Our final contender is from Asus, a massive company that is not that well known for its CPU coolers as it is for its other computer components. The VR-Guard is a fairly traditional looking CPU cooler compared to the other two on test here, although it has something up its sleeve. Itâ€™s using three heatpipes, which draw the heat from the copper plate at the bottom of the cooler up into the aluminium fins.
The VR-Guard uses an 80mm Delta fan, again nothing special as such, but at least Asus has fitted a finger guard â€“ Iâ€™ve put my fingers in moving fans too many times by mistake. What makes the VR-Guard different from all other coolers is the clear blue plastic shroud which allows it to draw some of the hot air away from the voltage regulation circuits on the motherboard. How well this works in reality is hard to test, but Asus claims that it significantly improves the cooling of the voltage regulation circuitry.
Mounting the VR-Guard is not as easy as the other two coolers, but it is more secure as you have to fit a metal plate to the back of the motherboard to which the cooler is screwed onto. The problem with some of these constructions is that the metal plate doesnâ€™t allow for the motherboard to flex and thus the CPU doesnâ€™t connect to all of the pins. However, the VR-Guard didnâ€™t appear to have these problems.
Performance wise the VR-Guard wasnâ€™t too impressive as it started at 50 degrees Celsius at idle, which doesnâ€™t compare well to the competition. At 100 per cent CPU load it hit 66 degrees, still well within spec but far from the best coolers on the market. The VR-Guard isnâ€™t available for sale in the UK as yet, but it should retail for around Â£25 which also makes it quite expensive, especially compared to the Freezer 7 Pro.
The Asus VR-Guard does the job, but itâ€™s a rather unimpressive cooler in comparison to the other two and quite pricey at that.