Fanless Heatpipe CPU Cooling System by FMAH

Do-It-Yourself Systems
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Test fitting the parts

Close up of blocks and heatpipes

Large heatsink mounted on backside


After all the components were secured in place, I fired up the system and went into BIOS. Initially I used a two-fan Antec Smartpower power supply that I happened to have available. Later I put in a Seasonic Super Tornado 300 (SS-300FB). The Seasonic is much quieter.

When I turned on the system without a hard drive, I put my head a few inches from the motherboard to see what I would hear. I didn't really hear much but the power supply fan. Ocassionally the motherboard generated various kinds of electrical hum and crackles depending on the load, but this is likely to vary with the motherboard design and CPU load. Such electrical noise was mostly apparent when overclocking the CPU.

I sat in the BIOS screen with the temperature readings. I was happy to see the temperature did not ramp up quickly, it slowly went to a stable reading after many minutes.

I spent a fair amount of time trying different CPU speeds with various overclocking settings. This was done to simulate different CPU heat loads and see whether the CPU temperature would go out of control. The highest speed Althon XP is a 3200+ at 2.2 GHz. I was able to run the system for around 10-15 minutes at that speed, but the system was unstable, because I received a system error in Windows. The temperature was in the low 60s °C when the error occurred. I suspect the CPU/RAM combination is the main factor in the overclock success/failure, not overheating. The system seemed to be fairly stable at 2 GHz. Perhaps PC3200 RAM instead of PC2100 Kingston "value ram" would make a difference in the maximum overclocking tests.

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