Eight Low-Profile CPU Coolers For Your Compact PC, Reviewed

AXP-200R Installation

Thermalright adds a support ring around the socket, and uses yet another bracket to push its cooler base towards the CPU. Divots on the edge of the ring align to AMD’s bracket hole spacing, and slots in the ring’s corners fit Intel’s LGA interfaces.

Shown on the previous page, carriage-style bolts attached to a socket support plate slide through motherboard holes to be topped with threaded spacers. Insulating washers prevent motherboard damage, and the assembly is topped with the ring-shaped cooler bracket and screws.

LGA 2011 installations instead use a set of supplied standoffs to attach the ring bracket over and around the socket.

Thermalrights AXP-200R does not support under-sink fan installation, but does clear DIMMs and motherboard components up to 1.4” tall. Missing fins at one end of the sink provide screwdriver access to install the final hold-down bracket.

Though its color scheme is ROG-specific, the AXP-200R’s red and black fan looks great with the red memory and black PCB of this non-ROG platform.

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  • LePhuronn
    Zalman CNPS2X conspicuous by its absence - 28mm tall cooler that claims to be able to shift 120W?
  • Sayken
  • tiu_sergiu
    There must be 2 winners
    Nocturna NH-L12 is best quality (Don't forgot about 6 ears of warranty)
    and Zalman CNPS8900 Quiet Smart Buy
  • Haravikk
    I'm a bit surprised by the Noctua offering, as they do have a much smaller only (37mm tall) but then I expect they wanted to use as much space as possible to ensure a good score.

    Also the NH-L12 I believe is compatible with Noctua's NF-A15 which is a 150mm PWM fan with 120mm mounting holes. In my perfect small form factor case I'd swap one of those as the top fan and just use a 150mm side vent as the only exhaust for the case, with other vents as intakes over the major components, or maybe leave off the top fan in favour of fitting an 200mm fan if space allows. That being for a high performance small case anyway, anything more modest I'd probably just go for the 37mm option.

    Another favourite option is Prolimatech's Samuel 17 cool (45mm) plus one of their 140mm x 15mm Ultra Sleek Vortex fans for a total height of ~60mm, which still tops out under 2.5"