New in the TNN500AF is the chipset cooling system implemented with the help of a heat pipe.
The heat pipe transfers heat from the chipset to the rear panel of the case. The position of the heat pipe can be adjusted to match different mainboards.
The chipset cooling kit looks unassuming compared to the CPU and GPU kits: two bars embrace the heat pipe, and two screws fasten this embrace, and a sticky thermal pad is in between.
The sticky thermal pad isn’t the best thermal interface for modern chipsets made as an open die on a wafer. The pad will hold badly and the heat transfer will be inefficient all due to the small contact area. I guess good fasteners and a thin layer of thermal paste would be better (like in the GPU cooling system, for example).
The chipset cooling kit is intended for chips that dissipate up to 20 watts. This seems to be enough for the hottest chipsets of today.
The last item to be discussed is the HDD cooling unit called ZM-2HC2.
This is a slightly redesigned version of the block I told you about in our Zalman TNN500A Review. Frankly speaking, the efficiency of such units in a TNN system is rather low. The heat generated by the hard disk drive can be transferred to the case’s panels or to the air, but the HDD cooling unit has no contact with the panels and there are usually no airflows in Zalman’s TNN500 series cases. That’s why you may want to use an additional fan with the ZM-2HC2 to create airflow around the heat pipes.
Two rows of blue LEDs were highlighting the hardware installed in the TNN500A. With the TNN500AF we have a special rotating LED-based flashlight located at the internal side of the front panel. The snapshot below shows you the platter that covers the plate with connectors and buttons on the back side of the front panel.
So, the flashlight is aglow, the case is open and all the fasteners are laid out on the desk. It’s time to get the system assembled.