Thermaltake’s Cooling Off with a New Frio

And they’ve got a new mouse to boot…

Thermaltake LogoThings have been busy lately at Thermaltake’s Taipei offices; or so it would seem with a new CPU cooler, the Frio Advanced, and a new gaming mouse, the Saphira, being announced today. At first glance both appear to be competent offerings in their respective markets, but these days that’s not really enough. So the question remains how are these new offering going to differentiate themselves in the market place.

Thermaltake’s Frio Advanced is the third offering released under the Frio brand. It differs from its predecessor in a number of ways. Both the original Frio and the Frio Advanced use a five heat pipe configuration, the major difference being, the Copper heat pipes on Frio were nickel plated, where as the ones on the Frio Advanced are not. In keeping with both the Frio and the Frio OCK the Frio Advanced has a very attractive looking plastic cover. The red and black plastic color scheme meshes really well with the tops of the copper heat-pipes, and the aluminum fins, that form the functional parts of the cooler.

Thermaltake is touting it’s replacement of traditional welding methods with a mechanical assembling process to ensure that the heat-pipes on its latest cooler have, “…precise and direct contact for flawless heat transmission from the CPU to the heat-sink.” It remains to be seen how the Frio Advanced is going to perform in the wild, but it’s a fair to to assume that the extra 10 Watts of cooling capacity it offers over the original Frio is due to the new heat-pipe mounting process.  One of the nicest features the Frio Advanced has to offer is universal socket compatibility. If it’s a desktop CPU socket that’s been released since 2006 then chances are the Frio Advanced can be mounted on it.

When it comes to hard specifications the Frio Advanced manages to maintain its appearance as a contender.  It boasts 230 Watts of cooling capacity, a weight of 954 grams, and has a Maximum air flow rating of 88.77 CFM. Thermaltake claims that the dual fan configuration will consume about 6 Watts of power under load, with RPM’s ranging from 800 to 2000, and a maxium air pressure of 2.7 mmH2O. At 44 dBA.  The Frio Advanced is not the quietest cooler ever, but it’s really no worse than its predecessor, and still retains the ability to drop down to 21 dBA at its lowest setting. Look for reviews to start popping up around the web in a little bit.

In the mean time we can take a look at a pair of mutually supporting products that Thermaltake is releasing under its Tt eSPORTS brand. First up we have the mass market product, the Saphira high-end gaming mouse.

The Saphira offers select-able DPI resolution ranging from 100 to 3500, and a select-able polling rate of 125, 500, 1000 Hz. The fun features it carries include a four level LED DPI indicator near the front of the mouse; as well as a software app that allows users to change the lighting scheme and setup macros. The black styling with red accents is a tried and true look, and the emblem they’ve chosen for the palm rest fits in nicely with the visual theme of the mouse.

Tt eSPORTS has also released a limited edition “White-Ra” mouse pad to pair with its new Saphira mouse. The White-Ra is a cross-woven synthetic mouse pad that has a rubber non-slip bottom and rolls up nicely to fit in a cylindrical carrying case. The White-Ra mouse pad is basically a promotional product aimed at quenching the professional, and enthusiast, gaming communities thirst for more products developed with the insight of Thermaltake’s in-house team of professional gamers.

Thermaltake is definitely trying to expand and maintain its hold in both the high-end cooling market, and the high-end gaming market.  In the high-end cooling market the Frio Advanced is a competent upgrade from an already competitive predecessor, which bodes well for Thermaltake. But in the high-end gaming market the success of the Saphira gaming mouse, and its supporting products, will have more to do with product placement and continuing the already strong marketing effort that Thermaltake’s developed under the umbrella of its Tt eSports brand.

Thermaltake’s new products are looking good. So it’s steady as she goes, and keep them coming, from the good folks in Taipei.S|A

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Thomas Ryan is a freelance technology writer and photographer from Seattle, living in Austin. You can also find his work on SemiAccurate and PCWorld. He has a BA in Geography from the University of Washington with a minor in Urban Design and Planning and specializes in geospatial data science. If you have a hardware performance question or an interesting data set Thomas has you covered.