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Deepcool Gamer Storm Assassin II Review

Designed to conquer Deepcool’s biggest competitors, does its Gamer Storm Assassin II really deliver top-level cooling and noise levels?

Test Results And Final Thoughts

The Assassin II comes within two degrees of the standard-bearer NH-D15 at full throttle, both in CPU and PWM temperature. Temperatures at the lower fan setting are a little worse, but that’s because the Assassin II was manually set to 50% while the NH-D15 uses Noctua’s greater-than-50% resistor wire.

A look at the fan RPMs shows that Noctua’s speed reduction is closer to 25%. We used those resistor wires while trusting that Noctua knew the “optimal RPM” for efficiency. Meanwhile, coolers that lack this feature suffer from the “non-optimized” 50% setting. Or do they?

While the Deepcool Assassin II starts out a little noisier than the NH-D15, it ends up much quieter at low speed because 50% is such a low setting. Perhaps a retest of the NH-D15 at 50% is also in-order?

Slightly warmer and slightly noisier at full speed, the Assassin II ends up around 5% behind the NH-D15 in cooling-to-noise ratio. We’re now treating the 50% test as a bonus measurement.

Price is closer to the point, as the Assassin II provides a few percent less full-throttle performance compared to the NH-D15 but costs over 10% less. That means it’s a 5% better value. As for the value at low fan speed, this measurement really points out the benefits of motherboard-based fan control.

Final Thoughts

Barely underperforming our top “big air” CPU cooler, Deepcool’s Gamer Storm Assassin II comes at a low-enough price to make it a far better value. That’s not to say it’s cheap, only that it’s cheaper than best cooler we’ve tested.

Some users will think it looks better too, and the extra 0.6” of space savings in both front-to-back and side-to-side dimensions will certainly help it fit more motherboard/case combinations. Yet better value alone is enough to earn it some kind of value award.

Unfortunately, my previous experience of mounting 3-pound coolers on 4-layer motherboards forces me to narrow my recommendation for this 50-ounce unit to stationary systems with six-layer boards. That’s still a broad enough field to cover most LGA 2011 and LGA 2011-v3 models, but it's far less than the range of products the Assassin II actually fits. If in doubt, I recommend asking a few users in our community forums.

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Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware, covering Cases, Cooling, Memory and Motherboards. Follow him onTwitter.

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  • Skhmt
    Designed to "concur"? Did you mean "conquer"?
    Reply
  • firefoxx04
    More heat-pipes than the Noctua and it still gets beat in cooling performance? The Noctua is a touch louder but thats no big deal. The D15 I have is plenty quiet.

    Why only 3 coolers to compare? Surely the Phanteks dual tower (with 140mm fans) would have been a great competitor here considering the price point is closer to the Deepcool cooler than the Noctua is.
    Reply
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    I have the original version on my 4790k build , they are incredible coolers , super sturdy fans.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    16880966 said:
    More heat-pipes than the Noctua and it still gets beat in cooling performance?
    Its RPM is 270 lower, that probably explains most of the handicap.

    It might be interesting to compare these while using the same fans on both, to see how much the heatsink's structure affects performance. Even better would be a constant air flow rate test to take fans completely out of the equation.
    Reply
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    Original has the sturdiest fans I've come across.
    Reply
  • DouglasThurman
    The 3 pound thing doesn't matter when you mount the motherboard horizontally. This thing fits fine in my Sentey ss6-240 case. I can overclock the AMD Athlon 2 x4 860k to 4.2GHz without hiccups.
    Reply
  • Amdlova
    nops i don`t find this cooler sexy. prefer the d-14 or d-15
    Reply
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    Best in it's class Cryorig R1.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    16881663 said:
    The 3 pound thing doesn't matter when you mount the motherboard horizontally.
    How many people still buy full-height horizontal desktop cases deep enough to fit a 212 these days? Nearly everyone uses towers and most popular "pizza box" type systems use either half-height expansion slots or angle risers to keep height down.
    Reply
  • Crashman
    16880703 said:
    Designed to "concur"? Did you mean "conquer"?
    Perhaps I left out "with" and meant to say it was agreeable to competing products?
    -Fixed, thanks :D
    16880966 said:
    More heat-pipes than the Noctua and it still gets beat in cooling performance? The Noctua is a touch louder but thats no big deal. The D15 I have is plenty quiet.

    Why only 3 coolers to compare? Surely the Phanteks dual tower (with 140mm fans) would have been a great competitor here considering the price point is closer to the Deepcool cooler than the Noctua is.
    Because the D14 and its Phanteks doppelganger were reviewed on the previous platform.
    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/LGA-2011-i7-3960X-Air-Overclocking,3130-11.html
    16881998 said:
    Best in it's class Cryorig R1.
    You should contact News Man Niels and see if his friends at Cryorig would like to send one. Or maybe I should.
    16882000 said:
    16881663 said:
    The 3 pound thing doesn't matter when you mount the motherboard horizontally.
    How many people still buy full-height horizontal desktop cases deep enough to fit a 212 these days? Nearly everyone uses towers and most popular "pizza box" type systems use either half-height expansion slots or angle risers to keep height down.
    You're both mostly right :)
    Reply