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3D Spotlight : Hardware : 3DfxCOOL Socket 370 Alpha 7HO-FAN review

3DfxCOOL Socket 370 Alpha 7HO-FAN review
Posted by Adam Klein on September 16, 1999 - Page 2/3
Company: 3DfxCOOL     Product: Socket 7-370 Alpha 7HO-FAN

Installation (continued)

The Alpha design states that the fan should be facing away from the heatsink, but 3DfxCOOL recommends the unit to be blowing onto the heatsink. I agree with 3DfxCool’s method. I currently have my CPU in an MSI v1.1 converter board placed in an Abit BX6 r2 motherboard. The heatsink is placed on its side rather than directly towards the motherboard because of the slocket converter, so I can see why blowing towards the heatsink would be more beneficial.

The MPU 3.7 heatsink compound is really heavy-duty stuff and is bundled with the 3DfxCOOL Alpha 7-370 unit. This thermal compound has been ranked the highest quality around.

Previously, I have been using the cheaper Radio Shack stuff. The compound that is shipped with the 3DfxCOOL Alpha is much much much more thicker than the cheaper Radio Shack stuff and performs much better too. The fan that comes with the unit is a 60mm by 25mm unit capable of 27.2 cfm. The fan is also a ball bearing unit, which means it is a little bit noisy, but will last a long time.

Overclocking Results

When it comes to overclocking, a lot of people uses the Alpha and for good reasons too. My results were impressive to me. The place where I ordered my guaranteed overclocked Celeron 366 CPU to 550MHz recommended 2.2 volts for stable operation at the 550MHz overclocked speed.

The place obviously didn’t do any “burning in” of the CPU, because after 6 hours of looping unreal I was able to run the CPU 100% stable at 2.1 volts. This was with the smaller generic cooler that was supplied with the CPU. After putting the Alpha on this very same CPU, I was able to enable turbo mode (103MHz FSB) to run the CPU at 567MHz and I lowered the voltage to the default 2.0 volts. I then ran the Unreal flyby loop at this speed for 8 hours straight without one single lockup. I was impressed to say the least. I then tried for 616MHz.

While the CPU was unstable, I was able to boot into Windows 98 at 2.3 volts. The previous cooler would stop at the splash screen. I’m not one to keep trying for these super high overclocking speeds, so I am comfortable with running the CPU at 567. Besides, why worry about if the CPU is going to lock up and if you can get the highest number of frags in Quake 2 when you can just be worrying the later?

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