Noctua NH-D14 flagship dual-fan CPU cooler

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MikeC
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Noctua NH-D14 flagship dual-fan CPU cooler

Post by MikeC » Mon Feb 01, 2010 10:42 pm


corrion
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Post by corrion » Mon Feb 01, 2010 11:03 pm

I wanted to point out that the year you have listed is "2009".

Reading the article right now!

fri2219
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Post by fri2219 » Mon Feb 01, 2010 11:55 pm

Nice to see gluttony hasn't been completely killed by the global depression.

Bigger is always better, just ask anyone with a wart or an inoperable tumor.

ekerazha
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Post by ekerazha » Tue Feb 02, 2010 2:51 am

Good review.

However
The other HS with comparable mounting hardware is the Prolimatech Megahalems, but it is only compatible with Intel socket boards.
Not really, http://www.prolimatech.com/products/acc ... RM-01.html

Tzupy
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Post by Tzupy » Tue Feb 02, 2010 3:31 am

IMO the whole 2nd fan issue is exaggerated, since it only becomes apparent when testing outside a case.
If the testing would be done within a case, the back case fan would be so close, that it would play the same role as the 2nd fan.
And if it wouldn't be close enough, an empty fan frame can be used between the case fan and the CPU heatsink.

I'd like to see a tower fan that doesn't rely on the PSU airflow at all. I have a Mugen2 on i7-920 and with Slipstream fans at 660 rpm on it and as case fan it only reaches 50C with 8 Prime95 threads. But my SPCR-recommended Enermax Pro82+ 525W (bought about 10 months ago, when I built the system) ramps upto 950 rpm (from 550 rpm now), which ruins everything.
I know that I wouldn't have this problem with a P183 instead of the Solo, but I don't like the looks and size of the P183, compared with the Solo.

cannesahs
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Keep going

Post by cannesahs » Tue Feb 02, 2010 3:41 am

Good, "long" waited review. ;) Made me, long time reader, to register.

Could you add row with measurements with 1x Nexus 120 -fan to chart B at page 8 of the review.
Ideally you could add 3 rows:
-1x Nexus120 blowing
-1x Nexus120 center
-1x Nexus120 "sucking"

For clobal charts you could add 2x and 1x (best of 3 positions) measurements.
Why? Help us compare 1x vs. 2x performance. And to give advice of positioning fan - ofc this will always depence on whole system setup.

For curiosity have you tested orienting heatsink to blow up instead of back of case? I doubt its any better, but some recommend it.

Edit: Oh true. Testing is done in open air, so no reason for different orientations (up/back). This might also make 2 fans look better against 1 fan, than it might be in real use in case.

lodestar
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Post by lodestar » Tue Feb 02, 2010 4:37 am

Tzupy wrote:IMO the whole 2nd fan issue is exaggerated, since it only becomes apparent when testing outside a case.
To me this is an argument for testing outside a case, and I say that as a supporter of 'in case' cooler testing. As the rest of your post shows, once in case other variables come into play which make it more difficult to isolate the CPU cooler and reach firm conclusions about it.

There certainly seem to be plenty of Core i7 systems out there with dual fan coolers so I suspect that they are an advantage in practice, but maybe not for all configurations.

dev
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Post by dev » Tue Feb 02, 2010 4:54 am

Great work Mike.

Don't mean to hijack the thread but this may provide some answers:

http://translate.google.com/translate?j ... l=ro&tl=en

Case testing included with up to 3 fans.

Edit: Not all heatsinks benefit from the use of a second fan. Two excellent performers spring to mind: Thermolab Baram and Thermalright HR-01+. The vast majority of top heatsink will only record a minor improvement, 1-2 degrees maximum. But in twin tower design theres obvious reasons why a second fan is more beneficial. Given the size of these coolers an exhaust case fan is also a good idea.

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Post by MikeC » Tue Feb 02, 2010 7:24 am

dev wrote:Great work Mike.

Don't mean to hijack the thread but this may provide some answers:

http://translate.google.com/translate?j ... l=ro&tl=en

Case testing included with up to 3 fans.

Edit: Not all heatsinks benefit from the use of a second fan. Two excellent performers spring to mind: Thermolab Baram and Thermalright HR-01+. The vast majority of top heatsink will only record a minor improvement, 1-2 degrees maximum. But in twin tower design theres obvious reasons why a second fan is more beneficial. Given the size of these coolers an exhaust case fan is also a good idea.
uhhhh.... 64 pages? :lol: Someone has too much time on their hands, methinks!

Anyway, that article only answers questions about one other model on our top quiet HS list, the Megahalems. In theory, whether it's a 2-stack fin design or one does not have anything to do with whether a 2nd fan provides benefit. It's the question of impedance: If the stack is somewhat tight in spacing and deep (for the air to pass through), then there will be benefits at low rpm with 2 fans. Just how much will depend on many variables, which is why a dual-fan roundup of previously tested HS might be worthwhile. Also, the actual noise produced by 2 fans will vary a bit with the HS, which is another issue for SPCR to consider.

Of course, as mentioned in the article, it's simple for end users to add a second fan and play around for themselves. Someone could even start a 2-fan results poll/thread.

Jordan
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Post by Jordan » Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:40 am

Tzupy wrote:I know that I wouldn't have this problem with a P183 instead of the Solo, but I don't like the looks and size of the P183, compared with the Solo.
P180 Mini solves the size issue somewhat... but you'd also need a mAtax mobo if you don't already!

sovnarkom
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Post by sovnarkom » Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:44 am

In SPCR's 120mm case fan roundup (submitted by Devon Cook) the Noctua fan beats out the Nexus as the airflow to noise king.

I'm surprised to see that the P12/14 aren't correspondingly the static pressure/noise winners.

Please try testing the Noctua NF-S12B ... it may outperform the Nexus.

Jordan
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Post by Jordan » Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:55 am

lodestar wrote:
Tzupy wrote:IMO the whole 2nd fan issue is exaggerated, since it only becomes apparent when testing outside a case.
To me this is an argument for testing outside a case, and I say that as a supporter of 'in case' cooler testing. As the rest of your post shows, once in case other variables come into play which make it more difficult to isolate the CPU cooler and reach firm conclusions about it.

There certainly seem to be plenty of Core i7 systems out there with dual fan coolers so I suspect that they are an advantage in practice, but maybe not for all configurations.
Not to mention all the heatsink data SPCR have is in open conditions. To compare new heatsinks to older ones they'd also need to re-test these to have as a benchmark.

roadie
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Post by roadie » Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:22 am

Seems like you could mount 3 Nexus fans on this HS if you were mad enough to!

RemoteControlAxe
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Post by RemoteControlAxe » Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:26 am

Great review as always. I read all the reviews you guys post, as SPCR does some of the most in-depth testing I've seen, and I'm always fascinated to see how the various heatsinks handle different loads/airflow amounts.

Ok I want to point out a couple things.
Simple typos:
1. page 3: you wrote 2010 as "2100" when referring to the new HS test platform article.
2. page 3: it's socket 1156 not 1166 (don't ask me why Intel names their sockets as such because 1366 is correct)

Noctua stuff (edit: links):
I own a U12P myself, and here are 2 things I find very helpful and really give me a lot of respect for the company:

1. You mention that Noctua always offers their new mounting kits for sale, but what's more important to me is that as long as you own a Noctua heatsink and an appropriate CPU and can provide proof, they'll send it to you for free.
reference for their newest mounting kit: http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=prod ... =30&lng=en

2. on their site, they explicitly list every single motherboard that the heatsink is compatible with and any issues that might be encountered (and in some cases, even asking you to contact them to get what's needed for compatibility). The amount of information here is absolutely astounding.
reference for the D14: http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=comp ... =34&lng=en

A quick question: why did you use the wire to strap on the Nexus fans? Is something wrong with the stock clips? It just seems odd to me that you wouldn't use them when you praised them so much early in the review.

And finally, for those interested, a bit ago I saw that HardwareCanucks did a review of the D14, and they even went as far as doing triple-fan testing.
Last edited by RemoteControlAxe on Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:08 pm

RemoteControlAxe --

Thanks for your comments... and the typo points. :)

Didn't know about the free updates. will make a change in article.

Great to know about the mobo compatibility.

wires -- there's only 4 clips for the fans (afaik), and they're on the supplied fans, with the little eyelet plastic tabs. Didn't want to remove them, and the wire mounting takes less than a minute. Time. No difference in end results anyway...

RemoteControlAxe
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Post by RemoteControlAxe » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:23 pm

Ah I didn't see the "eyelet tabs" (must be a new thing they're doing, since the clips for my U12P SE1366 didn't have those). Makes sense to leave the clips on there, then.
Thanks for the reply!

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Post by CA_Steve » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:36 pm

RemoteControlAxe wrote: 2. page 3: it's socket 1156 not 1166 (don't ask me why Intel names their sockets as such because 1366 is correct)
It's one of the few times a model number actually means something:
Socket 775 has 775 pins, 1156 has 1156, and 1366 has 1366.

RemoteControlAxe
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Post by RemoteControlAxe » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:38 pm

/facepalm
Thanks, heh.

ehume
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Post by ehume » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:26 pm

Fabulous review! Exactly what I wanted.

I would have liked to see a Scythe Kaze Maru or Kaze Maru 2 tested as the middle fan. Like the Noctua, they have 120mm standard fan mounting holes. I have a P14 and three Kaze Marus - 500, 1200 and 1900. I am highly impressed with the KM's. When downvolted they are quiet and push air.

Q - Does the thicket of vanes surrounding the central fan muffle it at all? Based on your results, it would seem not.

Finally: everyone assumes that the Nexus Real Quiet fan is a Yate Loon. I have one of each (the YL is from Petra Tech). On the outside they look the same. But the YL clicks when it is downvolted, where the Nexus does not. I understand that this has to do with circuit switching, and can be changed with electronics that put the switching frequency up where we can't hear it. Unfortunately I did not bookmark the reference.

When I want quiet, I turn to my Nexus.

sovnarkom
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Post by sovnarkom » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:29 am

btw, you listed that the Street Price ~$90 USD. There are a few retailers that sell it that high and a couple who even sell it at under $100. That's the result when the demand is so high, they can get away with asking for more. Newegg, which sells it at $99.99 -> was selling for $84.99 only a few weeks ago.

Heatsink Factory, svc and Sidewinder Computers are all selling it for under $80.

I bought mine @ linkecomputer dot com for only $69.99 (the price is the same now).

If you shopped around to get the best price -> it would still cost you at least $95 to get a prolimatech heatsink with comparable fans ...so this combo is actually a great deal.

walle
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Post by walle » Sat Feb 06, 2010 1:30 pm

I'm actually in the market for a new cooler but I'll be waiting with replacing the HR-01 Plus until that you've reviewed the IFX-14.

/excellent review Mike C. as always.

guises
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Post by guises » Sun Feb 07, 2010 9:19 am

Does SPCR currently have a method for VRM testing? That seemed like a pretty significant feature here, if it worked. Though, granted, there are probably a lot of heatsinks that you could just slap a 14cm fan on to get the same result.

Rebellious
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hellooooo-o

Post by Rebellious » Mon Feb 08, 2010 2:33 pm

Hello... it would be nice to test heatsinks mounted on AMD mobo for a change!

Can the Noctua NH-D14 be mounted both north/south and east/west on AM3?

BTW Prolimatech Megahalems does work with AMD, just needs a separate adapter, the best mounting setup I've ever used.

bestwestern
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Post by bestwestern » Mon Feb 08, 2010 11:53 pm

I think it's strange that Noctua is including their old 120 mm fan NF-P12 instead of the improved NF-P12 FLX which has better airflow at lower noise.

Why don't you include Orochi in your comparisons?

I am building a new pc and don't know if I should choose NH-D14 or the Scyte Orochi.

Jordan
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Re: hellooooo-o

Post by Jordan » Tue Feb 09, 2010 1:11 am

Rebellious wrote:Hello... it would be nice to test heatsinks mounted on AMD mobo for a change!
Doesn't really matter... if it performs well on this hot Intel CPU it should perform well on any AMD CPU.

The main thing is that all other heatsinks have been tested on this platform so it makes sense to keep using it for comparison's sake :wink:

Jordan
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Post by Jordan » Tue Feb 09, 2010 1:14 am

Mike - the link to the Pentium D on the test platform page goes to a 404 page.

guises
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Post by guises » Tue Feb 09, 2010 4:52 pm

bestwestern wrote:Why don't you include Orochi in your comparisons?
This has been mentioned in other reviews, but the reason is because the retention mechanism is inadequate for such a heavy heatsink.

Since the Orochi has been updated to include a backplate I believe that Mike said something less negative about the reviewing it, but it was a pretty begrudging "maybe" and didn't seem at all enthusiastic about the prospect.

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Post by frostedflakes » Tue Feb 09, 2010 7:00 pm

RemoteControlAxe wrote:Great review as always. I read all the reviews you guys post, as SPCR does some of the most in-depth testing I've seen, and I'm always fascinated to see how the various heatsinks handle different loads/airflow amounts.

Ok I want to point out a couple things.
Simple typos:
1. page 3: you wrote 2010 as "2100" when referring to the new HS test platform article.
2. page 3: it's socket 1156 not 1166 (don't ask me why Intel names their sockets as such because 1366 is correct)

Noctua stuff (edit: links):
I own a U12P myself, and here are 2 things I find very helpful and really give me a lot of respect for the company:

1. You mention that Noctua always offers their new mounting kits for sale, but what's more important to me is that as long as you own a Noctua heatsink and an appropriate CPU and can provide proof, they'll send it to you for free.
reference for their newest mounting kit: http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=prod ... =30&lng=en

2. on their site, they explicitly list every single motherboard that the heatsink is compatible with and any issues that might be encountered (and in some cases, even asking you to contact them to get what's needed for compatibility). The amount of information here is absolutely astounding.
reference for the D14: http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=comp ... =34&lng=en

A quick question: why did you use the wire to strap on the Nexus fans? Is something wrong with the stock clips? It just seems odd to me that you wouldn't use them when you praised them so much early in the review.

And finally, for those interested, a bit ago I saw that HardwareCanucks did a review of the D14, and they even went as far as doing triple-fan testing.
Great info, that's actually really cool. I had kind of shied away from Noctua products because of the price, but it sounds like quality and support is top-notch. In the future I'm definitely going to have to take a closer look at what they have to offer.

RoderickGI
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Re: hellooooo-o

Post by RoderickGI » Thu Feb 11, 2010 10:39 pm

Rebellious wrote:Can the Noctua NH-D14 be mounted both north/south and east/west on AM3?
No it can't. See http :// www. noctua. at /main.php?show=faqs&step=2&products_id=34&lng=en#11
(Remove spaces)

Ven
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Post by Ven » Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:48 am

Thanks for a great review of this impressive cooler.

Regarding using multiple fans - I can tell that in my configuration, extra fan means extra performance. I have i7 920 @ 3.6GHz (3.78 with turbo boost) and 1.3v in Silverstone Raven RV01 case. It's cooled by Megahalems with 2x Scythe S-Flex and 3rd S-Flex replacing stock exhaust fan. I can achieve better noise levels at given temperatures when using all 3 fans compared to 1 push fan on heatsink + 1 fan on exhaust, especially at lower fan speeds (these are 1200RPM fans, but most of the time I use them just over starting speed). Another advantage of using more heatsink fans is that you can decrease speeds of intake/exhaust fans, which are exposed in may cases. Because of that I've always been against "passive" cooling, because it resulted in more noise from case fans.
At this point the only issue are my GTX 260 cards. Their coils and fans produce much more noise than the rest of the computer.

btw, is there any chance to see Megahalems and True 120 Rev. C in comparison in push-pull configuration?

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