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August 18, 2013

Unboxing: Thermalright Silver Arrow SB-E



At the time of writing this article, most PC users would prefer or wish to get an All-In-One (AIO) water cooling unit for their CPU. Due to the sheer number of brands and model of these, we often forget to look at the classic Heat-Sink and Fan (HSF) assembly.

Thermalright is a leading brand that specializes in producing high quality cooling components for the PC of today. Since 2001, Thermalright have brought us a few innovative solutions such as the wire fan clip mounting, the introduction of Heatpipes, the first 120mm fan mount and convexed copper contact points which we are familiar and widely used today.


I have with me the Thermalright Silver Arrow SB-E, a classic representation of the third party HSF. It is one of the best, if not the best air cooling HSF in the market, matching and even beating the performance of most AIO water cooling units in the market while keeping the cost affordable for most enthusiast. The Silver Arrow retails at RM269 which is affordable for more people compared to AIO watercooling units. A big thanks for the team at  A.P.E.S for providing the unit for this unboxing and review.

I thought that it would do justice to the Silver Arrow to test it in a modern overclocked CPU, hence this article will cover the unboxing part while Goldfries will be covering the testing on his more updated-Haswell system.

UPDATE -> Thermalright Silver Arrow Review

Here are the specifications in the official Thermalright webpage:

Heatsink Specifications:Dimension: L154 mm x W103 mm x H165 mm
Weight: 750g
Heat pipes: 6mm heatpipe x 8 units
Fin: T = 0.3 mm ; Gap = 2.1 mm
Fin Pcs: 10 + 12 + 80 = 102 pcs
Copper Base: C1100 Pure copper nickel plated
Motherboard to Fin:
30 + 8 = 38 mm, 38 + 8 = 46 mm45 + 8 = 53 mm
TY-141 FAN Spec
Dimension: L152 mm x H140 mm x W26.5 mm
Weight: 175g
Rated Speed: 900~1300RPM
Noise Level: 17~21dBA
Air Flow: 28.3~73.6CFM
Connector: 4 Pin (PWM Fan connector)
TY-150 FAN Spec
Dimension: L170 mm x H153 mm x W25.5 mm
Weight: 190g
Rated Speed: 500 - 1100 RPM
Noise Level: 22~34dBA
Air Flow: 38.2 - 84.2 CFM
Connector: 4 Pin (PWM Fan connector)

The Box



Thermalright shipped their Silver Arrow SB-E in a plain brown box, not too much to say about it except that it has the name of the product printed on the sides and the Thermalright logo at the top. I personally like this approach, it shows that they don't spend too much of the budget decorating the box, focusing on the product's performance instead.


Inside, the Silver Arrow is protected by soft foam on all sides with the Silver Arrow heatsink wrapped loosely in plastic bag. The accessory box is lodged between the two towers in the middle which protects the middle part of the heatsink as it's wrapped with two pieces of thin soft foam as well.

Contents

Pulling out the contents, we have the beefy looking Silver Arrow heatsink, an accessory box and two PWM fans (one being the TY-141 140mm and another TY-150 150mm) though I'm not particularly fancy of the colour of the fans. I'm missing the installation guide but that is easily procured at the official website. There should be a sticker as well in the actual retail package.

Assembly Package


The accessory box contains the assembly package which is sealed tight. Here is the list of items inside the assembly package:

1x Anchoring mount
1x Metal back plate
1x Mounting plate
4x Screw nut
4x LGA 2011 Type B Screw Pillars
5x M3 L10 screw
7x M3 L6 screw
4x TY-141 fan clip
2x TY-151 fan clip
4x Intel (small) washer
4x AMD (big) washer
8x Anti vibration pad
1x Back plate cap
1x Wrench
1x PWM Y-Cable
1x Thermal Paste

I'm impressed with the assembly package, quite a mouthful but impressed. The mounting system has solid metal mounting plates that doesn't bend when force is applied, which gives me a sense of security mounting a hefty chunk of copper and aluminium onto the motherboard. The inclusion of anti vibration pads and a PWM Y-cable are nice touches that I haven't seen in most other CPU coolers.

The Silver Arrow Heatsink





1st impression? Shiny!! very shiny indeed. Every inch including the 6mm heatpipes are polished to a mirror finish which should make it pop out in any system thanks to the nickel plating. Taking the product shot was difficult due to the reflections but it was manageable. It is a bit heavy though, 750g compared to the 626g of the CM 212+ that is currently mounted in my system but is still lighter compared with some other dual tower giants out in the market.

The size is understandable, as even with AIO water coolers, surface area plays a huge role, more surface areas means better heat dissipation. With double fin design array stacked against eight 6mm heatpipes, the Silver Arrow a huge total surface area. RAM clearance will be an issue as well should you're using a tall fin array.



Thermalright are one of the few manufacturers that has mirror finish mounting point, from the shot above, you could see that the nickel plated mounting surface is very reflective. Now, I know that it was proven that a mirror finish doesn't contribute to the heat dissipation of the cooler but what you have is clear surface that lets you detect any dust particles prior to mounting the heatsink. Just remember to peel off the protective sheet of plastic before installing it.


Just an extra shot of the "shininess" of the Silver Arrow and a closer look at the double-fin design.

The Fans


Finally, here is what the Silver Arrow with the fans look like. Thermalright provided two fans of different sizes, one being a 140mm fan while the other a 150mm fan.

As I've said, I'm not particularly fond of the colours but their main function is to dissipate heat from the fins of the heatsink; besides, these should accommodate military-themed PCs out there. Dubbed as Ultra-low noise PWM fans, they do feel to be of high quality and should be able to do their jobs nicely. The use of Double ball-bearing and specially designed Silent Torpedo Blades should provide a good cooling performance.

I do like the sleeving on the wires, however, they might've missed sleeving the PWM Y-cable; not that you'd see them after mounting the Silver Arrow due to the sheer size of it.  

Thermalright supplied three pairs of wire clips to mount up to three fans onto the Silver Arrow. These clips onto the grooves at the side of the fin stack which is easy to do but lack the kind of solid feel as opposed to the heatsink mounting mechanism but being the first to introduce wire clips I'd think they know what works best.

Conclusion

The Silver Arrow SB-E is a beautiful beast of a cooler. If you're looking at an AIO watercooler but couldn't afford it, then the Silver Arrow is a great alternative which should keep the CPU temperatures in check even in the most heavily overclocked systems.

If there are anything to complain about the Silver Arrow, most would point out that the size and weight are not desirable. I also wished that the bundled fans would look better but seeing that you could change them or repaint them makes the problem insignificant, though I would wonder how will I connect the third fan with a the PWM Y-splitter supporting only two fans.

As I've mentioned, the review/testing will be done by Goldfries at www.goldfries.com as my aged system will not show the true potential of the Silver Arrow.

Pros:
-Beautiful & shiny heatsink
-Solid mounting system
-Mirror polished mounting surface
-Inclusion of PWM Y-cable and anti vibration pads
-High quality fans with thick sleevings

Cons:
-Very big and heavier than most coolers
-Funny fan colour combination

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