Thermalright SI-120

Testing

I used my PC normally for a few days to make sure that the thermal paste had ‘set’ and was working at its optimum. I did the tests with the standard base then an extra lapped one. I used both the included heat paste and then some Artic Silver 5.

The testbed stats are:

CPU: Intel P4 3.2Ghz (Socket 478)
RAM: 2 x 512mb GEIL Value
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-8IPE1000-G

Name Base/Heat paste Load Idle Case
Thermalright SI-120 Standard base + provided heat paste 48°C (12°C difference) 32°C (2°C difference) 36°C 30°C
Thermalright SI-120 Lapped base + Artic Silver 5 47°C (10°C difference) 30°C (1°C difference) 37°C 29°C
Coolermaster Aero 7 Lapped base + Artic Silver 5 58°C 38°C

My case doesn’t have the best ventilation, so these temps are higher than you would normally see.

These results are after activating an overclock of 10% (200FSB to 220FSB). The blue result is the non-overclocked result for comparison.

Name Base/Heat paste Load Idle Case
Thermalright SI-120 Standard base + provided heat paste 58°C (22°C difference) 41°C (9°C difference) 36°C 32°C
Thermalright SI-120 Lapped base + Artic Silver 5 56°C (9°C difference) 41°C (11°C difference) 37°C 32°C
Thermalright SI-120 Lapped base + Artic Silver 5 47°C (10°C difference) 30°C (1°C difference) 37°C 29°C


Graph of temperature over 12 minutes. Shows 100% CPU @ 220FSB


It takes 1m 38s for temp to return to idle from full load

I count these results as very positive. As I have already said, my case doesn’t have great ventilation so in a case that has better airflow, lower temps can be expected.

After testing this new design, I am very impressed. It manages to keep temperatures very low all the time, even when overclocking. This is definitely at the top end of heatsink design and performance. It even beats some lower end water-cooling systems which is a great feat for an air HS.

Perhaps the cooling performance could be further improved if there was a smaller heatsink on the lower part of the design. This would instantly remove the heat produced by the CPU, rather than having to use the heatpipes and there would be no problems with compatibility.

On the other hand, Thermalright have obviously done their research and more than likely, know more about heastsink design than I do…

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