[nextpage title=”Introduction”]

The Thor’s Hammer is a CPU cooler from Xigmatek with a tower heatsink, seven heatpipes, and supports one or two 120 mm fans. Let’s test it.

The Xigmatek Thor’s Hammer box is nice, with colorful holographic reflections. It has transparent openings which allow you to see the base of the cooler.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 1: Package

The box contents are shown in Figure 2: the Thor’s Hammer heatsink, manual, thermal compound, and installation hardware. This cooler doesn’t come with fans, but it supports one or two 120 mm fans.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 2: Accessories

Figure 3 shows the Thor’s Hammer.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 3: The Xigmatek Thor’s Hammer

This cooler is discussed in detail in the following pages.

[nextpage title=”The Xigmatek Thor’s Hammer”]

Figure 3 shows the heatsink from the front. The aluminum fins and the copper heatpipes are both nickel-plated for a beautiful dark look.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 4: Front view

In Figure 5, you see the side of the heatsink, which is very large.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 5: Side view

Figure 6 reveals the top of the heatsink. The fins have unusual shapes, all of them with a hole at the center. Only the top fin is spliced in two; the other ones are single pieces.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 6: Top view

[nextpage title=”The Xigmatek Thor’s Hammer (Cont’d)”]

Figure 7 reveals the heatpipes near the base of the cooler. There are four 8 mm heatpipes at the bottom of the base, and three 6 mm heatpipes on a second layer.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 7: Heatpipes

The base of the cooler is shown in Figure 8, where you can see the four 8 mm heatpipes that keep direct contact with the CPU.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 8: Base

Figure 9 shows the rubber fan holders in place. As this cooler doesn’t come with a fan, we will use in our test the fan that came with the Aegir CPU cooler, also from Xigmatek.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 9: Fan holders

[nextpage title=”Installation”]

Figure 10 shows the clip for use with AMD processors at the left. In this case, the cooler will be installed in the motherboard frame. The backplate for Intel systems is at the right.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 10: AMD clip and Intel backplate

In order to install the Thor’s Hammer on our CPU, the first step was to attach the clips shown in Figure 11 to the base of the cooler.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 11: Clip installed

After that, we put the backplate on the solder side of the motherboard, placed the cooler over the CPU, and then screwed four spring-loaded screws to secure the cooler in place. Due to the shape of the fins, two of those screws were easily attached, but the other two took a lot of time to be attached.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 12: Heatsink installed

The last step is to install the fan, as you can see in Figure 13.

Xigmatek Thor's HammerFigure 13: Fan installed

[nextpage title=”How We Tested”]

We tested the cooler with a Core i7-860 CPU (quad-core, 2.8 GHz), which is a socket LGA1156 processor with a 95 W TDP (Thermal Design Power). In order to get higher thermal dissipation, we overclocked it to 3.3 GHz (150 MHz base clock and 22x multiplier), keeping the standard core voltage (Vcore), which was the maximum stable overclock we could make with the stock cooler. Keep in mind that we could have raised the CPU clock more, but to include the stock cooler in our comparison, we needed to use this moderate overclock.

We measured noise and temperature with the CPU idle and under full load. In order to get 100% CPU usage in all threads, we ran Prime 95 25.11 with the “In-place Large FFTs” option. (In this version, the software uses all available threads.)

We compared the tested cooler to the Intel stock cooler with a copper base (included with the CPU), as well as with other coolers. Note that in the past, we tested coolers with a socket LGA775 CPU, and we retested some “old” coolers with this new methodology. This means you can find different values in older reviews than the values you will read in the next page. Every cooler was tested with the thermal compound that accompanies it.

Room temperature measurements were taken with a digital thermometer. The core temperature was read with the SpeedFan program (available from the CPU thermal sensors), using an arithmetic average of the core temperature readings. During the tests, the left panel of the case was open.< /p>The sound pressure level (SPL) was measured with a digital noise meter, with its sensor placed 4″ (10 cm) from the fan. We turned off the case and video board cooler fans so they wouldn’t interfere with the results. This measurement is only for comparison purposes, because a precise SPL measurement needs to be made inside an acoustically insulated room with no other noise sources, which isn’t the case here.

Hardware Configuration

Operating System Configuration

  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit SP1

Software Used

Error Margin

We adopted a 2 °C error margin, meaning temperature differences below 2 °C are considered irrelevant.

[nextpage title=”Our Tests”]

The table below presents the results of our measurements. We repeated the same test on all coolers listed below. Each measurement was taken with the CPU at idle and at full load. In the models with a fan supporting PWM, the motherboard controlled the fan speed according to core load and temperature. On coolers with an integrated fan controller, the fan was set at the minimum speed on the idle test and at full speed on the full load test.

 

Idle Processor

Processor at Full Load

Cooler Room Temp. Noise Speed Core Temp.

Noise

Speed Core Temp.
Intel stock (socket LGA1156) 14 °C 44 dBA 1700 rpm 46 °C 54 dBA 2500 rpm 90 °C
Cooler Master Hyper TX3 G1 14 °C 47 dBA 2050 rpm 33 °C 56 dBA 2900 rpm 62 °C
Zalman CNPS10X Extreme 14 °C 45 dBA 1400 rpm 27 °C 53 dBA 1950 rpm 51 °C
Thermaltake Silent 1156 14 °C 44 dBA 1200 rpm 38 °C 49 dBA 1750 rpm 69 °C
Noctua NH-D14 14 °C 49 dBA 1250 rpm 27 °C 49 dBA 1250 rpm 53 °C
Zalman CNPS10X Performa 14 °C 46 dBA 1500 rpm 28 °C 52 dBA 1950 rpm 54 °C
Prolimatech Megahalems 14 °C 40 dBA 750 rpm 27 °C 60 dBA 2550 rpm 50 °C
Thermaltake Frio 14 °C 46 dBA 1450 rpm 27 °C 60 dBA 2500 rpm 50 °C
Prolimatech Samuel 17 14 °C 40 dBA 750 rpm 40 °C 60 dBA 2550 rpm 63 °C
Zalman CNPS8000A 18 °C 43 dBA 1400 rpm 39 °C 54 dBA 2500 rpm 70 °C
Spire TherMax Eclipse II 14 °C 55 dBA 2200 rpm 28 °C 55 dBA 2200 rpm 53 °C
Scythe Ninja3 17 °C 39 dBA 700 rpm 32 °C 55 dBA 1800 rpm 57 °C
Corsair A50 18 °C 52 dBA 1900 rpm 33 °C 52 dBA 1900 rpm 60 °C
Thermaltake Jing 18 °C 44 dBA 850 rpm 34 °C 49 dBA 1300 rpm 60 °C
GlacialTech Alaska 18 °C 43 dBA 1150 rpm 36 °C 51 dBA 1600 rpm 60 °C
Deepcool Gamer Storm 18 °C 43 dBA 1100 rpm 35 °C 48 dBA 1600 rpm 62 °C
Corsair A70 26 °C 56 dBA 1900 rpm 40 °C 56 dBA 1900 rpm 65 °C
Deepcool Ice Blade Pro 23 °C 45 dBA 1200 rpm 38 °C 52 dBA 1500 rpm 64 °C
AC Freezer 7 Pro Rev. 2 23 °C 47 dBA 1750 rpm 44 °C 51 dBA 2100 rpm 77 °C
Corsair H70 27 °C 60 dBA 1900 rpm 37 °C 60 dBA 1900 rpm 61 °C
Zalman CNPS9900 Max 27 °C 55 dBA 1600 rpm 38 °C 58 dBA 1750 rpm 63 °C
Arctic Cooling Freezer 11 LP 25 °C 45 dBA 1700 rpm 51 °C 49 dBA 1950 rpm 91 °C
CoolIT Vantage 26 °C 60 dBA 2500 rpm 37 °C 60 dBA 2500 rpm 62 °C
Deepcool Ice Matrix 600 25 °C 46 dBA 1100 rpm 41 °C 53 dBA 1300 rpm 69 °C
Titan Hati 26 °C 46 dBA 1500 rpm 40 °C 57 dBA 2450 rpm 68 °C
Arctic Cooling Freezer 13 27 °C 49 dBA 1950 rpm 41 °C 53 dBA 2300 rpm 70 °C
Noctua NH-C14 26 °C 52 dBA 1300 rpm 37 °C 52 dBA 1300 rpm 61 °C
Intel XTS100H 26 °C 49 dBA 1200 rpm 42 °C 64 dBA 2600 rpm 68 °C
Zalman CNPS5X SZ 23 °C 52 dBA 2250 rpm 38 °C 57 dBA 2950 rpm 69 °C
Thermaltake SlimX3 21 °C 50 dBA 2700 rpm 46 °C 50 dBA 2750 rpm 99 °C
Cooler Master Hyper 101 21 °C 50 dBA 2600 rpm 38 °C 57 dBA 3300 rpm 71 °C
Antec Kühler H2O 620 19 °C 52 dBA 1400 rpm 34 °C 55 dBA 1400 rpm 58 °C
Arctic Cooling Freezer 13 Pro 20 °C 46 dBA 1100 rpm 36 °C 49 dBA 1300 rpm 62 °C
GlacialTech Siberia 22 °C 49 dBA 1400 rpm 34 °C 49 dBA 1400 rpm 61 °C
Evercool Transformer 3 18 °C 46 dBA 1800 rpm 33 °C 51 dBA 2250 rpm 65 °C
Zalman CNPS11X Extreme 20 °C 51 dBA 1850 rpm 34 °C 56 dBA 2050 rpm 61 °C
Thermaltake Frio OCK 15 °C 44 dBA 1000 rpm 27 °C 64 dBA 2200 rpm 51 °C
Prolimatech Genesis 18 °C 49 dBA 1050 rpm 30 °C 49 dBA 1050 rpm 54 °C
Arctic Cooling Freezer XTREME Rev. 2 15 °C 41 dBA 1050 rpm 32 °C 44 dBA 1400 rpm 60 °C
NZXT HAVIK 140 16 °C 48 dBA 1250 rpm 29 °C 49 dBA 1250 rpm 55 °C
Antec Kühler H2O 920 18 °C 41 dBA 650 rpm 29 °C 64 dBA 2500 rpm 49 °C
Zalman CNP7X LED 18 °C 45 dBA 1950 rpm 33 °C 48 dBA 2150 rpm 58 °C
EVGA Superclock 14 °C 43 dBA 1300 rpm 27 °C 58 dBA 2350 rpm 47 °C
Evercool Transformer 4 15 °C 46 dBA 1500 rpm 26 °C 53 dBA 1950 rpm 52 °C
Xigmatek Dark Knight 18 °C 47 dBA 1700 rpm 30 °C 53 dBA 2150 rpm 57 °C
Xigmatek Aegir 15 °C 44 dBA 1500 rpm 27 °C 50 dBA 1950 rpm 52 °C
Cooler Master GeminII S524 16 °C 45 dBA 1300 rpm 29 °C 53 dBA 1800 rpm 58 °C
Enermax ETS-T40-TA 16 °C 40 dBA 1050 rpm 28 °C 48 dBA 1800 rpm 55 °C
Corsair H80 14 °C 42 dBA 2150 rpm 25 °C 52 dBA 2150 rpm 47 °C
Akasa Venom Voodoo 13 °C 40 dBA 1000 rpm 26 °C 48 dBA 1500 rpm 51 °C
Xigmatek Thor’s Hammer 15 °C 44 dBA 1500 rpm 30 °C 50 dBA 2000 rpm 55 °C

In the graph below, at full load you can see how many degrees Celsius hotter the CPU core is than the air outside the case. The lower this difference, the better is the performance of the cooler.

 Xigmatek Thor's Hammer

[nextpage title=”Main Specifications”]

The main specifications for the Xigmatek Thor’s Hammer CPU cooler include:

  • Application: Sockets 775, 1155, 1156, 1366, 754, 939, 840, AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, and FM1 processors
  • Dime
    nsions: 4.7 x 3.5 x 6.3 inches (120 x 90 x 160 mm) (W x L x H)
  • Fins: Nickel-plated Aluminum
  • Base: Aluminum, with the four 8 mm heatpipes in direct contact to the CPU
  • Heat-pipes: Four 8-mm and three 6-mm nickel-plated copper heatpipes
  • Fan: One or two 120 mm fans (not included)
  • Nominal fan speed: NA
  • Fan air flow: NA
  • Maximum power consumption: NA
  • Nominal noise level: NA
  • Weight: 1.65 lbs (750 g)
  • More information: https://www.xigmatek.com
  • Average Price in the US*: USD 70.00

* Researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this review.[nextpage title=”Conclusions”]

The Thor’s Hammer is a beautiful CPU cooler. With its nickel-plated black metallic look and its fancy fin design, it is very eye-catching.

But appearance is not everything. Although its performance wasn’t bad at all, it performed a little worse than its “brothers,” Dark Knight and Aegir. And as it is more expensive than both (and you will have to buy a good fan, in addition), there is no point in buying it unless you really love its design.