iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






Socket A Coolers: Autumn/Winter Complex Benchmarking of 45 Models

Part 2. Test Results (temperature, thermal resistance, noise level)

Part 1. Budget AVC solutions, new models from Thermaltake, Titan and Zalman

Our updated testing technique for Socket A coolers is given in the GlacialTech Igloo 2310 and Igloo 2400 Coolers Review (the general issues and the original version of the testing technique can be found in the Coolers Comparative Testing Technique). The procedure hasn't changed since that time.  

The testbed is traditionally based on ABIT KD7-S mainboard.  

This board features the temperature monitoring system based on National Semiconductor LM90 chip. The chip is located in socket's heart which minimizes various distortions and makes the measurements very precise.  

Test system:    

  • ABIT KD7-S V1.0 mainboard
  • AMD Athlon XP 3000+ CPU (Barton)
  • OS Microsoft Windows XP

CPUBurn burnk7 utility is used for modeling a nearly maximum load, and Motherboard Monitor utility is used for temperature control.  

Diagram 1. Temperature
Each cooler was tested with the Stars 420 thermal grease 
The diagram demonstrates the complex result 

Diagram 2. Thermal resistance 

Thermal resistance θja  can be found from the following correlation: θja = (Tj - Ta)/Ph, where Tj  is CPU core temperature, Ta is ambient temperature (in this case it's 33°C), Ph  is CPU thermal power (in this case it's 70W). 

Finally, here are the noise measurement results (the technique is described in the Coolers noise characteristics and noise level measurement technique).  

Diagram 3. Noise parameters
Note: The background noise is 19 dBA

Part 3. Ratings (technical-economical coolers map, performance and economical ratings)

Appendix. Coolers consumer qualities assessment (New Edition)


Vitaly Krinitsin (vit@ixbt.com)

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