Zalman CNPS8700 NT CPU Cooler
Author: Rutledge Feman
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 11-11-2007
Provided by: Zalman Technologies
Discuss: View Comments

The installation for the CNPS8700 NT was surprisingly pleasant and quick, with almost no complications along the way. Everything in the process is well thought-out and well engineered.

The first step in the process is to align the backplate with the four screw holes in your motherboard. There are small washer-type ridges on the backplate so it doesn't slide around when you turn the motherboard back over. With that sitting in place, you screw down the mounting bracket to the backplate via the motherboard holes. My motherboard was not compatible with the mounting bracket as it was intended to be used, so I had to rotate it 90 degrees to avoid my Northbridge heatsink, but this was no hassle at all.

The next step is to slide the mounting clip into place, centering it on the ridge on top of the cooler, and slide a little handle on to the end of the clip. After that two minute process, you're almost done installing.

Once you've spread the supplied thermal grease, you're ready to snap down the cooler. To do this, simply push the side of the clip without the handle around the mounting bracket, and then use the handle to push the other side down. The pressure from the clip will keep the cooler in place, and ensure good contact with the CPU. As you can see, the fins are a little larger than you might expect at first. This is a feature intended to help cool the surrounding components, which would be especially useful in an HTPC environment. There are no clearance issues whatsoever.

Here are some shots of the cooler in action. As you can see, the LEDs are quite intense (possibly too much so), and the cooler is much smaller than most other high-end coolers I'm used to these days. After only a few minutes of installation, everything is all set. Is this cooler too good to be true, or can it perform like a champ too? Let's check it out…

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