We’re big fans of cooling gear at Atomic, and Thermalright heatsinks have been a mainstay in the Labs for quite some time. Their TRUE reigned at the top of the roost for many years with only a slight refresh, but Thermalright appear to think that the only way to improve – is to double.
This ethos results in the Silver Arrow, a gigantic monster heatsink that is closer to two heatsinks, fused into one. Taking the shape of a U, four 8mm heatpipes run from tip to tip, dipping down at the centre to mate with a nickel-plated copper base. Heat is pulled up through the aluminium fins, and the two included vibration-dampened fans dissipate the thermal energy. The fans might not be our favourite colour, resembling a mix of dull grey and pasty green snot, but they generate only 56dBA each and are nigh-unnoticeable in a case.
Unfortunately the deviation in form factor away from the TRUE affects installation, which we can only describe as ‘involved’. It starts with a backplate and motherboard mounting ring, secured with spacers inbetween, to which the heatsink is mounted, then screwed down to the ring with a bar that passes above the nickel-plated base. It’s then tensioned with an included custom tool, and the fans are added with clips and anti-vibration pads, where finally it’s complete – not exactly intuitive.
Thermal performance isn’t as stellar as we’d hoped it would be, with the heatsink performing slightly worse at load than the CoolIT Eco in our high-load overclocked torture tests. Re-mounting didn’t improve this somewhat average showing, nor did tensioning at various levels, though to its credit the noise level remained static throughout.
It’s a decent choice for cooling, but due to its awkward installation process, immense size that makes motherboard choice a problem, and merely good performance, we suggest you look towards other high-end tower heatsinks.