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thermalright ultra 120 the best air cooler for 775?

Last response: in Overclocking
May 12, 2007 5:56:40 PM

Hello. Just to be sure, the ultra 120 has beaten the tuniq off the top spot yes? it is the best thing to keep an e6600 cool without liquid or ice yes?
May 12, 2007 6:02:18 PM

Most people would agree that the current top dawg is the Ultra 120 Extreme. Take a look at this review at
May 12, 2007 6:06:26 PM

Marvelous. Exactly what I needed to know. Things just move so fast I can't keep up.
Related resources
May 12, 2007 7:35:27 PM

From what I have read, pretty much everyone agrees that it's one hell of a good cooler. I don't know what the availability is like right now since it's a new product.
May 12, 2007 7:38:11 PM

It is sold out EVERYWHERE!!!!!!
May 12, 2007 9:34:34 PM

Just noticed there's only one retailer in denmark, and indeed there are 5-10 days delay. But on the other hand, the memory modules I want won't arrive till next month anyway :) 

How much better is it than the tuniq in reallife performance ? I'm asking, because it costs 30% more than the tuniq (which is in stock)
May 12, 2007 11:02:00 PM

I have an ultra 120 extreme on an e6600 overclocked to 3.4 on a current build and it idles at 30C and Load (using TAT) 48C with 25C ambient. The stock cooler at stock speeds idled at 44C and Load (using TAT) 77C.
May 13, 2007 11:29:33 AM

I bought mine from heatsinkfactory but they are currently out of stock. You should email them and ask when new stock is expected. They are very helpful and a great e-vendor.
May 13, 2007 12:49:08 PM

Partner it with a Scythe S-Flex 63 CFM fan as in the Anandtech report and you won't be disappointed for either noise or cooling.
May 13, 2007 1:40:48 PM

I second that fan (I have one and it is silent).
May 13, 2007 2:09:59 PM

Just noticed there's only one retailer in denmark,

He lives in Denmark

Neiro: Here is a link to an Anandtech review that has stats for them together. It doesn't start to really outshine the Tuniq Tower until you compare them OC'd at 3.8Ghz or higher. My concern with the TT would be fitting it inside the case/on the motherboard. You would need to research its dimensions vs your motherboard. You could also check on the Tuniq website to see if it is specified to be compatible with your mobo.
a c 197 K Overclocking
May 13, 2007 2:28:37 PM

I have been watching this topic with interest. I would like to pick up a better HSF when I go home next time. The reason I did not pick up a tuniq was that i did not know if it would fit in my case.

Sure would like to reach 3.6 GHz at reasonable temperatures and voltages.

Hey, Rugger. I am in Dhahran. Where are you at?

May 13, 2007 2:38:43 PM

Jubail - only an hours drive. Amazing how small the world is...
May 13, 2007 2:45:28 PM

What voltage are you running for 3.3? I'm assuming you're talking about the e6600.
a c 197 K Overclocking
May 13, 2007 6:19:30 PM

Yes. Motherboard setting is 1.45 v - BIOS reports 1.4 v. I had to go to over 1.55 v for 3.6 GHz. On the other hand, my particular E6600 will run at 3.0 GHz at 1.25 vdc.

Indeed, 'tis a small world.
May 13, 2007 6:22:32 PM

A lot of what I've seen says the e6600s can be stubborn when you go past ~3.4Ghz and voltage may not help on some chips.
May 13, 2007 6:26:16 PM

If you want to push the e6600 that hard, run it consistently at that speed, and have some extra dollars to spend, then you should seriously think about watercooling. The right WC components can be quiet and still OC to those levels...
May 13, 2007 7:15:37 PM

As others have said, the 120 extreme is the cooler to get - I'm just so gutted that it doesn't come with attachments for socket 939 :x
May 13, 2007 8:05:41 PM

I don't have a regular 120 unfortunately.

So can I can buy the mount for s939 separately? I've only seen the AM2 mount sold separately so far.

This would be great news as I really want one of these!
May 13, 2007 9:21:31 PM

You're a star tacos - thanks very much for this

May 13, 2007 10:13:36 PM

I agree with the other posters that this is the best air cooler available at this time according to the reviews on Anandtech. However, be aware that there are some quality issues related to this cooler. I found this post on another forum, and after searching the same forum, found a couple more posts on the same problem.

I also have recently purchased one of these heatsinks. Mine also has a poorly finished contact surface (not level), but I believe I've been fortunate as it's in an area that is not in contact with the cpu heatspreader (along one edge).
May 13, 2007 10:52:59 PM

I agree that, in general, Thermalright's quality is normally of the highest standard. However, there are a number of ppl reporting badly finished contact surfaces on these new heatsinks (myself included).

Lapping would indeed solve the problem, but it is not something that we should be expected to do as consumers. Also note that doing so would invalidate any warranty.
May 14, 2007 10:33:48 AM

Holy sh1t! gone for a short periode, and already like 20 posts to read!

@ rugger - space concern probably isn't even one. I'm planning on buying a ga-p35-ds3 - and a guy with a ds4 sais that the extreme can fit, and since the ds3 doesn't have the vrm cooling, it can definetly fit there as well. I've alraedy got a scythe ninja on my current build, and I did consider just keeping that one, but it's rumored to fit poorly in the rubbish intel socket (using it on a 939 ; works brilliantly). Also u mention water cooling. Is that really nessecary for 3.6? I've got a custom built chassis, so there's no way I can fit water in there. Only free spot's in the front of the motherboard, and that's where the hd's are. And lapping. Why's it nessecary? I've never lapped anything in my computer. My current build is limited by the sata controller being unable to keep up at 294fsb ; cpu could go a bit futher, and before I reach a thermal issue there, I'll run out of voltage (the bios won't let me go past 1,4v on the core)

So to get my question answered:

Should I really invest 500kr (67) on a TR 120 extreme, or can I make do with a tuniq (but replace the fan with my scythe from the ninja)?
The ninja is going to be used on a passively cooled p4 system that isn't built yet, so I won't need the fan.
May 14, 2007 11:04:56 AM

Also u mention water cooling. Is that really nessecary for 3.6?

A lot of people are needing 1.5V or more to get the E6600 over around 3.5Ghz. That much voltage puts out a lot of heat and a WC setup is better capable of removing the excess heat from higher OCs like that. WC may not be required to get 3.6, but it makes it easier if you have the extra $ to spend.
a c 197 K Overclocking
May 14, 2007 3:03:15 PM

... then you should seriously think about watercooling.

I have not seriously considered watercooling. The extra 10% or so (over 3.3GHz) is not worth the expense or trouble to me.

The upside is that WC will actually pull heat out of the case instead of just recirculating a good part of it.
May 15, 2007 5:27:39 PM

perhaps it's like the celerons of old - the 6300 and 6400 (not 6x20) have half the cache, thus the cache generates less heat. Or they just exaggerate, who knows.

ps. air can be designed to leave the case too u know.
at least in my cabinet not much of the heat lingers.
(link to my computer)
a c 197 K Overclocking
May 16, 2007 11:32:31 AM


ps. air can be designed to leave the case too u know.
at least in my cabinet not much of the heat lingers.
(link to my computer)

Yes, I know that, with a little attention to detail, fans do a pretty good job of removing heat from inside a case. But watercooling is a more efficient method of extracting heat from a case.
May 16, 2007 12:08:22 PM

Thermalright Ultra-120/ Extreme and Tuniq Tower 120 are the best. All 3 are just about in par so whichever you pick is a good choice.
May 16, 2007 12:46:03 PM

I had to lap my Thermalright as well, it was kinda concave. I only figured it out after I lapped my e6600. The whole time I blamed Intel. I kinda just thought the Thermalright Ultra 120 had a good reputation. Lapping the e6600 dropped 5c on load, lapping both dropped 10c+ on load for core0 and core1. I went all the way up to 2000 grit on each.

Before lapping of any kind e6600 at 3.6ghz 1.55 vcore = around 70c-73c load, external idle 42c.

after lapping e6600 = 65-67c load, external idle 39c or 40c

after lapping both = 60c-63c load, external idle 38c. External maxes out at 51c full Orthos small ffts.

All ambient is 25c, using Arctic Ceramique. All tests were done using Orthos small ffts.

This is a new batch of Thermalright though cause I just bought it after it was back in stock.

I think I'll lap all heatsinks from now on just in case because it's only 30 minutes to make sure you have top quality.

Are my temps ok for aircooling? I do not know how I compare to others using the same vcore at 3.6ghz. Please post your results =).
May 16, 2007 1:17:53 PM

I think I'll lap all heatsinks from now on just in case because it's only 30 minutes to make sure you have top quality.

What were the "steps" you used to lap the HS?
May 16, 2007 1:55:14 PM

Buy 300, 400, 600, 1000, and 2000 WetNDry. 1000 and 2000 was found at Wal-Mart's automotive.

I started out by lapping the Thermalright with 300 grit sandpaper on a flat glass table. It's very important that you have a good wide gliding surface. You do not want to use much weight on the heatsink. Let gravity do most of the work because it's a very heavy object as it is. For the first grits, heatpipes to the left and right.

Lap away till you see the copper. The copper on my heatsink showed up first on the sides and the very middle very last. This is how I knew it was concave. It took a good 5-10 minutes to do. I would push it, then bring it back closer to me and push again. It's very hard to do the back and forth motion on this grit. After the last silver is gone, move to the next grit as this is the indication that is is finally level. By having to lift it up and bringing it back, I was sanding a different pattern each time so I din't have to rotate it 90 degrees...You'll find lapping it with the heatpipes facing you is very tough to do evenly anyway.

Next, I used 400 grit, moving it back and forth until it's kinda shiny. I did this about 30 pushes. Once again, use only pushes for about 5-10 minutes.

Now, use the 600 grit paper. Use the same lift to you and push out method. I did this about 30 pushes. Wet your sandpaper now and do another 30 pushes. Wetting the sandpaper makes this a lil better than 600 and will prep it for the 1000 grit. I thought to do this since I did not have 800grit.

The next steps are very fast since it'll just glide. When gliding, use your thumb and pointer on each side. Remember to let gravity do the work and just move it parallel with the glass table.

Moving onto the 1000 grit, You can now kinda glide it back and forth now. I did another 20 reps (reps = out and back), turn it with heatpipes towards me and did 20reps. Then added water and did another 20 reps, gliding back and forth. Turn it with heatpipes left and right, do 20.

Finally, use the 2000 grit one for 30-40 reps. Turn it heatpipes toward you, do another 30-40. This will provide a very very shiny reflective surface.

May 16, 2007 2:28:18 PM

Nice write up - thanks!

This is a Lapping Guide from, an on-line retailer in Texas. Do you think this is a good technique? I noticed they recommend oil or lubricant, and you just used water.

Heat Sink Lapping - An Installation Guide
May 16, 2007 3:51:59 PM

That guide would probably give me a little better and professional results but I think I'm happy with the 10c drop. My main goal was to rid the concave surface. My glass table was wide enough that the motions I was making was sufficient. Plus, this particular hsf we are talking about is bulky to handle.

I would recommend using their method if a very flat surface was not available.
May 16, 2007 11:15:53 PM

... then you should seriously think about watercooling.

I have not seriously considered watercooling. The extra 10% or so (over 3.3GHz) is not worth the expense or trouble to me.

The upside is that WC will actually pull heat out of the case instead of just recirculating a good part of it.

What EVGA 680i Mobo do you have. When you OC does the Mobo make a winding noise??
May 17, 2007 12:12:43 AM

Sorry to say but that that forum post you linked is completely off, there is in no way he got a "BAD" heatsink, its not like cpu's or ram where a different module can overclock higher than the other. Its metal and regardless of how well the base is machined they will perform very similarly. Thermalright ships them that way cause they know it still performs just as well. That was thermal paste is for.

That guy who posted in the other forum must not have good contact with the cpu and should consider remounting it. Its pretty typical that someone of his level of experience would not mount a heatsink of that size correctly.
May 19, 2007 5:49:55 PM

Does Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme have a fan?
May 19, 2007 6:44:51 PM

Does Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme have a fan?

You'll need to buy one for it; it doesn't come with one from the factory. I bought a Scythe S-FLEX SFF21F but only paid $14 for it. For some reason they're $25 now @ newegg.
May 22, 2007 6:38:02 AM

while were on the topic, for the ultra 120, or the tuniq tower, whats the best 120 mm fan to pair it with? i know the scythe s-flex fan with 60+ cfm is really good but what about others like
AeroCool XtremeTurbine-Blue Case Fan 120mm? which pushes 80+ CFM
May 22, 2007 12:08:11 PM

It's often a balance between airflow and acceptable noise. You have to decide how much airflow you need or want (your OC/temps might determine how much you need), and what fan noise level is acceptable to you. Higher CFM also comes with higher dBA in most cases.
May 22, 2007 11:23:13 PM

well i want to do a good overclock with my e6420 and the turbine provides great airflow
May 22, 2007 11:58:19 PM

hmm, yeah I figured it was hype as well. Will a lower CFM scythe s-flex fan still be good to pair up with a ultra 120?
May 23, 2007 3:17:36 AM

Here's a better price (best I've seen): jab-tech

@ $3.00 a pop :!:
May 23, 2007 4:59:44 AM

Hmmm so cheap, really nice find thanks guys. Also i was wondering, are the fans that come with the antec 900 good? or should i repace those
May 23, 2007 9:12:08 AM

They're quiet on the low settings, but get too loud, IMO, on the med/high settings. You can try them and replace if you are not happy.
May 23, 2007 6:12:14 PM

hmm, alright well Ill check it out, thanks for showing me those loons
May 23, 2007 7:24:50 PM

You're welcome :wink: