1. Features, specifications
The new "Nero" (AK-967) CPU cooler is Akasa's proposal keeping your new LGA 1366 processor cool and ready for overclocking. The product is also compatible with the previous LGA 775 socket as well as with AMD's AM2 platform.
- Akasa Nero (AK-967)
The Akasa NERO (AK-967) has a classic design that combines performance and near silent operation. A multi-platform cooler designed for the entire range of Intel and AMD current processors with 3x8mm ultra high capacity U heat pipes are installed with direct CPU contact for rapid heat transfer. The direct contact eliminates a thermal resistance thereby increasing efficiency. Over 46 aluminum profiled fins are available for optimum heat dissipation. A black 120mm PWM fan is mounted using anti-vibration siliconized rubber pins giving quiet cooling.
The product design has been refined to ensure quiet cooling for CPU’s up to 150W TDP (Thermal Design Power). Installation is easy using push-pins (Intel) or cam-lever (AMD) mounting mechanism.
The Akasa NERO can be assembled horizontally or vertically (in desktop or tower chassis) as the heat pipes work independently of installation direction. It supports the following CPU sockets: Intel LGA 775, LGA 1366, AMD Socket 939, AM2, AM2+ and many
CPU’s: INTEL Pentium 4, Pentium D, Core2Duo, Core2Quad, Core2Extreme, Core i7, AMD Athlon 64, Athlon 64 X2, Athlon 64 FX, Athlon X2, Phenom X3 and Phenom X4. The key features on the Akasa Nero CPU cooler include:
- Three high capacity 8mm U-shape heatpipes with direct CPU contact
- Piano black 12cm fan with PWM
- 46 fins profiled for optimal airflow and heat dissipation
- Siliconized rubber fan mounts for easy installation and ultra quiet performance
Here are the full specifications of the product:
| Socket type
|| Intel LGA 775 / LGA 1366
AMD 939 / 940 / AM2 / AM2+
| Heatsink dimension
|| 146.4 x 120 x 65mm
| Heatsink material
|| High grade aluminum fins, copper heatpipes
| Cooler dimension
|| 160.5 x 119.9 x 54mm
| Fan dimension
|| 120 x 120 x 25mm
| Fan connector
|| 4-pin (PWM control enabled)
| Fan speed
|| 500 - 1500 R.P.M.
| Fan airflow
|| 17.38 – 50.54 CFM
| Fan air pressure
|| 0.152 - 1.32 mm H20
| Fan life expectancy
| Bearing type
|| Sleeve Bearing
| Voltage rating
| Noise level
|| 18.3 – 24.6 dB(A)
| Product code
2. What's in box
The Akasa Nero comes in a small sized box . The retail price of the AK-967 is around $38~$45, as found at several online stores.
Opening the box unveils a very well packaged internal, everything is surrounded by a plastic hard foam that keeps the product in place and secure during transportation.
The middle-sized cooler 160mm x 120mm 54mm (H x W x D) features siliconized rubber fan mounts for easy installation and quiet performance, as you can see in the picture below:
The cooler uses 46 fins profiled for optimal airflow and heat dissipation. Three 8mm full copper heat pipes with U-shape are linking the array of the fins to the base, offering direct contact with the CPU:
The 120mm fan support the PWM function and rotate at 500~1500 R.P.M. This speed is high but still, we have seen even faster fans. Let's wait and see the actual performance of the fan later in this review.
The retail package includes mounting clips for the various supported sockets, thermal paste and two mounting screws for the Intel sockets.
The 120mm fan can be easily installed by just pulling the rubber absorbers through the two holes of the fan.
Installing the cooler itself is also simple. The first step is to mount the clips for your Intel/AMD CPU. In our case we used the LGA 1366 clips and we secured them on the bottom side of the cooler using the includes two screws. Then you just push the four clips down until they lock on your motherboard. It would be better to do this procedure before you mount the fan on the cooler.
3. Test methodology
For our tests with the LGA 1366 CPU coolers we used an open air test bed with the following configuration:
- CPU: Intel Core7-920 Retail
- Case: open air test bed
- Motherboard: Asus P6T Deluxe Bios 1003 & Foxconn Renaissance Bios P07
- Memory: 3x1GB Crucial PC3-1066
- PSU: OCZ 720W
- HDD: WD 80JB
- Operating system Windows XP with all the latest updates installed
- Software: OCCT v2.0.1 & CoreTemp 0.99.3
- Thermal Paste: Tuniq TX-2
- Idle time: ~30min
- Load time: ~30min
- RPM speed controllable via SmartFan BIOS or via external hardware controller
In order to produce the highest possible temperature inside the PC case, we used OCCT v2.0.1 software with a custom 30mins (mixed) operation.
We left both cores running at full load for ~30 minutes. All
temperatures were logged using the CoreTemp 0.99.3 and the software itself.
We followed two overclocking scenarios:
- Intel Core i7-920 @ 2.66GHz
- Vcore: 1.1000V
- Other BIOS values: Auto
- Intel Core i7-920 @ 3.60GHz
- Vcore: 1.26250V
- DDR3 Voltage: 1.64V
- Other BIOS values: Auto
We also measured the produced noise from all the coolers using the Precision
Gold N09AQ Environment Meter. All measurements were taken at a distance of 30cm from the cpu cooler running at full speed. For all the coolers we used the same thermal
compound from Tuniq, the TX-2. All in all
we tried to have the exactly same environment conditions in all the
In the following graphs you see the results of the Akasa Nero cooler (blue bar) compared with the Intel's stock CPU cooler and two other solutions from Titan and GlacialTech.
We lest the Core i7-920 processor running at its default speed (2.66GHz). The Akasa Nero cooler kept the temperature down to 50 degrees Celsius (max), as the OCCT software reported. That's eight (8) degrees less than Intel's stock cooler. The higher priced Titan Fenrir was more efficient in this test with 46 degrees Celsius, mainly due to its more powerful fan.
The next step was to see how the coolers perform under overclocking conditions. We pushed the Intel Core-i7 920 at 3.60GHz. This means that its voltage was also increased and thus, the CPU was producing more heat.
Akasa's solution kept the temperature at 69 degrees Celsius, which is 21 degrees less than Intel's stock solution. Again, the Titan Fenrir performed better with 61 degrees C.
When it comes to active cooling solutions, keeping the right balance between cooling efficiency and produced noise is critical. As it was expected, the Intel stock CPU is the quietest CPU cooler in the test, but it lacks efficiency.
The Akasa Nero produced 47dB of noise and the Titan Fenrir around 52dB. All the test results are available here.