SilverStone has been in the cooling business for quite some time now and has been a staple in the marketplace for quite a while now with their most recent examples being in the Permafrost and Tundra lines. These models have proven popular and we have had the opportunity to look at them a couple of times now. However, SilverStone is moving forward with new products under the IceGem line (and revised models under the Permafrost line) which was launched back in September 2020. You may not have heard about this due to, well, 2020 being 2020. I mean between murder hornets, Tiger King, UFO’s and Poland invading the Czech Republic (did they not check a calendar and realize what century it was ?) there was a lot to be paying attention to.
SilverStone sent us the brand new SilverStone IceGem 280 Liquid CPU Cooler (SST-IG280-ARGB) sporting a 280mm radiator for review today. At an MSRP of $159.99 (and a 280mm radiator) this is the middle of the road option out of the bunch. The IceGem 240 Liquid CPU Cooler, sporting a 240mm radiator, is available for a $139.99 MSRP and the IceGem 360 Liquid CPU Cooler, sporting a 360mm radiator, is available for $169.99 MSRP. The only size missing is a single-fan option, such as a 120mm radiator variant which we would like to see part of the new lineup to really complete it.
We will again be using our AIO test platform that is capable of putting out enough heat to make even the devil sweat. We do this to test AIO liquid cooling solutions that are likely to be used with some of today’s most demanding CPUs. This is a brand new launch from SilverStone that we are excited to dive into.
SilverStone IceGem 280 Overview
The SilverStone IceGem 280 is an all in one (AIO) CPU cooler that is designed to work on a wide variety of sockets. These include Intel’s LGA 115x/1200/1366/2011/2066 and AMD’s AM2/AM3/AM4/FM1/FM2/strR/sTRX4/TR4. This range covers most high-end desktop processors on the market today and SilverStone is quick to point out that the design of the block used will cover the entire IHS of AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors.
The IceGem 280 we have for review today has the IceGem Pump Head with LEDs set under the “diamond cut” top. The fan speed operates between 600-1600RPM. Fan noise range is between 9.8-23.4 dBa (advertised). On the support front, all of the IceGem AIOs carry a 3-year warranty.
The water block on the SilverStone IceGem 280 is similar to previous SilverStone offerings as it features copper cold plate with microchannels. This cold plate design features a 76mm2 rectangular copper base plate.
The cube-shaped water block includes the pump and measures approximately 76x76x66mm making it one of the larger options we have seen. That makes sense given the fact that it is advertised to completely cover an AMD Ryzen Threadripper IHS.
The pump used with the SilverStone IceGem 280 is a three phase, six pole design. The pump operates at 3000 (+/-10%) RPM by default while drawing 0.42A (which includes the RGB LEDs). This design is supposed to result in excellent performance, and noise reduction, along with providing excellent efficiency.
The liquid CPU cooler radiator is designed to hold two 140mm fans and measures 314 mm x 140 mm x 28 mm. By our count, the aluminum radiator sports a density of 21 fins per inch. The tubing attached to the radiator is 400mm in length.
The included RGB fans are a tweaked version of SilverStone’s standard-sized modified sleeve bearing 140mm fans (APA1425M12). These fans support a listed fan speed of 600 to 1,600 RPM on their specs at a reported noise level of 9.8 to 23.4 dB(A). The stated maximum airflow is 99.2 CFM with a static pressure of 3.1 mm/H2O. SilverStone claims that these fans are “pressure optimized” to more effectively dissipate heat from the radiator.
There are addressable RGB led lighting features in the water block as well as fans included with the SilverStone IceGem 280 today. The RGB connectivity is provided through 3-pin 5v connectors and lets you control it via the included RGB controller or with the baked in solutions from ASUS, MSI, ASRock, BIOSTAR, or GIGABYTE that you may already have on your motherboard. The integrated stand alone controller, however, sports 10 preset modes for you to choose from if you want to skip using the baked in solutions of many enthusiast motherboards.
Let’s move on now to our test setup and installation of the SilverStone IceGem 280.