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Gigabyte GH-PCU31-VH 3D Cooler Ultra GT & GH PCU31-SD Cooler Ultra - Gigabyte CPU Coolers
The GH PCU31-SD ‘Super-Silent’ cooler, running at 2,500rpm without the resistor fitted, measured 53 degrees with the PC running idle. With CPU burn kicking in the temperature immediately began to rise before levelling off at 73 degrees. We then set it up again with the resister attached, taking the rotational speed down to 1,960rpm. This was a tad quieter but the default temperature was higher at 58 degrees. At a 100 per cent CPU load the temperature measured 75 degrees.
Moving to the variable speed fan equipped GH-PCU31-VH, when running at the slowest speed of 2,109rpm the default temperature was 49 degrees. When we loaded up the CPU, the temperature soared as high as 80 degrees. Turning the fan up to its maximum speed, recorded by MSI Core Centre as 4,560rpm, the temperature this time hit a more reasonable 66 degrees. However, the noise here was extremely loud, so you wouldn’t want this fan going full pelt the whole time.
For comparison we also tried out a copper based Coolermaster Aero4 cooler. This also offers a variable speed controller. At its slowest speed setting of 1,176rpm, the Coolermaster started at a default of 59 degrees, eventually going up to 78 degrees. With the fan going at full pelt at 3,515rpm, the Coolermaster capped at 66 degrees.
From the results we can see that the Gigabyte fans both do a good job of keeping your CPU cool. If you want to dabble in overclocking the variable fan on the GT would be the way to go. The Coolermaster Aero4 was a little better at full speed than the GH-PCU31-VH, but there’s not much in it.
If you’re happy at stock speeds and are more concerned about volume you can pick up the slower but quieter model for only £16.99. At £28.78, the GH-PCU31-VH is more expensive than the Coolermaster Aero4, so although we like it, it’s only really worth it if you plan on having a clear side panel in your PC to show off those blue lights.