In the past few years, heatsinks have gone from relatively obscure devices mounted on processors with the sole purpose of moving heat away from the processor core to something more of a techie's craze. They attracted very little attention and very little care because no one needed all that good cooling to help keep a Pentium I or even a Pentium II stable. But with the advent of the Pentium III/AMD generation, heatsinks have risen in both popularity and necessity. With processors throwing off so much heat, a fan is not only convenient, but required. With today's processors, a fan is required and a bigger fan is convenient. Sooner or later we will hit the stages where every processor will need exotic cooling since every generation of processor architectures, so far, have meant more heat needed to be thrown off. If you're a computer nut or just someone who builds systems, you will probably have noticed that there are an abundance of heatsinks to choose from in all shapes and sizes that perform relatively the same except for the few overachievers that are excellent in both design and capability. The great thing about this industry is that there is no single company dominating the market such as NVIDIA or Microsoft, etc… The market for heatsinks is a market for innovation and design, there are so many different ways to make a good HSF and so many ways to make it even better. All a company needs is a good idea and good resources to make a winning product. Today we look at a HSF from a company that was relatively obscure a few months ago. Thermosonic (Here) was established last year and is a relatively new company based in Taiwan. In fact, their first product is the Thermoengine. I'm sure this probably isn't the first review you've read on this good looking unit, but it probably wont be a last as there are quite a few different combinations and revisions made on this unit.
The design of the Thermoengine is unique to say the least. Of all of the heatsinks available today, it is the most attractive while being the most intriguing. As you can see in the pictures, the fins on the thermoengine don't go one way, they lead out away from the core of the heatsink to the outer edges. I'm guessing this is a design trick that'll help the distribution of heat but only testing will help us find out. The "core" of the heatsink runs from the top right down to the contact area for the CPU where there is a stock TIM (Thermal Interface Material). At first glance, there seems to be a good amount of surface area on the serrated fin design. The V60-4210 comes with a stock 60x60x10mm fan moving only 19.8CFM at it's best. But at around 30db, it's a great fan for people who like quiet while they're working. The fan intakes air into the heatsink so it may be a bit louder although more effective.
Going back to the actual heatsink, the typically low-density aluminum makes it moderately light although it's a feather compared to some of the copper heatsinks lying around here. Thermosonic has done an amazing job casting, machining, and assembling the heatsink: there are holes drilled for the screws, everything fits right, feels solid, and it's just well constructed and it's obvious by how it looks. The design of the heatsink is very attractive, especially if you can find one of the anodized ones in 5 great colors. As the most popular well-rounded and available heatsink out today, it's been in good demand and also in good combinations with various Delta, Panaflo, Global Win, and etc fans.
Looking at the Interface material on the Thermoengine (there's some preapplied goop on the bottom of the heatsink that is described by Thermosonic as "phase correcting material" which basically means it heats up to conform to the best parameters of contact) we realize that there is a very thick amount of it and that it's supposed to even out when it's heated up. From my experience, a thick layer of thermal compound is never a good thing because it's just required to fill in the gaps and imperfections between the two surfaces: making it thick won't actually benefit it. To see if the TIM would even itself out with heat as it's supposed to. We put the processor on a Pentium III 800e at 1GHz and let it sit there for a while under full load. A couple of hours later, when we pulled the Thermoengine off, we were surprised to see that the TIM had evened itself out due to the pressure and the heat and made good contact with the CPU, not too much and not too little. So in our tests below, we used the base TIM instead of something fancy.
>> Thermoengine History/Installation/Benchmarks And Performance