Summary: I use this CPU cooler on all my desktop systems. The machines vary in assignments from general purpose machines to programming stations to gaming rigs. I am not a fanatical overclocker, but I still like to keep my processors cool. I presently run mostly AMD 8350's. They get high marks in cooling. My fastest machine rarely exceeds 35 - 36 degrees centigrade. The only reason I dock it one star is for it's wonkey CPU bracket.
Summary: I got this for a new AM3+ budget build. I got this cooler because it has the PWM fan control and I hate the other styles with the little knob that you have to keep adjusting for the fan speed. The great thing about this cooler is that it keeps my FX8350 cool and quiet even when overclocked to 4.6ghz and at full load.The unit is big overall, but it is small enough to clear the ram, 200mm side fan and all other components in my case.
Summary: This cooling fan has been quite effective. I am running an i7 CPU, which generally run pretty warm. This fan has kept the temperature down quite a bit even under heavy load. I would definitely recommend this product, but if you aren't very comfortable disassembling and reassembling your desktop computer I would suggest that you have a professional make the installation.
Summary: If you happen to be rocking a stock OEM cooler like I was, expect some work and to make some room. I had to of course remove the cooling duct that was on my case to make room for this cooler. I also had to do a little creative wire management after it was installed. Speaking to installation, I essentially had to disassemble my PC in order to install the bracing that goes on the bottom side of the motherboard. As for the cooling..
Summary: I actually had to watch a video to get the installation instructions straight in my head. Much more involved than my last cooler, but definitely bound to the CPU for efficient heat transfer. It's quiet, all copper and blue. I have to take a star only because of slightly more involvement of installation.
Summary: Contrary to certain posts this fan is compatable with an 1156 mb. I have an i5 cpu with a Intel Core i7/i5 LGA1156 4DDR3-2200 CrossFireX/GBE/Raid/SATA3/USB3.0/7.1-CH ATX Motherboard GA-P55A-UD3 motherboard and this cpu fan is compatable. The fan itself is very large so make sure you have a big enough case to house it. My case, a NZXT M59 Classic Series ATX Mid Tower interior chassis CS-NT-M59, is just big enough with the top and rear fan in place.
Summary: I am running a core i7 940 and was previously using the Intel stock cooler. Performance: I have the fan set to be controlled by the motherboard. When kicking off something like prime 95 you will instantly hear the fan kick up. At normal speeds the fan is pretty silent though. I also do not hear the fan spin up when playing games so the noise of the fan at full throttle doesn't really bother me since I rarely do anything except video encoding that would kick the fan up...
Summary: It's a great cooler. Keeps my CPU at around 35C. I just had a slight challenge with installation. I had to buy a separate base from Zalman. The base provided did not fit the EVGA motherboard well because one of the capacitors on board was going to be squashed by the base, if forced. I therefore filed it before insertion. It's working great so far.