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Is i7 IHS concave or convex? Trying to convince myself out of lapping...

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
Just want to clarify matters on the flatness of an i7 IHS (integrated heat spreader) and the base of a Thermalright Silver Arrow. Hopefully I can avoid having the lap both the CPU & heatsink.

Quoting Frostytech's review of SA: "the base plate has a somewhat convex profile in one axis. The opposite axis is very flat."


Reason from HardOCP: "Thermalright does this on purpose in connection with its mounting system to apply more pressure to the center of the CPU. Its mounting system uses a pressure bolt in the middle which can be tightened or loosened to adjust the pressure on the CPU and in turn adjust cooling performance."

Can someone please clarify if the i7 IHS is concave/convex? Hard to find conclusive picture of a razor blade check, and people on forums seem to have inconsistent understanding of what's concave and convex. I know for sure it isn't perfectly flat.
For visual aid, this guy was lapping his i7 920 with 400 grit and seems like it's convex, yet sides are also slightly raised (whatever part is higher would show copper sooner during lapping)


IMO, ideally the chip should be concave so the SA can fit right in. If the chip is convex though, I suppose it won't be the end of the world since the center (hottest part) of the CPU is still making direct contact with the HS base.

I've read articles saying you can expect "up to around 5-10 degrees C cooler" after lapping both CPU and heatsink, but those were with different CPU and heatsink pairings. And the last time I did lapping (2004, with AMD 2200 Barton + SP-97) it was terribly time consuming and tiring, so I'd want to avoid it if the performance gain is diminished with my pairing. Anyone have lapping experience with this pairing? Is it worthwhile to do the lapping?
Edited by majinwu - 12/29/10 at 11:00pm
post #2 of 2
I would run it as is and see where the temperatures are before lapping. If your temperatures are high then I would lap it or move onto better cooling like water.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Q9300 @ 3.2 (1.29v load) ASUS P5N-D 750i Asus DirectCU GTX 460 8GB DDR2 GSkill 1066 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
150GB WD Raptor OS, 500GB, 640GB x2 Samsung SATA DVD RW Coolermaster Hyper 212 plus Win 7 Pro x64 
MonitorPowerCase
Dual 1280x1024's OCZ 600W Silverstone TJ07 w/ a few mods 
  hide details  
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