be quiet! Shadow Rock 3 Review

Intro

One of the most important things you can do for your PC is getting a CPU Cooler. It is one of the few necessary parts to a PC and this is an area you don’t want to cheap out on if you want your CPU to last a long while. be quiet! has just released their newest CPU Cooler called the Shadow Rock 3. It retails for 49.99 and can be found in most online retailers. The Shadow Rock 3 is the third in the Shadow Rock series from be quiet! and has some major improvements from the last in the series.

be quiet shadow rock 3 running inside pc

be quiet! as a company is not only a hard name to write with autocorrect on but is also a PC hardware company that has been in the business of PC parts for 20 years. It has been voted Germany’s #1 PSU Manufacturer along with other accolades. According to its website, “be quiet! is a premium brand of power supplies, PC cases, and cooling solutions for desktop PCs. The products of be quiet! offer legendary quiet operation and first-class performance thanks to the passion for quality and precision. A special focus is on product quality and details. Which is why our very own experts lead product conception, design, and quality control from our headquarters in Germany.”

Specs

  • Impressive cooling performance of 190W TDP
  • Five 6mm high-performance nickel-plated copper heat pipes with HDT technology
  • Decoupled Shadow Wings 2 120mm PWM high-speed fan
  • Emits only 24.4dB(A) at maximum fan speed
  • Asymmetrical construction avoids blocking memory slots in front of the cooler
  • Elegant brushed aluminum top cover with bi-color surface
  • Easily installable installation kit that can be mounted from above
  • 3-year manufacturer’s warranty

Inside The Box

Upon receiving the Shadow Rock 3 I was curious to see what kind of components would come inside the box to help me with the installation of a new CPU Cooler. To my surprise be quiet! went above and beyond in providing everything you need to put together a new CPU Cooler. In the package, you will find the Shadow Rock 3, of course, two separate baggies with installation parts for either Intel or AMD depending on which CPU you have. Next, you will find CPU Coolant to use on your CPU before you put the Shadow Rock in. The manual states there are about 2 uses to the paste. There is also a fan to install onto your CPU Cooler and a detailed instruction manual on how to install the cooler. The manual runs through the two different CPU types and how to install each. This was a very nice touch and shows be quiet!’s dedication to keeping things nice and organized inside the package. Lastly, you will find a full-fledge screwdriver inside the package. Not only is this be quiet! branded screwdriver long and useful for computer parts it also has a magnetic tip. This magnetic tip can help if you drop screws or are just clumsy in general while working on your PC. This was completely unexpected and blew me away at how much be quiet! made sure the consumer was taken care of. This goes a long way and for a 50 dollar package, you are already getting your money’s worth. 

packaged contents from be quiet shadow rock 3 including 2 baggies a screwdriver and a manual

Installation Process

CPU Coolers are not my forte and that became ever so obvious to me as I struggled to get my Cooler Master CPU Cooler out from inside my case. After struggling for what seemed like hours I finally got it out. I prepared all the necessary steps to insert the Shadow Rock 3 inside and went to work. After 20 minutes and a decent bit of screwing in screws, I was finished and my new CPU Cooler was in place. I had to install the Intel version of the instructions as I have an intel core i5. Longingly looking at how simple the AMD process could’ve been I was a bit jealous of not having an AMD processor. However, even though Intel does take a few more steps to install it was relatively painless with everything be quiet! had provided with the package. Through and through if you follow the instructions and use all of the provided components you will have the Shadow Rock 3 installed in around 20 minutes, maybe even less if you are more experienced. 

be quiet overhead view during installation process

How Quiet Is be quiet!?

One of the reasons you may turn to be quiet! when seeking the right PC parts is their name. be quiet! prides themselves on being some of the quietest PC parts on the market. After installing the Shadow Rock 3 I left my PC case open for a bit to capture some footage of the Shadow Rock and I could barely notice the fans were even on. Now that my PC case is fully back together I couldn’t hear anything coming from my PC Case. To be fair, I never noticed anything from my CPU Cooler either but if you do have a problem with a loud CPU Cooler then the Shadow Rock 3 will definitely be a necessary upgrade! The website states that the fans emit emits only 24.4dB(A) at maximum fan speed which is very impressive!

Testing The Cooling

To test the cooling I decided to run the CPU Cooler against a high performing VR game known as Half-Life: Alyx. While gaming won’t always demand the most out of your CPU it is always a trustworthy test. While running the game the CPU temperature peaked at 70 degrees celsius and never went past this. 

I decided to do this test with a VR game because those games are usually more demanding than your typical games. Also Half-Life: Alyx just released so I decided to test the Shadow Rock 3 on the most up to date games. It did excellently and since then I have played other games and didn’t notice my CPU heating up at all.

I did try exporting a video through Adobe Premiere Pro and the CPU got up to 80 degrees celsius. I was a bit worried it would go past this but it kept at a constant 80 degrees. Exporting video is one of the most demanding things you can do for your PC so these numbers seemed to be what you should expect from a CPU Cooler around this price range. 

program showing the speeds and cooling of the shadow rock 3

Overall

If you are in the market for a new CPU Cooler I honestly can’t recommend the Shadow Rock 3 enough. It has improved on the Shadow Rock line by adding a quieter fan and even better cooling. The package you get gives you everything you need (and more) to get your CPU Cooler installed. Installation only takes 20 minutes or so. These are all amazing positives in my book and be quiet! has definitely impressed me with the latest addition to the Shadow Rock family. 

front of be quiet shadow rock 3 box

Watch the be quiet! Shadow Rock 3 Video Review Here

 

 

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