To evaluate the CNPS10X’s performance capabilities, we performed multiple runs of Cinebench 10 64-bit to torture our i7-960 and see if the CNPS10X was up to the task of keeping it cool and performing smoothly. We also installed two generic 1100 RPM 120mm fans to see how good the performance numbers will be when you add an extra fan into the mix. We tested the CNPS10X against Intel’s stock cooler, the Vigor Monsoon III LT, Prolimatech Megahalem, and the Zalman CNPS10X Extreme we reviewed last year.
Wow. Under idle conditions, we noticed a huge drop in temps over the other four heatsinks we added to our roundup. The CNPS10X Flex truly put those two 120mm fans to work as our LGA 1156 test bench hummed along at an average of 24c for all four cores. Very impressive.
Under 100 percent load conditions in Cinebench, the CNPS10X Flex also posted the best temperatures by almost five degrees over most of the other competitors. The design of the heatsink, smoothness of the copper base, and dual fans definitely contributed to these performance scores. I also think the mounting system Zalman incorporated also ensured there was good contact with the copper base and the CPU and thermal grease so we could get the best results during performance testing.