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Deepcool Gammaxx 400 Slim-Tower CPU Cooler Review

Deepcool Global pushes its value message with low pricing, but can its $30 Gammaxx 400 provide enough cooling power for a high-end processor? We compare it to two of our favorites to find out!

Our Verdict

By a wide margin, Deepcool's Gammaxx 400 has the best performance-to-price ratio of any cooler I've recently tested. It will remain on the top of my purchase list until something with even greater value comes along to replace it.

For

  • Moderate thickness for extra memory clearance
  • Cooling
  • Price

Against

  • Unfinished appearance
  • Slightly high noise

Introduction, Specifications And Features

Deepcool has shipped us several great-performing reasonably-priced products over the past few years, with its Gamer Storm Assassin II dual-tower cooler recently beating most of the firm's competitors in both price and performance. Can the company do more with even less?

The Gammaxx 400 loses both the Gamer Storm label and a second cooling tower compared to that high end model, but gains a cleaner airflow pathway and broader compatibility with systems that have tall memory modules. Cooler thickness is the most-important factor in determining whether a CPU cooler must sit above or behind that memory, and the Gammaxx specifications are fairly close to those of other recently-tested slim tower coolers.

Forced Air CPU Cooler Specifications

Compared to the NH-U12S, Deepcool's Gammaxx 400 hangs an extra 0.1" of fins off both the front and rear of the CPU socket. As a frugal builder, I can sympathize with anyone who actually needs the extra 0.1" of memory clearance afforded by the costlier part. The Gammaxx 400 is also a little wider, though about half that difference comes from its wire fan retainers sticking out farther. All three coolers come with an extra set of clips to hold a second fan in push-pull orientation.

Four screws secure mounting brackets to the side of the Gammaxx 400's base. The installation kit includes an AMD bracket for a motherboard's stock clip-on retainer (oriented with clips at the sides), a universal square-ILM bracket with "push pin" locks for Intel's LGAs up to 1366, and a similarly slotted bracket with spring-assisted LGA 2011x screws. Adjustment slots are meaningless with screws that are specific to LGA 2011x, and installers must remember to slide these screws all the way to the outer edge of those slots to match their motherboard's threaded retainer holes.

The Gammaxx 400 has perhaps the smoothest direct-contact heat pipe base I've ever felt. Best cooling results can usually be found by filling the gaps next to the pipes with thermal paste, yet I was barely able to squeeze any into these spaces.

The Gammaxx 400 fits well behind the closest memory slots of our test board, allowing memory far taller than the 1.6" clearance height of its side fins. The fan can also be moved up and down on the heat sink, though doing so increases the required amount of over-cooler clearance while reducing the fan's effect on motherboard component cooling.

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  • Traciatim
    Personally, I think this would have been a better comparison if it was done with the current value champ of forum recommendations, the Coolermaster 212 EVO. That has always been the go to cooler for recommending to people with new builds or not very specific requirements because it's fairly cheap and works well in almost any case.

    Reply
  • kunstderfugue
    I'd have loved to see this cooler compared to the 212 EVO. Because if it's as good as these tests show it to be with that price tag, we might have ourselves a new King of the Hill.
    Reply
  • Val Cyril Estrada
    I dont know why people are spending almost a hundred dollars on a noctua when you can get this for the same or better cooling performance. Im using this but replaces the LED fans with Corsair SP120s since i have black and white themed system with deepcool color changing RGB lights
    Reply
  • Onus
    I really hope this finally silences the incessant parroting of the Hyper212 EVO. I'd seen a good review of the 300, and I'm glad the 400 is consistent with that.
    Nice job, covering a budget cooler!
    Reply
  • Calculatron
    Wow, I am seriously impressed by this.
    Reply
  • Chris Droste
    who pays $100 for the Noctura? that's a $65 part all day, Val.
    Reply
  • Onus
    Thomas, you have batted one out of the park with this one. Imho, solid, budget parts are something people want to see, in any / all categories.
    Reply
  • zodiacfml
    I reckon, this seems to perform slightly better than a Hyper212 EVO.
    Reply
  • Darkbreeze
    Great review, couple of things I feel I need to interject though. As usual, and as mentioned in the Shadow rock slim review comments, not offering comparisons to the 212 EVO, as mentioned here already, makes little sense when you're trying to show budget cooler performance and value.

    The 212 EVO is the budget cooler that 90% of recommendations focus on, therefore, you need a review of that unit and you need to begin offering comparisons to it.

    Secondly, I'd REALLY like to see you retest this unit with a higher quality fan installed. If it's as good as your results indicated, then I think the addition of a higher quality bearing fan like the NF-F12 PWM or one of the Cryorig, Thermalright, Scythe or Phanteks fans that have quieter, longer life bearings would be a great thing to look at since it would still keep the price under fifty bucks.

    If the performance is still good with one of those fans, it makes it an even better option versus something like the U12S at 65.00 or more.
    Reply
  • Xaltar
    I have been a fan of DeepCool's products since I picked up a Gammax 300 a while back. While their fans leave a lot to be desired their tower coolers offer fantastic performance for the money. My Gammax 300 even cools my 6600k respectably when I am switching it in and out of review boards (simple mounting system makes it handy for in and out jobs). I still prefer my Thermaltake Frio for hardcore overclocking but for a 24/7 light OC the gammax does the job well, that and I don't have to worry about warping my CPU substrate.
    Reply