Core 2 Duo stock cooler question

raytracer06

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I recently built a Core2 PC for a friend, and I'm quite concerned about the stock cooler's fixation system : Sure, it is simple, but it seemed a bit fragile, and even if it seems to be correctly attached, I couldn't help fearing the cooler to fall down from the mobo when I moved the computer. :?

I'll precise that even though I'm not a noob in computer building, I'm not really familiar with LGA775 CPUs & HSFs... that's why I don't feel comfortable with attaching a quite heavy cooler just with little plastic things...

My question is : is this system really reliable on the long term, or should I replace the stock cooler with a HSF that is attached with screws ?
(especially if I want to move the computer quite frequently)
 

mesarectifier

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The C2D stock coolers are alright, but there's an abundance of really great aftermarket coolers available now from Scythe etc.. which are really worth getting for reducing temps, noise and for OCing. Even if you aren't into OCing you should consider one anyway, they're pretty cheap.
 

raytracer06

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thanks for the advice... I think I'll go for an aftermarket cooler, at least to reduce noise, and maybe for moderate OCing.

Is there a particular cooler I should go for (or avoid) ? I'm not looking for a high performance cooler or a flashy thing with LEDs... just an average cooler that does the job.
 

mesarectifier

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Scythe Ninja is the one I have experience with, works real nice. The temps are low, the OCs are pretty good (only tried moderate FSB OC's) and it's quiet as hell.
 

bberson

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thanks for the advice... I think I'll go for an aftermarket cooler, at least to reduce noise, and maybe for moderate OCing. Is there a particular cooler I should go for (or avoid) ? I'm not looking for a high performance cooler or a flashy thing with LEDs... just an average cooler that does the job.
I've been searching for what I think would be some suitable aftermarket coolers for the C2D platform, particularly bearing in mind Intel's recommendation for an omnodirectional fan for keeping airflow on the nearby VRMs, NB/MCH, etc. Here's my top two picks right now:

PrimeCooler PC-HC5+CU
Spire CoolWave III SP503B0-1

Edited to add this URL:
Coolerguys

I'd say stick to the radial designs, but YMMV...

Edited again to add that the C2D motherboards support four-wire fans (PWM control), and not many aftermarket fans support this. It's something you might want to keep an eye on.

I wonder how much functionality is lost by plugging a three-pin cooler into the four-pin mobo connector, if you even can?

-Brad
 

Doughbuy

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The fourth pin is only for PWM (Pulse width modulation bullshit...) Which allows the mobo to control the fan, but most non-Intel mobo's control fans with the standard 3-pin, so basically, not much of a diiference.

I like the Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 pro, which also sorta follows specs...

But I still think the stock HSF will work just fine. Just make sure all the corners are locked when you turn them, and it shouldn't fall off. But mine was a real biatch to latch on...
 

raytracer06

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But I still think the stock HSF will work just fine. Just make sure all the corners are locked when you turn them, and it shouldn't fall off. But mine was a real biatch to latch on...
I'll soon upgrade my PC to a C2D E6400 (E6600 if I can afford it)... I think I'll start with a Asrock 775 Dual Mobo, then progressively replace my DDR, AGP card and PSU. During this transition period, I'll use the Intel stock cooler, and I'll replace it when I buy a better motherboard.

But I didn't really see any cooler that seems to be really designed for C2D. most of the socket775 HSFs I saw were massive coolers, obviously designed for Pentium4 CPUs. From what I've read, C2D doesn't produce as much heat as P4, so I hoped there would be relatively compact coolers for C2D...
Can C2D produce so much heat that such big coolers are needed ? Or is it just that HSF manufacturers decided that as P4 coolers work with C2D, they don't have to make new models ?
 

skyguy

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Stock C2D cooler is just fine. The big coolers are because everyone here wants to OC the heckoutta their chip and need the cooling ;)
 

bberson

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Stock C2D cooler is just fine. The big coolers are because everyone here wants to OC the heckoutta their chip and need the cooling ;)
That's pretty much on the mark. I don't think anyone in this thread looking for a C2D cooler has absolutely zero intention of going out of stock specifications.

I was digging a little more last night and found the following...

These four support Intel's PWM fan control with four pin connector:

Nexus PHT-7750
Thermaltake CL-P0101
Thermaltake CL-P0037
Radian CS7128

I'm not sure if the P0101 is still made. None of these come close to the rest in terms of apparent capacity of the next four but they're all larger than the stock 450gr Intel HSF, even if not by much. Interpolating from the drawings here around pages 90-100, it looks like the boxed C2D comes with a fan sporting 80mm diameter blades. Impressive for a stock HSF to be honest.

It's also worth noting that the same spec sheet intimates that the four-pin fan connector on a so-equipped motherboard does not support variable voltage fans and will supply a constant 12V. So a three-pin fan may end up going full tilt, full-time unless you use some other kind of controller.

The following four don't support PWM fan control but do still maintain a radial design to help cool the regulators and memory hub:

Zalman CNPS7700-Cu
Thermaltake Blue Orb II
Spire CoolWave III SP503B0-1
PrimeCooler PC-HC5+CU or 4+

The Zalman is very well reviewed but I wonder if it'll interfere with the enormous heat sink on the D975XBX2 MCH. The PrimeCooler looks a lot like the Zalman. No matter, I don't think anyone outside CZ can find 'em. Actually they all are similar in concept.

-Brad
 

raytracer06

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Stock C2D cooler is just fine. The big coolers are because everyone here wants to OC the heckoutta their chip and need the cooling ;)
Well, that's true, I almost forgot about overclocking... Anyway, with a Asrock 775 Dual mobo, I won't even have to care about OCing... it's not made for that... maybe later, when i have a good mobo, and above all when I find my PC too slow ! As long as I'll be satisfied with the performance, I don't think I'll bother with OCing.
 

Doughbuy

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It should be fine, depending on what you do. OC'ing will really only net you gains in encoding and other CPU intensive tasks, some gaming, but not anything to be really surprised about... The stock cooler is perfectly fine. Only reason you might want to change would to go quieter or whatnot.

And yeah, all the huge coolers are for like 50%+ OC's... and to shield people from speeding bullets...
 

raytracer06

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Well... the main usage for my computer is 3dsmax rendering... so, whatever CPU I put in the computer, it will be on its knees. final renderings can take hours per frame... generally, I start the rendering, and I go to bed, so the performance gain brought by moderate overclocking would be worthles... and extreme overclocking could make the PC unstable (I don't want the computer to crash at 99% of a rendering)

the problem is that recently, even low-res test renderings became too slow with my athlonXP 2600... it's getting horrible to adjust lighting in my scenes.
That's why I really need to change my CPU... but I don't think overclocking will be really useful to me
 

bberson

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Programs like 3D Studio scale very well with increasing numbers of cores. If you have the cash to spare you might just want to wait until the quad-core stuff hits the streets...

But I think we're creeping away from the topic now.

-Brad
 

Doughbuy

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Yeah, you really shouldn't worry about OC'ing your comp then. But are we still talking about the same computer/topic anymore? The question was about your friends comp... are you building one for yourself too...

Confused... but get a core 2 duo!
 

raytracer06

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My original question came after I built a C2D computer for a friend. When I saw the way Intel stock cooler was attached, I started wondering what I should do for my own future build.

About Quad core... yeah, it would be great... but I can't afford it... Before I saw the Asrock 775 dual, I didn't even consider upgrading, because changing my CPU meant replacing almost everything in my computer at the same time...

moreover, computer hardware is a bit more expensive in Europe, since a $100 part in the USA will become a 100€ part in France ($100 = 78€)... sure, it's easier to convert $ and € this way... (a friend of mine who lives in London told me they often do the same between € and £...)

but it's true : we're drifting away from the topic

Thanks a lot for your help !
 

skyguy

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Well, look at it this way: the stock C2D cooler is fine for running stock. And on a 6300 you can use the stock cooler if you OC it up to 3.0 ghz no problem. After that I'd recommend aftermarket cooling. You may not need one of those huge ones, so there are other options.....sounds like you wouldn't be doing extreme OC'ing in that event anyways so you would be fine. So that covers that issue.

The next issue is that if you get a C2D chip and don't OC it for now (but may later) you can get much improved performance right out of the box. Your rendering times will improve vastly, especiallly if your sig is correct and you have an XP Barton. HUGE improvement with a stock C2D over a Barton. HUGE.

Next issue, if you plan on OC'ing later, then you can still greatly improve the performance of the stock C2D. I've got a 50% OC on my 6300 right now and there's still more headroom. My encoding and filtering times have improved vastly. I used to sit down to watch some TV when waiting on my old 2500 Barton, and now I barely have time to go take a pi$$ ;)

Any C2D will absolutely wipe the floor with what you have now. You can get the cheapest C2D, cheap mobo, stock cooler, everything right out of the box and it'll chew through CPU-intensive tasks without breaking a sweat compared to what you have now. Sorry, don't mean to insult what you have, am just giving an honest comparison so you're informed. You wouldn't need to spend lotsa $$ on great mobo/RAM/cooler to notice exponential improvements on your tasking times. ;)

Just my $0.02 worth.....get a cheap C2D and let 'er rip! :D
 

Anoobis

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I wouldn't worry too much about the Intel spec of keeping the VRM cool with a CPU fan that blows down on the motherboard. Most cases have room for a case fan that mounts directly in line with the VRM and will provide adequate airflow over the VRMs. If you're not going to be doing any serious overclocking for awhile the stock unit will do. Some people have even achieved decent OC with the stock unit.

If you feel the need to buy an aftermarket heatsink the Thermaltake Big Typhoon conforms to Intel's specs (aside from the 4-pin connector), can be had at a decent price and performs very well for the price. The Arctic Cooling Freezer Series are outstanding performers for the money (cheaper than the Big Typhoon) and are one of the few tower style coolers that do provide cooling to the motherboard's VRM provided you orient it correctly on the motherboard.

Avoid Zalman's CNPS9500 and 9700 unless you can find them under $45 which isn't going to happen.

Since you render a lot, I would seriously recommend looking at the Intel C2D E6600. They overclock very nicely and the extra cache will come in handy both of which will benefit your rendering needs. You're going to be pleasantly surprised once you switch from the Athlon XP to the C2D.
 

raytracer06

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don't worry, you're not insulting at all ! I'm fully aware that my CPU is now ridiculous compared to recent models (especially for the kind of software I use)... And I start insulting it more and more often... it is the signal that tells me it's time to change.

You're going to be pleasantly surprised once you switch from the Athlon XP to the C2D.
I've already tried to render a few of my scenes on a friend's E6600 and the only thing I can say is... WOW !!

maybe I could recycle my barton into some media center PC... will be fine to watch movies... a nice retirement after what it has suffered with 3dsmax !
 

diselement

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i kno it might be a lil off topic but i just build a c2d 6400 system and i did have some complications setting it up and all in all it was a hassle but i got it done (still havent been able to enjoy it cuz im to rboke now for any games). the only reall problem i have is that even in simple idle moments my cpu runs at 85 C. that way 2 high! when i push it a lil it goes above 115's and i get really scared. i checked th hsf and i think the ehatsink is on corerectly. i put thermal paste arctic silver 5 so its not that. any1 got any ideas? (im think once i get some cash im going to get another pretty nice hsf
 

Doughbuy

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Touch it, feel how hot it really is... I think that might be more of a mis-reading than an actual temp since the C2D isin't designed to go past 80C... so you should have a fireball in your comp by now... You sure that 85C... not 85F ?

Don't worry about not getting a heatsink that conforms to spec since most aftermarket cases cool that area off and mobo's usually account for that sort of cooling also (heatpipes and heatsinks, whatever)

If your looking to upgrade, wait a bit for DDR2 prices to drop, then jump on it... Black Friday is coming up... could be perfect time =)
 

Anoobis

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If you feel the need to buy an aftermarket heatsink the Thermaltake Big Typhoon conforms to Intel's specs (aside from the 4-pin connector)
Sort of. There will be a few blind spots and the fan will be going full tilt full time.
The Big Typhoon uses a fairly quiet 120mm fan. I wouldn't worry about it running all the time. It's not absolutely silent, but neither is the Intel stock unit. You can always buy a simple fan controller or volt mod (with care) the fan to run slower to keep noise down. The issue becomes moot if one considers overclocking as silent PCs and overclocking just don't go hand in hand.

The fan size alone easily allows it to cool the VRMs. And as I noted earlier, a well ventilated case will also assist in cooling the VRM, especially if the case uses a 120mm exhaust fan at the rear.

Umm...thanks there's some decent info there.

@diselement, in addition to Doughbuy's comments, I would try removing the heatsink and re-install it after you've re-read the installation instructions to make sure it's seated properly. You did remove the thermal pad that was on the Intel stock heatsink before using the AS5, right? There's also updated instructions on the AS5 website about the proper method of applying their product on the C2D cpus.
 

skyguy

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Media comp for your Barton......excellent idea Ray!

The 6600 will work wonders for your tasking times, even at stock speeds!

I have the Zalman 9500, it works just fine....I bought it quite some time ago and just reused it on this new rig.....but Anoobis is right that it is overpriced compared to other stuff on the market now......was cheap for me though to reuse it ;)

A 6600 would allow you to add to your system later, improve the RAM and cooling, and OC it like a beast. You'll drool at how fast it cuts through your tasking work ;)
 

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