SilverStone Tundra TD02 & TD03 CPU Liquid Coolers Review

Silverstone is stepping in to the sealed all-in-one CPU cooler market which is far from deserted. Silverstone is however bringing some features to the segment which some others do not have. It is touting better radiator designs and builds as well as a better water block design. Will these features make a difference to the end user?

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Conclusion

SilverStone continues to impress with the release of the Tundra TD02 and TD03 all-in-one coolers. Silverstone introduced some new design elements that made the units both look more appealing as well as perform above the expected range.

Not everything is perfect of course as the units both use 120mm fans to do the cooling. This creates a double edge sword where you get a wider range of compatibility but at high sound levels. In the end the TD02 was able to perform very well even though it didn’t place at the top of our tests. As for the TD03, we have a cooler here that performs much better than expected in a small package and is even able to challenge larger coolers like the H110 from Corsair.

The only left to explore now is just how competitive SilverStone is with its pricing.

Price/Performance

The charts below show the cost you will pay for each degree in temperature reduction the heat sink gives you over the stock cooler. The two areas that influence this chart are cost of the heat sink and its performance. An expensive cooler that gives you superior performance will be rated as average here since its cost hurts its rating. Inversely, a poor performing heat sink that costs next to nothing will be rated as average since its performance will hurt its ratings. We ideally look for low cost and high performance. All prices were gathered by doing a very quick search of the web for each cooler and listing it here sans S/H and tax (these can vary widely from region to region).

As an example, if a cooler outperforms the stock cooler by 10C and costs USD $5.00 it would be listed in our chart as $.50. You would pay fifty cents for each degree of better performance over the box cooler.

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To arrive at a single number difference, we took the value of all four cores from our overclocked tests, averaged these and then compared for analysis.

The Bottom Line

Silverstone has brought to market two very good sealed water coolers in the TD02 (dual length radiator) and TD03 (single length radiator) models. Besides simply looking good, these new coolers both sport very well built and sturdy water block packages that trump other current designs in overall build quality that seems to be more durable over the long haul. The innovative radiator design is a welcome advantage too and seems to show off in the TD03 model specifically when compared to the likes of the Corsair H110. The big upside to the TD03 is that it supports a push pull configuration out of the box. The downside of both the TD02 and TD03 is that there is no native fan speed support software. On newer systems however, this may very well not be needed due to the extremely rich fan speed support now found on most enthusiast grade motherboards. Still we found the fan and pump speed support on the likes of the now-aging Antec H2O 920 KUHLER to be a great feature.

You can see how our price comparison chart favors coolers that are priced lower or are able to cool the CPU well. In this case the TD02 is able to cool our CPU well but is priced higher than almost all other coolers. On the other end we have the TD03 which doesn’t put up as good numbers as the TD02 but its lower price gives it a better value here in our chart.

In the end everyone’s needs are different whether it be the biggest most powerful cooler available or the cooler that gives the best performance per dollar, we try to give you the most information to help with your buying decision.

The TD02 and TD03 are both extremely solid performing CPU coolers but neither are inexpensive, but to that note these seem to be priced appropriately when compared to Corsair's competitive products. We think SilverStone has a couple of hands down winners on its hands if it can price these a bit more competitively. The TD02 and TD03 are both currently selling at Amazon, at MSRP prices noted above, both with Free Prime Shipping.

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Silverstone TD03 Liquid CPU Cooler

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