Zalman hasn’t released a fundamentally new cooling system for the past four years. At a certain point, they even got the impression that they were no longer interested in this segment of the market. However, at recent international computer shows, Zalman showed off many new cases and coolers. And soon all this will reach our latitudes. And something has already arrived. Meet — updated in the «spirit of the times» version of the well-known Zalman CNPS10X Optima II cooler.
Packing and scope of delivery
The cooler comes in a characteristic glossy package with color printing on the sides. There is an image of the product, a visual and textual description of its advantages (and in 14 languages at once), and even some technical characteristics. But the main thing is that the contents are reliably protected from damage during transportation by soft dampers inside.
The package includes quite a few parts. Among them:
- installation instructions;
- universal metal reinforcement plate;
- 200 mm fan power splitter from one four-pin connector to two connectors of four and three pins;
- two mounting feet for AMD AM3 and AM4 series sockets;
- two mounting feet for sockets Intel LGA 115x, 1366, 2011;
- four plastic stoppers for studs for Intel sockets;
- four screw clips for Intel sockets;
- four plastic stoppers for studs for AMD sockets;
- four screw clips for AMD sockets;
- adhesive white square for reinforcing plate;
- black plastic square for reinforcement plate (required when mounting on AMD sockets);
- four screw racks for Intel LGA 2011 sockets;
- L-shaped hexagonal screwdriver;
- a bag of Zalman STG-2M thermal paste;
- four Phillips screws for Intel sockets;
- four hex screws for AMD sockets;
- four long screws for mounting the fan.
Design CNPS10X Optima II «improved» in comparison with its predecessor due to the plastic lining on the sides and top of the radiator. In this version, they are painted white together with the fan, but according to rumors, there will also be a black version of the cooler. Needless to say, the pads significantly increase the dimensions of the device. The propeller is attached to the plastic bodywork with metal screws and is not adjustable in height.
On the side plastic wall there is an inscription with the name of the cooler and a vertical hole in the central part. Most likely, it is needed here for beauty. In terms of blowing, it would be better without it.
On the reverse side, the radiator is open and, sadly, there is no way to properly fix the second fan.
The top panel has several designer cutouts, including a hexagonal hole with the Zalman logo in the center. The sanded texture of white plastic is trying very hard to look like metal. A translucent plastic is inserted into the holes, behind which are the backlight LEDs.
The fan looks very similar to the Zalman ZM-DF12 series with its impeller. The main feature of transparent blades is that there are actually two sets of them — nine large and nine small. As a result, a mini-impeller with 18 blades is formed near the central part of the rotor. It is likely that this innovation somehow improves the airflow in the bearing area, where it is traditionally the least. Another feature worth noting is the rubber dampers on the corners of the frame on both sides. And four white backlight diodes. The fan is controlled by PWM in the speed range from 900 to 1500 rpm. In terms of noise, this is between 39 and 53 dB(A). The bearing is hydraulic. In general, the propeller is quite quiet, although it does have a noticeable vibration. The black four-pin power cord is 200 mm long.
The mounting holes for the fan are plastic and not reinforced with any metal clips. Therefore, when tightening the screws, you should not make extra efforts so as not to break the thread. Please note that the top plate light has its own 100mm 3-prong power cable.
To dismantle the plastic body kit, you will need to unscrew two screws from the bottom, on each side and one from the top. Under the top plate on two separate boards, we found 14 RGB backlight diodes and circuits to control them.
And this is what the bare radiator CNPS10X Optima II looks like. In comparison with the old version, the shape of the radiator plates has changed, but the arrangement of four 6-mm heat pipes has remained the same. Without a plastic body kit, the dimensions of the radiator are 134×48 mm and 150 mm in height, and the weight is 498 grams. With a body kit: 143x64x160 mm and 752 grams excluding fasteners.
Four heat pipes are arranged in two rows one after the other. The radiator has 56 fins with a gap of 1.6 mm. The total heat dissipation area is about 7200 cm².
Bends of the ribs appeared on the sides on the sides, which, leaning against each other, create a stiffening frame and prevent the plates from sticking to each other.
From above, you can clearly see the layout of the heat pipes and the fact that the plates do not have significant improvements in terms of aerodynamics, apart from the recesses in the central part.
The clamping pad on the base remains the same as on the latest current versions of the CNPS10X.
The base is made using direct contact technology. The aluminum plate is simply pressed onto the heat pipes from above and does not play any special role in heat dissipation.
The workmanship and evenness of the base leaves much to be desired. The gaps between the tubes at the base are 2 mm, no one was engaged in fitting the aluminum plate. There are differences in height between the central and lateral parts of the tubes.
Let’s move on to installation and testing.