Introduction

When it comes to the powerful yet silent cooling solutions for the PC market, Be Quiet! needs no introduction. They are in the business for over 15 years and have made quite a way into the hearts and minds of the customers. Their major product lines are Power Supplies, Fans, Coolers, and Chassis. Designed in Germany, the Be Quiet! products deliver exactly what they are designed for; utmost performance with silent operations. Not only their products are designed in Germany but quality-control is also ensured in Germany. The products of be quiet! offer legendary quiet operation and first-class performance thanks to the passion for quality and precision. Attention to detail is the key to perfection and this is where the company excels.

Be quiet! has sent us their essential series Pure Wings 2 fans for the review and our attempt on all-black base custom loop build. The fans that have been sent to us are Pure Wings 2 120, Pure Wings 2 140, Pure Wings 2 120 PWM High Speed, and Pure Wings 2 140 PWM High Speed. Be Quiet! fans are categorized into three segments:

  • High-End
  • Premium
  • Essential

Their silent wings 3 fans fall under the High-End category. The shadow wings 2 falls under the Premium category and pure wings 2 falls under the Essential category. The Pure Wings 2 fans come in the following sizing:

  • 80mm
  • 92mm
  • 120mm
  • 140mm

In each sizing, there are two variants DC control based fans and PWM based fans. In PWM category, there are also two groups, PWM and PWM with High Speed. Since we have got high-speed variants in 120mm and 140mm sizing under the PWM category, we will be focusing on these fans. In the DC control category, normal and high-speed variants are also available. We have got 120mm and 140mm without high-speed variants. All the pure wings 2 fans feature rifle bearings with 4-pole motor and are rated at 80,000 hrs of a life span at 25°C. Let’s start.

Product:               Pure Wings 2

Manufacturer:     Be Quiet!

Category:            Cooling

Pricing:

BL037 4260052184387 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2 PWM, 80mm  £ 7,49
BL038 4260052184394 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2 PWM, 92mm  £ 8,49
BL039 4260052184400 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2 PWM, 120mm  £ 8,99
BL040 4260052184417 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2 PWM, 140mm  £ 9,99
BL044 4260052183373 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2, 80mm £ 6,99
BL045 4260052183380 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2, 92mm £ 7,99
BL046 4260052183359 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2, 120mm £ 8,49
BL047 4260052183366 be quiet! PURE WINGS 2, 140mm £ 9,49
BL080 4260052186824 be quiet! Pure Wings 2   120mm High-Speed £ 8,99
BL081 4260052186831 be quiet! Pure Wings 2   120mm PWM High-Speed £ 9,49
BL082 4260052186848 be quiet! Pure Wings 2   140mm High-Speed £ 9,99
BL083 4260052186855 be quiet! Pure Wings 2   140mm PWM High-Speed £ 10,49

Specifications

Property Pure Wings 2 120 Pure Wings 2 140 Pure Wings 2 120 PWM High Speed Pure Wings 2 140 PWM High Speed
Dimension 120x120x25 140x140x25 120x120x25 140x140x25
Voltage Range (V) 5-12 5-12 5-12 5-12
Speed (RPM) 1500 1000 2000 1600
Noise (dBA) 19.2 18.8 36.9 37.3
Airflow (CFM) 51.4 61.2 65.51 94.2
Air Pressure mmH₂O 1.25 0.76 2.23 1.82
Input Power (W) 1.08 1.44 3.6 6
Input Current (A) 0.09 0.12 0.3 0.5
Connector 3-pin 3-pin 4-pin PWM 4-pin PWM
Bearings Rifle Rifle Rifle Rifle
Life Span/25°C (h) 80,000 80,000 80,000 80,000

 

Packaging and Unboxing

Since the packing of all these fans is similar, hence we will be showing only one fan’s unboxing here which is Pure Wings 2 120 PWM High Speed.

The fans are shipped inside the cardboard box. The top side of the packing box has be quiet! logo printed in themed colors on the top right side. The speed of the fan is printed on the top left side.  PWM is printed right below the speed label. Please, note that non-PWM fans don’t have any PWM label printed on their packing boxes. There is a picture of the fan printed in the main section. Pure Wings 2, 120mm high-speed is printed below the picture. The left side of the box has a gray color stripe running on the entire length. It has essential printed at the bottom in a vertical layout. This is the category of these fans. Salient features are printed at the bottom in two languages.

The backside of the packing box has be quiet! brand logo printed on the top right side. The salient features are printed in three languages here. The specifications of the fan are printed in tabular format on the lower right side. A serial no sticker is at the bottom right.  The fan is made in China.

The right side of the packing box has salient features of the fan printed in two more languages. be quiet! brand logo is printed on the top.

The left side of the packing box has be quite! brand logo printed on the top. The salient features of the fan are printed in one more language here. The fan has 3 years of warranty. The size of the fan is printed at the bottom.

The opening cover on the top has be quiet! brand logo printed on the top right side. Pure Wings 2, 120mm high-speed text is printed in the center.

Contents

The fans come in a bare minimum packing. Following are provided:

  • 1x Pure Wings 2 fan in the desired sizing
  • 4x screws

This is understandable given the pricing of the fans and the nature of the product.

Closer look

I will start with what be quiet! is saying about these fans “The Pure Wings 2 family fans are unique in their class, combining outstanding reliability, silent cooling, and a great price-for-performance ratio. It’s impressive how much quiet technology the German engineering team has crammed into these fans at this amazing price. They are the ultimate reason to put well-known be quiet! silent cooling in your PC if you haven’t already done so.”

We are looking at two 120mm versions and two 140mm versions. The design of all these fans is the same. The difference is coming from the pin interface and the rated specifications. The overall look and feel of the fans are appealing and all black neutral scheme is maintained. Looking at the fan from the top side, we can spot 9 blades or impellers on the 120mm fans. The center has be quite! logo printed on it in the middle. It is the only colored element on these fans. The frame if made of the plastic and is designed in a circular manner with four sides attached to it though this is a uni-body design. The blades are designed to provide optimal airflow. Each blade has 13 grooves on it. This particular design will help in reducing the air drag which will not help in the better airflow across the surface but also reduces the noise. There is no flex in the frame and it is quite rigid.

Each mounting corner has a mounting hole to install the fan on the radiator/chassis. There are no anti-vibration pads on any mounting corner. Looking at each mounting corner will show that there is a gap between the mainframe and the mounting corner. This seems to be the design only aspect and may have nothing to do with the overall performance of the fans.

One of the sides of the fan’s frame has two arrows carved on it. The arrow pointing towards the mounting corner is indicating the direction of the blades’ spin. The other arrow is indicating the direction of the airflow. This is a visual aid for the users in case they are not sure about these directions.

The backside of the fan shows four-arms assembly with one arm widened to provide passage for the wires. There is a latch in the middle of this arm to lock the wires from falling down. The motor hub has a sticker pasted on it. Be quiet! brand logo is printed on its top. Pure Wings 2 is printed below the logo. The power rating of the fan as well the compliance information to various regulations is printed at the bottom. Four wires can be seen coming out of the motor hub and going outwards through the widened arm. The cable is flat to my liking. The PWM high-speed versions have 4-pin cable having a length of 460mm. the weight of the 120mm PWM high-speed fan with the box is 0.130kg whereas it is 0.158kg for the 140mm PWM high-speed fan with box. The Pure Wings 2 non-PWM fans have 3-pin cable having a length of 450mm. The weight of the non-PWM 120mm fan with the box is 0.130kg. The weight of the non-PWM 140mm fan with the box is 0.158kg.

These fans are using Rifle bearings with 4-pole motor. Thanks to the rifle bearings, the MTTF of these fans is rated at 80,000 hours at 25°C.

The PWM versions of the Pure Wings 2 fans have 4-pin PWM cable whereas non-PWM fans simply referred to as Pure Wings 2 120 or Pure Wings 2 140 have 3-pin cable and are DC-based controlled. The high-speed versions of the Pure Wings 2 fans offer better air pressure though at an elevated noise level (still not that loud) as compared to the other models in the same category making them ideal for the radiator as well as airflow in the chassis use.

Testing

We have tested the be quiet! pure wings 2 120mm PWM high-speed fans on the Alphacool Eisbaer 360 which is a 360mm CLC. It is a standard on our test bench that we check the fans for their thermal performance. The other fans in the graph are Eiswind 12 from Alphacool, Corsair HD120, LL120 RGB Fans, Raijintek Iris 12 RGB, SilverStone fans, Noctua fans, and Noiseblocker fans to name a few. Unfortunately, we could not test the Pure Wings 2 120 (non-PWM) on this cooler as only two of these fans were sent.

The Eiswind 12 fans operate on the 12V DC. They are 4-Pin PWM fans with the rated speed of the 55-1700 RPM with ±10%. Airflow rating is 63.85 CFM with the static pressure rating of the 1.66mmH₂O. Sound rating is 29 dBA per fan. The reason we are giving the brief rundown of the Eiswind 12 fans is that these are the stock fans of the Alphacool Eisbaer 360 and holds a reference point for the comparison.

Airflow Testing

We test the airflow of the fan without any resistant to the flow i.e there is no radiator or mesh between the fan using the PerfectPrime WD9819 Anemometer. All four fans were checked for the airflow at various speed levels including the 100% speed.

The airflow on both 120mm versions was validated. In fact, our testing is showing them to cross the rated airflow rating though this is also dependent upon the distance between the anemometer and fan which in our case is like 20mm. But the tested airflow rating for the 140mm fans falls behind the rated airflow values. Tests were repeated to validate the readings.

Speed Range

The non-PWM fans were tested at various voltage levels starting from 4V and going up in an increment of 1V to the 12V DC using the Reeven Polariz fan controller. The PWM fans were tested at duty cycles from the UEFI of the motherboard for which the fans were connected to the same 4-pin header on the motherboard.

The above picture shows the graphs of the Pure Wings 2 120/140 fans (non-PWM). The X-axis shows the voltage level (V) and the Y-axis shows the speed of the fans in RPM. The maximum speed on both fans falls behind the rated speed. The Pure Wings 2 140 sample is lacking by 7% and the 120mm version is lacking by 4%. If be quiet!’s error of margin range is up to 10% then this is within the error of margin.

The above picture shows the graphs of the Pure Wings 2 120/140 PWM high-speed fans. The maximum speed of the Pure Wings 2 140 PWM high-speed was 1516 RPM whereas its rated speed is 1600 RPM. This makes it lacking behind with a margin of 5%. If be quiet!’s error of margin range is up to 10% then this is within the error of margin range.

Thermal Testing

Thermal performance of the fan was tested on this test bench:

  • Intel i7 6850k
  • Asus Rampage V Edition 10
  • Corsair Vengeance Red 32GB DDR4 @ 2666MHz
  • Alphacool Eisbaer 360
  • Samsung 840 EVO 250GB
  • Corsair AX 1200i

Testing was performed on the Microsoft Windows 10 x64 Professional edition build version 1709. Noctua NT-H1 thermal paste was used. The fans were put on 50% and 100% of their speed. The pump of the CLC was put on 100% of the speed. Asus RealBench v1.44 was used to stress test the CPU. RealTemp was used to monitor the temperatures. First, the stress test was run on the stock clocks of 3.6GHz at 1.13V VCore. XMP was loaded all the times. Reported temps are deltas. The maximum temperature of every core is added and divided by the no of cores. The ambient temperature reading is subtracted from this average value. The benefit of using delta temps is that it covers the variation in the temperatures under uncontrolled environment. Next, the Chip is overclocked to 4.3GHz at 1.350V VCore. XMP is loaded as well. The stress test is run again using the same methodology as described above and delta temps are noted.

Here are the results.

Acoustics

It is summer time here and there are certain environmental sounds that are beyond our control hence we are not measuring the acoustic performance using sound meter as it may not be an accurate indicator of the acoustic performance but given our experience in testing the fans over time, these fans are not louder and even sitting close to the system with these fans ramping to 100% of the speed would not bother the user at all. Job well done, be quiet!

Conclusion

Be Quiet! is known for making some of the coolest products in the PC market ranging from power supplies to chassis to cooling solutions. This was my first time with their products as they sent Pure Wings 2 fans for the review and build. The Pure Wings 2 fans come under the Essential category of their fans. The other two categories are High-End and Premium. The Silent Wings 3 come under the High-End category whereas the Shadow Wings 2 come under the Premium category. There are multiple size fans available in the Pure Wings 2 ranging from 80mm to 92mm to 120/140mm sizing. In each of these fans, the DC and PWM versions are available separately. There are even high-speed variants in each category. The fans which we have tested are Pure Wings 2 120, Pure Wings 2 140, Pure Wings 2 120 PWM high-speed, and Pure Wings 2 140 PWM high-speed.

All of these fans bear the same design element. The Pure wings 2 120 and 140 have DC control and have 3-pin cable. The PWM versions have 4-pin cable. They all are using Rifle bearings with the 4-pole motor. The MTTF of these fans is 80,000 hours at 25°C. The scope of delivery for all is the same that is a fan and 4 screws. These fans have a voltage range of 5-12V. The Pure Wings 2 120 has the speed of 1500 RPM with a noise level of 19.2 dB(A) and air pressure rating of 1.25 mmH₂O. The airflow rating is 51.4 CFM. Input power is 1.08W at 0.09A. The Pure Wings 2 140 has the speed of 1000 RPM with a noise level of 18.8 dB(A) and air pressure rating of 0.76 mmH₂O. The airflow rating is 61.2 CFM. Input power is 1.44W at 0.12A. The Pure Wings 2 120 PWM high-speed has a speed of 2000 RPM with a noise level of 36.9 dB(A) and air pressure rating of 2.23 mmH₂O. The airflow rating is 65.51 CFM. Input power is 3.6W at 0.3A. The Pure Wings 2 140 PWM high-speed has a speed of 1600 RPM with a noise level of 37.3 dB(A) and air pressure rating of 1.82 mmH₂O. The airflow rating is 94.2 CFM. Input power is 6W at 0.5A. All of these fans have a flat cable which is what I personally prefer. The length of the cable on PWM versions is 460mm whereas it is 450mm for non-PWM versions. The weight of the 120mm fan with the box is 0.130kg whereas it is 0.158kg for the 140mm fan with the box.

I appreciate the all black/neutral accent of the fans and overall look and feel which is bold and aesthetically pleasing. These fans have 9 impellers or blades with a special design which helps in reducing the air drag that would not aid in better airflow but also reducing the turbulent noise. The center has be quite! logo printed on it in the middle. It is the only colored element on these fans. The frame is made of the plastic and is designed in a circular manner with four sides attached to it though this is a uni-body design. There are no anti-vibration pads on the mounting corners. The back side has 4-arms assembly. There is a sticker pasted on the motor hub with power rating and other information about the fan. These fans are conceptualized, designed in Germany and manufactured in China. The good thing is their quality control is also based in Germany. These fans come with 3 years of warranty. There are two arrows on one side of the fans’ frame. These are there to show the direction of the airflow and spin direction of the blades.

The be quiet! pure wings 2 120 PWM high-speed fans were tested on Alphacool Eisbaer 360 CLC as all other fans have been tested on the same cooler on our test bench. These fans have performed quite well. These fans even at 100% speed were not that loud and even sitting close to the test bench with fans set to run at 100% speed was a comfortable experience. We could not test the thermal performance of the Pure Wings 2 120 as there were only two of these in the delivery box. The main selling feature of these fans is the price point at which they are available in the market and noise-to-performance ratio. These are a good Value for your bucks should you be looking for the fans for either radiator or chassis use and come recommended by us.

We are thankful to be quiet! for giving us the opportunity to review their Pure Wings 2 series of fans.

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