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Four Way AMD Athlon XP Heatsink Shootout - ThermalTake TR2-M2

Even though it is under one week till AMD conduct their worldwide launch of their desktop 64-bit processor, Athlon 64, many people will still buy current Athlon XP 32-bit processors for a little while to come as Athlon 64 drives its pricing down across the globe. Today Shawn "Toxic" Baker has a four way AMD Athlon XP heatsink shootout comparing two heatsinks from CoolerMaster and Thermaltake including the CoolerMaster Jet 7 which only came out of NDA today!

| CPU Liquid Coolers in Cases, Cooling & PSU | Posted: Sep 17, 2003 4:00 am

ThermalTake TR2-M2

 

- TR-M2

 

ThermalTake have been in the cooler game for quite a while now and some of you may even remember slapping that Golden Orb on to your old Pentium 3 slot 1 processor all those years ago.

 

When you first look at the cooler you notice just how much it looks like the Vantec Aero Flow. Having a closer look you notice that it uses the same TMD fan to help shrink the dead spot that traditional fans produce. The TR2-M2 might not be the most unique cooler but it's still an AMD cooler, so we will how it performs in just a few moments.

 

 

- The Heatsink

 

The heatsink is quite ordinary looking and has a very low fin count. When there is less fins there is less surface area for the heat to move around on, which normally causes the heatsink to get warmer and overall doesn't give you the performance you would want or expect. We will see if this affects the performance of the cooler in just a few pages.

 

 

- The Base

 

The TR2-M2 cooler from ThermalTake is the only cooler we have here that has a copper slug compared to an all copper base. While it is very smooth a copper insert compared to an all copper base won't perform as well.

 

 

- The Fan

 

The fan used in the TR2-M2 is a Tip-Magnetic Driven fan, because of the smaller center area the dead spot on the fan is a lot smaller which of course helps when it comes to cooling the heatsink. The fan pushes 35.5 CFM @ 5600 RPM at 38 dBA. At full speed the fan is quite load but not as load as the Aero 7+ when at full speed. The fan on the M2 is only 74mm when compared to the 80mm fans that are found on the other three coolers. The fan found on the M2 is very low profile and helps make it the shortest cooler in the shoot out.

 

 

- The Clip

 

The clip found on the M2 needs a screw driver to be installed. ThermalTake have done the right thing by including little clips on the side and bottom for you to insert the screw driver into. Thanks to the side clips it is a lot harder, if not impossible, for the screwdriver to come out and hit the motherboard.

 

While a design similar to the CoolerMaster would have been much nicer, this design is definitely not bad and helps bring down the overall cost of the cooler.

 

 

- Fan Control

 

The M2 uses the ThermalTake Fan Speed Controller which helps when it comes to slowing down the fan. While it doesn't have the same amount of control as the CoolerMaster coolers, it does give you the ability to set the fan to High, Medium or Low.

 

The controller comes mounted to a back plate which gives you the ability to screw it to the back of your case. Behind the case is a lot safer as if you do have people around your PC tempted to fiddle or go to LANs people won't notice that you can adjust the fan speed. At high speed the fan spins at 5600 RPM and 38 dBA, at medium speed 4500 RPM and 34 dBA and finally at low speed 3000 RPM and 30dBA.

 

Further Reading: Read and find more Cases, Cooling & PSU content at our Cases, Cooling & PSU reviews, guides and articles index page.

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