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ZALMAN CNPS9900ALED 120mm 2 Ball Low-noise Blue LED CPU Cooler
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  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

5 out of 5 eggs Terrific Cooler 02/25/2014

This review is from: ZALMAN CNPS9900ALED 120mm 2 Ball Low-noise Blue LED CPU Cooler

Pros: Does a great job of cooling.
Like most Zalman coolers, looks almost alien.

Cons: Somewhat fussy installation.
Those notorious, razor sharp Zalman copper blades!

Other Thoughts: I was a bit apprehensive about buying this cooler for an AM3+/GIGIBYTE build after reading the difficulties many have had with installation. But, the price and rebate were hard to pass up, and I’ve always had a great deal of luck with Zalman. So, caution be darned and let’s see what the issues are.

First-things-first: I installed this thing in 20 minutes. I should add that I could see the potential issue with the mounting screws not quite reaching the mounting nuts fastened to the backplate. However, knowing about this ahead of time, I skipped the second half of Step 3 and did not attach the padded, double-sided tape to the loading block. This got the mounting screws an extra millimeter or so closer to the mounting nuts, which was just enough. (Note that the enclosed User’s Manual indicates that the double-sided tape “…is not a necessary component.”)

A second strategy I found useful was keeping the rigid plastic cover on the unit during installation. The User’s Manual early on instructs you to “…unclip and remove the heatsink's plastic brace before installing the cooler.” But, on close inspection, it seemed obvious that the cover could be easily snipped off after installation. Keeping the plastic cover on accomplishes two things: You can mostly avoid getting your fingers and hands cut to shreds by those notorious Zalman copper blades; and, the rigid plastic cover is braced in such a way that you can apply some moderate pressure to its top during installation to help with the threading of those four, potentially troublesome mounting screws.

A surprisingly easy installation, all things considered. Periodic checks of the CPU temp under a variety of loads has yet to show it above 30C, although I’m not a gamer. And, whisper quiet, too, if by “whisper” you mean it *literally* can’t be heard. What’s not to like? …as long as you go in prepped.


John J.'s Profile

Display Name: John J.

Date Joined: 04/11/09

  • Reviews: 1
  • Helpfulness: 1
  • First Review: 02/25/14
  • Last Review: 02/25/14
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