Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer

Written by Harry Butler

July 15, 2008 | 11:57

Tags: #direct-contact #heat-pipe #heatsink #review #testing

Companies: #sunbeamtech

Core-Contact Freezer

Manufactuerer: Sunbeamtech
UK Price (as reviewed): TBC - around £25 (inc VAT)
US Price (as reviewed): $34.99 (ex. Tax)

Weight (without fan): 590g
Size (without fan): 104mm(W) x 125mm(D) x 155mm (H)
Fan Size: 120mm
Fan Speed: 2,000RPM at full speed, 1,000RPM at half speed
Noise Level: 20dBA at full speed, 16dbBa at half speed
Bearing type: MFDB
Warranty: One year standard warranty


Contact coolers, where the heatpipes are in direct contact with the processor’s heat spreader are becoming more and more popular, and today’s heatsink review is a prime example of this new approach to heatsink design.

Previous direct contact coolers we’ve reviewed, like the OCZ Vendetta, have produced impressive performance for their size and cost, so can the Core-Contact Freezer continue the trend when the technology is implemented on larger heatsinks?

Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer Introduction Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer Introduction
Click to enlarge

Sunbeamtech are a Taiwanese company specialising in PC cooling and modding accessories, offering products ranging from full cases, down to memory spreaders. Previously Sunbeamtech has been responsible for the well known, and very popular Tuniq Tower 120 CPU cooler, as well as distinctive fully acrylic cases - so the company certainly has a reputation for producing innovative products in the PC enthusiast market.

In some regards, the Core-Contact surprisingly doesn't use the same Tuniq branding even though people currently associate the Tuniq name with admirable heatsinks like the Tower 120. Is Sunbeam confident enough that the Core Contact can win people over without this association? It's time to find out.

What’s in the box?

The Core-Contact Freezer has a straight forward no-nonsense box, clearly laying out key features on the back, with a full list of specifications on one side, and a helpful photo gallery on the other. It’s refreshing to see such a clearly laid out box, with all the text clearly written.

The cooler was well packaged in a moulded plastic surround that separated easily, and the extras were all clearly bagged and boxed separately. Top marks so far - time to move on to the extras.

Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer Introduction Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer Introduction
Click to enlarge

And boy, do you get a good spread of extras too. The usual AMD AM2 and Intel LGA 775 mounting brackets are joined by a tube of Sunbeamtech's high quality Tuniq-branded thermal grease, a well written and easy to follow installation sheet and - hurrah! – an adjustable fan controller.

The fan controller is a simple dial fanbus mounted in an expansion card bracket, but any fanbus no matter how simple is of great benefit to anyone trying to balance performance and noise.

While it’s not perfect (after all, you still need to give your PC a reach-around to alter the fan speed), it is something we’d like to see more often. Motherboard BIOS-based fan controllers can be difficult to setup and woefully inappropriate when they kick in the extra cooling when you're watching a movie, for example. With a manual fan controller though, you’re in the driving seat all the time and can happily silence your CPU cooler at a whim, then dial it back up when you want to use CPU intensive applications.
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