Summary: The MaxOrb EX from Thermaltake is a nice update to a good cooler, and in our testing we found it to be a very decent cooler worthy of your consideration. The performance has increased over the original MaxOrb (due to the extra copper in the cooler), but other than the extra copper the rest of the cooler is almost identical to the original MaxOrb. Many of my findings were identical to the original MaxOrb ( Which we reviewed here ).
Pros: Better Performance than Original MaxOrb, Easy Installation, Lower Height than other Coolers
Conclusion: Thermaltake knows how to market a product, which is why the MaxOrb comes in a very attractive retail box with a clear view of the product. Since the MaxOrb is so big, the box is also just as large, which makes you feel as though you are getting a lot for your money. If you like things that sparkle, you will fall in love at first sight. The MaxOrb has plenty of polished chrome and aluminum components, which really helps to draw attention to the attractive design.
Pros: Extremely attractive design, Excellent cooling performance, Blue LED fan adds effect, Convenient fan control, Compatible with all current CPU sockets, High-quality construction, Durable aluminum fins
Cons: Poor heatpipe efficiency, Would benefit from textured mating surface, Needs more cement on control knob
Conclusion: The Max ORB EX is an outstanding block of copper love. There are a few gremlins in the cooler though, although I more want to question the shipper rather than the manufacturer. Our HSF arrived with a few bent fins, which were easily straightened with a fine-toothed comb, but not everyone will enjoy doing that, and for the asking $60 price-tag you would figure this should be a big deal.
Summary: With the AMD Phenom 9850 set at a stock 2.5Ghz and 1.3v, the MaxOrb EX was tested at both minimum and maximum fan speed. Idle temperatures were a cool 26-27° C which is less than 5° over ambient. Load temperatures ranged in the mid-40's, with the max fan speed reducing peak temperature by just 3° C over the much quieter, minimum setting. Leaving the fan set at maximum, the CPU was then overclocked to 3.0Ghz at 1.4v and tested again.
Summary: Thermaltake has set the bar pretty high for cooling products and in the case of a cooler like the Thermaltake Big Typhoon VX that we recently took a look at, they've got some pretty decent cooling solutions. In the case of the MaxOrb, I found myself a bit disappointed with the overall quality and performance of this cooler, and while it is by no means a bad cooler, it just falls short to other Thermaltake offerings.
Pros: Smaller Height then most Heatpipe Coolers, Easy Installation
Summary: So far pricing for the Thermaltake MaxOrb EX is not available, though we expect it to be quite pricey given that it is largely made up of copper. This combined with the sheer size of the heatsink means that the MaxOrb EX weighs just under 600 grams. The MaxOrb EX is actually very similar to the original MaxOrb, with the key difference being in the materials used.
Excerpt: Thermaltake is back with one of our favorite CPU cooling designs, the Orb. The latest offering is a revamp of the MaxOrb we tested back in December , but with a twist of copper added in for good measure. The original MaxOrb fared well in our performance tests and I found the mounting mechanism for Intel motherboards innovative. To this day, I use the MaxOrb on one of my open-air test rigs and have yet to uncover any issues with the design.
Summary: The system I'll be using to test the Thermaltake Max Orb consists of the following hardware:
AMD 6400+ X2 Black Edition
Biostar TForce 570 SLI
2 x 1Gb OCZ Titanium PC6400
The Black Edition AMD processors do not include a factory heatsink/fan as they are marketed for computer enthusiasts and overclockers who would more than likely not use a stock heatsink anyway.