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Deepcool Ice Matrix 400 Review

airman    -   December 22, 2010
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Conclusion:

The Deepcool Ice Matrix 400 is a solid contender compared to other heatsinks in its price range. Under stock situations, it closes in on the Noctua NH-D14 and the recently tested Zalman CNPS9900, which are currently at the top of the market. However, when having to deal with even a mild overclock, it cannot compensate as easily for this extra heat output as the higher end heatsinks. Once the heat output from a processor begins to exceed the effective range of a heatsink, the temperature of the heatsink has to increase rapidly to compensate for this extra heat. This is due to its small size and less surface area compared to higher end heatsinks. The Ice Matrix 400 is, however, quiet, lightweight, and small.

Deepcool does market the base of their Ice Matrix 400 as being mirror polished, which I demonstrated is clearly not polished at all. This disappointed me a little bit, because seeing a high quality base shows extra care from a manufacturer by putting the extra step into the assembly process that improves the performance of the heatsink. Since Deepcool claims that it is polished to a "mirror finish", I'm going to have to take points off since it is not. For a lower end heatsink, I wouldn't expect base to be polished. However, the only reason I am mentioning this is because I expected to see a little more of a shine on the base, and less evident machining marks with Deepcool's claims. I also wished for a backplate for the 1366 platform to be implemented. The four plastic nuts that are stuck to the back of the motherboard are hard to remove and aren't really reusable. They also leave adhesive residue on the back of the motherboard, causing other backplates to be difficult to remove because they get stuck!

However, aside from the base not matching my idea of being "mirror polished", the Ice Matrix 400 will still be a good buy for someone who wants something quiet, small, and inexpensive. The Ice Matrix 400 certainly meets everything in that category. At full speed, I can't pick out the noise from the fan over the other fans in my case, which is a good thing. Deepcool should market this heatsink not only as a low cost, mid range performing solution, but also one that is quiet and not disturbing in any way!

 

Pros:

  • Low cost
  • Lightweight
  • Quiet

 

Cons:

  • Base not mirror polished like Deepcool implies
  • Not great for overclocking


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  1. Introduction & Closer Look:
  2. Closer Look (Continued)
  3. Specifications & Features
  4. Testing & Setup
  5. Conclusion
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