Thermolab ITX30 Ultra-Low Profile CPU Cooler Review

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I’m thankful that people’s perception is changing in relation to physical sizes. For decades we were force fed the belief that “bigger is better”. In certain instances, there is no denying that is true. A large bank account is certainly better than a small bank account. If you are battling rogue aliens, a big gun is certainly better than a little gun, unless the little gun happens to be the “cricket” from “Men In Black”. I mean, really, we all had an inkling as to what was about to happen there, but it is still a classic scene from a classic movie. The look on Will Smith’s face when he fires it is priceless, there has never been an expression that says “how did that little thing do that?” that has been quite as spot on.




That’s the thing, size isn’t always a telling feature of an item’s worth or capabilities. Just ask the bookies who lost their sheckles back in the day when they had everything riding on the heavy favorite, Goliath. The transition makes its way into technology on a regular basis, as we see smaller and smaller items consistently offering more power as technology evolves. That typically excludes CPU and GPU coolers, however, simply because of physical limitations. Surface area is a required asset for heat dissipation, and the more you have, the better off you are….provided we are talking about a singular material. However, different substances have very different capabilities, with copper providing far and away the best dissipation of common alloys. With that in mind, it is easy to understand that a far smaller copper heatsink can provide the same heat dissipation than a larger aluminum piece. Using that as a base, it is possible to make coolers that are far more effective in a smaller size.



Thermolab’s ITX30 offers a powerful solution for the mini-PC builder without sacrifices in performance or quality. With an incredibly slim 30mm height (15mm shorter than Intel’s stock cooler), the Thermolab ITX30 can fit in the smallest chassis yet is capable of cooling CPUs up to 100W TDP. At the heart of the ITX30 is its all copper construction, including solid CPU contact plate and fin array. Two sintered powder copper heatpipes draw heat away from the CPU to be dissipated in the fin array. The ITX30 uses an 80mm PWM fan that measures only 10mm thick, with a top speed of 2400rpm with only 27 dBA of noise. The simple mounting system allows for installation of the ITX30 to be mounted in only a few minutes and thermal interface material comes pre-applied. The ITX30 fits Intel LGA1150/1155/1156, and adheres to Intel’s ILM Keep-Out Zone, so it will not interfere with any other system components.