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 Post subject: Do heatpipe northbridge coolers exist?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 6:12 am 
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Has anyone ever seen a heatpipe based fanless northbridge cooler?

If so, does it offer improved cooling compared to a zalman nb heatsink or alike?

Anyone know by any chance how much heat a nforce4 chip produces?


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 6:24 am 
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Well Silentmaxx showed a computer at the cebit with a heatpipe cooled northbridge but I think it was just made for this computer.
http://img169.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img169& ... 0036wu.jpg

I think the whole setup was made by teschke. It's a german page about silent computers.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 6:29 am 
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I seriously doubt there are heatpipe coolers for chipset available. That one is a Zalman VGA heatpipe cooler, and quite heavily modified it is too :shock: I might just be crazy enough to attempt that myself, i have a spare 80-HP somewhere.. :D Bending ther heatpipe is the tricky part, they brake quite easily..


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 10:32 am 
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A heatpipe cooler could certainly be designed to cool better than a Zalman NB block, but there's really no need. Nforce4 "northbridges" produce less heat than older chipsets, such as an Nforce2 did, since the memory controller, which was the biggest part of the northbridge, is now on the CPU die itself. Just look at all the boards that use only a tiny 1/4" high heatsink on the northbridge.

Even the hottest northbridges can be cooled passively with just a tiny bit of scavenged airflow, only the OC-addicted and those easily swayed by marketing need anything more than a tiny heatsink.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 10:54 am 
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You really think it doesn't get hotter than the previous Northbrigdes?
From what I've heard it is the other way round. I think the only NForce4 Mainboard with a passive NB is the Gigabyte one.

Often the problem is, that the vga card interfers with a bigger heatsink like the Zalman NB47.

@nici: Bending the heatpipe probably won't work. I think it's custom made one. They have someone who sells heatpipes already bended like you want. And it isn't that expensive.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:12 am 
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I still think its a bent zalman heatpipe, the heatsink and the piece mounted on the NB ar from the original heatpipe cooler, and the weird bend in the heatpipe would be explained. It looks like correct lenght too.

About temps.. The nF4 really runs hotter than older chipsets, even nF3 250Gb managed with a passive heatsink but practically all nF4 boards have active cooling. I have the VF700 @ 1300rpm moving some air over the NB47J and it idles at 43-44c. Yes the HS is mounted correctly and i used AS3 as TIM. This is with case open. IF i have a 80mm fan directly blowing at the HS at 1200rpm it goes to about 35c. The nF4 has loads of features integrated, i dont know of other chipsets with HW firewall for example.
If i have no airflow around the chipset, it rapidly rises over 50c...

The new VIA chipset is supposed to run much cooler, and almost all boads have passive cooling...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:13 am 
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The placement of the NB behind the VGA is the reason for the fanned heatsinks, not necessarily the heat being produced. A fanned heatsink is lower profile than an equivalent passive one would be.

Add to that the fact the fanned NB heatsinks are both cheaper to produce than passive ones, and the fact that they "look" more powerful to all the l33t OC'ers out there, and you get a win-win for the mobo manu's. :lol:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:17 am 
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Rusty075 wrote:
The placement of the NB behind the VGA is the reason for the fanned heatsinks, not necessarily the heat being produced. A fanned heatsink is lower profile than an equivalent passive one would be.

Add to that the fact the fanned NB heatsinks are both cheaper to produce than passive ones, and the fact that they "look" more powerful to all the l33t OC'ers out there, and you get a win-win for the mobo manu's. :lol:


Ok i get the point... :roll:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:28 am 
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Rusty075 wrote:
Add to that the fact the fanned NB heatsinks are both cheaper to produce than passive ones, and the fact that they "look" more powerful to all the l33t OC'ers out there, and you get a win-win for the mobo manu's.

Well it was a win-loose for me since I just bought a Soltek SL-K890PRO-939, with the passive Via chipset, for the very reasons discussed in this thread. Maybe the board makers will wake up and move nForce4 chipsets to a location on the board where they are easier to be passively cooled. Or maybe NVIDIA needs to do something to keep them from running so hot.

The very slight difference in performance between nForce4 and Via boards was not significant enough for me to mess with the hassles of cooling the nForce4 chipset. This is especially true if not using the on-board audio.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 12:53 pm 
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I would probably have got the Abit AX8 or the Soltek board, but neither of them was available and still isnt. I didnt want a A8V-E or A8n-SLI either, and the Gigabyte isnt availale and the Epox just became available. But overall im very happy with the DFI 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:29 pm 
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m0002a wrote:
... I just bought a Soltek SL-K890PRO-939...


Hey m0002a,

Could you tell us a little about your experiences with your Soltek board ?

Are you pretty happy with it ?

Are you doing any overclocking with it ?

Thanks a bunch !


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:53 pm 
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I always thought a heatpipe northbridge cooler would be a great idea. One like those aerocool DP-somethings with the one heatpipe, except thinner and with farther apart fins, and of course small and passive.

But now with all those nforce 4 boards, that wouldn't be such a great idea, so instead I guess it would have to have the heatpipe going up at a 45 degree angle, and it shauld have multiple mounting holes, so you could rotate it to fit.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:14 am 
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rbrodka wrote:
m0002a wrote:
... I just bought a Soltek SL-K890PRO-939...


Hey m0002a,

Could you tell us a little about your experiences with your Soltek board ?

Are you pretty happy with it ?

Are you doing any overclocking with it ?

Thanks a bunch !

I have the Soltek SL-K890PRO-939 up and running now. It seems to work fine, but I have not over-clocked it and have no intention of doing that.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:43 am 
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I think it's a shame that the k8t890 boards still use an old southbridge, which makes it difficult to get on par with nforce4 boards. (no intergrated gbit lan, only 2 sata ports (sata1 not sata300) to name a few)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2005 12:50 pm 
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I have the Thermalright NB-1 on my nForce4-SLI and the fan is running at ~4,700 rpm (still loud, I wish I had the low speed version of that fan).
A thermal probe on the heatsink says 35C and by putting my finger on it I couldn't sense heat or cold, so it's at body temperature. I will do further finger-testing when overclocking the 'FSB' to 266, maybe this weekend...
I think it would be an overkill to build a heatpipe chipset cooler for nForce4, but I have a few alternative concepts. The first one got built, but it sucks - no need to test it to know this. I'll still post pictures of it, maybe Zalman can do a better job at building a similar one (it leaves enough space for the AC Silencer ;-) ).
Instead of a heatpipe one could use a copper 'core' extending from the copper base, and aluminium fins that are soldered to that 'core'.
Probably the best chipset HSF is the Swiftech, but it's outrageously expensive, IMO.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2005 2:25 pm 
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madman2003 wrote:
I think it's a shame that the k8t890 boards still use an old southbridge, which makes it difficult to get on par with nforce4 boards. (no intergrated gbit lan, only 2 sata ports (sata1 not sata300) to name a few)

The Soltek SL-K890PRO-939 (VIA K8T890 + VT8237 chipset) has on-board gigabit ethernet, and two seperate SATA controllers (VT8237 and Promise), for a total of 4 SATA ports (plus 3 IDE ports supporting 6 IDE drives). There are not any SATA 300 drives available to the best of my knowledge.

Also important is that the chipset is passively cooled.

How about them apples!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 3:14 am 
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But still that's only 4 sata ports. The Samsung P120 series will be SATA300. I've yet to see any k8t890 boards with 8 sata ports. The gigabit lan you have isn't in the southbridge, nforce4's have it on the chipset iirc and generally one extra.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 10:02 am 
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madman2003 wrote:
But still that's only 4 sata ports. The Samsung P120 series will be SATA300. I've yet to see any k8t890 boards with 8 sata ports. The gigabit lan you have isn't in the southbridge, nforce4's have it on the chipset iirc and generally one extra.

Only 4 SATA ports? This is a desktop board, not a server board. 4 SATA ports is enough (probably twice as many as needed by most people).

SATA 300 may be coming, but I am not going to throw away the SATA 150 drives that I installed just because someone comes out with a faster one. Existing 7200 RPM drives are limited in throughput and cannot even reach 150 MB/s. The best I have seen in burst speed with SATA is about 106 MB/s. We will have to see if SATA 300 actually performs better for a quiet desktop drive.

So what if the gigabit LAN is not on the Southbridge. It is only slightly slower than NF4 gigabit and more than enough for a home PC, even if networked. For a corporate PC, there would be so much traffic on the LAN that you could never achieve maximum throughput anyway. The only way it would make any difference would be if the board was used in a server that had a private Ethernet connection to another machine (such as application tier to database tier). Not having all that stuff in the chipset is one thing that makes the Via chipset cooler and able to be cooled passively (less noise).

Your concerns are just theoretical arguments that have absolutely no relevance to types of quiet PC's people are trying to build in this forum.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 10:58 am 
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Well, I just did the 3DMark overclocking tests: 266 'FSB' X9 multiplier, memory DDR444 1T, CPU 2.4 GHz at 1.475V, HT multiplier X3.
The thermal probe reports just 1C more than at 200 'FSB' (36C instead of 35C), the same as the Asus probe. Subjectively, with finger-testing on the NB-1, maybe it's more like 2C difference... ;-)
People that have the Zalman NB47J could try lowering the HT multiplier, maybe that is lowering the chipset temps.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 1:17 pm 
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The number of sata ports is a realistic concern. It's my plan to completely do away with ide cables. I'll need 3 for hard drives and 2 for optical drives, which makes a total of 5. I know not many people need more than 4, but the concern was a genuine one. The SATA300 is more of a future proof thing, it comes with native command queing which might improve performance a bit.(for drives that have it)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 3:25 pm 
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I would think the most useful part of SATAII for people here would be staggered spin up


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 23, 2005 1:39 pm 
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This thread is pretty old and got a little bit offtopic but I have new information about the original question.
Everyone interested in northbridge heatpipe cooling should check this thread out:
http://www.silenthardware.de/forum/inde ... opic=10154

I know one of my german pages again. I'm sorry, but I can't change it. When you are interested in more information and translation programs fail, feel free to ask. I'll try to translate the parts which you don't understand.

We have someone on our board who made the whole construction including bend heatpipes, cooler, mounting system ... for 30€.
I know it's not cheap but a really nice solution for the nforce 4 cooling problem.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 1:34 am 
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Interesting solution, especially for DFI owners. But I couldn't see any cooling fins / pins, just the two blocks at the ends of the heatpipes...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 2:25 am 
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Here's a photo of my passive Swiftech heatsink. I bent the fins out (none broke) for better passive operation. The copper base is about 1/2" thick....heavy.

With some case airflow over it, the Intel 875 NB runs around 42C. Yeah it's expensive....but what the hell. :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 2:43 am 
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He used the bottom of the case as the "radiator". You can also use a heatsink but why not use the case when it works out.

@Bluefront: Nice heatsink for a NB, works probably great when you have the room for it, but unfortunately nforce4 NB is so stupidely placed.
Well not my problem at the moment only have two nforce2 mobos in use, so I don't have any problems cooling the NB.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 5:50 am 
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Webfire, how well did that heatpipe contraption work?

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 Post subject: Abit has the goods
PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2005 12:31 pm 
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http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=22790


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 Post subject: Re: Abit has the goods
PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2005 12:55 pm 
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afrost wrote:
http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=22790


Wow! That looks awesome, is it for real? If so, will it be available for Socket 939 boards too? :o

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