NoFan CR-80EH Fanless Copper CPU Cooler Review



/ 6 months ago

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Introduction


CR_80EH_07

On the cooling test bench today we have something pretty special, the NoFan CR-80EH. The latest cooler from NoFan, a completely passive CPU cooler that obviously promises silent performance for your computer, but it’s also the newer, more budget friendly model of their previous fan-less CPU cooler, the CR-95C which we reviewed two years ago. We were really impressed by the performance of the previous model, it kept our CPU well within the safe zone for your average user and of course it didn’t without making so much as a whisper of noise.

When it comes to building a HTPC, a silent build can be an incredible tool at your disposal, but it’s hard to get the components right. Passive components still need airflow to get the heat out of the chassis and keep the system from overheating, but with careful consideration you can have a rig that won’t be humming away in the corner while your watching your favourite movies, leaving you to enjoy the show, not the ambient noises.

Prices at just under £40 the CR-80EH is far from expensive, but while I’m certain that I would be able to find many coolers in this price range that offer much better cooling performance, I doubt there are any that will be as quiet. Cooling performance is still important of course, no one wants to cook their CPU in a hurry, but not everyone is trying to overclock the brains out of their system. So long as the CR-80EH can keep a stock i5 within the safe zone, I’ll be happy, but I would be foolish to think this will be enough to cool a heavily overclocked chip… but we’ll find out about that shortly.

As you can see from the specifications, the cooler is quite large, but no so much that it shouldn’t find in most PC cases. It can handle up to 80W, which should be ok for newer high-end or older midrange chips, but keep in mind that some of the older AMD hardware for example can require 125W coolers.

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The packaging is really nicely designed, giving a great view of the cooler thanks to a plastic window, just look at all that lovely copper!

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Around the back we have another window panel, this time giving us a sneak peek at the CPU block. There are some features listen on the box too, such as the zero noise and dust free design.

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In the box you’ll find an easy to follow product manual, some mounting screws, so AMD / Intel compatible brackets and a small bottle of thermal compound.

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  • Quartz

    I bought this cooler 6 months ago. See my tale of woe here: http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1794057

    I found the mounting mechanism particularly poor. Since the base is copper and the screws and plates are not, the difference in thermal expansion and contraction caused the plates to come loose which bodes ill for long-term use. I also had temperature problems which were likely due to the thermal paste – it turned out I was using a very old tube and it had dried out somewhat, and the paste supplied with the CR-80 was very poor. I’ve been meaning to give the CR-80 another go for some time, but I’m really just happy with my CR-95.

  • http://bagofspoons.net Steve

    I just bought one of these. I built a system around an AMD A8 6500 on a Gigabyte GA-F2A88X-D3H. I started with the stock cooler, but it’s noisy enough to be annoying. There’s actually plenty of room around the CPU.

    I tried to fit it, but found that the supplied screws are not quite long enough. I can’t attach the nuts on the back. I’ve mailed Nofan about this. They responded that I needed to remove the existing cooler mounting and I replied that I did that. Awaiting a further response.

    I have some Crucial memory with heatsinks and there is plenty of clearance for those. If I can find some longer screws then it should fit fine. I’ll still have the case and PSU fans, but those are pretty quiet.

    • http://bagofspoons.net Steve

      I eventually managed to installing it by slightly bending the brackets. On idle it was running 10C over the CPU maximum, so I have reverted to the AMD cooler for now. They recommend a case with holes in the top, which my Cooler Master Silencio 550 does not have, but there is a rear fan near the cooler. I was testing with the side panels off anyway.