Raijintek Eleos 12 Duo RBW CPU Cooler Review
Intel’s 12th Gen Core processors perform, but from a power standpoint higher end Corei9 models 12900K and 12900KF are a hot mess. Don’t believe what you’ve heard about 241W as Intel gave up on constraining its motherboard partners years ago, allowing every brand to ignore its CPU power defaults and instead ramp up to full “Turbo Boost” ratios regardless of whether a particular load pushed the CPU behond the point at which it was supposed to throttle back. With actual Prime95 tests known to push these CPUs past 260W, imagine our surprise when Raijintek started advertising a mere air cooling solution as an LGA 1700 solution!
Raijintek dismissed our doubts about whether a 50mm-thick four-pipe radiator could keep up with our CPU’s hefty output and sent a review sample. A pair of 120mm fans in push-pull arrangement would help it keep up. Raijintek customized these to have a front frame on the rear fan and a rear frame on the front fan but, like the Addressable LED feature, we’re viewing this as a visual rather than a performance enhancement.
The included package is simplified with its multipattern AMD and Intel brackets, which are said to support Sockets AM3 through AM4 and LGA 1156 through 1700, but here’s a secret: The Intel top bracket is slotted all the way up 80mm and all the way down to 72mm spacing, so it would be possible to bolt this to an old LGA 1366 or 775 board…if you have a spare backplate from a previous cooler.
The included Intel backplate has only LGA 115x and LGA 1700 mounting provisions, and our attempts to slide it past the wider LGA 1700 divot caused it to come unsnapped, dropping its T-nut into a very large box of leftover mounting hardware that this editor just happened to be standing over at that very moment. Unless you like sorting through small shiny things to find small shiny things, don’t do that. AMD builders get to use their motherboard’s included backplate.
Raijintek’s direct-contact heatpipe union is so perfectly merged with the base of its cooler that we didn’t even need to fill any crevices, though the finely sanded finish was still rough enough that we wouldn’t worry about voids developing as our thermal past dries out.
Mounting brackets attach to the top of the base plate’s side tabs, and are secured from underneath with a pair of screws on each side. Also seen here are the four-pin PWM (power) and addressable LED headers: These are hard wired to both fans without removable splitters, so that the fans are permanently “paired”.
|Raijintek Eleos 12 Duo RBW|
|Type||Cross Draft Single Tower|
|CPU Support||LGA 1700/1200/115x, AM4/3+/3|
|Height/Width/Depth||159mm / 130mm / 101mm|
|Fan Size||Dual 120mm x 25mm|
|Connectors||(1) PWM, (1) ARGB|
Raijintek just released US pricing at $38, beating the value of its previous models through the addition of new features (Addressable RGB). While its site lists a one-year warranty, the firm has affirmed a two-year warranty for this model.
|Test Hardware Configuration|
|CPU||Intel Core i9-12900KF: 16C/24T, 3.2-5.2 GHz, 30 MB L3 Cache, LGA 1700|
|Motherboard||ASRock Z690 Taichi: LGA 1700, Z690 PCH, DDR5|
|Memory||1.35V Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB DDR5-5600 2x16GB (32GB)|
|Graphics||Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2070 Gaming OC 8G: 1410-1725 MHz GPU, GDDR6|
|Power||be quiet! Dark Power Pro 10 850W: ATX12V v2.3, EPS12V, 80 PLUS Platinum|
|Hard Drive||TOSHIBA OCZ RD400 256GB NVMe 1.1b SSD|
|Sound||Integrated HD Audio|
|Graphics Driver||GeForce 496.49|
We’re using our DDR5 testing platform to prove the Raijintek Eleos 12 Duo RBW’s capability with Intel’s Core i9-12900KF, which is the top model for verifying its LGA-1700 capacity. Since our CPU’s max Turbo frequency at all-cores-loaded is 4.8GHz (Power Cores) and 3.7 GHz (Efficiency Cores), we’re also monitoring frequency and voltage. And since it wouldn’t be fair to test an air cooler against our $200+ custom cooling configuration, we decided to simply hold Raijintek’s feet to the fire regarding capability across the full range of LGA 1700 processors by giving it our worst.
We first tested the cooler with our motherboard mounted normally inside our case and our case fans at max RPM and, after noticing the high temperatures, retested the “platform” outside the case. Even though our case fans added airflow, the Eleos 12 Duo RBW maintained a slightly cooler temperature when tested in the open air. While we’re not exactly happy with the temperatures, they’re only 10° warmer than that of our enormous custom liquid cooling configuration. Our frequency chart will be the final determining factor regarding whether this cooler “skates by” in this highest-load scenario.
The CPUs cooling fans also add airflow over our voltage regulator, but so does our case fans. We were again surprised to see the Eleos 12 Duo RBW working more effectively in this capacity without the assistance of our case fans.
Today’s criteria is a little different in that the only thing the Eleos 12 Duo RBW had to do was maintain our system’s default clocks without throttling: That’s a pass-fail system. It passed.
Intel’s CPUs are capable of dropping the voltage slightly and checking for stability before being forced to throttle down, and that appears to happen here as our CPU Core VIDs hold steady at ~1.28V, where it fluctuated between ~1.26 and ~1.30V under liquid cooling. Given that our frequency was “nailed down”, it still passed.
Regarding noise, Raijintek’s 22db rating seems like wishful thinking, even for a single fan. Our full speed reading produced 30.1db at 1m, which is the distance used by many fan manufacturers as well as most speaker makers. This open-air noise level compares favorably to that of several previously-reviewed cases.
|Raijintek surprises us with a lightweight cooler that supports Intel’s highest-powered LGA 1700 processor under Prime95, without throttling (barely), leaving it only the problem of getting its Eleos 12 Duo RBW CPU Cooler to market.|