By Gareth Ogden posted Aug 30th 2010
Corsair launched the Hydro Series H50 high-performance CPU cooler in June 2009, and since then it has taken the cooling market by storm. It has won worldwide critical acclaim for its superior cooling performance, quiet operation, and ease of use. Installing a Corsair H50 in place of your existing CPU cooler will significantly reduce CPU temperatures and allow for higher overclocking flexibility, and will provide better cooling at lower noise levels. But, as good as the H50 is out-of-the-box, it is possible to increase its performance even further with a simple fan upgrade known as ‘Push-Pull’, which uses two identical fans to increase airflow. We will compare the cooling performance of the H50 in single-fan and push-pull mode to that of a Noctua NH-U12P HSF, also in single- and dual-fan configurations. The test system will use an Intel Core i7-870 (Lynnfield) processor at stock settings, overclocked to 4133MHz with Hyper-Threading Off (max frequency) and overclocked to 4GHz with Hyper-Threading On (max multi-threaded performance). The results, summarized below, show that the Corsair Cooling Hydro Series H50 in a push-pull configuration outperforms the standard H50 by up to 4oC in the overclocking tests. In addition, it significantly outperforms the Noctua NH-U12P, with temperature reductions of up to 12oC. This is a significant reduction that will increase overclocking headroom, as well as allowing for minimal noise levels while maintaining low CPU temperatures.