CPU Heatsink Roundup Fall 2007

Cooling/CPU Cooling by jmke @ 2007-11-06

In this large group test we compare over 30 CPU heatsinks with different fan speeds, giving you the data on both thermal and decibel performance. Want to upgrade your stock cooler? This roundup will help you out.

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Zalman CNPS8700 LED

Zalman CNPS8700

  • Provided by: Zalman

  • Platform support: Intel S775, AMD S939/AM2
  • Type of heatsink: Lower profile
  • Installation Type: Back Plate / Clip
  • Materials: Copper, Heat Pipes
  • Fan Support: Custom Design
  • Extra’s: Fan Controller, LED Fan
  • Average Selling Price: ~$50

Zalman is going back to their “flower” design of coolers with the latest additions to the CNPS family, the 8700 is designed similar to the 7x00 series with a custom size fan sitting in the middle, and copper fins spreading out. The 8700 adds two heat pipes which helps transfer heat from the base. The full copper design of the cooler does drive up price compared the other offers in this roundup.

Madshrimps (c)

These are the specifications given by Zalman:

  • Dimensions 120(L) X 123(W) X 67(H) mm
  • Weight 475g Base
  • Material Pure Copper
  • Fan Bearing Type 2 Ball-Bearing
  • Speed 1,150rpm ± 10% ~ 2,300rpm ± 10%
  • Noise Level 17.5dBA ± 10% ~ 33dBA ± 10%

    Inside the box we’ll find mounting gear and goodies also found with Zalman’s CNPS9x00 series:

    Madshrimps (c)

    Compared to the CNPS7700 the CNPS8700 is noticeably smaller in size:

    Madshrimps (c)

    The LED fan is transparent and mounted on the middle of the base:

    Madshrimps (c)

    The copper base is machine lapped and polished:

    Madshrimps (c)

    Installation of the mounting bracket was easy, but pushing the clip in place required a bit of maneuvering as it was a tight fit:

    Madshrimps (c)

    While the heatsink is indeed more compact than the previous “flower” designs, you’ll have to rotate the mounting bracket until you find a suitable spot where you easily install the clip:

    Madshrimps (c)

    When powered on the blue LED fan makes for a nice light show:

    Madshrimps (c)
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    Comment from Rutar @ 2007/11/06

    A new sheriff in town from Coolink (former Noiseblocker), it is VERY interesting that it seems to be geared towards silent computing (hence performing best there while not outperforming with a high speed fan. I can't seem to get it here tough
    Comment from thorgal @ 2007/11/06
    John, in your chart the "coolIT freezone" : where is that review ?

    Edit : found it :$ But it's watercooling :s : why did you include it in the charts ? Shouldn't there be an explanation added ?
    Comment from jmke @ 2007/11/06
    it's water cooling and it's not water cooling at the same time imho; this all in one kit doesn't install different from many other heatsinks, there is zero maintenance, zero risk. It gives you an idea of TEC performance combined with water cooling. Plus, if you state that I should not include it, why include the GTO-990 ? It has a radiator, pump and water block, mounted on a small surface; should I not include that one either?

    While the CoolIT does use water to cool down the CPU, it's such a compact and one in all device that I never stopped to think of it as a water cooling setup, similar to the Swiftech and Dangerden offerings. It can be installed by any PC illiterate without risk of damage, most water cooling kits sold do require a bit more knowledge and include some risk.
    Comment from thorgal @ 2007/11/07
    My feeling is you're walking a thin line here. I do not disagree with your previous post, but to my feeling : air is air, and water is water

    Hassle is not a criterea I think, or you could just as well include a resorator from Zalman for example : all in one solution with only one waterblock to install to the cpu, almost the same as the CoolIT in my book. Zalman uses a clamp system not unlike CoolIT to attach the tubing to the cpu block, external connections with Zalman are clampless. Just to say there's no hassle there as well (I'm not a real resorator fan myself )

    And then there's the price : air coolers of around $40 compared to a watercooling system from over a $100... in that respect the CoolIT is definately in the watercooling league.

    Anyway : the chart is not necessarily wrong, and provides an interesting comparison between the two technologies, but isn't this comparing apples to oranges ?

    All imho of course
    Comment from jmke @ 2007/11/07
    The Ultra ChillTEC is $120+, all air cooled. THe reserator is not all in one kit, you need to handle the tubes = more risk