Pros: Price, performance, appearance.
Cons: Fan is so so. Mounting instructions could be better.
The fan is a 1500 max RPM Hydro bearing fan that is rated at 56.2 CFM and only 24 dbA max. It is NOT the most powerful fan on the market but I have to say is very quit for that much CFM. The cooler itself will also support push/pull with the provided rubber mounts to ensure silence.
The only and main con of this cooler would be the fact that the mounting system has been changed 3 times. Their is no indication of which mounting system the cooler will use so you are in for a lottery when opening the cooler to find out. The mounting system for my particular cooler was no where near hard to figure out but the directions I must say are very vague. At first I thought I was going to like the fact that simple thumb screws are used to attach the cooler but as the installation evolved It became clear that it was not meant to be installed in tight cases. If room is an issue around your cooler then I would suggest removing the motherboard to allow you to tighten the cooler down with minimal fuss.
Some shots of it with the Hyper 212 non evo.
As for overall performance, I am by far a pro at testing coolers but I did test the hyper with a burnt in application of MX2 and Prime95 small ftt's. After 30 minutes or so the Hypers results are as follows.
53c after 30 minutes is not to shabby on a 1055t OC to 3.4
The same test where ran on the Gaia with a burnt in application of MX2 with its own fan. The results of that are as follows
With a difference of 2 degrees I think It is fair to say that it will compete well with the hyper but at a few bucks cheaper. I will also say that with another more powerful fan it should match or beat the hyper all together.I did not measure ambient temps as I see that as useless when not every ones ambient temps will be the same. A cooler should be judged by how well it works in ANY temps to me. I do have to mention that my house was a lot warmer when testing the Gaia so it may have effected the overall temps.
So without further ado, I present the new top of the line Air cooler on a budget!!