CPU Heatsink Roundup May 2006

Cooling/CPU Cooling by jmke @ 2006-05-01

Eight new heatsinks are compared to 21 other air cooling solutions from different manufactures. We have some promising entries from Spire, Aerocool, Scythe, Thermaltake and Tuniq for you today!

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Scythe Mine

Scythe Mine
Supplied by: Scythe

At Cebit this year Scythe introduced a new high end heatsink, the “Mine”, a custom designed heatsink with a 100mm fan which sits in the middle of the unit. The Mine promises plug and play installation on all supported platforms and a solid noise/performance balance.

The retail price is situated between $35-50 depending on where you shop in the US, in Europe the Mine is available from ~€30.

Madshrimps (c)

Specifications :

  • AMD: Athlon64/64+ Socket754/940/939
  • Intel: Socket 478/775

    Fan included: 100mm x 100mm x 25mm
    (1500rpm / 42.69CFM)

    Heatsink+Fan Dimensions: L109xW105xH150mm
    Weight: 560gr

    In the Box :

    Madshrimps (c)

  • Instruction manual
  • Small bag of thermal paste
  • Clip on mounting gear for the different platforms

    Construction :

    The Mine’s main design consists of a large U form with 3 heat pipes running through the whole construction which transfer heat to a series of aluminum fins which have been formed to increase surface area without increasing noise generation. In the middle sits a 100mm fan which is squeezed between two metal strips. These strips can be opened and other sized fans can be placed inside, the Mine works with any 25mm width fan (<25mm doesn’t work as the strips can clamp down on fan’s bracket). base has an excellent finishing and is very smooth.

    Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c) Madshrimps (c)

    Installation :

    The Mine features plug and play installation through the use of clip-on mounting gear, these are pushed into the side, unlike the Scythe Samurai Z which used the heatsink’s fins to make the clips fit, the Mine has a dedicated metal construction to prevent accidents like this (from SPCR Review) from happening. I repeatedly installed/removed the clips without issue.

    The next installation step is simply a matter of placing the heatsink onto the CPU and turning the small clips’ handle to secure the installation. The included 100mm fan is also available separately from Scythe, it’s called the “Kaze Jyu, the model here is the SY1025SL12M, it has mounting holes which match with 92mm and 100mm.

    Installation of a 120mm fan did not cause any issues size-wise, I tried to install the 140mm fan from the Aerocool but that one is low-profile (20mm) and I couldn’t secure it in place.

    Madshrimps (c)Madshrimps (c)Madshrimps (c)Madshrimps (c)

    Performance and Noise :

    First I compared the Mine with the Ninja using the stock fan at 50/100% and also with the Papst 120mm.

    Madshrimps (c)

    At this CPU speed there is practically no difference between the Ninja and Mine when looking at the CPU temperature. The stock fan is remarkably silent at full speed, only 36dBA, and offering performance similar to the larger 120mm Papst, the extra 20mm does play an important role when you look at the PWM temperature which drops 10°C with the Papst.

    In the overclocking test I’ve added the Shogun which is also a high performance part from Scythe.

    Madshrimps (c)

    Again the results from all heatsinks are evenly matched, except when you slow down the fan speed the playing field opens up, the Shogun is not very good at lower airflow and falls behind. The 100mm fan at 50% also throws in the towel, with a 79°C PWM temperature. Equipped with the 120mm papst at 50% both the Ninja and Mine are evenly matched.

    When using a larger fan than the default 100mm you don’t use all the airflow efficiently with the Mine, so I decided to do a small and easy modification: I spread out the fins on the heatsink so they took up more room. Then to guide the air better through the heatsink I added a ghetto fan duct.

    Madshrimps (c)Madshrimps (c)

    I re-tested the Mine with the 120mm Papst. A quick legend, (Mod) = spread out fins. (Mod+Duct) spread out fins and ghetto duct added.

    Madshrimps (c)

    First thing that stood out was the added noise from the ghetto duct, there is no temperature advantage, so it’s worthless. The other modification showed a ~1°C drop in CPU temperature, but this is well within my margin of error.

    The Verdict:

    The Scythe Mine has a lot going for it, good price, easy installation and killer performance. It doesn’t get much better than this; toughest competition comes from Scythe’s own Ninja which is known to excel with low CFM fans (or no fans at all), the Mine tighter packed fins make it work best with an active airflow and its compatibility with 80/90/100/120/140/* fan sizes offers you plenty of options. Its included fan is one of the quietest stock fans at 12v I’ve yet encountered.

    Stellar performance with high/medium/low speed fans
    Stock fan extremely silent
    Plug and play installation
    Multi platform compatible

    Can only be mounted in one direction

  • Where to buy?

    Next up is the Thermaltake Mini Typhoon ->
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