Performance: 36 out of 40
There are two ways at looking the Ninja 5’s performance: potential and out of the box. The out of the box performance may indeed be very good considering it comes with two slow fans. On the other hand, the potential performance of the Ninja 5 is outstanding… but requires a further investment in aftermarket fans. To us the out of the box performance is a 32 and the potential is a 40. We have split the difference and called it a 36. You may, and probably will, feel different. Please feel free to adjust your final score accordingly.
Ease of Use: 17 out of 20
Compared to ‘slim’ or the stock ‘OEM’ CPU cooling solution the Ninja 5 is a bit of a mixed bag and will be more hassle prone than smaller coolers. However, compared to the typical massive CPU cooling solution the Scythe Ninja 5 is surprisingly easy with few issues to worry about. The Hyper Precision Mounting System II works and makes concerns over ‘will it work’ with darn near any motherboard moot. The large cutouts for RAM make RAM incompatibility worries all but extinct. Overall it may not be as easy as the Mugen 5 Rev.B but it is a lot closer than you would think. Color us impressed.
Build Quality: 20 out of 20
Everything about this CPU cooling solution screams quality. From its mirror finish base, to its good performance at ultra low fan speeds, to even the unique cooling tower design, it all just exudes quality.
Value: 18 out 20
When dealing with ‘flagship’ class CPU cooling solutions… value is hard to quantify as price, noise, and everything else usually takes a back seat to performance. With the Scythe Ninja 5 things are a bit different. No, this cooler will not give uber performance levels with its default fans. However, the performance is still very, very good and it does so at a noticeably lower than typical price point, and is dead silent. That is a lot of ‘extra features’ for your hard-earned dollars. As such we think it’s a pretty darn good value for its class.
Final Score: 91 out 100
With its unique tower design, the Scythe Ninja 5 does offer a lot of performance for its asking price. However, it has been designed to be a low noise cooling solution. This does negatively impact total performance so if you want the ‘best of the best’ you may want to think about picking up a pair of faster fans to go along with your new purchase. Alternatively, you may be better served with other CPU cooling solution altogether. It really will depend on what you prize the most: cost, noise, or CPU temperatures.