Cooling, thanks both to an upturn in enthusiast interest in PC's particularly overclocking, and the ever increasing speed of consumer hardware, has taken a centre stage in the minds of PC lovers in the past few years. Everything from water cooling, to serious freon chillers to the humble air cooled heatsink has been seen and done and the bleeding edge of processor cooling can be found relatively easily on the world wide web with the Finn's and Japanese in particular taking a loving of literally freezing the silicon backsides off their machines.
But PC cooling has it's origins in simple active air cooling and this is where the biggest market for after market cooling products lies. There are many big names in the heatsink and fan market these days with perhaps Alpha and Swiftech being the most famous with their fearsome air coolers being the pinnacle of cooling for both AMD and Intel platforms in the recent past.
It's a Swiftech cooler that's the focus of this review here today, more specifically the MCX4000 which is their latest and greatest addition to an already formidable line up of products.
The MCX4000, unlike the MCX462/478, is a Socket 478 P4 only cooler whereas the MCX462/478 is a hybrid Socket A and Socket 478 cooler that is changeable for both platforms via the use of a set of brackets.
Using the same mount points as the stock P4 mounting mechanism for the heatsink retention 'cage', the MCX4000 is certainly bigger than a replacement sink that uses the stock mounting cage and it's obvious the sink means business when compared to the stock cooler or something similar.
With a much larger surface area than the MCX478 by means of 429 grooved aluminium pins screwed into a much larger copper base than the MCX478 which only features 371 pins. The grooved pins increase surface area over a smooth pin and the increased number of pins combined with a larger copper base mean that the MCX4000 should cool better than MCX478 with the same fan.
Swiftech claim a 1 degree celcius variance in temperatures between MCX4000 w/ TMD fan compared to MCX478 with 68cfm Delta fan on a 3GHz Pentium 4. So the same cooling but a lot quieter with the 68cfm Delta being a pure assualt on your ears and the TMD fan being much quieter.