The Zalman CNPS10X Flex heatsink ships without
any fans, so users can install one or two 120mm fans of their own choosing. In all other respects the CNPS10X Flex is identical to Zalman's CNPS10X Quiet heatsink, so today's review is not going to be a huge departure from what we saw from the Quiet.
other Zalman CNPS10X series heatsinks, the Flex
stands 150mm tall, weighs in at ~700 grams and supports Intel socket
775/1156/1366 and AMD 754/939/940/AM2/AM2+/AM3 processors. Constructed from a
die-cast copper baseplate soldered to five 6mm diameter copper heatpipes that
pass through a 105mm section of aluminum fins, the CNPS10X Flex is intended to
be the flexible heatsink option for users who prefer ultra quiet after market
fans from the likes of QuietPC and Noctua. It's also proven itself to be a
very capable CPU cooler, but more on that later.
At 133mm wide, the Zalman CNPS10X Flex demands a good 65-70mm clearance from the center of the CPU socket out. There is 37mm clearance below the bottom fin. On Intel platforms the mounting hardware allows this heatsink to be installed in any direction, AMD users are
limited by the orientation of the AMD heatsink retention cage.
|Zalman CNPS10X Flex Heatsink
|Model No.: CNPS10X
Materials: aluminum fins, copper heatpipes, copper baseblock|
| Fan Mfg:
| Fan Spec: Not
|Fan Dim: 25x120x120mm|
|Heatsink & Fan Dim:
|Weight: 700 grams|
(2) sets fan mounting brackets, instructions.|
Compatible with Sockets:
AMD - 754/939/940/AM2/AM2+/AM3
Intel - 775/1156/1366
|Est. Pricing: $65USD
two 120mm fans can be installed with the use of springy wire fan brackets.
For the purpose of this review Frostytech will be testing the Megahalems
heatsink with an 80CFM AGA12025F12L and 50CM Mechatronics G1225S12B fan (both
are 120x120x25mm vanaxial 12vDC). The former because enthusiasts like
higher-airflow fans and the latter because it has long been Frostytech's 120mm
test fan of choice for heatsinks that ship fanless.
Mounting Method and Hardware
CNPS10X Flex heatsink can be installed on Intel socket 775/1156/1366 processors
and AMD socket 754/939/940/AM2/AM2+/AM3 CPUs. Every major CPU variation is
covered by this one heatsink, good for those of you planning an upgrade in the
Installation is straightforward, although there are those
pesky clearance issues to be aware of. Generally
speaking, the CNPS10X Performa will fit any modern motherboard with 65-70mm clearance
from the center of the CPU out. The AMD mounting clip makes use of the
stock AMD heatsink retention frame. A stainless steel clip fits over
the central hub on the heatsink's base cap and locks onto the
retention tabs on AMD motherboards. The heatsink should generally be oriented with
airflow exhausting towards the rear of the case if that's possible. If not, the next best
position is the fan exhausting up towards the power supply.
Intel socket 1366 and 775/1156 processors make use
of metal clips which slot into the space between the cast aluminum base cap and
copper base plate. A metal rear motherboard support plate and mounting posts are
then used to hold everything in position quite firmly. Access to the back of the
board is necessary to apply a rear support plate, which is always a bit of a
downside with tower heatsinks.
This heatsink will be tested on FrostyTech's Intel
LGA775 and AMD version of the Mk.II synthetic thermal temperature test platform,
and compared against a couple hundred reference heatsinks. The whole test
methodology is outlined in detail
here if you'd like to know what equipment is used, and the parameters under
which the tests are conducted.