Determining whether an aftermarket cooler will fit into an existing system can be tricky, especially when dealing with small-form-factor rigs, taller memory modules, or bulky motherboard heatsinks. That's why our mobo reviews provide detailed clearance measurements for various landmarks around the CPU socket. But those measurements may not be necessary for long, because cooler maker Cryorig has come up with a simple but seemingly effective alternative: an origami compatibility tester that simulates the presence of the desired cooler.
Downloadable PDF templates are available for all four of Cryorig's coolers. They need to be printed on A4 paper with 1:1 scaling, and there's an integrated ruler to make sure the output is the right size. This isn't origami in the strictest sense, though; some cutting and taping is required to attach the separate base, pipe, and fin elements.
The compatbility tester is designed to fit over the CPU heat spreader, so there are versions of each template for different sockets. Once the papercraft stand-in is finished, users should be able to plunk it into their system to check for conflicts.
Based on the current templates and Cryorig's own pictures, it looks like heavier card stock would work better than thinner paper. The concept is brilliant, though, and I hope more cooler makers adopt it. Thanks to Hermitage Akihabara for the tip.