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Acoustic Samples: Listen to this Heatsink
The CNPS6000AlCu comes with the Zalman Fanmate 1 which allows users to control how fast the 92mm fan rotates, and thus how noisy it is. The first recording is a standard 10 sec bit with the fan connected directly to the power supply. The second recording is of the fan connected via the Fanmate 1, and also illustrates what happens when you turn the dial down so the fan makes less noise.
You can see the effect visually in the second wave form image, or you can click on the pair of headphones and listen in to each recording separately. Since all Zalman heatsinks use the same type of fan, each of these recordings applies to all similar Zalman flower heatsinks.
Sound Level Measurements:
Being able to listen to the heatsink allows you to hear things that pure numbers alone cannot get across, but to further emphasize Frosty's reliance on cold hard facts when evaluating a heatsink we took some sound level measurements with a HHSL1 meter. While the list of heatsinks which have been measured for sound levels is still growing, this is now firmly part of our test procedures.
The split results for the Zalman heatsinks means this; the first measurement of 47.4 dB is of the fan without the FanMate 1 in place, the second measurement of just 28.9 dB is of the fan with the FanMate 1 set to its maximum point. The Dynatron heatsink with its 38mm Delta fan is very noisy by contrast.
Synthetic Temperature Test Results: *Ranked according to 100W small interface die test results.
The CNPS6000-Cu comes in where we really expect to see a primarily aluminum low noise cooling solution - towards the lower end of reference coolers. Since it uses a much less focused cooling fan, the is little it can really do to compete head on with the other higher-powered heatsinks, but in its class this is pretty good performance.
Considering that with the Fanmate 1 active at the lowest setting the CNPS600-Cu will produce less than 20dBa of noise, and at full throttle, a mere 36.1dBa I would have to peg it as a good average cooler, and in terms of quiet heatsinks, very good. To be totally sure, let's have a look at the rise above ambient temperature results next.
Well the CNPS6000-Cu is certainly not at the bottom of the barrel as far as cooling goes, and it will provide sufficient cooling for even a stock 2000+, though overclockers may not have as much luck.
We should all know by now that overclocking and quiet heatsinks just don't go together. For those kinds of situations liquid cooling is usually the better option, but from a users perspective where noise is the main issue, the Zalman heatsinks will help tremendously. The core temp will not be as low as it could be with other heatsinks, but so long as the chip is running at stock speeds everything should be fine for average use.
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