Evercool, a company which specialise in the cooling market, provide our latest CPU cooler sample to pit it wits against our i7 rig. The cooler in question with its low profile architecture is designed to suit HTPCs and small cases. Named the HPK-10025EA, this cooler is solely Intel orientated for both LGA775 and LGA1366 sockets but how well can it contend with the high 130W TDP of the i7 920 processor.
Many larger designs have come unstuck so how will the HPK-10025EA fare? Let’s take a look…
- 4 heatpipes in 6mm and H.D.T. Tech can make the maximum cooling efficiency
- Application for Intel core i7 & P4 LGA775 series
- The 10cm extremely quiet fan provides more air flow while using
- Pentium 4 Socket T 505~571/620~672
- Pentium D Socket T 805~840/915~960
- Pentium 4 Processor Extreme Edition Socket T 3.73G
- Core 2 Duo Processor Socket T E4300~E8600
- Core 2 Extreme Processor Socket T QX6700~QX9650
- Core 2 Quad Processor Socket Q6600~Q9550
- Core i7 Processor I7-920~940
- Core i7 Processor Extreme Edition I7-965
|Overall Dimension||118 x 110 x 67mm|
|Heatsink Material||4 Heatpipes + Al Fin + H.D.T. Core|
|Bearing Type||EL long life bearing (Life Expectancy at 25 degrees 50,000 Hours)|
|Rated Speed||1800 +/- 15% RPM|
|Rated Voltage||12V DC|
The HPK-10025EA, not a particularly imaginative name I must say, arrives in a plastic carton with the cooler fully visible from the front with its distinctive red impeller. The Evercool logo sits at the top along with the compatible sockets: P4 LGA775 and Core i7 LGA1366 making the cooler solely Intel orientated.
The back, evidently much more factual, gives a full list of compatible processors – pretty much all the Core 2 Duo, Core 2 Quad and Core i7 series – and the features complete with some close up shots of the cooler and a specifications table.
With the installation guide printed on the inside of the packaging, only a few accessories come bundled with the cooler:
- Thermal paste
- Nuts (to screw the screws into)
The lack of any sort of backplate is a little worrying but we’ll take a closer look at the installation method a little later.
The cooler, being low profile in its design, has a top-down format structure; the aluminium fins are quite densely packed in but do not attached directly to the base as some coolers tend to.
The fins themselves are pretty small helping to maintain the low profile nature of the cooler with the pre-attached fan atop the fin stack.
The fan has a seven blade impeller with a fan speed of approximately 1800RPM at a rated voltage of 12V. At this speed, Evercool claim a noise output of less than 23 dBA and a life expectancy of 50,000 hours.
A total of four polished copper heatpipes are utilised in the design bending around from the H.D.T. (Heatpipe Direct Touch) base and back through the fin stack so as to evenly dissipate the heat throughout the whole heatsink.
The pipes are not offset but, with the relatively small width of each fin, this is not crucial as the pipes are spread out to make full use of the whole surface area of each and every fin.
Looking a little more closely at the base, the cooper pipes are flattened out and make direct contact with the integrated heat spreader on the CPU. This approach does not give the smoothest of finishes but the base seems flat enough to make a good contact.
The ends of pipes are nicely rounded off as has become the norm for most CPU coolers and just give a more professional finish.
Overall, the design seems to have been constructed well enough but with the relatively small fin surface area, it does make you wonder how well it will perform against the high 130W TDP of the i7 series of processors.
The Test Setup:
|Processor||Intel Core i7 C0 920 @ 2.67GHz|
|Graphics Card||XFX 1GB Radeon 4870|
|Memory||OCZ Gold Triple Channel Platinum-10666 6GB (3 x 2GB)|
|Hard Drive||Seagate Barracuda 3.0GB/s 7200.10 500GB,Western Digital Caviar Blue 160GB|
|Power Supply||NOX Apex 700W|
|Enclosure||Cooler Master ATCS-840|
|OS||Windows Vista 64-bit|
Installation proved to be a very quick, if not an overly simple, process; the first step simply involves screwing in the screw mounts to the brackets on the cooler and then putting a stick-on washer over the top.
The application of thermal paste to the CPU comes next and then the motherboard and cooler have to be flipped over so that the cooler can be secured using the included screws.
The cooler doesn’t seem quite as secure without a backplate but it’s good enough and with this low profile design not being particularly large or heavy, it’s not a big issue.
At Verdis Reviews, we test CPU coolers by booting the PC up into Windows Vista and then taking temperatures in both idle and load states.
The temperatures are taking using Core Temp and averaging the four core temperatures. For idle testing, we simply leave the PC for 30 minutes and then come back and take the temperature readings. For load, we run prime95 for 20 minutes before taking temperature readings once more.
Thermal results will be recorded with the i7 920 CPU @ 2.67GHz (stock) and overclocked to 3.6GHz with Vcore and QPI voltages of 1.35V.
Finally, noise is that final factor that is tested; however, at Verdis Reviews, we are not yet at the stage where we can use high tech sound equipment and therefore, noise testing is left to the human ear – not the most scientific but it gives a good impression of how noisy the cooler is.
Ambient temperature was 18 degrees and a number of coolers were used for comparison purposes.
Evidently, the HPK-10025EA couldn’t compete with the high end tower format coolers but then we were hardly expecting miracles given the size and intention of the cooler – for smaller cases namely HTPCs.
Bearing this in mind, the results are actually not bad with the cooler only a few degrees behind the OCZ Gladiator Max – a large tower format design. Obviously if you’re looking for knock-out performance, this cooler isn’t for you but it does provide some decent cooling for use in smaller chassis’.
NoiseThe fan, whilst not being the quietest ever made, is actually pretty impressive and the noise levels are fairly unnoticeable especially with all the other fans whirring inside a rig.
The HPK-10025EA is clearly not intended for overclockers or users looking for ultimate cooling performance; in that regard it simply cannot compete with the larger, high-end, tower-format coolers that now dominate the market.
However, its purpose, as a low profile CPU cooler for HTPCs and other small cases, is well catered for and the temperatures are not bad considering the size and surface area of its fins. Compatible with most Intel processors, this CPU cooler is certainly a good candidate for this specific market.
On the down side, the installation method is not the easiest and flipping the motherboard over to secure the cooler isn’t exactly ideal but at least once it’s done, the cooler isn’t likely to move. Moreover, AMD users are just not accommodated at all.
All things considered, this would be a good choice for HTPCs users who are not too concerned too much about achieved high cooling performance- not the best ever but a good showing.
- Low profile
- Fairly quiet
- Not the best at countering the 130W TDP
- Not compatible with AMD sockets
- Installation method is not the best