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Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler Review

Manufacturer: Noctua

Introduction and Technical Specifications

Introduction

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Courtesy of Noctua

Noctua is a well known name in the enthusiast world for its high-end CPU cooler products. Their flagship cooler, the NH-D14, features a nickel-plated copper base with dual radiator towers actively cooled by low noise 120mm and 140mm fans. The NH-D14 can be used with all current Intel and AMD CPU offerings. The cooler was put to the test against other similarly classed air and water-based cooling systems to see just how well Noctua's design would hold up. The Noctua NH-D14 does not come cheap with a retail price at $99.99, but its performance and utility should make up for that initial outlay.

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Courtesy of Noctua

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Courtesy of Noctua

The Noctua NH-D14 cooler is everything you would expect in a premium CPU cooler - nickel-plating for corrosion resistance, twin-tower radiators for massive heat dissipation potential, and copper / aluminum hybrid design for optimal heat transfer from the CPU. Noctua designed the NH-D14 with a total of six heat pipes, laid out in a U-shaped design which passes through the copper base plate and terminates in the radiator towers. The bottom of the copper base plate leaves the factory ground flat and polished to a mirror-like finish, ensuring optimal interfacing with the CPU surface.

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Courtesy of Noctua

Noctua included the following components in with the base cooler: SecureFirm2™ multi-socket mounting kit, NF-P14 140mm fan, NF-P12 120mm fan, four fan mounting brackets, a dual-ended fan power cable, two single-fan low power cables, a case badge, and NT-H1 thermal compound.

Continue reading our review of the Noctua NH-D14 CPU air cooler!

Technical Specifications (taken from the Noctua website)

Heat Sink Specifications

Socket compatibility

Intel LGA1366, LGA1156, LGA1155, LGA1150, LGA775, LGA2011 on request, Asus X-socket™ & AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1, FM2 (backplate required)

Dimensions (without fan)

160 mm x 140 mm x 130 mm (H x W x D)

Dimensions (with fan)

160 mm x 140 mm x 158 mm (H x W x D)

Weight (without fan)

900 g

Weight (with fan)

Single fan - 1070 g
Dual fans - 1240 g

Material

Copper (base and heat-pipes), aluminum (cooling fins), soldered joints & nickel plating

Fan Compatibility

140x150x25 (with 120mm mounting holes)
140x140x25 (with 120mm mounting holes)
120x120x25

Scope of Delivery

1 x NF-P14 premium fan
1 x NF-P12 premium fan
2 x Ultra-Low-Noise Adaptor (U.L.N.A.) Y-Split Cable
4 x Vibration-Compensators (for using NF-P12 as case fan)
4 x Fan screws (for using NF-P12 as case fan)
NT-H1 high-grade thermal compound
SecuFirm2™ Mounting Kits
Noctua Metal Case-Badge

Warranty

6 years

Fan specifications

Model

Noctua NF-P14 & Noctua NF-P12

Bearing

SSO-Bearing

Rotational Speed (+/- 10%)

1200 / 1300 RPM

Rotational Speed with U.L.N.A. (+/- 10%)

900 / 900 RPM

Air Flow

110.3 / 92.3 m³/h

Airflow with U.L.N.A.

83.7 / 63.4 m³/h

Acoustical Noise

19.6 / 19.8 dB(A)

Acoustical Noise with U.L.N.A.

13.2 / 12.6 dB(A)

Input Power

1.2 / 1.08 W

Voltage Range

12 V

MTBF

> 150,000 h

 

December 3, 2013 | 12:53 PM - Posted by pdjblum

"However, the NH-D14's performance profile begins to break down as the processor is pushed to higher performance levels via overclocking. The fan's equipped with the cooler simply cannot push enough air through the radiators to keep the CPU cool enough to remain stable."

Morry, I think that last sentence needs a modifier. The fans will certainly be sufficient to allow the cpu to be overclocked and stable, just maybe not as much as some others in the comparison, though I doubt even that.

More importantly, countless enthusiasts the world over have been using the NH-D14 to successfully oc their rigs for years. In fact, I would argue the NH-D14 has been the air cooler of choice for the vast majority of enthusiasts since it came out years ago.

December 3, 2013 | 02:34 AM - Posted by Brox

Agree with pdjblum.

And remember this cooler came out in 2009 if I'm correct, which makes it even better for a 4-5yr old air cooler still able to amaze people!

*proud owner of a NH-D14*

December 3, 2013 | 02:55 AM - Posted by IRQ6

bad ass hsf

December 3, 2013 | 02:08 PM - Posted by ImmenseBrick (not verified)

I currently have an i7 930 running @ 4ghz (1.2ghz oc) with hyper threading on. I push about 1.38 volts through this thing and the cooler keeps my cpu pretty cool. Even under heavy prime 95 benching it holds around 70 degrees, keep in mind, on everything stock on this cpu with stock cooler prime would push it to 83 degrees. All to say this thing is a champ and very quiet. I have not tested on haswell yet but imagine it can handle most things fine.

December 3, 2013 | 11:30 PM - Posted by matman (not verified)

In the conclusion I think you mean 6" tall though I would love to see what a 12" tall cooler could do :-)

I'm concerned that you consider a 2:3 crash rate a stable overclock. In general I think that running your cooler tests so close to the TDP may produce unreliable results. Thermal throttling is not something you want to encounter in a cooler comparison test. If throttling occurs a cooler that trips it more could end up with favourable numbers it doesn't deserve.

Can you please specify whether you used either of the low noise adapters in testing? I assume not but I'd rather not have to assume.

December 4, 2013 | 09:05 AM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

I didn't consider the cooler to be stable under overclock, as i stated in the results and the conclusion.  The overclocking level is a known stable overclock for that CPU, memory, board combination if temps can be kept under control.  The Noctua just couldn't for 2 out of 3 runs.

As far as adapters used in testing, the fans were running full speed.

December 4, 2013 | 03:31 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Looks like a torture device.

December 4, 2013 | 05:05 PM - Posted by exxo (not verified)

Noctua have promised at Computex 2013 an upgraded version of this gem (fan) for Q4 2013.

The updates version sports dual 140mm fans with PWM and more optimized heatpipes.

The enemy of the good is the better one :D

I am still waitung for this device.

December 10, 2013 | 08:43 AM - Posted by praack

noctua is a pretty good company, i tend to use thier low profile coolers in some cases.

but i think i would opt for a self contained water cooled option instead of pulling this hunk of metal out- the nh -d14 is way too much ...

January 13, 2014 | 03:05 AM - Posted by 4960X (not verified)

I completely agree with pdjblum. The NH-D14 is considered to be one of the best coolers out there.

Here's two reviews I found on the NH-D14 handling 3770K @ 4.6Ghz.

http://www.relaxedtech.com/reviews/noctua/nh-l9i-nh-d14/6

http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/corsair_h110_review,13.html

January 17, 2014 | 01:53 AM - Posted by Wettering (not verified)

"However, air flow through the radiators can be felt only barely on the exit end of the cooler.",
Im sorry but if you dont feel any airflow with this cooler either you set it up wrong or this specific unit has something wrong with it.

January 21, 2014 | 09:55 AM - Posted by Randalltroy2 (not verified)

I have nh-d14 on a 3930k, i run all day, at 4.6ghz 1.40v, rock solid stable, and the 3930k is a hot beast.Somethings wrong with your methodology or setup, i have had this 3930k as high as 4.8 with some r4s strapped on to it, but, that creates to much noise.

January 21, 2014 | 10:21 AM - Posted by Randalltroy2 (not verified)

I have nh-d14 on a 3930k, i run all day, at 4.6ghz 1.40v, rock solid stable, and the 3930k is a hot beast.Somethings wrong with your methodology or setup, i have had this 3930k as high as 4.8 with some r4s strapped on to it, but, that creates to much noise.

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