When you are overclocking every part of your system is stressed. People have been known to replace cases, fan, and CPU heatsinks to make sure they can push their system to the limit. One part that make get skipped over is the Northbridge. Without the Northbridge your CPU wouldn’t be able to communicate with the RAM, PCI Express, and the Southbridge. As you can imagine when you are really pushing your system the Northbridge is hot also. That’s were Coolink comes in with their Chipchilla. Featuring dual heatpipes and a 60mm fan it’s bound to perform better than the passive cooled heatsinks on most chipsets. Coolink was kind enough to provide us one for testing, continue reading to find out how it performed.
Review Sample Provided by: Coolink
Review by: Garfi3ld
Pictures by: Garfi3ld
SpecificationsHeight (without fan) 94mm Width (without fan) 60mm Depth (without fan) 32mm Height (with fan) 94mm Width (with fan) 60mm Depth (with fan) 37mm Weight (with fan) 130g Material Copper (base and heat-pipes), aluminium (cooling fins) Compatibility Push-Pins & Mounting-Hooks Fan size 60x60x10mm Rotational Speed (+/- 10%) 2200rpm Acoustical Noise 19dB(A) Included Cooler, Fan, Mounting Parts, Thermal Paste, Installation Manual Warranty 3 Years
Coolink designed the packaging of the ChipChilla to show off this amazing looking cooler. The front of the packaging only has the Coolink logo and the name Chipchilla on it. Leaving you access to view 5 of the 6 sides of the heatsink. On the back they ask you simply “is your mainboard overheating?”. Frankly after looking at this amazing heatsink I already want it, the small feature list on the back does nothing to slow me down.
Digging into the packaging more I notice right away as I take the back paper off that it folds out and included all of the mounting instructions. Much easier than a piece of paper that has been folded up 8 times like normal. The heatsink is enclosed between two formed plastic trays keeping it protected and still leaving it open for everyone to see. Lastly in the box you will find the pushpins, a clip, thermal paste, and a foam spacer for chips without heat spreaders.
Our Test RigIntel® Desktop Board DG965WH Intel Q6600 Quad core CPU 2 gigs of A-Data G Series Ram Stock CPU Cooler EVGA 7800GT Video Card Antec Twelve Hundred Case Antec Quadro 850 Watt Power Supply Lite-On DVD Burner Running Vista Ultimate and XP
The Chipchilla is designed to work with both the clip style and push pin style mounting for Northbridge heatsinks. In our case we are working with an Intel motherboard with the clip style mounting. I started by removing the stock heatsink, Intel uses three clips to hold the heatsink down on our motherboard. Once I removed the three clips the heatsink came right off. Next I made sure to clean off the old thermal paste off of the Northbridge chip. While you are at this point please make sure to check to see if your chip has a heat spreader on it. If you do not have a heat spreader, you will need to use the foam protector included with the ChipChilla.
Having taken off the old heatsink and cleaned everything up we are ready to install the ChipChilla. First I removed the push pin mounts because we have no use for them with the clip mounts on our motherboard. After that I removed the paper from the foam mount and mounted it to the underside of the ChipChilla. Next I put a drop of thermal paste on the Northbridge chip. After that I slid the clip into the proper place on the heatsink and carefully sat the heatsink onto the Northbridge. After that I secured both ends of the clip into the hook mounts built into the motherboard. The only thing left is too plug the fan into one of the motherboards fan headers. The instructions tell you to take off the fan while installing but I didn’t find it to be in the way. At this point we are finished with our install. I found it to be surprisingly easy, especially with the amazing instructions that Coolink included.
Although you will see the greatest improvement with the ChipChilla when you are overclocking and really pushing your Northbridge. Our Intel motherboard doesn’t Overclock, but we were still able to see a major improvement at stock speeds. Putting the test rig on a load with 4 instances of Prime95 we weren’t able to get the Northbridge to heat up beyond ambient with the ChipChilla. This shows you how well it is cooling though. You shouldn’t ever have overheating issues with your Northbridge again. That means that you will be able to turn the voltage up a little higher while overclocking without working about temps. Meaning you should be able to get higher stable overclocks. All the while there is no noticeable noise coming from the supplied cooling fan.
The ChipChilla is a great deal for less than 23 bucks if you are looking to get a little more out of your Overclock. The 60mm fan included is great and the total heatsink shouldn’t get in the way of most aftermarket CPU heatsinks. The instructions Coolink included were amazing, making the install easy and painless. Something about heatsinks adds to the style and look of your pc, and the included blue fan will match a majority of other pc components. The performance was amazing! We were unable to put the Northbridge past ambient once the heatsink was installed. If for some reason you need a little more performance out of the ChipChilla the copper base could use a good lapping o get rid of imperfections. The ChipChilla from Coolink is basically a standard CPU heatsink made a little smaller to fit on your Northbridge!