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Putting a 92mm cooler up against the 120mm versions from your competitors takes guts, but that’s exactly what Arctic Cooling chose to do, even after being informed that our particular test would use a highly overclocked Core i7 processor. This is obviously a value play, as the company also produces a 120mm-based Freezer XTREME Rev.2 that costs almost twice as much. With a low Web price of around $25, we’re anxious to find out if this tiny unit can take the heat.
The Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 ships with thermal paste that is pre-applied and protected by a clear plastic cover. Removing the paste reveals a super-flat copper base with a finely-sanded finish.
Supporting Intel’s desktop LGA processors (775, 1156, and 1366) and AMD’s clip-on socket frame (939, AM2, AM2+, and AM3), the Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 is one of the few “performance” coolers that can replace a stock Intel cooler without removing the motherboard from a case.
Expansion plugs and wedges make bracket installation easy because low cooler weight and moderate spring pressure made a rear support plate unnecessary. Access to the front mounting screw is eased by unclipping the fan and extracting the wedges for bracket removal requires nothing more than a pair of long-nose pliers.
AMD fanatics will be a little more disappointed with their installation options, since the socket orientation of most AM2/AM3 motherboards will force them to mount the cooler with the fan blowing upwards from above the video card rather than in the proper cross-draft configuration.