Heatsink & Fan Solutions

Hi All, I don’t need to splash for the official heatsink as my processor tasks wont be very demanding but can anyone share any examples of working heatsinks and will the self adhesive heatsinks be enough ?

Would something like this be adequate ? are there any raspberry pi fan / heatsink combos that work well.


The ones you posted look a bit small, I would recommend heat sink of size 20 x 20.

I bought the acrylic case with heat sink from a local distributor. With the default adhesive, cooling performance was just ok. It increased appreciably after replacing the adhesive tape with a small cooling pad!

Not even close. Even this:

is actually not enough if ventilation around is not perfect, but good enough for light to medium tasks. It’s the size of the board.

You can run without, but CPU will throttle very fast.

Is it safe to run without ? I really don’t need good CPU performance, my current solution that this replaces is a pi 2

It will throttle itself safely.

Rockchip is known for making parts that run at extremely high temperatures. In fact, most Chinese vendors (i.e., also includes HiSilicon) are known for hot running CPUs. If you’re looking for cool running parts, try Qualcomm. Even with the core voltage locked at maximum, a Dragonboard 820c with no heat sink or fan at all, will be running at barely over room temperature for moderate tasks.

Of course, you’ll be paying a premium for that hardware.

What kind of performance hit should be expect if we let it throttle without a heatsink or fan? I’m in a similar situation as the OP and am looking to replace my RPi 3 with an SBC in the same form factor. So this board will need to be able to fit in the official Raspberry Pi 3 case which means I definitely can’t use a heatsink if I want it to fit in the Pi 3 case (assuming the PCIe connector at the bottom of this board doesn’t cause issues either).

I would recommend a new case. Super cheap ones would work but this thing gets hot!!! My current pi case would prob melt if I used that !

That’s unfortunate then since I’d really like to keep using this case. It’s a special custom case I have based on the official RPi case that’s perfectly suited to this project of mine. If the Rock Pi 4 really isn’t usable without a heatsink I might have to consider an alternative board with an SoC that won’t run as hot or one with the SoC on the top side of the board so I can use a heatsink and still have it fit inside the case.

@generalheed, depends on how much it’s custom. Remember, that RockPi have chip on bottom side, so, unless you create hole in your current case (why not do this, btw?) - it will just melt it most likely (over time). My advice is to get some kind of heatsink for rockpi and to create a hole for it.

As for perfomance without heatsink… Highly depens on what you gonna do. If it’s something not cpu heavy, you may just lower cpu freq. With this it should(!) be fine without heatsink, but that’s require testing

If you’re compiling big software on it continuously, it will slow to a crawl. If its a media player box that depends mostly on accelerated video decode (rather than cpu/software decode), then it will work fine.

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hi, i run face recognition tesk, and i xrandr -o right to rotating screen. From htop, CPU usage of the two big kernals always is about 100%, four small kernals is 30-50%. the tamperature of zero0 is 85 C, zreo1 75 C ,about 30 minutes, the board is shuts down automatically, and the power led is off.
face recognize tesk CPU is 145%, Xorg tesk CPU is 100%.
so do you have any suggestions?