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Finding an appropriately-sized heatsink

I have an XPS 430 tower. Some sites have been referring them to mini-towers, but I guess that might be another term for medium-sized tower? Anyways, I purchased a HD 5850 1mb ram card for it. When I opened the package, I realized that it was a very long and thick card. However, I had plenty of room to stick this in.

More recently, I realized that the full potential of the card was held back due to my processor. I have this older quadcore 2.5ghz processor, thus the card won't do anything spectacular for me. I get 30-40 fps at best in World of Warcraft which is low even with maxed settings. Anyways, I decided to purchase an I7 950 because it seems to be a great processor for gaming. I'm not sure if the I5 750 performs just as well for gaming, but I decided to go with the other.

For a mini-tower (AKA Medium-sized tower), what size heatsink will it allow? I've noticed that there are i7-supported heatsinks generally 120mm in size, but there is 92mm heatsink from newegg.com.

Note: The DELL XPS series seems to come with a shroud of some sort. I'm not sure if that's true or changes anything, but I'd like to know how that will affect my installing a heatsink as well.
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  1. Well first of the I7 950 needs a new LGA1366 motherboard. It will not fit in a LGA775 board. I5 750 would have been enough for gaming but it needs a LGA 1156 motherboard. Both platforms will need DDR3 ram.
    If this has been taken into account then we can worry about the cooler.
  2. :) Please post a CPUZ pic of the specifics of your rig since the variation in the XPS430 series has a few other options too.
    So basically if you were to put an icore x into your rig we wouldn't know whether they're compatible or not :( and I hope that's an ATI HD58501GB Card and not 1MB or you've been had real bad.
  3. I'm deciding to purchase an antec 300 case with the new asus sabertooth motherboard and i7 950. I already have an 850w psu, but do i need to purchase a heatsink?
  4. it's 1gb LOL
  5. For overclocking a after market heat sink is a good idea. This one comes highly recommended http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103065&cm_re=hyper_212%2b-_-35-103-065-_-Product
    If you are not overclocking then the stock cooler that comes with the CPU is enough.
  6. OK, since you already have a list of the new things, the answer is no, you'll not need a new heatsink for your GPU, I guess, that was your question right? and for the CPU the Hyper 212 with a push pull config should do fine. As stated by ct1615 & rolli59, thats a decent cooler and will fit into your case.
  7. Agreed ct1615 :)
  8. Also use the CM 212+ as I need a very quiet system and the stock Intel cooler could get noisy under load, in my Antec 200 it runs passively and has no problems with a stock clocked i5 750.
    Of course when overclocked things are a little different, but even with a single fan it can handle 3.2GHz overclocks @50% fanspeed.
  9. alyoshka said:
    OK, since you already have a list of the new things, the answer is no, you'll not need a new heatsink for your GPU, I guess, that was your question right? and for the CPU the Hyper 212 with a push pull config should do fine. As stated by ct1615 & rolli59, thats a decent cooler and will fit into your case.


    What exactly is a GPU? Is that the motherboard? Are you saying that it comes with a heatsink, but the processor doesn't? I thought that the processor is packaged with one as well? And if I don't plan on overclocking, would I need to purchase any new fans/heatsinks for my motherboard or cpu? I just need this cleared up. I'm a bit confused.

    Motherboard: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131665
    Processor: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115211
    Case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.437504.11-119-233

    Correction: I just realized that a motherboard requires a heatsink, whereas the processor requires a cooler. If this is correct, then the motherboard and processor has their own respective heatsink and cooler? If that's true, would I actually need to purchase anything else if I don't plan on overclocking? I hope that the case helps a bit too.
  10. Doesn't the HD 5850 have a built-in fan in the actual card? Will Asus sabretooth motherboard have a fan/heatsink with it? Also, the case that I'm getting has 2 fans inside of it. I'm not sure if I can use the fans from the Dell case. I think that I can.
  11. Best answer
    The HD5850 Does have the heatsink and fan on it, but your question stated
    "When I opened the package, I realized that it was a very long and thick card. However, I had plenty of room to stick this in. "
    That sounded like a doubt and people do customize their cards so there are quite a few GPU coolers which are made and sold separately for GPU, hence the answer, you will not require a GPU after market cooler or heat sink.
    Oh Yes the Sabertooth does have heatsinks on it, NB,SB , Power Capacitors, I think most of them are all covered with the heatsinks. But you're not going to have fans on those heatsinks, they're just there for dispensing the heat and use the cases airflow to stay cool.
  12. Best answer selected by soknar.
  13. This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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