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Thermalright's Shaman VGA Cooler: The Quiet Giant?

The Big Daddy Of VGA Cooling

After we wrote our last VGA cooler roundup, Thermalright brought its newest entry in this segment to market: the Shaman. Thermalright claims two world firsts for this cooler: the first VGA cooler designed to accommodate a 140 mm fan and the first VGA cooler with eight 6 mm heat pipes.

Of course, we're always looking to put claims of superiority to the test, so we're itching to compare this unit to some of the products reviewed in the past.

Let's have a look at how Thermalright's new VGA cooler stacks up against the competition:

ThermalrightShamanArctic CoolingAccelero XTREME PlusDeepCoolV6000ZalmanVF3000
Dimensions:160(L) × 132(W) × 38(H) mm290(L) × 104(W) × 56(H) mm212.5(L) × 110.5(W) × 65(H) mm239(L) x 98(W) x 51(H) mm
Weight:500 grams(without fan)622 grams759 grams430 grams(without fans)
Fans:Single 140 mm fanThree 92 mm fansTwo 92 mm Case FansTwo 92 mm Fans
Power Cables:Single MotherboardFan HeaderSingle Graphics CardFan HeaderTwo MotherboardFan HeadersSingle MotherboardFan Header
Construction:Nickel-platedCopper Cooling BlockAluminum Heat pipes and Cooling FinsCopper Cooling BlockCopper Heat PipesAluminum Cooling FinsAll-Aluminum ConstructionCopper Cooling Block Copper Heat Pipes Aluminum Cooling Fins
Compatibility:GenericFour mounting hole size options:Radeon 3870/4800/5800 and GeForce 250/9800GTX,GeForce GTX 200 series,GeForce GTX 480 and 8800,GeForce GTX 460Radeon 6950/6970GeForce GTX 570/580GenericFive compatibility set options:VR001-Multiple Radeon/GeForce CardsVR002-GeForce GTX 200 seriesVR003-GeForce GTX 470/465VR004-GeForce GTX 480VR005-GeForce GTX 460GenericSix mounting hole size options:43 mm, 51 mm, 53 mm,58 mm, 61 mm, 80 mmVF3000F: GeForce GTX 480VF3000F: GeForce GTX 465/470VF3000A: Radeon HD 5800 seriesVF3000N: GeForce GTX 200 series

From the raw specifications, we can see that the Shaman's 140 mm cooler does stand out amongst the crowd. A large fan has the potential for higher airflow combined with lower RPMs (and consequently lower noise) compared to smaller fans. Of course, the drawback is the significantly larger size of the cooler, standing more than 20 mm higher than the next-largest competitor, and even higher when the fan is attached. As a result, the Shaman won't fit in anything smaller than a full-width case with at least 6 3/4" inches of clearance from the motherboard.

Enough statistics for now though; let's have a closer look at Thermalright's VGA cooling beast.