Spire Coolwave SP441B0-F HSF review

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June 2, 2004 by Ralf Hutter

Spire Coolwave heatsink

Spire makes heatsinks for OEMs primarily, but also sells many low and mid-price heatsink to retail consumers. Spire seems to target the mid-range consumer that's looking for a value-oriented product as opposed to a cutting-edge, spare-no-expense heatsink.

The SP441B0-F Coolwave certainly falls into the mid-price range but the manufacturer claims that it will "meet the extreme cooling demands of Intel's 3.4 GHz+ Pentium 4 Prescott processors." This is quite a claim to make for a rather unprepossessing heatsink. Spire doesn't specifically claim that the Coolwave is designed with low noise in mind, but they've included an adjustable voltage controller in the package along with the heatsink and if it's capable of cooling a 100+ watt Prescott that would bode well for using it at low speed and on a cooler running P4 CPU as part of a quiet PC.


  • Dimensions: 84×70×18.9 mm (l × w × h)
  • 12VDC Fan : 70×70×25 mm
  • Bearing Ball bearing
    • Rated speed 2500 ~ 4200 RPM +/-10%
    • Rated power 0.96 ~ 3.60 W
    • Noise level 23.5 ~ 34.5 dBA
    • Air flow 19.3 CFM at 2500 RPM, 34.6 CFM at 4200 RPM
    • Current 0.08 ~ 0.30 A
    • Life hours Ball: 50.000


  • Low profile all copper radial cooler, PCI slot
  • Included Fan speed controller
  • Power Connector: 3 pin mainboard
  • Application:
    • Intel : Celeron ~ 2.8 GHz (FC-PGA2)
    • Pentium 4 ~ 3.4 GHz (Prescott)
    • Pentium 4 ~ 3.4 GHz (Willamette / HT NW)
  • Thermal resistance @ 4200 RPM, 0.29 °C/W


The Coolwave is an all copper design and is composed of a circular column 2.7" in diameter, surrounded by 160 fins. Each of the 160 copper fins is only .006" thick, slightly curved, and is soldered onto the center column. Spire says the fins are curved so that they "channel air in all directions to cool surrounding components".

Even with the fan mounted on top of the heatsink, this cooler is one of the lowest profile P4 coolers around and would seem to be perfect for cases with little clearance for large heatsinks, like SFF and HTPC cases. It's difficult to imagine that this relatively small heatsink is capable of cooling a hot running top of the line P4 processor, but maybe it's unique, many finned design makes for very efficient cooling.

Package contents: Heatsink, fan, fan controller.
Also included is a small tube of thermal grease.

The underside of the Coolwave heatsink w/1" EAR fan grommet for perspective. CPU contact area is fairly smooth.

The translucent blue ball-bearing cooling fan measures 70mm x 25mm and comes with a braided three pin power cable and a chrome plated steel fan guard. This fan is rated from 2500 rpm (at 23.5 dBA and 19.3 cfm) to 4200 rpm (at 34.5 dBA and 24.6 cfm). The SPL specs sound a little too good to be true, but who knows how Spire arrived at them. Most seasoned SPCR readers know that they should take the manufacturers claims with a grain of salt and let their own ears be their guide. That's what I'll be doing here.

The fan itself is screwed onto a steel mounting frame that snaps right onto the existing Intel heatsink bracket. Unfortunately the bracket is only large enough to mount a 70mm x 70mm fan so there is no way to experiment with the more typical (and generally quieter) 80mm or 92mm fan that seems to be the fan of choice here at SilentPCReview.

70mm Coolwave fan mounted on clip assembly.

The Coolwave also comes with a manual fan speed controller. This is mounted on a PCI slot cover and will enable users to adjust the cooling performance and noise level of the cooling fan. Spire gives no specs for the voltage adjustment of this controller but I measured it's range from 6.5-11.5 volts using a multimeter. The included controller also comes with braided power cables, just like the fan itself. This is a nice touch for all us neat-freaks. Spire also includes a small tube of white thermal grease along with the Coolwave HSF.

Fan controller mounts in an unused PCI slot. Braided wiring is standard.

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