Monday, December 21st 2015

Aqua Computer Intros Spacer for Skylake CPUs

The Intel Skylake CPUs are getting very popular at the moment. For a much better cooling performance many users are removing the heatspreader from the CPU. This has some negative effects on the secure installation of the CPUs. Aqua Computer has developed a protective spacer to allow a much more secure mounting and usage of Skylake CPUs without the original heat spreader. The spacer is available at a price of 6.99 Euro.

Why is it recommended to use a spacer after removing the heat spreader? The first problem is that the brittle silicon die is not protected against tilted mounting of a CPU cooler - due to this fact edges of the die can easily be broken. The same issue can happen during transportation of the system.
The next problem is the dissipiation of the CPU cooler clamping force after removal of the heatspreader. With the mounted heatspreader the force is dissipated to the outer areas of the heatspreader contact surfaces. Below this surfaces the PCB of the CPU is in direct contact with the socket and this results in nearly no deflection of the CPU package. This is very important especially for the Skylake CPU as the PCB substrate is thinner than at previous CPU generations and the die is much smaller which results in much higher surface pressure.

Making this problem even worse, directly beneath the die there is a pocket in the socket. As there is no direct contact to dissipate the force to the socket any clamping force will result in a deflection of the CPU package and damages can occur.

To address these issues Aqua Computer has developed a CNC laser machined spacer consisting of a precision stainless spring steel sheet and a very thin heat resistant adhesive tape. The sheet is sanded after laser cutting to deburr it perfectly. This is important as for maximum protection the height of the spacer is only some 1/100 mm lower than the CPU die.

Due to this fact the clamping force of the CPU cooler will be dissipated by the spacer if the CPU package deforms more than the height difference between die and spacer. In this case the force is dissipated to the outer faces of the socket. It can handle higher forces as well during the mounting process or transportation of the system.
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11 Comments on Aqua Computer Intros Spacer for Skylake CPUs

#3
Ed_1
I don't see how this helps much as pressure will go to CPU core which is not supported by shim , sure it takes up space were the heat spreader was .
IMO if they integrated a heat spreader into the shim they have something. As this would distribute pressure evenly across the shim and reduce distortion of pin area .
Posted on Reply
#4
TheinsanegamerN
Ed_1 said:
I don't see how this helps much as pressure will go to CPU core which is not supported by shim , sure it takes up space were the heat spreader was .
IMO if they integrated a heat spreader into the shim they have something. As this would distribute pressure evenly across the shim and reduce distortion of pin area .
But, this is for people who remove the heat spreader. Removing the heat spreader then installing a heat spreader is redundant. The people who remove it are those looking for insane OCs, they are not going to bother with another heat spreader.
Posted on Reply
#5
RejZoR
I had my Athlon XP 2400+ all chipped on the edges and it was still working :D
Posted on Reply
#6
Primey_
Ed_1 said:
I don't see how this helps much as pressure will go to CPU core which is not supported by shim , sure it takes up space were the heat spreader was .
IMO if they integrated a heat spreader into the shim they have something. As this would distribute pressure evenly across the shim and reduce distortion of pin area .
Why would they integrate a heat spreader when this is meant for people who take the heat spreader OFF their cpu?
Posted on Reply
#7
arterius2
Ed_1 said:
I don't see how this helps much as pressure will go to CPU core which is not supported by shim , sure it takes up space were the heat spreader was .
IMO if they integrated a heat spreader into the shim they have something. As this would distribute pressure evenly across the shim and reduce distortion of pin area .
WRONG, pressure from heat sink contact will be evenly distributed among the CPU die and the shim (which should be just a hair shorter in height than the cpu die) once you factor in deformation.
Due to this fact the clamping force of the CPU cooler will be dissipated by the spacer if the CPU package deforms more than the height difference between die and spacer... It can handle higher forces as well during the mounting process or transportation of the system.
have you even read the article?
Posted on Reply
#8
Chloe Price
RejZoR said:
I had my Athlon XP 2400+ all chipped on the edges and it was still working :D
The same happened to my Athlon Thunderbird 1000MHz and still also overclocked like mad, thanks to the legendary AXIA stepping. :)
Posted on Reply
#9
Darksword
It's 2001 all over again, ha!
Posted on Reply
#10
xvi
btarunr said:
The spacer is available at a price of 6.99 Euro.
That's not bad. I have a 6700k that's in a rather thermally limited environment. Running naked would probably be nice.
Posted on Reply
#11
Toothless
Tech, Games, and TPU!
xvi said:
That's not bad. I have a 6700k that's in a rather thermally limited environment. Running naked would probably be nice.
Open your windows and let in the cold, free air.
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