Quiet at both idle and when under load, especially compared with previous generation. Easy to install.
Only available with the AMD FX-8370 chip for now.
AMD's new stock CPU cooler is quiet and effective, much more so than its predecessor, even if it won't replace the best aftermarket coolers.
While most of the enthusiasts building their own PCs wouldn't opt for the stock cooler that ships with the processor, there are some scenarios where it's a sound option. If you're putting together a budget build, or compiling parts for a more casual friend or family member, a stock model like the AMD Wraith Cooler (bundled with AMD FX-8370 processor for $199).
Intel's in-box coolers have generally done well at stock speeds, but the same was not the case for AMD. This new Wraith cooler changes things: It's more stylish, quieter, and a little larger than the previous generation of D3 cooler. It is shipping with the FX-8370 processor for the time being, and may be included with others in the future. (You can still buy the processor with the older model for slightly less if you plan to swap it out for another anyway.)
The Wraith is a good deal larger than the D3, meaning it can move more air without spinning as fast. There's also a larger heat sink, so there's more surface area for heat dissipation. It's still fairly compact overall, though, and stands about 3.5 inches off the motherboard. It features a copper base plate, four heat pipes, and aluminum fins.
Performance-wise, the Wraith is a drastic improvement over the old model. In part thanks to the larger size, the fan didn't have to work as hard to keep the system quiet, and the difference was noticeable, even while idle. With the test systems under load, the gap in decibel level grew even wider, and the Wraith was much more pleasant to leave running. The difference in temperature was not as pronounced, but generally speaking, the Wraith keeps the system at least as cool as the D3, and does so much more quietly.
For more details, check out the AMD Wraith Cooler review on our sister site, Computer Shopper.
By Matthew Buzzi
Matthew Buzzi is a junior analyst on the Hardware team at PCMag. Matthew graduated from Iona College with a degree in Mass Communications/Journalism. He interned for a college semester at Kotaku, writing about gaming. He has written about technology and video game news, as well as hardware and gaming reviews. In his free time, he likes to go out with friends, watch and discuss sports, play video games, read too much Twitter, and obsessively manage any fantasy sports leagues he's involved in.
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