Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

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In this review we will take a deep dive into the “Be Quiet!” top-flow cooler. Shadow Rock TF 2” comparing it with a more traditional one, highlighting strengths, weaknesses and differences

What we will be dealing with in this analysis is not a conventional air cooler. When Be Quiet! he offered us to analyze his Shadow Rock TF 2, in fact, we have seen how little used “top-flow” heatsinks actually are. When a user chooses to buy a cooler for his CPU, he mainly asks himself the question: “Better liquid or air?”.

In reality, there is not only one type of air cooler, namely the classic “tower-cooler”, but also different models that certainly make a lot of sense and are often overlooked because their presence on the market is ignored.

In this review of the Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2, in fact, we will not only analyze the latter, but we will also make a comparison with a tower cooler from the same company!

Recensione Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

What is a top flow cooler?

Let’s start by understanding what a heatsink of this type is and how it works. First of all, what immediately catches the eye is the shape. While a tower heat sink develops in height, the “downdraft” type is lower and wider. Of course, the direction of the fans also changes. In the first case, these will point in a direction favorable to the PC’s airflow, while in the second case the fan will look in the direction of the glass or the side bulkhead of the case.

The positive sides of a top-flow cooler are, precisely, the possibility of being installed even in small configurations and the fact that, by covering the RAM, they tend to decrease the temperatures of the latter. Furthermore, with this type of dissipation, the VRM section will also benefit.

The downside of heatsinks of this type is certainly the price. In fact, these are often much more expensive than tower coolers and are not always comparable in terms of performance to a more classic design. Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2 is proposed, however, at a competitive price, in line with the tower models. We understand, therefore, whether, at the same price, it is better or not to rely on this type of cooling for our processor.

Unboxing e specifiche | Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Now let’s see what we find in the sales box of this Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2. Obviously, the first thing we’ll see is the cooler with the fan from 135mm already installed. In the various sachets there are then the plates eh backplate for AMD (AM2+ / AM3+ / FM1 / FM2+ / AM4) and Intel (775 / 115x / 1200 / 1366 / 2011-3 Square ILM / 2066). Now let’s look at the technical specifications:

  • Dimensioni (L x P x A): 137mm x 165mm x 112mm
  • Total weight: 0.68 Kg
  • TDP: 160W
  • Overall fan noise (dB(A)) 50/75/100%: 11.9rpm / 19.3rpm / 24.4rpm

Aesthetically we liked the cooler. Obviously what stands out right away is the 135mm fan which is anchored with the classic springs interlocked in the slats. Just the fins reach up to the cooling plate in order to guarantee a more efficient dissipation. The entire body is characterized by a classic aluminum colour. The 5 6mm heat-pipes, on the other hand, are made of copper. The Be Quiet! is engraved on the right side. The dimensions make it suitable for the vast majority of houses out there. While it’s 137.6mm wide by 165mm, the height hovers around 112mm. Regarding the space for the RAM, however, there are 48.5mm in height available.

Recensione Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Let’s compare it to a tower cooler | Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Let’s now move on to the comparison of the maximum temperatures reached on the same configuration between the “Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2” and “Pure Rock 2 FX“. The configuration used for the tests is composed as follows:

  • CASE: NZXT H510 Flow
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-10600
  • MOBO: NZXT N7 Z490
  • RAM: Goodram IRDM White 16 GB DDR4
  • SSD: Samsung 980 1 TB, Lexar 256 GB
  • HDD: WDC WD5000 500 GB

The tests were carried out by removing the original thermal paste and applying an Arctic MX-4 so as not to have any kind of difference. We tested the two heatsinks by subjecting them to identical tests.

Cinebench RE23 | Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Using Browser | Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Desktop | Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Conclusions and price | Review Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2

Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2 proved to be an excellent top-flow cooler, especially if we take into consideration the quality-price ratio. Although the case in which we tested it was not equipped with mesh on the side, but with a glass bulkhead, the differences with a classic tower are minimal. Even, then, in the stress test the Shadow Rock TF 2 won, certainly for the goodness of the fan if brought to maximum load. Furthermore, despite the size of 135mm it is very silent.

So who should buy a top-flow cooler? certainly those who need to create a compact Custom PC, perhaps to be used for SFF (Small-Form-Factor) systems, where it fits well in confined spaces, without however renouncing excellent performance. Another positive side is that some RAM models on the market have an important height, also due to any RGB LED Strips inserted inside the latter, with such a heatsink you will have no problem installing them.

Be Quiet! Shadow Rock TF 2 is offered at a price of around €60.00. We certainly recommend the purchase of this product in terms of performance, if instead you don’t have space problems, an equally safe choice can fall on the Pure Rock 2 FX.

Plus points

  • Design and construction
  • Performance
  • Fan performance