Product: Cooler Master Hyper Z600 CPU Cooler
Company: Cooler Master
Authour: Charles 'Lupine' Oliver
Date: April 30th, 2008
Up Close & Personal

First Impressions

Cooler Master didn't disappoint with their presentation and packaging. The box is huge, indicative of the contents, and protects the cooler well. Everything is nicely organized, making it easy to find the right parts for your installation needs.

Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600

Our first look at the cooler itself was somewhat shocking.  Yes, we'd read the specs so had an idea of what to expect but, wow, it is one big cooler. In fact, while the included clips don't accommodate such a configuration, one could manage to mount four 120MM fans on this monster, though the resulting windstorm might suck debris and small rodents into the maelstrom.

CM Z600
CM Z600
CM Z600 - Heatpipes
CM Z600 - Heatpipes
CM Z600 - Base
CM Z600 - Base

Next, lets take a look at the Z600 with our 120MM Noctua NF-P12 installed.  Its almost a shame to 'tarnish' the beauty of this cooler with a brown cooling fan, but the Noctua more than makes up for its color scheme with its performance. The bracket system used takes a bit of getting used to. Yes, it basically just hangs onto the cooler loosely, made looser since we chose to use the Noctua's 'vibration compensators' instead of fan screws, but it never budged during testing.  From a tester's perspective, it was actually pretty nice not to have to mess with anything solid mount, especially after the chore presented when installing the Hyper Z600 to the motherboard.  Bottom line?  Fan mounts are nicely designed.  Due to the size of the cooler, you may find that you won't be able to install two fans in a push/pull configuration, but the option exists if you have the space.

Z600 + Noctua
Z600 + Noctua
Z600 + Noctua
Z600 + Noctua
Z600 + Noctua
Z600 + Noctua

Hyper Z600 Installation Process

Z600 Accessory Kit
Z600 Accessory Kit
Z600 LGA775 Mounting Kit
Z600 LGA775 Mounting Kit
Z600 LGA775 Mounting Brackets
Z600 LGA775 Mounting Brackets
Z600 LGA775 Mounting Brackets
Z600 LGA775 Mounting Brackets
Z600 LGA775 Backplate
Z600 LGA775 Backplate
Z600 LGA775 Installation
Z600 LGA775 Installation

Six frames hardly does the process involved justice. We cannot comment on installing this cooler on an AMD socket motherboard, but we sincerely hope that fewer steps are required for that platform. The LGA775 installation was a multi-stepped process requiring the assembly of several components prior to actually installing the cooler to the motherboard. This isn't such a bad thing if you're an 'install it and leave it' sort of user, but those of us with an addiction to regularly swapping hardware will tire of the procedure rather quickly. One would hope that Cooler Master R&D will come up w/ an equally secure, but less involved installation system for their future products.

This bracket design, seen previously in Cooler Master's GeminII cooler, is effective and very secure.  Both installing and/or uninstalling the Z600 requires that the motherboard be removed from the chassis because the nuts are positioned on the backplate side of the cooler.  We prefer designs that simply require removal of the motherboard to put the backplate into position, allowing users to install and/or uninstall the cooler separately if they need to access a component, reapply thermal paste, or whatever other reason one might be motivated to pull a cooler.

Hyper Z600 Installed

Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600
Cooler Master Z600

Clearance is good, at least on our Abit IP35 Pro motherboard. Cooler Master has done a solid job with their heatpipe design to ensure that the cooler body doesn't come in contact with motherboard components. The Z600 looks magnificent, which is very good since it will certainly be the main eye-catcher in any system that can hold it! Speaking of which, those with a motherboard to side panel space of less than 17CM, probably less if the side panel is equipped with a fan, will likely find this cooler to be too large, at least if they wish to close their case.

Another issue that users may encounter will be DIMM slot proximity.  We were unable to use our admittedly huge set of Corsair Dominator DDR2-1066 modules during this test, with or without their cooling fan module, except in a passive configuration.

Now that we've introduced you to the Hyper Z600, lets move on to the testing portion of our review.

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