Nehalem set for bigger and stronger mounting system

"Intel have made some changes to how CPU coolers will mount to socket LGA1366 (Nehalem) motherboards"

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 Nehalem Dies


Intel implement new mounting system for Nehalem CPUs

The Inquirer have reported that the socket on the upcoming LGA1366 (Nehalem - Bloomfield & Gainestown) based motherboards is not only 20 per cent bigger on each side than the socket LGA775 for the current Penryns, but it also seems far more robust when looking for a nice secure mount.
Below are the front and back views of an LGA1366 test board for a Bloomfield CPU.  While the front looks very similar to what is currently in use, if you look closely you will see that there is an ILM (Independent Loading Mechanism) as opposed to the LGA775s direct socket loading.  You'll also see that on the rear of the board a metal back plate has been implemented which, via four screw holes, will hold the CPU socket firmly so as to help prevent banding of the motherboard under the heavy load of big heatsinks or water-blocks.

     Nehalem Front Mount            Nehalem Rear Mount
Here are a couple more pictures showing the mounting assembly process for the socket and also a small table detailing the differences between the popular LGA775 and the upcoming LGA1366 sockets / packages.

     Board Assembly             Socket Comparison

It seems that Intel have given some thought as to what changes to make to improve this socket. I imagine these changes will be welcomed but it also has to be mentioned that it seems Intel have stuck with the push-pin cooler design that people have been calling to be scrapped for ages.

Also with the socket change, inevitably, the mounting holes for cooling solutions have also changed. This means anyone who has shelled out on a top end heatsink and fan will more than likely be looking at having to buy a new one. For those with water-blocks that can change their mounting plates.. Hope remains. The size of the LGA1366 socket with the new retention mechanism fitted measures 60x82mm, compared to 58x61mm for current LGA775 processors.

While this isn't going to bother us any time soon, it gives a little more info on what we can look forward to in the future.

Let us know what you think. Discuss in our forum.
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