Arctic is a company that has made its name in cooling. They have everything from their famous thermal paste MX-4, to AIO CPU coolers and also air coolers for the CPU and GPU. Today, we are going to take a look at a product that is aimed the lower TDP for CPU coolers, the Arctic Alpine AM4 Passive CPU Cooler ($12).
Passive AMD AM4 CPU Cooler: The Alpine AM4 Passive comes without a fan and yet provides enough power to keep all compatible AMD AM4 processors up to 47 watts at bay. AMD AM4 APU like the Ryzen 5 2400GE can be cooled passively and thus completely silent. The cooler offers an affordable solution for fully fan-less computers on the AMD AM4 platform.
Black Anodizing for Improved Heat-dissipation: The micro-porosity resulting from the heatsink surface treatment optimizes the heat exchange between the aluminum and the surrounding air, thus the cooling performance in passive mode is greatly improved.
Pre-applied MX2 Thermal Paste: Thanks to the pre-applied MX-2 thermal compound, a quick and clean installation is guaranteed.
Dust and Maintenance Free: No fan means no dust and no maintenance over time.
Easy Installation & Optimal Compatibility: Fast and easy to install and extremely reliable, the Alpine AM4 Passive mounting system is compatible with AMDs AM4 socket, which is used for Ryzen CPUs. It is not only fool-proof to install, but also absolutely transport safe.
Multilingual Manuals: We offer a regularly updated user manual in many languages conveniently at your fingertips anywhere and anytime. Put the QR code sticker at a place of your convenience and never waste time again looking for product instructions.
Dimensions (W x H x D): 99mm x 70mm x 99mm
Weight: 557 grams
Heat-pipes: Direct Touch 6 x 6mm
Material: Aluminum with Black coating
Maximum Cooling Capacity: 47W
Recommended TDP: 35W
Fan Dimensions (W x H x D): 120mm x 120mm x 25mm
Compatibility: AMD: AM4
As we take a closer look at the box, you are greeted with a nice black and white color theme on the box. On the front of the box you have the Arctic logo, the picture of the cooler and the mention that the cooler has a 6-year warranty. The top of the box has the Arctic logo and a stamp that the product is carbon neutral. On the left side of the box you have the specifications and package contents listed. The right side displays some of the features of the cooler. The back also has some features listed in several languages.
When we open the box, you notice that the cooler is packaged with a plastic cover to protect the thermal paste and the base, along with the instructions QR code. Also, inside the box, is the accessories bag that has the 4 screws, spring and lastly 4 fiber stickers to protect the motherboard from the screws and springs.
A Closer Look
Taking a closer look at the cooler, as previously mentioned there is a plastic cover included to protect the cooler baser and also the thermal paste that is pre-applied. The cooler itself is a large aluminum heatsink block with 21 fins machined in to add to heat dissipation. The entire block is also anodized in black to further aid heat dissipation with the surrounding air.
Testing System and Installation
Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 2400g
Motherboard: Gigabyte AB350N Wifi ITX
Graphics Card: Onboard Vega 11 Graphics
Memory: 16gb Gskill Flare X 3200mhz
Storage: 240g Samsung 850 Evo ssd
Power Supply: Antec 650w
Case: Cooler Master HAF Evo XB Test Bench
Idle Temps: The temperature is recorded after 5 minutes of idle
Metro LL Benchmark (Very High, AF 16X, No AA, PhysX dis): This is looped into 3 consecutive runs and the highest temperature is recorded
ROG Realbench 15 min Stress Test: This test is accomplished to put a realistic load on the CPU/GPU. It runs LuxMark and Handbrake to stress the CPU, cache, GPU and RAM of your system.
Rise of the Tomb Raider: This game is less demanding on the CPU and more demanding on the GPU but is a great title to benchmark game performance.
Cinebench R15: This is a great CPU test to use all of the threads on your processor.
Installation was very simple. Make sure to remove the stock AM4 cooler brackets. Set the Passive cooler upside down on a flat surface. Place the motherboard face down on top of the Passive cooler, aligning the cooler holes. Apply the felt stickers to the CPU cooler holes and then using the provided screws attach the heatsink.
The following are what I believe to be a great group of real-world representative tests to be able to stress the CPU and integrated Vega GPU and lastly the CPU cooler that is attached. Since the Athlon 200ge is impossible to obtain at this time, testing was conducted with a 2400g underclocked to simulate the 35w TDP 2400ge. The ambient temperature of the room during testing is 20 C. The testing was conducted with the 2400g underclocked to 3.2 Ghz base clock and the Vega GPU left at stock settings. A few tests were also conducted with a fan providing low RPM airflow over the cooler. During testing the hottest package temperature is recorded.
System Idle (after 5 min of Power On)
Metro Last Light (Very High, AF 16X, No AA, PhysX Disabled (1 runs)
15 minutes of ROG Realbench Stress Test
A very impressive result is the Alpine AM4 Passive was able to not only complete the Realbench 15 min test with minor airflow, but it was able to hold the 2400g at a max of 78 C during the test. Without any airflow, the cooler was not able to pass the test.
Rise of the Tomb Raider Benchmark
Cinebench R15 (CPU & OpenGL)
During testing of Cinebench R15, the CPU test and OpenGL test were accomplished. In the CPU test the Alpine was able to settle the 2400g with a temp of 74C with airflow and 75C without. In the OpenGL test the Alpine was able to keep the chip cool at 51C with airflow and 70C without.
There were a few stress tests that were not able to be completed without airflow such as, ROTR, Metro LL and Realbench. I stopped these tests in the no airflow runs because the Passive cooler had difficulty dissipating the heat given out when not only the CPU, but GPU were under heavy load. I believe that the warm air just stayed stagnant in the area and without movement the cooler began to heat soak and temps continued to rise. With a little airflow provided by one fan the Passive cooler was able to keep up with the simulated 2400ge. I believe this cooler would do great on a 35w TDP CPU or APU, I just can’t confirm with testing at this time due to not having a CPU that has a TDP that low. I might revisit this review when the Athlon 200ge becomes more readily available.
- Impressive Cooler
- No power
- Simplistic Design
- Able to keep a 2400g at reasonable temps with minor airflow
- Larger than 35W TDP requires airflow to avoid potential throttling
- Lack of protective material surrounding cooler during shipping and handling