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Horizontal attachment of the A70 on an AMD motherboard

The purpose of this guide is to help those who would like to have the option of installing their Corsair A70 in the horizontal direction on AMD motherboards. This mod should also work with other heat sinks of various makes and models. DO THIS MOD AT YOUR OWN RISK! I will not be held responsible if this mod causes damage or bodily harm to you and/or your computer.

Equipment and parts need to complete this mod:

(4) M3 x 30mm Flathead screws (Metric Screws)[/URL] (25mm if using Corsair A70 Nuts)

Medium size Flathead or Phillips head screwdriver depending on the screw.

Heat sink compound (Arctic Silver 5 was used in this mod)

Xigmatek Crossbow ACK-ATI 775

Original AMD mount backplate

My system specifications during the installation of this mod were:

Thermaltake Tsunami Dream case (Side panel fan must be moved to the outside or removed for the side panel to fit)

Asus M4A78-E Motherboard

2x2GB OCZ Platinum DDR2 1066MHz low voltage ram

XFX Reference 5870

Maxtor Diamondmax 10 250GB hard drive

Creative Labs SoundBlaster X-Fi Xtreme Music

Corsair HX850 Power Supply

Directions to install the Corsair A70 in the Horizontal Position

Step one: Remove the motherboard from the case. (I do not recommend trying to do this with the motherboard installed)

Step two: Uninstall the AMD bracket (You will need the original back plate; you can skip this if you already have the Xigmatek mount installed)

Step three: Remove the original support screws from the Xigmatek Crossbow and install the new, longer support screws BEFORE installing the Xigmatek Crossbow. If you are unsure on how to install the Xigmatek Crossbow mount, Read the included instructions. Below is a picture of the mount with the shorter screws and the longer screws. The shorter screws are the stock Xigmatek screws that come with the mount. The longer screws are the new 30mm screws. You will not need the shorter screws for the Corsair A70 cooler, but save the shorter screws for future use.




Step four: Install the Xigmatek Crossbow but do not tighten the mount screws all the way. Tighten the screws somewhat so the mount is snug but keep enough play in the mount that you can move both mounts around.

Step five: Take the Intel style bracket that came with the Corsair A70 and fit it onto the four support screws. The bracket should not be on the A70 at this time. The support screws should be in the four holes closest to the heat sink.

Step six: Once you have the Intel style bracket on the (4) support screws, tighten the four mount screws. This will ensure when you go to mount the heat sink that it will slide on without incident. Also, check the back of your motherboard where the back plate is and ensure that it is flush with the motherboard all the way around.

Step seven: Remove the Intel bracket and install it on the A70 per the Corsair instructions.

Step eight: Ensure that all screws are tight. Prepare your CPU by cleaning it if needed. Also make sure to clean the heat pipes on the A70. The clear plastic attached to the heat pipes will leave a residue when it is removed.

Step nine: Apply your heat sink compound of choice per the line method, making sure to fill in the gaps next to the heat pipes.

Step ten: Install the A70 onto the processor. When installing the A70, BEFORE pushing the bracket all the way down on the support screws make sure that all the screws are in the proper holes on the bracket. All the screws should be in the holes on the bracket that are closest to the heat sink as in the picture below.



Step eleven: With the heat sink sitting on top of the processor, go ahead and start all of your nuts. I recommend using the nuts with the springs that came with the Xigmatek bracket. I did not test the corsair nuts but if you must use them, you will have to use 25mm screws instead of 30mm screws because the Corsair nuts are not open ended like the Xigmatek nuts and you will bottom out before the bracket gets secure.


Step twelve: Tighten two corners at a time by hand. Once you have two corners snug (not completely tight) start on the other two corners. Repeat this process until the heat sink is mounted tight. Once the springs depress all the way down on all four corners, The A70 should be securely tightened. With the springs depressed, I could not turn the nuts anymore. The heat sink should now be securely mounted. There should be no wiggle of the heat sink when moving the heat sink that's attached to the motherboard. If using the Corsair nuts, you will have to go by feel.


Step thirteen: Take a look at the mount underneath the heat sink. If the plastic tabs that the support screws are attached to look stressed (you will know, they will be bent slightly), loosen the nuts SLIGHTLY. It will not take much.




Step fourteen: Inspect the heat sink bracket and the Xigmatek Crossbow. Make sure everything looks as it should. The heat sink should be level all the way around. With the heat sink installed onto the motherboard, install the fans onto the heat sink per the corsair instructions.

Step fifteen: Reassemble the motherboard back into the case. You now have a horizontal mounted Corsair A70.



Step sixteen: Power on your computer, IMMEDIATELY go into the bios and look at the hardware monitor to ensure your temps are within range. My idle is about 32c and my full load is about 46c. This is with my room temp @ 71f and decent (not good) case air flow.

If everything looks good, you are now done. I would run a program that stresses the CPU and monitor temps to make sure that everything is working properly. I hope your install went as smooth as mine did. If you have ANY questions, comments or concerns, Please feel free to ask me. I will assist in any way that I can. All pictures in this guide plus others that were taken for the purpose of this guide can be found here

Dream Chaser
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