Naturally, after installation comes performance and even if it doesn't, that's
too bad because it's coming next anyway. I decided to test the Zalman heatsink
against the loudest cooler I had on hand, the Thermaltake Dragon Orb 3. The
Dragon Orb 3 is equipped with a 7000 RPM that usually clocks in at around 7200
RPM. Testing conditions:
Athlon XP 1800+
Enlight Mid-Tower (well ventilated)
The Dragon Orb 3 (DO3) obviously has the edge here. But the price you pay is with
your ears. The difference in noise between the DO3 and the CNPS6000-Cu is night
and day. With the DO3 you have to turn the TV up like 8 notches to hear it; with the
CNPS6000-Cu you can barely tell your computer is on.
This result was not unexpected. What is not reported here is that the 92mm fan
kept the system temperature down more than the DO3 was able to (for obvious
The CNPS6000-Cu performed very well for a product so quiet. The adjustable fan
unit is a very nice touch and adds to the overall effectiveness of the product,
which just demonstrates the completeness of the package offered by Zalman.
What impressed me most about the Zalman cooler was its ability to cool the
CPU decently while even cooling components near the CPU (north bridge, etc.).
I can't forget one of my favorite features which was the very easy installation
of the unit.
I found the CNPS6000-Cu on a couple sites going for around $40. That's a pretty
decent price for peace of mind (both in terms of noise and cooling your CPU). A
product this good is definitely going to get a good score out of me. The only
thing that holds me back from giving this unit a higher score is the price. While
the CNPS6000-Cu offers some pretty nice features, you can get a comparably
performing heatsink for less. Bottom line: works well and keeps quiet...