AMD's Wraith cooler is a surprisingly solid new take on the stock heatsink formula. If you're building with an FX-8370 CPU and don't intend to overclock, the Wraith is adept at keeping the processor cool while staying whisper-quiet. In fact, it can deliver performance that's not far off Cooler Master's $45 Hyper D92. Not bad for something that comes free in the box. The Wraith is super-easy to install, too.
The Wraith was let down at first by the Gigabyte 990FX-Gaming motherboard I used in my testing. Compared to modern motherboards from other manufacturers, the 990FX-Gaming's firmware fan controls are primitive, and its default fan control settings make the Wraith sound pretty bad. Even after I set up a custom fan speed curve in Gigabyte's Windows software, that utility needed far too much attention to keep that curve active. While other motherboards might be better off in the fan control department, builders may still have to do some fan-curve setup with them to bring out the Wraith's best side. To be fair, that's true of any heatsink.
When everything is running smoothly, though, the Wraith is probably the best boxed cooler around, and I would have no qualms about using it in a stock-clocked FX-8370 build. I just hope the company sees fit to include this cooler with more of its CPUs in the future. Given how well the Wraith performs, it'd be a shame if it were included with only one chip.
86 comments — Last by ronch at 10:18 PM on 02/22/16
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