Zalman CNPS9500 AT LGA775 HSF

Article Index
Zalman CNPS9500 AT LGA775 HSF
Test Setup and Installation
Cooler Performance and Conclusion

Product: Zalman CNPS9500 AT LGA775 CPU Cooler
Provided By: Zalman USA
Price: $69.95 @ MemoryExpress

Introduction:

A few weeks back I requested the Zalman CPNS9500 AT cooler and Zalman responded by shipping out the very product I requested.  Unfortunately, I was stupid, well maybe not stupid, but I had assumed that this cooler was an updated version of the CNPS9500 LED unit.  I never read to see it's socket compatibility.  This cooler is designed for LGA775 platforms only, and we traditionally run AMD Socket 939 hardware.  I didn't want to look like a fool to Zalman and give them a call and say, "Sorry, I didn't even read your website to see if I could use this cooler."  So the quest was on to build a new test rig that doesn't suck for around $250CDN.  Thankfully, Intel has recently released its Dual Core Pentium 805 processor.  This is a dual core 2.66GHz 2x1MB L2 processor that shows some real overclocking potential and should be able to generate enough heat to test out HSF's pretty well.

To make a long story shorter, I managed to put together a new test rig thanks to Hitachi, Dallmann Computers, Crucial and the patience of my wife.  Thanks honey!

First Look:

The Zalman CNPS9500 AT is almost identical to the Zalman CNPS9500 LED.  They carry the same design that has proven to be an excellent performer.  There are a couple of notable differences however.  The AT cooler doesn't have a blue LED fan - instead it ships with a standard black fan.  If you have a window in your case and you want maximum bling, you may want to stick with the LED.

Zalman 9500AT - Front View
 Zalman 9500AT - Front View


 

Zalman 9500AT - Front/Side View
Zalman 9500AT - Front/Side View

As you can see above, the design is remarkably familiar.  Zalman has managed to come up with a new fresh design for the 9500 series HSF, and this is just a stripped down version for LGA775.

Zalman 9500AT - Side View
 Zalman 9500AT - Side View

 

Zalman 9500AT - Bottom View
 Zalman 9500AT - Bottom View


 

Although you can't see it in the pictures above, the CNPS9500 AT has the Zalman name stamped into each individual fin on the HSF.  Zalman pride I call it, and it works for me.  Also what you can't see in the picture on the right is the finish of the base.  Compared to the base of the CNPS9500 LED, the AT base is very rough and unfinished.  You can see and actually feel with your fingernail machining marks on the bottom of this unit.  I'm sure that if you took some sandpaper and a lapping stone you could gain a few more degrees with this cooler.  The finish is better than some coolers I've seen, but it's pretty rough for a Zalman cooler.

The bundle that Zalman includes is pretty lean this time around as this cooler is designed for only one Socket - LGA775.  As such it only includes mounting hardware for LGA775.  Also included is a small tube of thermal compound and a Zalman case badge.  It's not much but it works.

Zalman 9500AT - Bundle
Zalman 9500AT - Bundle

You may notice that the 9500 AT package doesn't include the FanMate2 controller like the 9500 LED cooler.  The AT package includes an Intel standard 4-pin fan, and forgoes the FanMate2 controller instead.  Your motherboard or temperature software will have to handle fan speed and performance.

On the next page we'll take a look at our test rig, test methods and get into installing this cooler.