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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [01.13.04]
Manufactured by: Thermaltake


The Test...?

Since this is our first experience with a K8 cooler, there's not a lot we can do for testing. The only other cooler we have here is an OEM unit AMD included with the 3400+. It's a full copper 70x70 HSF with a 70x70x15mm fan. Not exactly the beefiest of heatsinks, but it's what AMD uses for the 3400+, so that gives us an idea of where the Venus 12 sits in comparison. I'll try to gather a bunch of K8 heatsinks and do a full out test on a bunch of them.

For testing, I ran the V12 at its lowest speed (which, by the way, is an ultra quiet 21 dBA, which is all but non-detectable by us, in all but the most quiet environments) and at its highest speed. We ran the stock HSF plugged directly into the board.

Prime95 was used to stress the CPU for 1 hour, and we recorded the temperature using a flat thermistor and a HardCano 10.

At full load, we see that the Venus 12 performs admirably well, breaking below 30C. At the lowest speed, things get pretty hot, but 40.9C is nowhere near being something you should be concerned about, and I would feel pretty safe running this at low speed full time when not OCing.

Idle temps are just that.. Idle.. lol

I could draw a better conclusion if I had more to compare the Venus 12 to. But so far I have to say it looks like it could be a potential champion! It has everything we could ask for - awesome clip design, great looks, versatility of running in high speed mode and quiet mode, and even the price is right. The Venus 12 runs about $27 or so at CompuVest, which is pretty good for a high end K8 cooler.

The only problem I can think of is the fact that we are pretty much at the end of what can be accomplished by air cooling. From here on out it comes down to a few things - looks, installation, versatility, and either OC performance or quiet performance. The Venus 12 excels in all those areas, so I have to say this is a great cooler, worthy of your attention for your Athlon64, Athlon FX, or Opteron CPU!

However, I can't give it an award until I have something else to compare it to.

  • Awesome looks
  • Great clip design
  • Versatile - runs very quiet on one hand...
  • and performs well when at full speed
  • Innovative fan design
  • More than a few fan control options offer a complete package

  • Should be using skivved fins

Final Score: 90%