Spire KestrelKing I Preview


Thanks to Bas from Fanner Group for sending this over to look at.

By now it is speculated that the AMD Athlon 64 (Hammer) will arrive this year. Many enthusiasts are eagerly waiting the release, as am I. The Athlon 64 will be based on a new chipset requiring a new motherboard, particularly based on the new Socket 754.  The Athlon 64 will require a new cooler to meet tomorrow's demands.

Today we will preview what the Athlon 64 heatsink fan installation will be like and what Spire's Athlon 64 coolers will look like. Introducing the Spire KestrelKing cooler for the AMD Athlon 64 processors!

The KestrelKing is constructed out of all-aluminum and utilizes a revamped 1-lug clip.  The clip provides an area where a flathead screwdriver is placed.  Again we see pre-applied thermal compound.  It comes in the traditional Spire box that looks attractive.


Socket 754 Cooling kit
Dimensions Heat sink :
12VDC Fan : 80×80×57 mm (l × w × h)

Bearing Ball bearing
Rated speed 4000 RPM +/-10%
Rated power 1.44 W
Noise level 27.5 dBA
Air flow 15.8 CFM at 4000 RPM
Current 0.12 A
Life hours Ball: 50.000
Connector 3 Pin, mainboard
Application AMD : Athlon 64 (Opteron)

Thermal resistance 0.36 °C/W
Thermal type White grease pre-applied

We can see by the specs that the Athlon 64 HSF's have lower thermal resistance, which is a good thing. I expect that the Athlon 64 coolers will provide better cooling than the current generation of CPU’s. Maybe the Athlon 64 will dissipate less heat. Who knows!

The construction of material was very good with only minor areas where it is a little sharp.  As the KestrelKing is based on an aluminum construction, you won't have to worry about it being heavy because it's very light.

I also noticed that the KestrelKing cooler has a large base area than current generation of coolers.  This leads me to think that the Hammer will be larger in the socket area.  It can be a possibility that it will be like the Pentium 4 socket area.  You will see why later on.

The fan measures 60mm in size and it is placed on a fan adaptor-like piece on the cooler.  I was surprised at the 15.8 CFM spec that it holds.  Does this make a difference of how good it will cool down the CPU?  We will see when we get the Athlon 64.  I predict that the Athlon 64 will dissipate less heat, thus this cooler only needs to blow 15.8 CFM's.


We are going to take you step by step on what you should expect when installing the KestrelKing cooler on the AMD Athlon 64.

1. As we do not have a new motherboard, this sample provides two things that take place of what the socket should be like.

Place the metal part on a flat surface.  This I believe depicts the motherboard.  Update:  This is in fact a back plate required for installation.  The back plate picture below goes on below the motherboard PCB.  You will peel off the white paper and that is a insulator.

2. Put the black component which I feel depicts the actual socket with it's lugs.  This looks like the piece on the Pentium 4 motherboards.  Anyway, now screw in the screws provided on top the metal component.  Update:  The black object is in fact a retention frame require for the heatsink to fall in.

3. Place cooler on the socket and clip both sides.

You're now done!  These are three easy steps that you will experience when installing the cooler on the Athlon 64.  However, some of the things, particularly the metal and black components do not apply to you.  All you need is the cooler to clip on the actual socket (the black object depicts the socket).


Since we don’t have the Hammer yet we can’t post any numbers, but when we get one we will surely update this page. From the looks of it, the Athlon 64 should be an easy to install coolers.  From the physical standpoint, the cooler is made very well and is very light.  I tested the fan to see how loud it was and I can say that it was relatively quiet.  It is around 30 dBA's from the specs and more quiet than the 40 dBA fan on the Dynatron (Green Fan) cooler.

I will update this page with more information and full testing results when we get our hands on a AMD Athlon 64 system.  We cannot wait!  Update: As said before we are going to update this page with numbers.  If this cooler proves good, we are going to try to achieve better or the best temperatures with a simple mod.  That will come later.

Let me thank Bas for sending this to preview.

Update:  You may view the AMD Athlon 64 Processor Thermal Design Guide for more information (Zip file).  Expect a full how-to when we put together a Athlon 64 system.  Don't take what you see here today is the final how-to version because it is not.  We are going to be officially writing a how to later and a official look on reviewing this cooler when we get a hold of a Athlon64.

Thanks for reading.


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