Installation and Finished Product
Now that I had the fans open, I figured I would install them for a couple of images. This is more of a "śwell that looks cool like that"ť image. That is until I pulled out the tape measure.
The CNPS145X, when equipped in the push/pull/pull configuration is a full seven inches wide. Keep in mind that an ATX motherboard is less than ten inches wide; that doesn't leave much room for memory or connectivity.
I went ahead and loosened the screws to insert the mounting brackets into the base of the cooler. All you have to do from there is tighten things down and be sure the brackets are aligned with the screws and you are good to go ahead and finish the mounting of this cooler.
I don't believe in testing an oxidized cooler, so I went ahead and brightened the copper base back to new before I mount the CNPS14X on my test rig.
The back plate needs a bit of prep before getting underway with the installation. You slide the nuts through the holes for the socket of motherboard you have, lock them in place with the side caps and then I had to add the foam ring to keep the plate from touching the motherboard.
Once the back plate is in the socket holes of the motherboard, you set the CNPS14X on the CPU and grab those silver bolts and the spanner. Getting to them on this side wasn't all that bad, but the nuts on the side nearest the phase heat sinks definitely needed the spanner and patience to get this cooler mounted.
With the cooler mounted and the back plate where it will stay for a while, you can see that the holes drilled around the center allow for the socket screws to pass right through them. The foam pad rests on the socket plate in this instance, but with other sockets it will isolate the motherboard.
Running the CNPS14X as it arrives out of the box, plays well with the memory and allows a bit of room for even sticks with taller heat spreaders to populate all four slots.
Even from this angle you can see there is plenty of room for taller sticks. The bad thing is once you go to a three fan configuration; this room is quickly diminished, so keep that in mind if you have thoughts on adding a pair of fans to this cooler.
Stock, the CNPS14X doesn't take up a lot of room on the motherboard. You still have easy access to the 8-pin EPS plug, as well as removing RAM is very easy. Once the other two fans are on, adding the plug or messing with the memory in a case will get quite tricky without their removal first.
The last thing to consider with the CNPS14X is once you do go with the three fan configuration to try for the best results this cooler can offer, you will want to pick up a splitter or plan another means of powering these three separate fan power connections.