Turns out you can (briefly) cool a Core i9 processor with an 8lb copper cylinder

Don't try this at home.

Cooling an i9 with a 8lb block of copper

Having witnessed the CPU cooling capabilities of weird thermal interface materials, now how about an unusual heat dissipator?

That’s exactly what we’ve been treated to by Redditor That-Desktop-User, who slapped an 8lb (3.6kg) hunk of copper on top of an Intel Core i9 CPU. The results? 35°C at idle for 15min, and about 80°C max when running a benchmark for a couple of minutes. Not bad at all, for a passive lump of metal with no fins or fans.

Wondering what the threaded holes on the side are for? According to That-Desktop-User, this piece of copper was salvaged from some medical machine. The threads were apparently used to convey some sort of liquid, so repurposing them for water cooling could be a possibility, and that’s precisely what the user is planning to do next. We’re curiously intrigued to see the results.

Cooling an i9 with a 8lb block of copper - Full
Source: That-Desktop-User

It goes without saying that this contraption is more for fun than utility, aside from the nightmare of permanently fixing a 3.6kg metal block to a board without bending or breaking it, the lack of any fins surely limits its long-term heat dissipation potential. While it’s always fun to see such homebrew modifications, the moment this copper cylinder hits thermal saturation, there’s every chance it will no longer sustain the CPU until the cylinder itself gets cooled, which may take a while due to the lack of surface area.

Aside from the above, during the brief testing, the CPU most likely operated at maximum frequency since it stayed below the thermal throttle limit, bringing us to another question, which Core i9 chip are we talking about? The user doesn’t specify, meaning it could be an easy-to-cool 35W i9-9900T or a power-hungry 253W i9-13900K. Going by look and layout (multiple M.2 and armoured PCIe slots), we would guess the motherboard is a Gigabyte Z390 Aorus, which happens to be compatible with Intel 9th Gen i9 CPUs.

It is amusing to see how some manage to find new ways to play with their hardware, though this user evidently doesn’t have high hopes for the copper cylinder’s long-term prospects. The mod was posted in r/hardwaregore, a subreddit specifically for ‘broken and gorey hardware.’