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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [12.09.04]
Manufactured by: Zalman

Lowest Price Finder: $50.99
SpaceCenter: $41.00 

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The Test

To test the CNPS7700-Cu, we used the hottest-at-stock CPU you can buy today - the Intel Pentium 4 560. Running at 3.6 GHz, and on the Prescott core, this CPU should offer all the wattage we need, even without overclocking. Besides, the CNPS is meant to be a silent solution, not an overclocking solution. The mere fact that you can run this CPU on it without turning the fan up is impressive in itself.

Tests were performed on our open bench, so keep in mind that these values may be a little lower than in an actual installation inside a case. CPU was run under 100% load using Prim95 Torture Test for 60 minutes per round.

The CNPS7700-Cu was tested at minimum and full voltage, using the FAN MATE 2. We tested it against the stock Intel cooler for the 560 - this cooler, while well designed, gets VERY noisy under full load.

The CNPS was all but completely inaudible at minimum speed. At full speed it was quite loud, although not as bad as a stock cooler under full load. Let's face it though; you're only going to want to run it in 'silent mode' anyway. That's what it's meant to do.

So let's get to the results:


Things were perfectly even at idle mode. Moving on to the load temperatures, the CNPS7700-Cu held up admirably to the heat of the P4 560. Although on an open test bench 59 C seems quite high, it's perfectly acceptable for a Prescott.

Considering that it is running at a level that is just below that of ambient noise, there aren't too many circumstances under which you are going to be able to hear this cooler. To have a cooler that quiet that is capable of taming the fastest Prescotts is quite an achievement.

Of course, that achievement comes at a price. Ranging from $41 (SpaceCenter) to $51 (, the CNPS7700-Cu doesn't come cheap.

However, as with most Zalman products, you get what you pay for, and more. The CNPS7700-Cu is extremely well crafted, and installation is a snap. Just keep in mind that there are some compatibility issues, and you'll need to check and make sure your case and motherboard combo are able to accomodate this monster of a cooler.

If you are looking for the quietest air-based CPU cooler possible for your high end Athlon FX or P4, it is quite obvious that the CNPS7000-Cu is the best solution.

If your cooling needs aren't quite as high, you might want to look at the Aluminum-Copper version of the CNPS7700. It is just as big, though not nearly as heavy, and is more reasonably priced. Using Dealtime, we were able to find it for $41 at, and $33 at SpaceCenter.

  • Cools the hottest CPUs without making a peep
  • Extremely well engineered
  • Compatible with all modern CPU sockets
  • Fan Mate 2 offers full control over performance and sound

  • It weighs 2 lbs
  • May be some compatibility issues
  • Pricey

Final Score: 93%