Thermalright Inferno IFX-14 CPU Cooler Review
Introduction and Features
Just when you think CPU heatsink fan technology has reached its peak, Thermalright comes out with a new air-cooler promising even greater performance! Behold; the Thermalright IFX-14.
The new Thermalright IFX-14 is a large tower style CPU cooler that incorporates a secondary, backside cooler for enhanced performance. The IFX-14 primary heatsink is designed to use one or more 140mm fans (or 120mm) of your choice with several different mounting options. It features a pure copper base, four large heatpipes, and two huge aluminum fin arrays, which sit on top of the CPU like most other tower style coolers. The IFX-14 main cooler provides approximately twice the heat dissipation surface area as Thermalright’s popular Ultra-120, the current reigning champ among CPU air-coolers.
Add to this Thermalright’s IFX-10 backside cooler and you have one sophisticated cooling solution for both Intel and AMD processors. The IFX-10 backside cooler features a small copper base, two flattened heatpipes, and an 80mm square aluminum fin array. The backside cooler can be passively cooled or fitted with an optional fan of your choice.
Compatibility Note: To use the IFX-10 backside cooler, you must have at least 70mm of open space around the top-front corner of the motherboard (in front of the PSU and behind the 5.25” optical drive bays) in a standard ATX tower style case.
Thermalright IFX-14 Main Features:
• Larger surface area than any other heatsink
• Designed for better airflow management and optimal cooling
• Pure copper base for excellent heat transfer
• Large 8mm heat pipes used for high heat transfer efficiency
• Backside cooler helps extend the life and stability of motherboard components
• Supports both Intel LGA775 and AMD Athlon64/FX/X2/AM2 platforms
• Model number: IFX-14
• Main Heatsink: 146.2 x 124 x 161mm (LxWxH), 790g
• Backside Heatsink: 134.5 x 163.5 x 112.6mm (LxWxH), 130g
• Materials: Copper base, copper heat pipes, and aluminum fins
• Finish: Nickel plated
• Intel support: All Socket LGA775
• AMD support: Athlon64/FX/X2/Opteron Socket AM2
• Recommended fan: 120mm or 140mm (70mm or 80mm for backside cooler)
Heat Pipe Technology
The Thermalright IFX-14 CPU cooler uses four 8mm copper heat pipes on top and two flattened 6mm heatpipes underneath to transport heat away from the CPU and motherboard socket area into three arrays of aluminum fins. The four main heat pipes are larger in diameter than the heat pipes used in the majority of HSF applications, which results in larger surface area for better heat transfer.
A heat pipe is a highly efficient conductor of heat. A properly constructed heat pipe has a very low thermal resistance, which is roughly independent of its length (unlike ordinary metal rods whose thermal resistance increases with length). Heat pipes are commonly used to efficiently transport heat from one location to another.
Heat pipes work on the principle of evaporation and condensation. A working fluid (frequently distilled water) evaporates inside one end of the heat pipe (the hot-end) absorbing heat in the process. A partial vacuum inside the heat pipe allows the water to evaporate at low temperatures. Once formed, the water vapor diffuses from an area of high vapor pressure (where it is being generated) to the other end of the tube where the vapor pressure is lower. The type of working fluid and the degree of vacuum will determine the heat pipe’s temperature range.
The vaporized fluid then condenses back to liquid (at the cold-end) and the heat is dissipated into the air from the metal cooling fins. The working fluid returns to the hot end via capillary action thru an internal wicking structure (sintered metal coating, fine wire mesh, or grooves) so the heat pipe does not have to rely on gravity to recycle the working fluid. The key to a heat pipe’s high efficiency is the latent heat of vaporization.
Packaging and Parts
The IFX-14 CPU cooler comes securely packed inside a large, traditional Thermalright cardboard box, along with everything needed to install the cooler on most modern Intel or AMD platforms.
• IFX-14 Main CPU cooler
• IFX-10 Backside motherboard cooler
• Universal mounting hardware for Intel and AMD
• Tube of thermal compound
• (4) Fan mounting wires and (2) Vibration isolation strips
• Printed Installation instructions sheet
• Thermalright decal