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asetek VapoChill Micro
Cooling Devices | First Looks
Thu 01 Sep 2005

Micro Vaporizer Extraordinaire

The VapoChill Micro is angled to direct air downward.

Thick piping for increased phase change surface area.

Copper base with pre-applied thermal paste.

If you're into overclocking or consider yourself a PC enthusiast, the term VapoChill will certainly have not slipped past your notice as the revolutionary cooling technique from asetek has gained quite a following. As performance cooling moves into the mainstream, asetek has reworked the large, vapor phase change compressors into a compact user-friendly package. The result is the VapoChill Micro.

Not Your Conventional Cooler

The VapoChill Micro has the appearance of the many heat-pipe coolers available in the market, but asetek assures us that looks are deceiving. The VapoChill Micro is designed not only to provide superior cooling through vapor phase change but to address many common concerns with CPU coolers like weight, PCB stress, user-friendliness, and motherboard overheating. Some of these are known problems with many cooling solutions from the traditional heatsinks to newer heat-pipe and water cooling kits.

The VapoChill Micro weighs in at a mere 355g with fan installed and can be mounted on most socket form factors without the need to remove the motherboard, a simple process that asetek claims to take only 30 seconds of your time. In order to counter the motherboard capacitor and other power circuitry overheating problem, the VapoChill Micro has an angled design (as opposed to the predominantly vertical builds of heat-pipe coolers), where the fan is blown downward, promoting air circulation around these critical components.

However, there is a slight catch. Though the VapoChill Micro units are the same, the packaging only comes with one type of socket clip. So if you're on an Intel system now and later switch to AMD, you'd have to purchase additional socket clips. We also found that the plastic fan duct to be rather flimsy, being not much thicker than the packaging it comes with, all in the name of further weight reduction.

The VapoChill Deal 

So what makes the VapoChill Micro a more powerful cooler or any different from a regular heat-pipe? Well, the most common method employed is to increase its cooling surface area. This is indeed achieved with larger pipes so that evaporation and condensation are more efficient. 55 thin aluminum fins also help increase cooling area and capacity, but the most unique factor is asetek's patented VapoChill vapor chamber. Unlike heat-pipes which relies on phase change to cool the heatsink block that in turn tries to remove heat from the CPU (you never knew cooling was so complicated didn't you), the VapoChill Micro places the evaporator chamber directly onto the CPU itself. This method is extremely effective at drawing heat away with a low amount of thermal resistance and its rated 150W heat dissipation capability is a testament to that.

The asetek VapoChill Micro comes in three models, Ultra Low Noise, High-end and Extreme Performance. All of these three models feature the same VapoChill Micro unit, but only differs from each other in terms of the supplied fan. The Ultra Low Noise and Extreme Performance models also come with a manual fan speed regulator.


Product Specifications

  • Dimensions (H×W×D): 139×98×50mm

  • Weight: 278g (355g incl. 92mm fan)

  • Fan Control Unit: 6-12V (1-24W) (for Ultra Low Noise and Extreme Performance models only)

  • Noise Level: <39 dB(A) (depending on fan model and speed)
  • Cooler Material: Pure copper base and tubing, aluminum fins

  • Coolant Liquid: Refrigerant gas R134a