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Modding Vengeance heat spreaders

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December 13, 2011 5:57:36 PM

Hey all,

First time poster on forums so if I violate protocols, take it easy on me...

This is an edited version of the full post I placed in the Systems: Homebuilt forum. The thread is called "Research and Development - OC Rig".
Trying to hit as many relevant forums to get the best answers.

I'm in the process of my 3rd rig rebuild in 12 years to bring it up to spec for my video editing and gaming interests. I will also be OCing my system for the first time ever and really stoked about it!

As I always try to do, I've researched extensively on the components I'll be getting. In this post, I'd like to share some FYIs that I've come across for the benefit of others who might be following a similar path that I did, and I also have a couple of questions I'd love some feedback on.

Firstly, these are the components I'll be purchasing: Corsair Performance Pro 128GB SSD, Corsair Obsidian Series 650D Mid Tower Case, Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler, Corsair Vengeance K60 Keyboard, Corsair Vengeance M60 5700dpi Mouse. (Yup, Corsair's got some great stuff out there!)

Here are some key points that have come up in my research that I want to share to "pay it forward" (thanks to all forum users who so freely give out great, valuable information!):

FYI
1. If you're thinking about the Noctua NH-D14, you'll have to be extra careful about DIMM clearance. I really want the NH-D14 and am looking at modding (either dremel or actual removal) the heat spreaders above my Corsair Vengeance RAM so that the cooler will fit.

Questions
1. I have not been able to conclusively determine if the removal/modding of my Vengeance heat spreaders will adversely affect their performance. It looks like I'm going to have to do something about them to accommodate the NH-D14. Comments?

2. How do I set my posting preferences so my system specs automatically come up at the bottom of my posts?

Thanks!

Motherboard: Asus P7P55D-E Pro
CPU: Intel Core i5 750 @ 2.67 GHz
HSF: Pentium i5 stock
RAM: Corsair Vengeance 4 x 4Gb
GPU: ATI Radeon HD 4600 series
PSU: Thermaltake TR2 500W
HDD1: Western Digital 120Gb 7200rpm SATA (OS, primary drive)
SSD: Kingston 64Gb SATA II 3Gb/s (Games)
HDD2: IOmega 1Tb USB 3.0 External Drive (Storage, Adobe CS5 files and projects)
ODD: Samsung SH-S222A
Case: Athenatech A747SS-Q350
Case cooling (rear): Thermaltake 5600 rpm Fan
Monitors: Acer X233H / Acer AL1706
Speakers: Logitech Z640 5.1 Dolby Surround (mobo audio)
Keyboard/Mouse combo: Logitech YSV-39 w/ cordless Mouse
OS: Windows 7 Home Ultimate SP1
a b } Memory
December 13, 2011 11:23:43 PM

Performance would not be directly changed by modding of the heat spreaders. You might damage the modules or they might get insufficient cooling which would obviously be a problem but the heat spreaders aren't going to automatically change any settings.

If heat spreaders are in the way then you might want to get lower voltage RAM with similar performance because it would output less heat, allowing lower profile heat spreaders. Since you didn't tell me exactly which RAM kit you have I can't know anything about them regarding voltages and heat spreaders.



I see a few problems with the listed specs on what I assume to be your current machine.
Your CPU's name is contradictory, it can't be both a Pentium and an i5 because they are different families. I assume you mean you have an LGA 1556 i5 750.
Do you really have a 1200RPM drive? Were 1200 RPM HDDs made in 120GB capacities?
USB drives aren't SCSI drives but you have one listed as SCSI. Do you know what SCSI is?
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December 14, 2011 4:09:08 AM

blazorthon said:
Performance would not be directly changed by modding of the heat spreaders. You might damage the modules or they might get insufficient cooling which would obviously be a problem but the heat spreaders aren't going to automatically change any settings.


If heat spreaders are in the way then you might want to get lower voltage RAM with similar performance because it would output less heat, allowing lower profile heat spreaders. Since you didn't tell me exactly which RAM kit you have I can't know anything about them regarding voltages and heat spreaders.



I see a few problems with the listed specs on what I assume to be your current machine.
Your CPU's name is contradictory, it can't be both a Pentium and an i5 because they are different families. I assume you mean you have an LGA 1556 i5 750.
Do you really have a 1200RPM drive? Were 1200 RPM HDDs made in 120GB capacities?
USB drives aren't SCSI drives but you have one listed as SCSI. Do you know what SCSI is?


Firtsly, thank you for your reply; I especially appreciated how you challenged some errors on my part.

1. Agreed. My question was predicated on the assumption that I would not be damaging the modules. There are several instructional videos that show how to remove the spreaders without affecting the intrinsic functionality of the modules.

2. The RAM kit I posted in my specs is the Corsair Vengeance 4x4Gb. I've just bought these and although you're right about replacing them with a lower profile kit to allow for overhead space, I'm not willing to do this.

3. :ouch:  I'm old school and Intel still equals Pentium in my hardwiring. Again, you're right. I have the Intel Core i5 750. I've edited my specs to reflect this.
You got me thinking about my WD HDD - yes, it's 120G for sure; the model name has 1200 in it; I think I may have always gone under an erroneous impression that this was it's rpms. Now, I'ma gonna havta take it out to confirm that...
I called my IOmega a SCSI just because, and it was admittedly sloppy on my part. Thanks for pointing that out; it too has been corrected in my specs.


It's clear to me that removing the spreaders would heat up the sticks but would it be significant? It's this point that I'm not sure about. The forums that I have read seem divided on this.


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December 14, 2011 4:25:05 AM

Well I'll be...

It IS 7200 rpm...
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a b } Memory
December 14, 2011 5:18:25 AM

The heatspreaders should not pose an issue. Unless you are planning to overclock the modules, removing the heatspreaders will just make them like many budget kits out there.

I wouldn't do anything drastic yet though. If you are only populating two dimm slots, you likely won't have an issue. I can't say first hand about the Noctua HSF, but every CPU cooler I've ever installed (and that includes dome monsters) has at least the outside 2 dimm slots available. I currently have a Spire Thermax Eclipse II cooler that unfortunately sits quite low on the mobo. The closest two dimm slots can not be populated, but I have 8 gigs in the next two slots. This is on an AMD board, and they are notorious for having clearance issues due to close proximity of the dimm slots to the CPU mount.

I would also recommend going with the Vengeance low profile modules if you want to fill all your ram slots. You could always sell kit you already bought.
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a b } Memory
December 14, 2011 9:41:10 AM

Thanks for fixing those problems. If you can't mod the heat spreaders and need to remove them you could consider looking around for lower profile aftermarket heat spreaders. There should be some very cheap ones on a few sites, I've seen them before.

Just make sure you do some measurements to know they will fit before you buy them if you do this.
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December 22, 2011 6:39:37 PM

All my DIMMs are filled, as per the description of my system. I just bought the Noctua NC-DH14 - damn the torpedoes!

I'll make it work somehow.
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December 25, 2011 2:09:10 AM

I went ahead and took the heat spreaders off my Vengeance RAM. It was surprisingly easy to do so and aside from voiding my warranty and limiting the overclocking of the RAM, the result turned out pretty good.

Here's a pic.

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January 19, 2012 12:47:59 PM

Best answer selected by bzzkff.
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a c 146 } Memory
January 19, 2012 3:11:19 PM

This topic has been closed by Nikorr.
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