Our process for testing and documenting heatsinks is straightforward and consistent. We install the heatsink according to the instructions provided by the manufacturer using only the provided accessories and thermal compound.
For idle readings, room temperature is maintained at a cozy 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) and the computer is running for an hour before CPU temperatures are logged. Full load is achieved with Prime95 set for In-Place Large FFTs (maximum heat, power consumption, some RAM tested). The TIM is applied and at least 100 hours have passed before the readings are recorded. Temps are recorded every 5 seconds for 45 minutes, then averaged omitting the highest and lowest temperatures recorded.