The Thermaltake Silent
Boost K8 heatsink is a mainstream cooler for AMD Athlon64 and Sempron socket 754/939/940 processors.
The heatsink is completely made of copper components for the metals' high
thermal conductivity properties, and utilizes a Panaflo FBL08A12M fan for its
lower noise generation. Installation is straightforward with
the tool-free clip mechanism which locks on to all three tabs of the K8
retention frame solidly. Rotating a small cam lever then applies the necessary
force on the K8 processor's integrated heat spreader that AMD's thermal
design guidelines require.
Silent Boost K8 heatsink does not come with any fan speed controllers, or
temperature sensors, so it is a very basic cooling solution for standard desktop
computers. According to FrostyTech's acoustic measurements, the noise from this
Thermaltake heatsink hovers around the 49dBA mark, which is
moderately low. As with most of Thermaltake's offerings, the model A1838 "Silent
Boost K8" is quite affordably priced, although it is absolutely not
a "silent" heatsink.
|Thermaltake Silent Boost K8
| Manufacturer: Thermaltake|
|Model No.: A1838 "Silent Boost K8"|
|Materials: Stacked copper fins soldered to copper
Fan Mfg: Panaflo FBL08A12M
|Fan Spec: 2500RPM, 12V, 0.17A|
|Fan Dim: 25x80x80mm|
|Heatsink & Fan Dim: 79x88x80mm |
| Weight: 450 grams (est.)|
Includes: thermal compound|
Compatible with Sockets: 754/939/940
|Est. Pricing: $22USD
The Panaflo FBL08A12M fan is a design of Panasonic
Industrial, but manufactured by Matsushita
Electric. The fan frame has horizontal slats in it which reduce air turbulence
and associated high-pitched noises that can sometimes occur. The
multi-directional air intake is apparently supposed to promote better airflow
while keeping the overall noise of the fan to a minimum. On top of that, the fan uses a
"Hydro Wave Bearing" to reduce impeller mechanical noises and increase the fans longevity.
Typically, ball bearings have better life expectancy but are louder than sleeve bearings which can dry out after several years continuous use. Sleeve bearings are quieter, but wear
out faster if not properly lubricated at all times.
"Hydro Wave Bearing" is basically a fancy name for a common sleeve bearing
with a thrust plate (rotating washer). The plate helps to
redistribute lubricant so that loads in the axis of rotation (axial) are reduced on
the sleeve bearing. FrostyTech has actually discussed how different bearing
systems work in this article,
if you're curious.
"Panaflo’s unique hydrowave bearing (HWB) addresses
the traditional weakness of sleeve bearings... axial friction. By utilizing our
unique HWB system, the thrust plate “floats” on a circulating film of oil, which
greatly reduces the axial friction and the bearing’s deterioration. The HWB
pattern on the bearing virtually eliminates thrust plate contact which is
As the shaft rotates it acts as a pump constantly circulating the oil in
the radial, as well as the axial direction. The sealed system and reservoirs of
oil maintain the proper lubrication to minimize mechanical contact and prolong
the fan’s life expectancy. The radial direction analysis shown above is
essentially the same as a traditional sleeve bearing. Panasonic’s unique HWB
reduces the axial contact."
FrostyTech's Test Methodology is outlined in detail here if you would like to know about the parameters under which this heatsink will
be evaluated. Now let's take a closer
look at the Thermaltake Silent Boost K8 heatsink, its acoustic characteristics, and thermal