Base Finish and Flatness
Flipping a heatsink over to inspect the business end is often a simple indicator of overall cooler quality. More practically speaking, a heatsink is in many ways only as effective as the contact it makes with the processor - the flatter and smoother the better. Base finish is one of the criteria that Frostytech measure in the course of evaluating heatsinks, and it involves two distinct aspects. Surface Finish is the first; this is calculated with the aid of Surface Roughness Comparator that has a cross section of common machine surface finishes and their numerical surface roughness equivalents in microinches. The second is Surface Flatness. This is tested with an engineer's straight edge or proven flat surface, in two axes.
The nickel plated copper base plate of the Scythe Fuma heatsink measures 38x43mm and has a smooth, machined surface finish. Surface roughness is approximately 16 microinches or better. According to the straight edge, the base is convex in one axis and flat in the opposite.
In case you missed the subtle reference to long term cooling reliability, 'Fuma' is the Japanese word for immortality. ;-)
Up next, acoustic sound measurements.
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