Luke Roberts schrijft dat er bij RipNet-UK.com een review is verschenen over de ZM17 koeler van Zalman. Deze koperen koeler is in het bezit van een apart design en is volledig passief, er zijn dus geen herrie producerende fans. Naast stil is de performance van de koeler ook heel behoorlijk. Een GeForce2 onder full-load weet ie bijna even goed te koelen als een Blue Orb :
I have to say that I was firstly surprised, and secondly impressed, by the Zalman's thermal performance. Only 1ºC behind the Blorb at full load is a pretty good showing. In addition I was quite surprised at how little the GeForce heated up under load, but conditions were exactly the same for each cooler so it seems like a fair comparison (ambient temperature was a typically cool 21ºC, that's a Cornish summer day for you).
So on that showing is the ZM17 a viable alternative to active cooling? Well Zalman are making a big deal about low or zero noise cooling solutions, and the first thing to bear in mind is that a Blue Orb doesn't actually make a whole lot of noise anyway. Certainly if you're running a 6800 rpm CPU cooler you won't notice the difference. And crucially the mounting screws on the ZM17 don't line up with the holes on the Hercules GF 2, which I'd imagine are in a standard position. This can be overcome by using the thermal adhesive that Zalman supply, but then you're committed - and nobody likes too much commitment, do they? On the plus side of the equation the Zalman performs very well, falling only just short of an active cooler, and it looks pretty as a picture into the bargain. If Zalman sort out the mounting screw positions, and then maybe start offering the ZM17 in a choice of anodised colours, then they could have a winner on their hands.