Prolimatech is a relatively new Taiwanese company with only one product: the Megahalems CPU cooler. Despite Prolima’s relative obscurity, the Megahalems has been making the rounds at several well-known PC enthusiasts sites and getting excellent marks. There’s only one thing left standing between the Megahalems and greatness: a thumbs up from SPCR.
Feb 20, 2009 by Lawrence Lee
| Prolimatech Megahalems|
LGA775/1366 CPU Cooler
Prolimatech is a relatively new Taiwanese company founded in 2008. They have
possibly the most interesting product line we’ve ever seen — it consists of
only one item! Stranger yet, their only product, the Prolimatech Megahalems
CPU cooler, has been making the rounds at several well-known PC enthusiasts
sites and getting excellent marks. It’s impressive for a new brand.
The Megahalems is its name, an obvious play on Nehalem (though why the name
is pluralized is a mystery), the codename for Intel’s first family of Core i7
processors. If any CPU deserves a "mega" heatsink, its the 125W Core
i7’s. The Megahalems is another giant aluminum tower heatsink with a six heatpipe
design. It is compatible with Intel LGA775/1366 motherboards only and does not
ship with a fan.
Prolimatech Megahalems: Key Features
(from the product
Feature & Brief
| Minimal air resistance between fins allowing|
best balance between noise and performance in range of 800-1200RPM
|This is a critical issue. Only testing will tell if they got it right.|
| Heatpipes are lined up in a straight line|
to prevent air back draft allowing air to easily pass through the heatsink
| It seems logical to stagger heatpipes|
to maximize their exposure to airflow, but at lower fan speeds it may do
more harm than good.
| Wide fins with mathematically calculated|
thickness to maximize best air-to-surface cooling rate
|The more surface area the better.|
| Uniquely designed, easy-to-install socket|
775 and 1366 retention mechanism to increase cooling ability.
| The Megahalems is an Intel-only CPU|
cooler for LGA775/1366.
| Easy to apply, high grade thermal compound,|
a perfect sidekick to all Prolimatech heatsinks
| To make a proper comparison to other|
heatsinks our own reference thermal compound will be used.
Prolimatech Megahalems: Specifications
(from the product
|Heatsink Dimension||(L)130mm X (W)74mmX (H)158.7mm|
|Heatpipe||Ø 6mm X 6pcs|
|Suggest Fan||120mm X 120mm X25mm|
|Suggest Fan Speed||800~1200rpm|
|Suggest Noise Level (dBA)||Below 26dBA|
|Direction of heatsink||Faces the rear exhaust system fan|
When you think of "mega" sized aluminum CPU cooler,
the Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme
comes to mind. In both size and appearance the two coolers are similar, though
the Megahalems has a noticeable gap in the center. The heatpipes are
also aligned in straight rows rather than staggered — this may help in low
The most critical aspect of installation is for the heatsink
to be securely mounted. The more firmly it is installed, the better the contact
between the heatsink’s base and the CPU itself. It’s also less likely to fall
off. Ease of installation is also important — a simple mounting scheme
means less time spent installing, and a reduced likelihood of screwing up.
Before thermal testing, we took some basic physical measurements.
Prolimatech Megahalems: Approximate Physical Measurements
| 790 g (heatsink alone)|
820 g (including crossbar, bolts, and fan clips)
| 45 mm (measured from the|
motherboard PCB to the heatsink’s bottom fin)
| 3 mm (measured from the|
edge of the heatsink to the top edge of our test motherboard’s PCB)
Comparison: Approximate Fin Thickness & Spacing
Scythe Ninja 2
Thermalright HR-01 Plus
Testing was done according to our
unique heatsink testing methodology, and the included fan was profiled
using our standard fan testing
methodology. A quick summary of the components, tools, and procedures
Key Components in Heatsink Test Platform
Nexus 120 fan measurements
Measurement and Analysis Tools
Load testing was accomplished using CPUBurn to stress the processor, and the
graph function in SpeedFan was used to make sure that the load temperature was
stable for at least ten minutes. The stock fan was tested at various voltages
to represent a good cross-section of its airflow and noise performance.
Provided Fan Testing
The fan provided by Prolimatech looks like a typical seven-bladed 120mm case
fan. It was a bit mysterious though as there were no identifying marks and no
case fans are listed on the Prolimatech website. It is possible that the "suggested" fan specifications on the main Megahalems product page describe this fan, but this is just a guess.
|Model Number||Unknown||Airflow Rating||Unknown|
|Bearing Type||Unknown||RPM Rating||Unknown|
|Hub Size||1.54"||Noise Rating||Unknown|
|Frame Size||120 x 120 x 25 mm||Header Type||3-pin|
|Weight||110 grams||Start Voltage||2.4V|
SPL @ 1m
Fan @ 12V: At full speed, the fan was turbulent and had a bit of drone. The measured sound pressure level was 20 dBA, low, at least compared to the average
Fan @ 9V: Much of the turblence disappeared, resulting in a 4 dBA decrease. With the airflow turbulence lowered, we noticed a high degree of clicking coming from
the fan’s motor.
Fan @ 7V: The fan sounded very much like the 9V level. The clicking
of the fan’s motor/bearings became more noticeable despite it being quieter
Fan @ 5V: Smooth at a distance, but up close the clicking sounded
more like a rattle.
Overall the fan is fairly quiet, but it is far cry from the much smoother,
high quality fans we prefer. It’s an average low/mid airflow fan with unremarkable
Prolimatech Megahalems w/ provided 120mm fan
Prolimatech Megahalems w/ reference 120mm fan
| Load Temp: CPUBurn for ~10 mins.|
°C Rise: Temperature rise above ambient (20°C) at load.
°C/W: based on the amount of heat dissipated by the CPU (measured
78W); lower is better.
Overall the Megahalems was a very impressive performer, delivering some of
the best results we’ve ever seen. Both fans kept thermal rise above ambient
below 20°C, even at 5V. The provided fan’s sweet spot seemed to be 7V, while
our reference Nexus fan performed proportionally depending on the fan voltage.
The Nexus fan delivered slightly improved results at equivalent noise levels,
but only by a single degree on average — nothing to write home about.
°C rise Comparison: Prolimatech Megahalems vs.
Nexus 120 fan voltage / SPL @1m
Scythe Ninja 2
All results generated with our reference Nexus 120mm
The Prolimatech Megahalems’s performance was top-notch across the board. It
posted similar results to the Thermalright
HR-01 Plus and Noctua NH-U12P
with low airflow, and bested the entire field, even the Thermalright
Ultra-120 eXtreme, when our Nexus fan was set to 12V.
MP3 SOUND RECORDINGS
These recordings were made with a high
resolution, lab quality, digital recording system inside SPCR’s
own 11 dBA ambient anechoic chamber, then converted to LAME 128kbps
encoded MP3s. We’ve listened long and hard to ensure there is no audible degradation
from the original WAV files to these MP3s. They represent a quick snapshot of
what we heard during the review.
These recordings are intended to give you an idea of how the product sounds
in actual use — one meter is a reasonable typical distance between a computer
or computer component and your ear. The recording contains stretches of ambient
noise that you can use to judge the relative loudness of the subject. Be aware
that very quiet subjects may not be audible — if we couldn’t hear it from
one meter, chances are we couldn’t record it either!
The recording starts with 10 second segments of room ambiance, then the fan
at various levels. For the most realistic results, set the volume so that
the starting ambient level is just barely audible, then don’t change the volume
The Prolimatech Megahalems delivered a championship performance, no matter
how much airflow was supplied by the fan. It performed similarly to the Thermalright
HR-01 Plus in a low airflow environment, but did 3°C better with high
airflow, making it an all-around superior cooler.
We were unsure whether a heatsink with tight fin spacing would do as well with
low airflow, but the Megahalems had just the right design to make it work. There’s little
doubt that the extremely secure mounting system also plays a big role in its
success. We appreciate its simplicity as well — most of the process is
tool-less except for the final step which requires a screwdriver. The mounting
components are also rather large making them harder to misplace. Only the lack of support for AMD processors is a bit disappointing, though this may come in the future.
The Megahalems is a first class heatsink, but availability and
price seem a bit problematic at the moment. The Prolimatech site refers us
to two retailers currently selling the Megahalems, with only the German site
actually having the cooler listed, priced at just under 60 Euros which is about
$77 USD at today’s exhange rate. While that’s fine if you want the latest and
greatest, it really needs to be at most, about $60 (without fan) to truly make it competitive
with a similar performing cooler like the Thermalright HR-01 Plus. That may
not happen until more resellers get their hands on some stock.
Perhaps its part of their marketing strategy to drum up excitement and anticipation.
In any case, the Megahalems joins the Thermalright HR-01 Plus at the very top of our quiet, high performance heatsink list.
* Top-notch performance with both low and high airflow
* Price, availability
Our thanks to Prolimatech
for the Megahalems heatsink sample.
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