Unboxing and Review of GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

We have previously reviewed the Phantom CPU coolers from GELID. In November 2018, they released their latest case fan series with the addition of RGB lighting, called the Radiant and Radiant-D. How will the new fans performed in our benchmarks?


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The GELID Radiant and Radiant-D fans are basically identical, except for the addressable digital RGB LEDs. The fans are using double ball bearing, which are expected to last for at least 100,000 hours (MTBF). They can spin from 500 RPM to 2000 RPM, at the same time generating 77.2 CFM of airflow and 3.39 mmH2O of static pressure.


GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

Both the Radiant and Radiant-D fans have a very similar exterior box design. The product photo in the center is accompanied by colored lines and a black background. There are a few circles at the bottom, highlighting some of the key features, such as the double ball bearings, noiseless motor and RGB LEDs.

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

Flipping the box to the back, you will see the same feature highlights. A detailed specification list is printed with useful information, including fan speeds and airflow rating.

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

There is not much accessories provided inside the packaging. Only four standard fan screws are included.

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

The Radiant and Radiant-D are 120 mm fans with standard 25 mm thickness. The fan frame is black in color, with the seven translucent blades to diffuse the RGB lighting. An array of nine RGB LEDs is installed around the motor hub in the center. The fan can operate in a wide RPM ranges from 500 RPM to 2000 RPM, controlled via a 4-pin PWM header.

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

There are no anti-vibration pads on the corners, which may lead to some rattling noise between the fan frame and PC case. The Radiant and Radiant-D’s blades have a rather unique shark-tooth design on their edges. GELID claims they will improve cooling performance by creating higher airflow, while minimizing unwanted noise.

GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

To power both the motor and RGB LEDs, there are two separate cables coming out from the fan. One is the 4-pin PWM fan connector, and the other one is either a 4-pin 12V or 3-pin 5V RGB connector. Please be reminded that the two RGB connectors/headers are not compatible with each other. Only the 3-pin 5V headers support addressable RGB LEDs.

As with most RGB components in the market, the lighting effects are compatible with the majority of motherboard manufacturers’ software, such as ASUS Aura Sync, MSI Mystic Light Sync and GIGABYTE RGB Fusion. Depending on which software you are using, there will be different lighting effect presets.

Overall, the RGB lighting of the GELID Radiant/Radiant-D is very vibrant and bright. In darker environment, the light diffuses evenly through the translucent fan blades.


Testing Methodology

To determine the performance of the fan, we will measure both the airflow and CPU temperatures when using in heatsink, as well as its sound levels.

An anemometer is used to record the fan’s airflow in various RPM ranges, including 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%. The results are measured in CFM (cubic feet per minute). The distance between the anemometer and the fan is kept at around 5 cm.

A decibel/sound level meter is also used to measure the fan’s operating noise at 1000 RPM, 50% and 100% fan speeds. Results are shown as dbA. Distance between the decibel meter and the fan is maintained at around 10 cm. Ambient sound level is at around 40 dbA.

The fan is then installed on the air cooler. The CPU, FPU and system cache are stressed using AIDA64. Ambient temperature is around 25°C. The temperature of the CPU package is recorded at full load when the fan is running at full speed.


GELID Radiant/Radiant-D RGB Fans

The GELID Radiant/Radiant-D fans performed very well in generating airflow, especially in lower RPM ranges. It could push around 69.5 CFM of air at full speed, which was close to the Noctua NF-A12x25 (its review here) and Noiseblocker NB-B12P (its review here) premium fans. The airflow of the Radiant/Radiant-D could reach higher in 50% to 75% of its RPM ranges, around 1000 RPM to 1500 RPM.

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As we can see, the Radiant/Radiant-D was comfortably sitting at the 2nd place in our chart, when used to cool the heatsink. It had a temperature difference of 23.5°C at load, which was about 8.2% lower than the default configuration with the Noctua NF-F12 (ΔT at 25.6°C). However, it trailed behind the Noctua NF-A12x25, which was around 4.3% better (ΔT at 22.5°C).

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At 100% fan speed, the Radiant/Radiant-D fans were the loudest among our tested fans at 60.1 dbA. The Noctua NF-A12x25, spinning at the same 2000 RPM, was only at 53.4 dbA, which is about 11.1% lower. However, the Radiant/Radiant-D performed much better at lower RPM ranges, measured at 47.1 dbA and 43.4 dbA respectively.


Unboxing Treatment Recommendation

The GELID Radiant and Radiant-D fans did exceptionally well in terms of cooling performance. It performed on par with the more premium Noctua NF-F12 in heatsink, and could generate a noticeable amount of airflow at most RPM ranges. The integrated RGB lighting looks awesome with vivid colors.

The fan did create quite a bit of wind and motor noises when spinning at full speed, which was considerably louder than Noctua and Noiseblocker fans we tested. Therefore, keeping the Radiant/Radiant-D fan at a lower RPM is recommended. Fortunately, the fan did outstanding at around 50% to 75% RPM ranges, as seen in our airflow benchmark.

The Radiant and Radiant-D fans cost $14 USD and $18 USD (MSRP) respectively, which both come with a 5-year warranty. For a RGB fan, the price is competitive and reasonable, not to mention the Radiant-D is equipped with addressable LEDs as well. If you want to pimp your PC case with RGB lighting, maybe the Radiant/Radiant-D is worth your consideration.

You can purchase the fans from your local/online resellers or the links below from Amazon and Newegg.

Thanks GELID for providing us the Radiant/Radiant-D fans for review. (Review Sample)

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unboxing-and-review-of-gelid-radiant-radiant-d-rgb-fansThe GELID Radiant/Radiant-D performed well in both of our airflow and cooling benchmarks, surpassing most of our tested fans. However, the fan would generate noticeable noise when operating at full speed. The 9 RGB LEDs in the center create awesome lighting effects, that can be controlled via software.


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