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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [04.06.03]
Manufactured by: CpuMate

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And Introducing...

To most of our readers, CpuMate will be an unfamiliar name.  Sure, they've been around for a couple years now (they started around the same time as Thermaltake).  But until recently, they'd yet to make anything interesting to most end users and Overclockers.

For the most part, CpuMate's product line consists of the same basic OEM heatsinks you've seen a million times - a block of aluminum with a fan on top.  To garner the attention of the most jaded overclockers, you're going to need to produce something like this:

So far so good? Yeah we've seen side-mounted heatsinks before.  Hell, we reviewed one 3 years ago! (almost to this very date, oddly enough). This one is slightly different though; instead of using a single tall heatsink with a fan mounted on the side, two heatsinks are employed, one on top of the other.  What difference does two heatsinks make? There is only one CPU, right...?

On the side, you can see a heatpipe that connects between the two individual aluminum heatsinks.  This is how you make use of having two heatsinks instead of one.  The bottom heatsink pulls heat off the CPU directly, and the top heatsink pulls the heat from the heatpipe, which transfers heat very fast.

The heatpipes are 5mm in width, and are soldered into holes drilled into the bases of the heatsinks.  It is installed at an angle to make proper use of airflow on the heatsinks (on the bottom heatsink they are in the center, directly over top of the CPU, and on the top, they are close to the fan).

Using a side mounted fan allows air to flow right through the fins with less impedance than a top mounted fan would introduce.  Furthermore, the heatsink is designed in a way that the hot air blows toward the rear exhaust fan in your case (provided you have one installed, which I'm sure you do).

As you can see, a custom retention unit was required to necessitate this radical design.  Of course, customizing such things is not always a great idea.  Case in point: The cooler you see above is actually the previous model of this unit!  We originally intended on testing the newer model, which looks like this:

The newer model is nearly identical to the old one, except that it uses slightly more conventional retention clips (we'll get to how the older one works later on).  Unfortunately, CpuMate couldn't get away from having to customize a RM to facilitate the side mounted fan design; it is required because the fan sits low to the base of the CPU, and would get in the way of every other RM.  Of course, when you design an RM that is out of spec, funky things can happen...

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