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Thermoengine V60-4210 Heatsink Review
Thermoengine V60-4210 Heatsink Review
Abstract: Of all the heatsinks we reviewed, the Thermoengine is one of the most uniquely designed, and most effective.

 Manufacturer  Category  Published  Author 
Thermoengine   Cooling / Heatsinks   Apr 12, 2001   Max Page  

Home > Reviews > Page: The Thermoengine from a few angles

The specs on the 60mm x 10mm YS Tech fan state that it runs between 3500-5500RPM, generates approx. 29.8-35.7 dBA and moves from 16.3 to 19.8 CFM of air.

It's true that the fan is fairly quiet, but a bit under powered for many of today's performance users who tend to like the 25mm thick fans better.

The very design of the Thermoengine makes all side equal, and quite unlike most other extruded heatsinks. The small plastic shroud comes down about 21mm to help channel the air from the fan further down the many vertical fins. Each of the fins is slightly tapered out to the edge, and ridged to create turbulence in the air and improve heat transfer between the metal and the air.

Fin depth ranges from 7mm to 20mm, with a total of 12 fins per side. Each fin goes from ~1.15mm to ~0.9mm thick

The top and bottom of the heatsink are virtually identical. The only real differences are that the clip rests on the top section, which unlike the lower counterpart is not beveled or notched at all. Below the hinge of the clip is the core of the Thermoengine. Measuring ~22mm in diameter at the surface, the hollow cylinder (9mm wide, 25mm deep) has been speculated to contain a substance promoting better vertical heat conduction.

The base of the heatsink is milled flat, and a small square of thermal phase change material applied. The edges are bevel ed to lesson the chance of cutting your finger on a sharp edge. We measured the base with a straight edge and it is perfectly flat and fairly smooth (but not polished). Polishing generally removes the marks left by the machining operation, which depending on the facing tool, can leave very small ridges on a surface.

One side of the base is notched out 7mm to accommodate the socket cam.

What makes this heatsink so special likes at the heart of the central cylinder in the extrusion. Unless you take off all of the hardware and then physically drill, or hack-saw the cooler into two pieces you won't even be able to see it. For that matter why would you want to?

As was shown on, and, the center of the ThermoEngine has a portion drilled out and left hollow. Within that chamber is speculated to be a substance which is sealed in by a thick aluminum plug. The top of this plug is visible if you look closely at the top of the heatsink with the fan removed.

What lies beneath this hefty aluminum stop-gap is what reportedly helps to make the ThermoEngine one of the best performing heatsinks we've seen.

For a minute lets make two assumptions. A.) there is an unknown substance in the central chamber. B.) there is nothing in the central chamber.

Our best explanation of assumption A) would be that the speculated substance in the empty chamber allows it to act as a large integral 'heat pipe' of sorts which helps transfer heat from the base of the heatsink more evenly up the entire 42mm worth of fins. Since there has been a bit of confusion on this point, let me just reiterate that according to the images we've seen of the internal workings of this heatsink it doesn't appear to have a sintered metal coating on the chamber walls, which would be indicative of a true heatpipe.

Looking at assumption B) for a moment, the empty chamber is there to serve some thermal purpose. Generally, a manufacture will not go the expense of drilling and then plugging and sealing a hole unless that cost is justified. Whatever the physics are behind the empty space, there should be an equivalent return thermally.

The end goal of either assumption of course is to ensure the efficient use of all the surface area on the heatsink for cooling. As air moves faster at the top of the heatsink, than at the base, this area is valuable cooling real estate.

While there isn't anything particularly special about the clip, I'd have to say it may be one of the more complicated designs we've seen.

It works very well at holding the heatsink securely to the CPU with just the right amount of pressure (about 20lbs according to Thermosonic). Unlike other heatsink clips the angle of the heatsink when it is being clipped into place on the processor is very shallow so there is less concern about chipping the corner off the silicon.

Let's take a look now at how the ThermoEngine compared to the other heatsinks that were tested out on our venerable Frosty Synthetic Temperature Test platform...

 Previous Page ° ° Next Page 

Table of Contents:

 1:  Thermoengine V60-4210 Heatsink Review
 2: — The Thermoengine from a few angles
 3:  FrostyTech Synthetic Temperature Test Platform
 4:  Synthetic Test Results

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