Vigor's Monsoon II TEC CPU Cooler


Water cooling may still be a great option for anyone who wants to take the time to set up and maintain such an elaborate system, and one can certainly buy a larger water cooling "rig" than the one we tested. Advantages include an increased selection of available radiator sizes, possible relocation of the radiator to a cooler air stream and the possible addition of component coolers to chipsets, graphics cards and RAM. A huge, well-maintained water cooler can eliminate several small noisy fans by substituting its own large, yet quiet fans.

The downsides of water cooling include a risk of leaks, a mess of tubing, a loss of internal system space, a decrease in system portability, increased difficulty in maintenance of attached system components and the eventual coolant contamination due to air contact. That list seems about as long as the side effects mentioned at the end of pharmaceutical commercials.

Vigor Gaming has a great alternative for anyone not interested in water cooler maintenance, risks and associated component installation hassles. The Monsoon II was at least able to achieve the same cooling effect as a similarly priced water cooler at maximum CPU stress levels, and requires nothing more than a couple of thin cables and a controller card.

Testing revealed that the Vigor Gaming Monsoon II Lite had a narrower temperature range with higher starting temps, but this was likely because it uses electronic controls in close proximity to other hot system components. Had it used a remote temperature sensor outside the system's heat envelope, a lower target temperature may have resulted in a continuously cooler operation. The system never reached a high enough heat level to force the Monsoon II Lite's TEC to run for more than a few seconds, which means that the cooler has more power than this E6700 processor ever needs, even at a high voltage levels.

I can only conclude that the Vigor Gaming Monsoon II Lite provides more cooling than I can possibly use with the tested E6700 even at insane overclock settings. Perhaps I should have asked the boss for a Quad Core.

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Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.