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Old 3rd June 2016, 5:13 AM   #1
headin2001 Thread Starter
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Default Cooler Master – MasterAir Maker 8 - User Review

Cooler Master – MasterAir Maker 8 - User Review





Introduction

Something new for review this time around. Today it’s all about the foray into the word of the big air-coolers. Fortunately, I have one of the largest on the market (it’s big, but I’ve seen bigger) in my hot little hands by the name of the Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8, which is a new edition to the revamped Master range of products. It’s packed full of new features and has an abundance of customization options for those wanting that extra bling.

Cooler Master have labelled this as “designed for gamers and overclockers’ who demand ultra-low temperatures, aggressive LED Lighting, and total control over their hardware”. I’m here to put that to the test and see if it lives up to its design.

The Cooler Master MakerAir 8 has some new/old tech employed to help set this cooler apart from its competitors. This is the inclusion of a 3D Vapour Chamber at the base plate, which transfers the heat away from the base plate and directly to the heatpipe array over.






Specifications



Model - MAZ-T8PN-418PR-R1
CPU Socket - Intel® LGA 2011-v3 / 2011 / 1366 / 1156 / 1155 / 1151 / 1150 / 775
AMD FM2+ / FM2 / FM1 / AM3+ / AM3 / AM2+
Dimensions (LxWxH) - 135 x 145 x 172 mm

Heat Sink Dimensions (LxWxH)
78 x 144.5 x 160.5 mm

Heat Sink Weight
758g

Heat Pipe Dimensions
Ř6 mm

Fan Dimensions Ř 140 x 25 mm x 2pcs
Fan Speed 600 – 1,800 RPM ± 10%
Fan Airflow 19.8 – 66 CFM ± 10%
Fan Air Pressure - 0.24 – 2.2 mmH2O

Fan Life Expectancy - 160,000 hrs
Noise Level - 8~24 dBA
Bearing Type - Loop Dynamic Bearing
Connector - 4-Pin
Rated Voltage - 12 VDC
Rated Current - 0.15 A
Power Consumption - 1.8 W
Fan Weight - 130 g
Weight - 1350 g
Warranty - 5 Years



Features

As mentioned before, Cooler Master have tried a different approach on the MasterAir Maker 8 in the way it transfers the heat away from the CPU and to the Fins in order to cool the CPU more effectively. The technology they have deployed is not new, and has been used for many years in the GPU cooling market to transfer the heat away in an efficient manner. They are calling the technology used a 3D Vapour Chamber, or, 3DVC.

Here is a diagram of how they explain the function.









We can see that the CPU directly heats the Vapour Chamber at the base, which vaporises the fluid used inside. I am certain there is actually a fluid there, as you can see the nipple on the base plate which would be used then sealed when the liquid is injected. This vapour then travels up the 4 Heatpipes where it is then cooled by the fins and fans in a conventional heatpipe cooler fashion.

To then complete the cooling, there is an additional block to the top of this chamber which a further 8 Heatpipes are connected, which also aid in transferring the heat to the fins to be cooled. The theory of More = More is truly upon us with this innovative design.


Photos / Comments

On first sight of the carton, I thought to myself “wow, that’s a big box! Surely it isn’t that big”. Well, look for yourselves. The packaging is huge, but it’s what’s inside it that counts. The carton has an abundance of detail all over it, including picture, a blown up assembly and product specifications.














Inside the box, Cooler Master have done an excellent job of packaging this large cooler safely, as well as dividing the accessories into very appropriately sized boxes too.




Included with the Master Air Maker 8 is mounting brackets to suit every modern socket available, from Intel Socket 775, 1150, 1151, 1155, and 2011 as well as the AMD Sockets. There is a multitude of fixings available in a nice Blister Pack setup to keep it neat and tidy.




First off, some pictures of the cooler. Just to give an all-round feel for it.










At the top of the cooler, there is a Red LED lit Cooler Master Logo. Around this, there is an option to have a smoked acrylic bezel surround, which allows more of the cooler to be lit, or the option to have an anodized metal bezel so only the Coolermaster Logo is lit. It’s bright, and the effect is impressive. To top this off, as it’s a bezel, users can also 3d print their own bezel to take it even further. The sky is the limit really.

{Acrylic Bezel}




{Anodized Bezel}




I found the Acrylic Bezel fairly easy to remove as it has some flex. Just push the clips at the end and it would lift off. The anodized on the other hand was a lot tougher. The metal was very strong, and took some real effort on the fingers to release. I must admit though, I was trying to be careful not to damage anything at the time. If it were my own cooler, I would probably give it a bit more effort. With the bezel removed, you can see the quality of the cooler below, and the LED lit emblems with the chrome surround to help disperse the light effect.







The cooler contains no less than 8 Heatpipes from the main base, plus another 4 which appear to be attached to the 3D Vapour Chamber, which Cooler Master have named 3DVC Technology (you can see more information on this on Cooler Master’s website). The heatpipes run through a high density aluminium fin array to help dissipate the heat.










With the protective label removed, we can see the finish on the base. In the top left corner is the nipple in which the liquid is delivered through in the factory then sealed. The base is flat, and has a brushed machine finish which is far from smooth or polished like other high end coolers available today.





The Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8 includes two 140mm Fans, both driven via PWM and spec’d to 1800RPM, with silence in mid. When running at full speed, there is no real horrid fan noise, more the sound of the air blowing and a slight fan “buzz”. Difficult to describe, but it’s neither annoying nor loud enough to stand out over other system noises and fans.




In the accessory boxes, there is brackets included to allow the fitment of 120mm fan in-lieu of the included 140mm fans for those that wish to customize their cooler, or have their own favorite fans which they wish to install instead. As mentioned in the intro, Cooler Master have worked to make this cooler customizable in many ways to make it your own.






Still on the fans, there is a clip system deployed that allows the fans to be easily removed. This same clip can let you sit the fans a bit further from the motherboard to help with clearance to any higher dimensioned RAM heatsink. Here are some pictures to show what I mean.

{Set to the bottom}




{Raised to top setting}




{and installed in highest setting}





Installation Setup

Installation was quite simple. The included instruction showed everything in a concise manner, and once I had worked out the layout, it was a simple affair to install.

First, I installed the correct backplate to the rear of the motherboard. This was done simply by adjusting the corner tabs to the correct position to match the socket layout and fitting through.




Then flip the motherboard back over to expose the socket side. Next was finding the correct standoffs to use and install to the threaded rods which are attached to the backplate.




Follow this, we then install the bridging mounts and thumb screws between the standoffs.




Then it’s a matter of applying the supplied thermal paste to the CPU (after cleaning both surfaces of course). In my case, I like a 5 Dice method. The Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8 is the positioned on top and screwed down to the bridging mounts.




The final step is then to install the fans to the cooler, and then connect the fans and light cables with the supplied adapter cable to the motherboard PWM Fan Headers.




Then all powered up and ready to test it out!





Test Setup

My test rig uses an Intel i7 6700K overclocked to 4.5 GHz on both core and cache, with the Vcore set to 1.35V. Being a modern processor with up to 8 threads available, the chance of a CPU bottleneck on this system is minimal. The CPU is paired up with a set of G.Skill Ripjaws V 3466C16 RAM in a 4 x 4GB configuration, with the timings set to XMP with all timings locked to reduce the chance of change between reboots, and all connected to an Asus ROG Maximus VIII Hero motherboard (see my review here - http://forums.overclockers.com.au/sh....php?t=1180393 ).

Power comes from a Cooler Master GX750 power supply.

For heat testing, I have used Windows 7 x64 Pro, installed on a Samsung 850 EVO 250GB SSD drive. All tests have been competed using Prime95 27.8 to add the load, and Intel Extreme Tuning Utility (Intel XTU). The Rig was mounted open air on the bench to allow clean air to all components, and an ambient air temp measurement to record the temperature delta for repeat-ability.

Test System

• CPU: Intel i7-6700K at Stock and 4.5GHz 1.35v (45 x 100MHz)
• Motherboard: Asus ROG Maximus VIII Hero
• Memory: 4 x 4GB G.Skill Ripjaws V 3466C16 (XMP Profile)
• GPU : ASUS 750ti OC Direct CUII
• PSU: Cooler Master GX750
• SSD: Samsung 850 250GB
• Case: Open Bench
• Operating system: Windows 7 Pro 64-bit

Coolers Tested

Cooler Master Master Air Maker 8

Cooler Master 212X EVO (in Push Pull configuration with 2/Xinruilian 1650RPM 120mm Fans at 100% Duty Cycle)

Enermax LIQMAX II 240 AIO Cooler (Fans set to 100% Duty Cycle)



TEST CHARTS

HEAT AND SOUND MEASUREMENTS


Temperature measurements are recorded using CPUID HWMonitor. The measurement taken is the hottest core after 30 minutes of the Blend Test. This is an open bench scenario, with an average room air temperature of 29°C. All fan setting were left on the software’s Default Auto Settings. The Cooler Master 212X and Enermax LIQMAX II Fans were set to 100% Duty Cycle due to the lack of PWM control to the fans.





For the second temperature test, I have used Intel Extreme Tuning Utility, or Intel XTU for short. For this I completed 3 runs at 1 minute intervals to allow the cooler to settle between. The results shown are the highest core temp reading (usually Core#1 on this CPU).

In this test, we can see the Air Coolers pull ahead, most likely because of the residual heat left in the coolant of the AIO cooler between runs. At this speed and voltage, they are holding their own in this bench, albeit it a short tough test.





Sound Measurements are taken using an iPhone app, by Skypa. My room in quiet times flattens at 55dB with just the main system in idle, all case fans on low, and with the phone located 30cm away from the case position. The base system itself is barely audible, with the PSU the and GPU the main noise generators..







Conclusion

Cooler Master are really working to re-invent the way we cool our CPU’s. With the introduction of the 3DVC, I can see a lot potential in the design, with some better efficiency to come in the future. It’s a big cooler and has plenty of pro’s and cons.

The fans are very quiet, and when at idle, only a small ticking noise can be heard. It’s definitely not loud, and any other fan I have in my system is always going to mask the sound from these fans. They are very good and push a great amount of air through.

The size is to be expected, but in some smaller cases, I can see some issues with clearance. I had no problem personally as I run a full size Corsair 750D case. In order to fit over my ram, I had to set the fans to the highest setting. Not that this is an issue, as it still looked bloody good, but it needs to be pointed out for those pedantic builders out there.

The finish to the base plate leaves a lot to be desired. I’m not entirely sure what the though was to have it machined the way it is, as a good polished or mostly polished base is going to provide a much better transfer of heat. As it is, when you remove the cooler, it is difficult to remove all of the paste from the markings, they are that deep. Anyone looking for some extra performance from it, will need to lap the base, even only just lightly.

Onto performance and we can see it works quite well in comparison to the venerable 212X. It really is an in-between cooler from the cheaper mainstream air-coolers and AIO coolers. It is quiet compared to the AIO I had at hand, and the performance isn’t too far behind, with stock load temperatures only 4 degrees behind, and in overclocked performing roughly the same delta.

Bling wise, I applaud the idea of being able to design and 3D print a new bezel for the top of the cooler just to make it mine. Modder out there can really take hold of this feature and get creative. The downside of this to me though is the lack of ability to change out the LED’s to another colour, or adjust the brightness of the lighting. I love the red, and it suits my colour schemes, but this could be a turn off for others in the market for a cooler of this caliber. The same criticism can be said for the fans. It’s a nice feature to have, but for those that want to turn it off, or alternatively, would like a different colour will find this hard to get around.

Finally the price. Hmmmmmm. Circa $170 is quite pricey, especially when you consider the cost of a good AIO cooler these days. There is a huge amount of competition in the market, and you need to have some good pro’s on your side to sway people to fork out a healthy amount of money for an Air Cooler now. For me, it’s pretty highly priced, and would opt for a 240/280mm AIO cooler over a High End Air Cooler purely from a performance point of view, albeit AIO’s have their pitfalls with reliability sometimes (pumps don’t last forever, and they might be sealed, but the coolant still finds ways to evaporate).

For those that want customizability and a top Air Cooling product to reduce the possibility of hardware failure, money probably won’t be an issue, and this is probably the pick of the bunch. For those that want the best performing air cooler available, I unfortunately think Cooler Master have missed out here, and I believe you can’t look past the Noctua NH-D15 for it’s much better placed price point, something I feel Cooler Master really needs to consider. I will try to add this cooler to the comparisons in the future.






The Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8 can be found now at most local computer stores, with a price in the range of $168 to $188 AUD. (search http://www.staticice.com.au/cgi-bin/...r+maker&spos=3 )

I’d like to apologize for the lack of coolers to test this against. I have a Noctua D15 I would like to add to the list for comparison, but this is just not possible at this time. So please bear with me and I will endeavor to add this and a Custom WC Loop in the future.

Feel free to comment below. It’s been a great experience to bring this to you guys. If there is anything else you would like included, your feedback is appreciated. I really want these reviews to suit what is relevant for our community.
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Last edited by headin2001; 3rd June 2016 at 5:27 AM.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 6:21 AM   #2
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Far out matey, that behemoth lump of alloy there I needed to go & get my sunglasses No wonder you have no time to answer pm's or even clock
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There is a group of us that get incredibly erect over such hardware. Maybe post in the retro section?
Haha ...........might be a bit rude that picture.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 10:37 AM   #3
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Nah, still OC'ing mate. Time is always at a premium though, wish I had more.

Waiting for some Partner GPU's to come out now so I can pick one to do next.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 10:43 AM   #4
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So only 1-2 deg better than the Hyper 212X?

Surely not.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 11:31 AM   #5
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I thought the same. I actually remounted and ran them 3 times for the results to make sure it was right.

The only thing I could put it down to is the CPU has been delid and I used Coolaboratory Liquid Ultra under the lid. I didn't want to push the CPU too hard, and went more for voltage and heat than pushing the MHz also, so this probably keeps the results closer than hitting the limit.

XTU was very close, but it generally is I found on this chip, but I found it interesting that both air coolers beat out the AIO.

6 degrees on Prime 95 when overclocked is a better gauge. But still shows either the CPU isn't big on heat output, or the CLU under the lid comes into play. I don't think I mentioned, but it was all tested using Cooler Master MakerGel Nano paste too.

The old 212x isn't too bad of a cooler in Push/Pull with reasonable airflow. But it's loud and noisy with the fans I had attached.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 1:01 PM   #6
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Nice write up mate well done
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Old 3rd June 2016, 1:55 PM   #7
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nice write up

my only suggestion would be to use a set square,straight edge, or metal ruler edge to show the flatness of a base, a ram heat sink probably isn't the best thing to use.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 1:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
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nice write up

my only suggestion would be to use a set square,straight edge, or metal ruler edge to show the flatness of a base, a ram heat sink probably isn't the best thing to use.
Hahahaha, yeah, I only showed the ram to show how non-reflective the base was (and a shameless plug/photo for G.Skill wink wink).

With a straight edge, it appeared totally flat.
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Old 3rd June 2016, 7:38 PM   #9
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Nice review. Good to see it clears the ram. Noctua D14 doesn't if it isn't low profile
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Old 31st December 2016, 5:52 PM   #10
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Shiiiit, so much good info in here

Great review
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