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Intel's LGA1700 CPUs Will Need New Coolers, or at Least New Mounts

Noctua
(Image credit: Noctua)

Intel's transition to LGA1700 will not only mark Intel's changeover to a new socket for mainstream PCs (something the company does rather often), but also to all-new dimensions of its CPU socket, something that has not happened for over 15 years. The new dimensions will entail new mounting mechanisms, which essentially means new coolers, or at least coolers with new mounts. Noctua has already announced that it would offer new mounts for its cooling systems

LGA1700 will be the first major upgrade of Intel's sockets for mainstream desktop CPUs since 2004. Back then, the company introduced its socket LGA775 that measured 37.5×37.5 mm, and while Intel's sockets changed over the years, their dimensions and mounting mechanisms did not. Intel's LGA1700 will retain the 37.5mm width, but will increase its length to 45mm. Furthermore, it will decrease its Z-height from 7.5 mm to 6.5 mm, according to a recent story from Igor's Lab. The new dimensions will entail a new CPU mounting mechanism with a new cooler hole pattern. To that end, LGA15xx coolers will not work with Intel's upcoming Alder Lake CPUs. 

(Image credit: Noctua)

Noctua (and almost certainly other leading cooler makers) are working on mounting kits that will enable existing CPU coolers to work with Intel's upcoming Alder Lake LGA1700 processors. That said, new processors will likely deliver their best performance potential when used with coolers designed specifically for them, which includes dimensions.  

One of the interesting parts of the report is that Intel (and probably an unnamed partner) is working on a cooler featuring a Peltier element. Perhaps this will be an update to the existing Cooler Master ML360 Sub-Zero, which we tested a few months ago. 

Since Intel's upcoming Alder Lake processors for desktops will be made using the company's 10 nm Enhanced SuperFin process technology, with high-performance power-hungry CPUs in mind, it is not surprising that Intel is indeed working on an extreme CPU cooler for the chip.  

But of course, none of this information comes directly from Intel. So take the details with a grain or two of salt and silicon.  

  • ezst036
    Both ridiculous and annoying. They could at least wait 3 socket generations. Build in a few extra millimeters or many mm now for future growth! Stop forcing me to buy new coolers every generation!

    This is bad customer service, as is their blockade on ECC ram. Linus was right to scold Intel over that. AMD does a better job of some future padding in this area for cpu sockets.

    https://www.tomshardware.com/news/Linus-blasts-intel-on-strangling-ecc-memoryf
    EDIT:
    Just thought I'd correct here. Intel has done this in some prior generations.
    https://www.tomshardware.com/uk/news/intel-comet-lake-cpu-socket-compatibility
    I do expect changes from time to time, anybody should.
    Reply
  • Why_Me
    Some manufacturers announced they will provide a compatible bracket. Noctua particularly I think for free.
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    ezst036 said:
    Both ridiculous and annoying. They could at least wait 3 socket generations. Build in a few extra millimeters or many mm now for future growth! Stop forcing me to buy new coolers every generation!

    This is bad customer service, as is their blockade on ECC ram. Linus was right to scold Intel over that. AMD does a better job of some future padding in this area for cpu sockets.

    https://www.tomshardware.com/news/Linus-blasts-intel-on-strangling-ecc-memoryf
    EDIT:
    Just thought I'd correct here. Intel has done this in some prior generations.
    https://www.tomshardware.com/uk/news/intel-comet-lake-cpu-socket-compatibility
    I do expect changes from time to time, anybody should.

    Intel's mounting pattern hasn't changed since 1st gen mainstream core ix series. A cooler you had on a P55 board, would easily install the same, on a Z590. That's a 12yr span, of the same mounting pattern.
    Reply
  • mikeebb
    So I could have re-used the old Zalman cooler (originally bought for a Pentium D that overheated using the stock cooler, then used on a Core2 Extreme) when I built the new system a few months ago? Interesting. Though the new cooler works just as well if not better, is LOTS quieter, and much less bloodthirsty (no knife edges on the fins).
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    mikeebb said:
    So I could have re-used the old Zalman cooler (originally bought for a Pentium D that overheated using the stock cooler, then used on a Core2 Extreme) when I built the new system a few months ago? Interesting. Though the new cooler works just as well if not better, is LOTS quieter, and much less bloodthirsty (no knife edges on the fins).

    Pentium D and Core 2 were both LGA 775, so it probably wouldn't work on a newer 115x/1200 based sockets, without an adapter. I was able to use the same cooler, on my i5 750, as I did on a 6700k.
    Reply