Processor (CPU): AMD Phenom II X2 555 BE
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD7
Memory (RAM): GeIL Ultra Plus 2000MHz CL9 4GB
Graphics card (GPU): ASUS ATi Radeon HD5870 V1 1GB
Hard drives (HDDs): 2x WD 250GB Caviar SE, 1x WD 500GB Black, 1x Samsung 2TB Spinpoint F1
Power Supply Unit (PSU): Zalman ZM600-HP
Case: Fractal Design XL
I’ll be testing the cooler on an ASUS HD5870 V1 1GB, on which the cooler is not supported. This didn’t turn out to be a problem at all, one just has to put the heatsinks on the right places that need to be cooled, with a bit of creativity all parts can be cooled just as well as on supported cards. Please note, this isn’t a ticket for guaranteed success if you try this cooler on a card that isn’t supported, it just happens to work fine on this card. That said, let’s move on to the actual installation.
Installing this cooler is quite a pain in the ass as there are many steps that need to be taken. After dismantling the stock cooler one has to supply all the heat-generating parts (like memory, VRM’s, etc.) with the supplied heatsinks, by applying these with the heatpaste/glue that Alpenföhn supplies with the cooler. After that the main heatsink can be mounted on the card, but this isn’t a very intuitive process and has to be done with small screws, instead of a proper thumbscrew system. The next step is to mount the fan bracket and then mount the fans, whereas mounting the bracket in a slot is a pain because of the many small screws that have to be tightened.
With everything in place I came to the shocking conclusion that this cooler uses five slots. That’s F-I-V-E slots, leaving a total of two slots on my oversized and well-featured GA-990FXA-UD7, Gigabyte’s flagship. As you can see in the picture, the heatsink, which, again, weights well over a Kilogram, really puts heavy pressure on the card and tends to pull it down. I don’t like heavy parts, especially not on horizontal mounts.
A picture of what happens to your always-so-clean-and-spacey case, after you install this beast of a cooler. It’s actually possible to use two of these heatsinks in a dual-card setup, which is surprising considering their size. You do need to mount the fans atop the cards though instead of infront.