Zalman CNPS7000-Cu Quiet P4 / Athlon64 Heatsink Review
Those of you with an eye towards upgrading should be interested to know that the Zalman CNPS700-Cu is the first heatsink we have tested so far that can be used to cool both the socket 478 Intel Pentium 4 and the upcoming socket 754 AMD Athlon64 "Hammer" processor. This means if you upgrade to an Athlon64 when it is released you'll be able to continue using the CNPS7000-Cu.
Based on the general design of the CNPS5700D series heatsink, the Zalman CNPS7000-Cu builds upon that tradition with even more surface area, and consequently a larger diameter (109mm). Since the retention mechanism is designed for both Petnium 4 and Athlon64, and because of the large size of the heatsink itself, there are a handful of motherboards which do not properly support the size of this cooler. An up-to-date list of incompatible motherboards (only about 12 so far) is kept on Zalman's USA site so you can double check for your particular computer first.
The space-related problems basically stem from three areas; 1) The motherboard has capacitors located too closely to the edge of the Pentium4 HSRM which block the CNPS7000-Cu clips from sitting properly. 2) The motherboard has the HSRM located to close to the edge of the mainboard, and the case offers less than 17mm of clearance between the power supply and the edge of the HSRM. 3) The HSRM is located too close to the AGP socket and blocks the videocard from being installed properly.
We've been following Zalman for a while now and I must say it's always surprising to see what this company can produce. When Zalman first released their CNPS (Computer Noise Prevention System) Flower heatsinks there was nothing like them anywhere else on the market. The Flower heatsinks were quiet, but the thermal performance of a passive cooler kept them away from the performance heatsink crowd by a fair degree.
That was then, and this is now. Since that time Zalman have kept true to its original motto of decreasing noise, with the CNPS7000-Cu measuring in at about 42 dBA in our tests.
What makes the CNPS700-Cu especially interesting is that it also happens to be one of the best socket 478 heatsinks one the market at this moment. More on that in a second...
The unique clipping and screw systems Zalman have designed into one assembly also make this heatsink fully compatible with both Pentium4 and Athlon64 retention systems as we have mentioned.
As the CNPS7000-Cu is both a large and heavy heatsink, Zalman have developed a new type of retention system for the 773gram heatsink. Spring clips are out, and in their place are two 7mm wide aluminum bars.
The two aluminum bars slide into the clip spaces in a standard Pentium 4 HSRM, after which the entire heatsink is dropped into the socket. An integrated spring mechanism holds the heatsink down and applies the correct mounting pressure to the processor core. However, no clips or other tool-free methods are used here. Rather than take a chance with this hefty finned array of copper, Zalman use two phillips screws for a secure lock down to the aluminum bars.
The screws fit into the stainless steel spring clip which is integrated into the CNPS7000-Cu and screw into a hole in each of the aluminum channels. There are two holes on each end of the stainless steel spring clip, and for a Pentium4 system the screws go in the holes closest together. Since the AMD Athlon64 uses slightly further spaced mounting points, the outer holes in the spring clip are for that use only. A brass standoff is used with the Athlon64 mounting plate which sits below the motherboard on socket 754 boards.
In fact, rounding out the list of included items are two brass standoffs, two aluminum bars, a couple screws, a small tube of thermal compound and the FanMate 1 Rheostat.
When the CNPS7000-Cu is installed on a Pentium 4 motherboard it is easy to see why there may be space problems in some compact enclosure. It is a large heatsink with a diameter of 110mm, but that also gives it a lot of cooling potential...
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