Posted by: tranquilpc | May 17, 2010

ixL Cooling

Cooling a super computer is not easy !

Intel made cooling the latest i3 and i5 CPUs a little easier by dropping the TDP to approx 70W, but still cooling those chips without a fan requires very careful design.

Why fan less anyway ?

A computer has one main enemy – DUST !

When running a ‘normal’ PC in a ‘normal’ environment the fans, needed to cool the CPU / Graphics / PSU etc do a great job of sucking in cool air, and cooling down those hot parts.  But they also suck in dust, and other airborne particles. 

After a few days, weeks or months the dust layer on the internal parts will already have started to build up, and the result is eventual system failure.  The dust effectively creates an insulation barrier onto the item that the cool air is trying to cool down, not to mention the damage to the fan fins, fan bearings etc.

The build up of the dust layer and the increase in part temperature means that temperature controlled fans will increase in speed (noise) to try to cool the parts down, at the same time sucking in even more dust, and exerbating the problem !

Oh, and a side benefit is that the removal of fans also ensures a quieter, much quieter machine, not just when it is new, but also after many years, when the fan bearing are normally worn out.

Can you cool down the fast i3 and i5 CPUs ?

By utilising multiple heat pipe technology and specially treated heat sinks, Tranquil PC are happy to report that the chips well within Intel’s design tolerances, even when hard pressed (incl the i5 Turbo mode, where the i5-650 CPU has been tested above 4GHz).

cooling_top1

The top view of the ixL shows the optimised natural air flow over the fluted heat sink fins, which have been specially treated for maximum heat radiation (SA = 227,000mm2)

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