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Old 02-15-2011, 05:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

Hello everyone,

I built my first computer a couple months ago, and now I've decided to replace my CPU's stock cooler and do some moderate overclocking. I'm willing to spend about around $60 and I would love to get some recommendations and advice on selecting and installing a cooler. Here is some information you may need:

Case: Antec 900
CPU: i7-950
Motherboard: EVGA X58 FTW3

I figured a picture may help:



As you can see, there are heatsinks below and to the right of the processor. The one below is actually touching the CPU's heatsink I believe. The memory slots are just above the processor, and the CPU's power cable is also fairly snug against the left side of the CPU's heatsink. There's also a spot where a side fan can be added that would be located somewhere above the large heatsink to the right of the CPU. If feasible, I would prefer not to block that spot, but it's not too important.

If any of you have any recommendations for high quality coolers that would fit well in this case, it would be much appreciated.

EDIT: You can probably see it, but I should probably mention the 200mm fan to the left of the CPU in the picture.
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Old 02-15-2011, 05:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

Do you prefer water or air coolers?
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

For under $60 I would try the

Newegg.com - ZALMAN CNPS10X QUIET 120mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler

or the

Newegg.com - Thermaltake Frio Overclocking-Ready Intel Core i7 (six-core ready) & i5 Compatible Five 8mm Heatpipes Dual 120mm Fans Intel & AMD Universal CPU Cooler CLP0564.

Of those 2 I would go with the Thermaltake Frio if it was me.

If you don't mind lapping the base of a Heatsink, Heatsink Lapping Guide, the Thermalright TRUE is a Great Choice.

Newegg.com - Thermalright U120eXtrem1366RT R-C 120mm Fluid Dynamic CPU Cooler
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:39 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

You need to do some cutting. And I gotta d/l my recent case pictures.

That big heatsink on the NB is why I didn't go for that board.

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Old 02-15-2011, 06:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

Newegg.com - ZALMAN CNPS10X Extreme 120mm CPU Cooler with Worlds first PWM Fan Speed Controller
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CAFA70 120mm Dual-Fan CPU Cooler


Both are relatively good Arctic Cooling Freezer 13 CPU Cooler Review | Hardware Secrets This is a review of a different cpu cooler, but the chart and graph has the above cpu coolers on there (as well as 1 of slaymate's suggestions).

Although, I don't know how well these would fit in that cramped space
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

I fit A Noctua NH-u12 in mine.
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Old 02-15-2011, 07:32 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

My 1st i7 setup was with the EVGA X58 and it had the same odd looking NB Heatsink.



I took the stock NB fan off and used a Hi-Speed 60mm fan instead and I have a 60mm fan to blow air directly on the Mosfet heatsink (to the left of the cpu). That's the Thermalright TRUE Copper on it with room for a 120mm x 38mm fan. There's also room for dual 120mm x 25mm fan for a push-pull (I can't find a picture but I know there's room). And there's even room for memory with tall heatspreaders. If you use a 120mm x 38mm fan then you can only use slots 2,4 & 6 with tall heatspreaders.





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Old 02-15-2011, 09:25 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

Thank you for all of the responses, everyone! I'm looking at the Thermaltake Frio. Do you think it would fit without having to remove a heatsink from the motherboard? I suppose I could always buy it and just exchange it if installing it is too much trouble.

Quote:
If you use a 120mm x 38mm fan then you can only use slots 2,4 & 6 with tall heatspreaders.
Did you mean slots 1, 3, and 5? Slot 2 looks to be the closest slot to the motherboard. In any case, my sticks are currently in 1, 3, and 5. Does it make a difference if I move them to 2, 4, 6?

Night Fox, thanks for the link to the graph and chart. There's some good information there!

Finally, patonb, I thought about cutting some holes in the case when I was first putting everything together but decided to put it off. As you can see, my cable management is pretty poor so I think I may work on that when I get the chance. From what I can see in the picture and based on my memory of the inside of the case it looks like you only made the one hole near the PSU. Am I correct? I would very much like to see a picture of the inside of your computer if you have one available.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

I have one of my i7 but its on my camera, and I haven't found my cable. I do have one of my q6600...


What I've done is add 3 holes. The one for my 8 pin for cpu, Upper left. One in the upper right for the front panel. As well as the slot down near the psu.

I'll look and try to get my 950 pics. I've also dropped both HDs down and reversed them.

i ALSO HAVE A HUGE, oops, psu, its like 7.5" long.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:54 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Help Buying a CPU Cooler

Wow, that looks great. I'm definitely going to have to do the same. I'll probably wait a few weeks until spring break and cut the holes in the case and install the cpu cooler at the same time.

EDIT: Is that cpu cooler blocking the side fan slot?
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