Thermaltake Big Typhoon (CL-P0114) CPU Cooler Review
With the arrival of dual core processors, there has been a major overhaul of product lines from Intel and AMD. Coming out with faster processors, overclocking processors translates into more heat output from these chips and that means faster spinning fans for the stock heatsink/fan (HSF) combo that come supplied with these processors. If you have ever heard a stock Intel 775 HSF, you know that it isn’t exactly quiet and that it doesn’t cool the best. The same goes with the AMD side.
Thermaltake is a name brand synonymous with cooling products in the computer industry. Today I will be reviewing their new HSF dubbed the ‘Big Typhoon’. Don’t let the name scare you – this is one typhoon you’ll want to check out.
This Thermaltake Big Typhoon was kindly supplied by the great folks over at ClubIT.com. Please check ClubIT.com for great deals on a wide variety of computer products.
As you can see from the specifications, one of the great things about the Big Typhoon is that it supports universal AMD and Intel platforms. The other thing that probably has caught your eye is its size: weighing in at 813g, it is probably the heaviest heatsink I’ve reviewed to date.
Receiving the Typhoon from ClubIT, you first get an idea of what you are dealing with by the sheer size of the box. I have to say it took me by surprise. On the other hand, the Thermaltake box, in its traditional red theme, nicely protected its contents.
Upon opening the box, you are presented with the following items.
The Thermaltake Big Typhoon is pure delight to look at. The thing is a work of art. The huge 120mm fan (with a grill on top) sits on the aluminum heatsink containing 142 fins and from the heatsink circulates air across the copper heatpipes. Everything is well constructed, shiny, and quite attractive. The cooler is very large so it is recommended that you make sure you have enough room to mount it in your case.
The quality of the whole heatsink/fan combination is excellent. The Big Typhoon is made and crafted perfectly. The bottom the copper base that is connected to the heatpipes, though it contains visible machine sanding marks, is very flat for a fine contact with the CPU.
Thermaltake has tried to simplify the installation process over the various universal platforms it supports by the use of screws, nuts and bolts, and brackets.
In my case the Big Typhoon was installed on an AMD K8 platform, namely the Socket 754, on an MSI mobo. Installation went pretty smoothly without any major problems. For such a big cooler, I thought it would be harder. For the K8, it consists of determining which back plate you have (metal or plastic). Luckily I had the metal frame type. Next you remove the black retention frame (on top the motherboard, not underneath) and it is now ready to be installed. You take and put the H bracket in place on the Big Typhoon, get ready two short screws and then align the base of the heatsink for screwing down on to the metal back plate. All this was done inside the Casepower PC case I reviewed a while back. I did have to remove the PSU to make room to screw the Typhoon down on my MSI motherboard.
I do however see some potential problems for some people. With the Big Typhoon being as large as it is, you must use a long reach screwdriver (thin as possible) and you have to estimate the amount of force used in screwing the HSF down. I screwed mine down until I got to the point where my screwdriver was slipping out of the screwhead.
Depending on your particular configuration, you may need to remove your mobo from your case to get more room to work with.
Results + System Specs
The AMD Athlon 3000+ CPU used in testing is overclocked 200MHz over stock @ 2200MHz, with a VCore of 1.55V. Ambient temperature was around 28 degrees Celsius at the time of testing. For testing, we will look at the following measures: idle, load playing NFS: Most Wanted, and a second load measure using Toast at five minutes on the High Priority setting.
Compared below is the Thermaltake water-cooling results from a previous review...
These results amazed me. Right from immediate startup there was a clear difference in CPU temperatures and also system temperatures. The Big Typhoon manages stellar numbers reminiscent of water-cooling type numbers and better than some water-coolers.
Let me give you an example of how well this heatsink cools things down. Look at this image. 30 degrees Celsius idle @ 2200MHz. Simply sick. I’ve never seen that number using the Aquarius water-cooling kit. I've seen this on a couple occasions thats it has become normal to see these type of numbers.
The 120mm fan isn’t at all noisy and spins only at 1318RPM. Mind you I didn’t hear anything extra since my case already boasts three 120mm fans. But 1318RPM and being 120mm in size, means that the fan is pretty darn quiet.
The Thermaltake Big Typhoon is the best cooler I have EVER tested thus far (this being July 2006). Coupled with heatpipes, the Typhoon is nothing short of stellar. It offers near close and/or better performance than water-cooling and awesome styling. The only potential difficulty is in installation aspect of things where caution is the word in tightening everything down.
All in all, the Thermaltake Big Typhoon deserves and wears its name with pride. This thing is truly a beast.
A BIG THANKS GOES OUT TO CLUBIT.COM. CHECK THEM OUT FOR A HUGE INVENTORY OF PRODUCTS.
Pros and Cons
Other Images of the Thermaltake Big Typhoon