Silverstone Hydrogon D120W ARGB review : Simple installation and decent performance with Ryzen 7 7700X, designed for SFF cases

Silverstone is a PC manufacturer that’s been around for two decades. They offer CPU Coolers, Power supplies, cases, and other equipment. I’ve previously tested coolers like their VIDA 240 Slim AIO and Hydrogon H90, two of their SFF coolers for Tom’s Hardware, and found them to be quite capable.

Today we’ll be looking at Silverstone’s Hydrogon D120W ARGB, a dual tower air cooler which can be found for $50+ at various online retailers. I’ve tested it against a variety of coolers from Cooler Master, DeepCool, Thermalright, and others to see if it’s a cooler worthy of your consideration.

The Hydrogon D120W is a dual tower air cooler that was designed in cunjunction with Silverstone’s small form factor SUGO 14 & 15 Mini-ITX and other similarly sized SFF computer cases. With a total footprint of 125mm (width) by 153mm (height) by 112m (depth), Silverstone’s goal was to create the best dual tower air cooler that can fit in space-constrained scenarios.

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Over the past few months I have explored the impact of different levels of cooling with AMD’s Ryzen 7 7700X CPU. When I tested EKWB’s AIO Elite 280, it surprised me by able to keeping the CPU under TJmax in intensive workloads – I had been under the impression that it was “impossible” to keep Ryzen 7000 CPUs under TJMax in intense workloads. On the opposite end, I tested BeQuiet’s Pure Rock LP SFF cooler – which was only able to cool 66W.

In the past I’ve mentioned how my past testing of coolers had focused on Intel CPUs because they were the most challenging to cool and also consumed the most power. When Alder Lake was released, I noticed that the thermal difficulty of cooling the 12900K was more difficult compared to prior generation products – only a few coolers were able to keep it under TJMax.

Intel’s i9-13900K and AMD’s Ryzen 7 7700X CPUs can be even more difficult to cool in heat intensive workloads – and this trend is likely to continue with future generations of CPUs. As CPUs continue to shrink in size, thermal density rises, increasing the difficulty of cooling. Indeed, it is no longer worrying to run a desktop CPU at it’s peak temperature – it is to be expected in intense workloads without power restrictions or undervolting.

I have been interested to see how different levels of cooling performance effect both AMD and Intel platforms for some time. Thanks to our partner ASRock this is now possible – they sent a sample of their B650E Taichi for testing purposes. I will be taking a closer look at this motherboard in the future – but in the meantime check out reviews of this pristine motherboard on Funkykit & Tom’s Hardware.

Introducing Silverstone Hydrogon D120W ARGB, a dual tower air cooler

Packaging and included contents

The Hydrogon D120W arrives in a medium sized box, which opens to reveal the cooler and its contents which are protected by cardboard and molded foam.

Included with the package are

  • Dual Tower Radiator
  • 2x Preinstalled 120mm fans
  • Mounting for modern Intel & AMD platforms
  • Screwdriver
  • Tube of Thermal Paste
  • Manual

AM4 & AM5 Cooler Installation

Silverstone’s installation was impressively simple, it is very easy to complete. One does not even have to secure the fans to the cooler, as they come already attached.

The first step in installation is to remove the default AM4/AM5 retention module. Afterwards, attach the included standoffs to the motherboard.

Next, place the mounting brackets on top of the standoffs and secure them using the included screws.

Apply thermal paste to the CPU using the included tube, and then place the heatsink on the mounting bracket. Use the included screwdriver to secure the cooler’s bar to the mounting brackets, sliding the screwdriver through the holes circled in red below.

Finally, attach the PWM and aRGB connections to your motherboard.

Features of Silverstone’s D120W ARGB

RAM ClearanceUnlimited!
ColdplateNickel-plated Copper
Heatpipes6 Heatpipes
Dimensions125 x 153 x 112mm
Compatible SocketIntel LGA 2066/2011/1700/1200/115x
AMD AM4 and AM5
Net Weight885g

Small Form Factor (SFF) Compatibility

The Hydrogon D120 was designed in cunjunction with Silverstone’s SUGO 14 SFF case and other similarly space constrained computer cases. It’s dimensions are 125 x 153 x 112mm, and as such it should fit in most small form factor (SFF) cases on the market with ease. See the picture below for an example of it installed in a compact SFF case!

Image Credit: Silverstone

Secure & Easy Mounting System

The cooler can be installed without removing it’s fans, making installation very simple. All components necessary for installation, including the screwdriver, are supplied with the cooler.

Source: Silverstone

Full memory compatibility

The heatpipes of Silverstone’s D120W are recessed so that the cooler doesn’t overhang RAM modules – insuring compatibility with any size of DDR4 or DDR5 memory modules, no matter how tall they are!

Source: Silverstone

Nickel Plated Copper base with six heatpipes

2x 120mm HYD120W-ARGB fans

There’s more to a cooler than just it’s heat sink, the fans paired with a cooler have a huge impact both total cooling potential and noise levels. The Hydrogon D120W includes 2x white HYD120W-ARGB 120mm fans with aRGB lighting support.

These fans are pre-installed to the heatsink, and the cooler can be installed without removing them – making installation a breeze!

Silverstone advertises the following with these fans:

  • Heatsink optimized fans
    • HYD120W-ARGB fans have a wide 0-1850 RPM speed range via PWM control, allowing for tailored performance on demand. This keeps acoustic noise level at a minimum while guaranteeing maximum cooling performance when required.
Source: Silverstone
  • Vivid ARGB lighting effects
    • Display any color combination to your liking that can be synced via an ARGB controller or ARGB compatible motherboards with a 5V ARGB header from ASUS, GIGABYTE, MSI, ASROCK & BIOSTAR
Source: Silverstone
  • Anti-vibrational rubber pads included for additional noise dampening
Size120 x 120 x 25 mm
SpeedUp to 1850 RPM
AirflowUp to 56.23 CFM
Static PressureUp to 1.98 mmH₂O
Rated Noise LevelUp to 30.5 dB(A)
BearingHydraulic Bearing

Test Platform Configuration

Test Configuration
CPUAMD Ryzen 7 7700X
MotherboardASRock B650E Taichi (sampled by ASRock)
Computer CaseDeepCool CK560WH (sampled by DeepCool)
PSUDeepCool PQ1000M (sampled by DeepCool)
Storage1TB Kingston Fury Renegade
GPUIntel ARC A770 LE (sampled by Intel)
RAM32GB (16gb x2) Crucial DDR5-4800 (Sampled by Micron)
Coolers Tested (click links for previous reviews)BeQuiet! Pure Rock LP
BeQuiet! Shadow Rock 3
Cooler Master Hyper 622 Halo
Cougar Forza 135
DeepCool AG500
DeepCool LT720 WH
EK AIO Elite 280 D-RGB
Fractal Celsius+ S28
Iceberg Thermal IceSLEET G4 Silent
Iceberg Thermal IceSLEET X7 Dual
Scythe Kotetsu Mark Three
Silverstone Hydrogon D120W ARGB
Thermalright Peerless Assassin SE 120 ARGB

For thermal results, I’ve tested the CPU in three configurations

  • At the default power limits
  • With a 95W PPT enforced
  • With a 75W PPT enforced.

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Noise Normalized Results

Performance only scales by a limited amount with improved cooling capacity with Ryzen 7000. This also means that there is less of a benefit to running fans at higher performance levels. As such, it can be useful to see how coolers compared when noise normalized for quiet operation.

Unfortunately, in this noise limited scenario the Hydrogon D120W is the worst performing air cooler I’ve tested in this scenario. You won’t actually lose a lot of performance with this cooling capacity, but it’s a disappointing result nonetheless.

Default Power Limits

At the default power limits, the most intensive loads can be difficult to cool and result in the CPU running at TJMax. As such, we’ll be looking at two metrics in this situation where the CPU temperatures reach TJMax: Noise levels and watts cooled.

With a maximum cooling capacity of 116.5W (average) in a long term workload, the Hydrogon D120W performs similarly to Iceberg Thermal’s G4 Silent and Scythe’s Kotetsu Mark 3. It achieves this performance with a total system noise level of 44.2 dBA. This is a moderate noise level, in the middle of the road for noise levels in comparison to other coolers I’ve tested with AMD’s Ryzen 7 7700X.

Some of y’all might notice that the graph starts at 35 instead of zero – this is because my sound meter cannot measure noise levels lower than 35 dBA. Since that is the noise floor of this meter’s recording capabilities, 35 dBA is the “zero” for our testing purposes. For those concerned that this might distort results – there’s no worry. If anything, the graphs above will minimize the differences in noise levels because dBA measurements are logarithmic.

For a more detailed explanation of how decibel levels correspond to perceived noise levels, please check out the video below from BeQuiet! which makes it easy to visualize and understand the true impact of of increasing dBA levels.


Imposing even a minor power consumption limit on AMD’s Ryzen 7700X reduces cooling difficulty dramatically resulting in the ability to easily to cool the CPU under TJMax (95c), as such in these situations the total noise levels are more important. It’s also important to test in these TDP restricted situations, because most “real life” workloads will not push the CPU to it’s limits.

The results above show that most air coolers will perform similarly, Silverstone’s Hydrogon D120W performs similarly to Sycthe’s Kotetsu Mark Three and BeQuiet’s Shadow Rock 3. There will be a ~7C delta between high end and entry level air coolers.

The noise levels in this scenario where the fan speeds are tied to the default curve of the motherboard are moderate, again near the middle of the road for coolers I’ve tested with AMD’s Ryzen 7 7700X. You might notice that the noise levels are the same as in the unlimited performance scenario – this is because the CPU reaches over 80c, triggering the full speed of the AsRock b650E Taichi’s default fan curve.


Lowering the power consumption to 75W further reduces the cooling difficulty, bringing CPU temperatures down to 47C over a 23C ambient temperature. While this is amongst the warmer results shown, when the power is limited to 75W CPU temperatures aren’t really much of a concern – pretty much any cooler will be able of handling this workload.

What’s more important in this test are the noise levels, and at 40.3 dBA is fairly quiet – like a slightly audible hum.


There’s a lot to like about Silverstone’s D120W ARGB. As it’s designed for space constrained scenarios, it will fit inside most SFF cases on the market. The installation of this cooler is very simple!

While it isn’t the strongest performer on our charts, it has moderate noise levels even when fans run at full speed. I also appreciated that the fans of this cooler come pre-attached to the radiator towers and don’t need to be removed.

With it’s price of $49.99+ I feel it’s a bit overpriced compared to other coolers of it’s performance class. However, Silverstone’s extreme ease of installation, it’s ability to fit in space constrained SFF cases, and full RAM compatibility are strong reasons to consider it for your PC’s CPU cooler over competitor offerings.

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