Thermaltake SWAFAN 12 & 14 RGB Fan Review




/ 2 months ago

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Exterior Packaging – Front

The packaging for both the Thermaltake SWAFAN 12 and 14 RGB is certainly eye-catching with solid colour contrasts on offer. A clear image of the fans is provided front and centre which contrasts well against the predominantly black background and when combined with all of the key features at one easy glance, this gets things off to a good presentational start.

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Exterior Packaging – Rear/Sides

Fan kits can often be quite limited in terms of presentation due to the fact that the box work isn’t usually that large. Thermaltake has, however, pretty much utilised all of the space available to the best effect. Every side is dedicated to relaying information, specifications, features, etc. with the rear being particularly excellent thanks to the inclusion of a surprisingly large number of coloured photographs showing the fans in action. – With a QR code also available for those who want to dive a little deeper, the packaging here is fantastic!

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It would be remiss of me to not also highlight that the internal packaging is equally excellent with the fans and the spare blades both well protected. Each fan comes with a thin polystyrene slice in between them to prevent any frictional damage in transit while they also have the added bonus of having the accessories boxed in the centre to help further reduce any potential damage from impact/transit.

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The Fans

As noted above, we’re looking at two separate kits here. One contains 3 x 120mm fans and one contains 3 x 140mm fans (pretty simple, right?). By and large, though, the size is pretty much the only real difference between them with, in so far as I can tell, there are no other notable differences.

So, in other words, let’s kill two birds with one stone here!

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The Thermaltake SWAFAN RGB fans are well presented with a sleek and, dare I say, somewhat professional aesthetic with the lighting turned off. You might, however, be wondering why the central parts of the fans look different in the picture below. Well, the answer to that is quite simple and you might notice it yourself if you pay close attention.

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Spotted it yet? Well, if not, the image below will give the game away. With the interchangeable fan blades, the black indicates the standard push configuration while the silver is used to denote the ‘reversible’ pull. – It’s a nice touch to easily identify which is which (for those of you who can’t visually tell the difference).

Oh, and yes, we most certainly will be getting into the functionality of the removable blades later in the review!

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Each corner comes with anti-vibration padding which, when compared to a lot of other fans, is surprisingly nice, thick, and chunky. In other words, the only noise these SWAFAN RGB fans are going to produce is what the blades themself provide (which is exactly as it should be!).

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Although the key feature of these fans is to keep the prettier side more visible, it should be notable that this does still incorporate a ‘triple riing’ design meaning that even the less attractive side will still look pretty good even if you don’t decide to flip the blades to your needs (Albeit, why you’d do that I have no idea!).

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So, overall, the fans look excellent and clearly something of a solid evolution of Thermaltake’s prior range of excellent cooling solutions. Clearly, though, things will get taken to a whole new level when those lights are turned on!

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Accessories

The Thermaltake SWAFAN RGB radiator fans come with a surprisingly large amount of accessories. More than you might usually anticipate for a triple-fan kit. What you do get, however, is both excellent and highly useful. In fact, in one particular respect, this goes well beyond what you might usually anticipate.

And two manuals? Well, one contains the general product specifications and installation methodology while the other goes more into detail surrounding the hub controller and how to access and use the TT RGB PLUS software.

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Both the SWAFAN 12 and SWAFAN 14 kits come with Thermaltake’s 4th-generation hub controller. This acts as a central hub for all of the fan connections and, presuming you own more than one kit, this can even be daisy chained to allow for masses of SWAFAN products to still be controlled via the main ‘access’ hub.

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Coming with five ports, while this is clearly more than enough for the three you get in the kit, I do perhaps wish that this supported one more. Five just seems like an incredibly awkward number whereas three would clearly allow for straightforward support for another set of SWAFAN products without the need for an additional hub controller.

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A useful addition to the hub controller is undoubtedly seen within the manual functionality switches. Through various configurations (detailed in the manual) this can provide a manual control for the fan lighting functionality. Admittedly, the vast majority of consumers are probably going to want to keep these in their default configuration. Still, though, it’s a nice option to have for the more enthusiast user.

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You may have noticed in the accessories a syringe, and more so, might be wondering why on Earth you’d need such a thing with a fan kit. Well, it does actually have a point, and, given its inclusion, likely a very important one too.

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You see, with the fan blades being removable, having metal rubbing against metal in the process is clearly not an ideal thing. Particularly since, over time, something is undoubtedly bound to eventually break. What this is, therefore, is a lubricant. – Yep, presuming you’re going to be rather excessively changing the fan blades, or perhaps want to do so after a few years in place, this is there just to ensure that the central hub is well greased to ensure your fans last for an exceptionally long time and removing the risk of damage from future removal/installation.

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