Zalman CNPS 9500 Heatsink Review

zalman-9500

Installation

In order to install the 9500 on the socket 478 all I had to do was slide two pieces of metal in over the already existing chassis that held down the original heatsink.  This is an overwhelming convenience compared to some of the other heatsinks I’ve had to install lately.  I absolutely love not having to gut a computer and completely remove the mobo just to install a freaking heatsink.

Installation is not so easy for all other socket installations.  Unless you are upgrading from another Zalman cooler, then you will probably have to remove the motherboard and mount the included plastic mounting brackets.  The included bracket will accomodate the ZIF lever for Socket 775, and is also notched to accept the curved retention pin.  There are only two notches on the bracket, so you need to make sure it is positioned correctly so your cooler blows towards your case’s exhaust and not the top or bottom of your case… or you will have to remove your motherboard again.


Once the brackets are installed, you must maneuver the curved retention pin through the heatpipe jungle near the base of the 9500.  Attach the other side of the pin, press down with your thumb until the pin catches on the plastic bracket’s spurs, and you’re golden.  It can be very frustrating at first, but once you get the hang of if you can do it blindfolded (well, almost).

I applied the thermal grease, clipped the heatsink into place, connected the wires and booted that baby up so I could get into some hardcore gaming.  Well, some softcore gaming, it is a P4 after all.  So how did it do?  Read on, you goofy goobers.