Pro overclocker modded an Intel cryo cooler to run on a Ryzen 9 5950X because why not

EK QuantumX Delta TEC
(Image credit: Der8auer)

When it comes to modding, the question isn't whether you should do something, but rather can you do it. In that vein, Der8auer, a well-known overclocker with serious modding chops, adapted a new EK thermoelectric (TEC) cooler designed in collaboration with Intel for its Comet Lake CPUs, getting it to fit and run on AMD's flagship desktop CPU, the 16-core/32-thread Ryzen 9 5950X. And it worked (mostly).

This is a tricky mod for several reasons. For one, the only mounting hardware EK's QuantumX Delta TEC comes with is specifically designed for Intel's LGA 1200 socket. Furthermore, EK's list of compatible motherboards includes just 15 models, including five each from Asus and Gigabyte, three from ASRock, and two from MSI, all based on Intel's Z490 chipset.

One thing working in Der8auer's favor, however, is that the insulation piece intended to keep condensation from spilling over to other parts has a CPU cutout that is already large enough for a socket AM4 setup. So, his custom bracket just needed to fit the piece.

Even after getting the hardware hacked together, there is the issue of the software. It only works with Intel's CPUs, and specifically its Core i9 10900K and 10850K, Core i7 10700K, and Core i5 10600K models.

To get around this, Der8auer had to cable the cooler to a second setup with a 10900K processor installed, and run the software from the secondary PC. Otherwise, the TEC cooler would just sit there useless as a glass hammer.

The cooler runs in three modes: standby, Cryo, and unregulated, the latter of which throws caution to the wind and runs at full blast, condensation build-up be damned.

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In standby mode, Der8auer saw temps on his 5950X chip hit 90C in Cinebench R15's single-threaded test. Turning on the TEC cut the temps almost in half, to around 50C. And while gaming, the 5950X routinely boosted to 4.8GHz to 4.9GHz on all 16 cores.

Switching to unregulated mode, temps dropped to 2C at idle, but the system ultimately crashed when either hammering the chip with Cinebench, or overclocking past 5.25GHz on all 16 cores (which is impressive).

So in case you are wondering, yes, you can can mode EK's new cooler to run on an AMD processor. But it's a tricky and unwieldy mod with not a lot of utility, so you probably shouldn't. Though 'probably shouldn't' is like catnip to overclockers...

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).