Thermalright SI-128 SE Heatsink
Author: Zahn Funk
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 11-13-2007
Provided by: Thermalright
Discuss: View Comments

Installation of the SI-128SE requires removing the motherboard to replace the socket backing plate in both Intel and AMD applications. The directions for both are similar. I'll be using the hardware for socket AM2 on my Biostar TForce 570 SLI board. Once the backing plate is exchanged the mounting plates screw down on top of the board and provide the two center posts for attaching the heatsink. Unlike the older XP and SI series of coolers, the SI-128SE uses a zero insertion force based mounting system similar to the HR line of heatsinks. Rather than having to press down on clips, the proper base-to-processor tension is applied from spring-loaded posts as they are screwed down. Since the finned portion of the cooler completely overhangs the socket area, Thermalright provides a small wrench to tighten the posts from the side. I removed the video card to free up space to access the lower one more easily.

Once everything was tightened down I noticed that the heatsink was turned slightly askew and didn't seem to want to straighten out. After maneuvering my head down to where I could get a look under the huge expanse of fins I discovered why; the support bars were contacting the side of the first memory stick. One option I had was to move both DIMMs to the second set of slots, however I discovered that after pulling the SI-128SE back off, the support bars could be pushed a bit further into the base, which freed up enough room to reinstall the heatsink at the correct perpendicular angle.

The size of the SI-128SE will be beneficial in helping to cool other components surrounding the CPU socket, especially the memory as it falls directly under the overhang. Voltage regulators and capacitors on the other side of the socket should also benefit from some ancillary cooling.

Continue on to testing and conclusion.

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