is each cooler, and its fans, capable of that kind of configuration.
Anyhow, checking the temperature results, It was interesting to see how at low fan speeds, lower clocks, and voltages, the difference in performance between coolers was most noticeable. For example, you can see how the Mugen 5 turned out to be very capable of pulling head at lower fan speeds, it seems that the big single tower design suits that type of scenario. The difference tapered off once you slowly bring up the fans speed, together with the clock and core voltage values, you can see how all three basically had identical 68°C temperature at 60% of fan speed and 4,1 GHz clock speed with 1,2 V on the cores.
All of them are really quite up to 60% of fan speed, and if you ask me, that should be the top end, because everything above that passes the point of diminishing returns. Although, as you might have noticed, at the 60% of fan speed Grandis 3 and Mugen 5 managed to keep the CPU working throughout the whole torture test at 4,25 GHz clock and 1,315V core voltage, while with Fuma 2 it would crash. On the other hand, it turned out to be the quietest, topping off at only 40 dBA at full speed, even though it used 1.600 RPM fans as opposed to 1.200 RPM fans on the other two models, and those other two were much louder, and as I said, 60% fan speed is a sweet-spot for them in that regard, performance to noise ratios. Here’s the loudest and quietest example of both the best performing and worst performing cooler noise-wise.
Speaking of ratios, taking into consideration their prices, around 45-50€, these are all pretty compelling products and you really need to get deep into it to see which one provides the best results. That turned out to be Mugen 5 in this case, although it’s also the loudest, not so much at 60% of fan speed, take that with a grain of salt. And yeah I know that this particular RGB version of the Mugen 5 is a bit more expensive, but you can always get the regular Mugen 5 and buy a second fan if you really need it, it will end being around 50€, although that second fan is not a big difference-maker, especially if you have a back exhaust fan, to begin with. It would be interesting to pin these down against something more expensive from Noctua or BeQuiet, definitely food for thought for the next comparison.