July 6, 2017 // 11:37 a.m.
EK Water Blocks has announced the launch of a passive, air-cooled heatsink designed to prevent thermal throttling of high-speed solid-state drives (SSDs) in the M.2 form factor.
A departure from the company's usual eponymous liquid-cooling accessories, the not-terribly-imaginatively-named EK-M.2 NVMe Heatsinks are entirely passive components which are attached to M.2 SSDs in order to bleed off excess heat and, the company claims, prevent performance loss caused by thermal throttling. Naturally, they're only able to do this if your motherboard has decent airflow around the M.2 slot - something some boards may struggle with, given the common positioning of the M.2 slot between PCI Express sockets typically populated with two- or three-slot graphics cards.
Available in black and silver finishes, the heatsinks are compatible with any M.2 2280 form factor Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) SSD - the stick-shaped drives measuring 22mm in width and 80mm in length. Motherboard compatibility, however, needs to be carefully checked: EK's heatsinks are a two-part system with a main heatsink on the upper side and a metal heat spreader acting as a backplate on the lower side, meaning M.2 sockets must sit a minimum of 4.2mm proud of the motherboard to allow for clearance.
The EK-M.2 NVMe Heatsinks enter a surprisingly crowded market: late last year MSI announced its M.2 Shield heat spreader design as a patent-applied-for feature of future motherboards, Aqua Computer launched a riser card and water block pairing, and EK itself announced a water block for Intel's 750 Series SSDs in 2015.
The EK-M.2 NVMe is available now from EK Water Blocks' official webshop, priced at €9.79 for the black-finish variant and €12.73 for the silver (around £8.58 and £11.16 respectively, including VAT).