What do you need in a CPU cooler? Do you need it to look like someone's ripped the still-sparking heart out of one of Michael 'Ka-blam Boom' Bay's Transformers? Does it need sparkly LEDs and fanciful, extraneous trimmings?

No, it needs to keep your processor cool and not break the bank doing it so you can spend a little more on sexier components like graphics cards or RAM. Thermaltake's Contac 29 then ticks all the right boxes.

It's not beautiful to look at, being just a plain, square, fat heatsink with a chunk-off fan strapped to it, but it gets the job done and no mistake.

It's also got compatibility up the wazoo - catering for all three of Intel's latest socket designs as well as tipping a respectful hat to the AMD camp and its CPU mountings.

We strapped it to Intel's i5-750 and it absolutely destroys the reference cooler design.

At stock frequencies that was hitting 36°C and 61°C at idle and under load respectively, but wouldn't allow us to run under load with the basic overclock we needed to get our 2GHz RAM sticks running. Compare that with the Contac 29's stock performance of 27°C and 44°C and you can colour us impressed.

The cooler was also partly responsible for the 4.12GHz we managed to get out of the latest Gigabyte revision of its UD6 motherboard.

Under the strain it hit almost the same operating temperatures as the reference cooler did at stock frequencies. Now that's cool.

For a chiller block priced at £20 you really can't argue with that cooling prowess and we sure as hell wouldn't. A great cooler and no mistake.

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