If Zalman wasn't so hung up on minimizing noise, they could have a "kick ***" HSF. There is no air cooling system better than a radial fin system for getting heat away from the core as fast as possible. You can not test the Zalman effectively using the in-socket thermistor for the same reasons as the ThermoEngine. The Zalman HS baseplate allows the ceramic carrier, in which the core is mounted to cool disproportionately in relation to the core temperature. I think we can all agree that causes in-socket thermistors to register temps lower than with an HSF that has a larger baseplate, regardless of which one actually cools the core better.