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February 12, 2015

Unboxing & Review: Scythe Grand Flex PWM


Scythe's Gentle Typhoon AP-15 has been endorsed by many enthusiast as the king of radiator fan due to its exceptional performance. With the Gentle Typhoon AP-15 gone EOL, Scythe has something else to replace the king. The Grand Flex PWM is the latest creation in the Scythe line-up, with every major component re-developed at its' core. Equipped with a closed-up liquid bearing (Sealed Precision FDB), the rotor shaft rotates on an oil-film created by dynamic pressure. This technique greatly reduces running noise and friction, which in turn slows down wear and tear of the bearing. The newly designed fan blades focus the air stream to the desired cooling area to optimize cooling efficiency.

Huge thanks to Ideal Tech for making today's review on the Grand Flex PWM possible. The Grand Flex PWM is available locally at a very affordable price of RM39, a rather good deal compared to the Gentle Typhoon AP-15 which was priced at RM59 back then. Now the price is pretty much right on the spot, will it perform just as good as the Gentle Typhoon AP-15?  


Specifications


Overview

The packaging is pretty much the same as the Gentle Typhoon in terms of material. What's not, is the design where Scythe boasts its 100% completely in-house engineering - new fan design, sealed precision FDB, higher speed of 2400 rpm.



At the back you'll find its specification, diagram showing the included accessories, brief introduction to PWM and its feature.


Accessories

The included accessories is pretty much the same as what the Gentle Typhoon AP-15 has (4-pin molex to 4-pin fan header, 4 pieces of screws), except for the rubber mount. 


Closer Look

The newly designed fan blade is unlike any fan blade we've seen before. Scythe boasts its new fan design to be able to concentrate the air flow generated to effectively cools the targeted area - which we'll find out later.



4-pin fan connector is pretty much expected for a PWM fan. Though it's subjective, we find that it'll look even better if the connector is in black.



Sleeved cables which are often found on fans with higher price tag is available on the Grand Flex, aww yiss?


At the back of the fan, you'll find curved grill instead of the traditional straight grill design. We've seen some fans with similar designs that performs pretty well and we believe that it provides better air channeling compared to the traditional straight grill design.


The uniquely designed fan blades, this is our first time seeing such design. 


Performance Test


Test Rig Configuration
CPU Cooler
Corsair H100i
CPU
Intel Core i7 4790K
Motherboard
ASUS ROG Maximus VI Gene
Memory
G.Skill TridenX @2400MHz
Primary Hard Drive
Crucial M500 120GB
Power Supply
be quiet! Straight Power 10 600W
Chassis
Corsair Carbide 300R

Under ambient temperature of 28°C, we've conducted a system stress test with the test rig as above to generate the amount of heat needed for our test with a single SilverStone AP121 120mm fan as the only exhaust to remove heat from the chassis. 


Temperature (chassis intake fan)

By using FurMark stress test, we've prepared a warm environment of 40°C in the chassis to test the capability of the fans used as chassis intake fan.  

Both Scythe Grand Flex PWM and Noctua NF-F12 IndustrialPPC 3000rpm topped the chart with exceptional performance that is capable of providing enough fresh air to cool down the internal temperature to 33°C.


Temperature (Radiator fan for Corsair H100i)


As for the radiator fan test, the difference in temperature isn't that much as compared to the chassis fan test. By comparing the result for both Gentle Typhoon AP-15 and Grand Flex PWM, we can assure you that the Grand Flex PWM did well as a substitute for the Gentle Typhoon AP-15.


Noise Level




Moving on to noise level test, our ambient noise level is measured at 42db but as we move our noise level meter near to the test system, we're picking up extra 2db from the system without front intake fan which appears to be coming from other moving parts in our system.

The noise level meter is left stationary in front of the fan tested for 5 minutes each and the average reading is taken as our final data. The Noctue NF-F12 IndustrialPPC 3000rpm as best performer in cooling performance, scoring the noisiest fan with noise level of 75db. The Scythe Grand Flex PWM positioned in the middle with noise level peaked at 58db might be noisier than the Scythe Gentle Typhoon AP-15 but it's reasonable due to the extra speed. 



Our Verdict
There's not much to complain about the Scythe Grand Flex PWM as it performs exceptionally well. Running at 2400rpm (full speed) on 12V does makes it noisier compared to the Scythe Gentle Typhoon.  

The retail price of RM39 is a very reasonable price for a fan as capable as the Scythe Grand Flex PWM and we highly recommend it to enthusiasts who is looking for a replacement for the Scythe Gentle Typhoon AP-15 that has gone EOL. 

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Aesthetically pleasing, especially with the sleeved cable
  • Solid build quality
  • Higher rpm for extra performance
  • Included with rubber mount for vibration reduction

Cons

  • Noisy on full speed


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