be quiet! Dark Rock Advanced C1
The Advanced C1 from be quiet! was the first cooler going through the protocol. With a stunning appearance, it has six heatpipes and uses a 120 mm PWM type fan. The multilingual installation manual is quite clear and it comes with a tube of thermal paste as well as the necessary for installing a second fan that has to be bought separately.
This is the major disadvantage of this cooler. As with the other coolers in this roundup, you have to put a plate at the back of the motherboard to install it, but you screw the cooler on the back of the board, right on the plate.
This isn’t too difficult when the motherboard is outside the casing but when it’s inside you have to hold the cooler in place while screwing, which is quite an exercise! Another problem is that the thermal paste that’s supplied is very dry and rather difficult to spread out and our test motherboard (the Intel DP67BG) wouldn’t start when we squeezed the back plate as tightly as it would go.
This cooler extends over the first two DIMMs on both AMD and Intel platforms, with the available space under the cooler being around 40 mm. This means you’ll have to settle for memory bars with small radiators.
Quiet even at 7V, the Dark Rock Advanced cools the Core i7-2600K effectively, which is the least to be expected. Once the processor was overclocked, things got a bit more problematic and we had to move up to 9V for the lowest overclocking corresponding to CPU energy consumption of 134 Watts. At this voltage the Dark Rock Advanced is very discreet though not quiet. At the highest overclocking setting, 177 Watts need to be disippated and this cooler can’t cope.
With a stunning design, the be quiet! Dark Rock Advanced suffers from the fact that it is rather difficult to mount. Once installed, it offers a good level of performance but one which doesn’t stand out from the competition.