Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler

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Product(s): Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler
Provided By:
Noctua
Price: ~$89.99 Online

 

Introduction: 

Today we've got the newest, latest and greatest (and largest) cooler from Noctua, the new NH-D14 CPU Cooler. This cooler features a 140mm NF-P14 fan (reviewed here) as well as a NF-P12 120mm fan (reviewed here) so lack of airflow shouldn't be a problem. This cooler features a 6 heatpipe dual radiator design and looks to achieve good performance with low noise (which Noctua has become famous for).

Ok, before we start let's make mention of the fact that this is a big cooler, probably the biggest air cooler we've tested so far and to help describe this cooler I've decided to use my trusty (and dusty) thesaurus to help describe this cooler:

Large

Definition: big, abundant.

Synonyms: ample, barn door, blimp, booming, broad, bulky, capacious, colossal, comprehensive, considerable, copious, enormous, excessive, exorbitant, extensive, extravagant, full, generous, giant, gigantic, goodly, grand, grandiose, great, gross, hefty, huge, humongous, immeasurable, immense, jumbo, liberal, massive, monumental, mountainous, plentiful, populous, roomy, sizable, spacious, stupendous, substantial, super, sweeping, thumping, tidy, vast, voluminous, whopping, wide

There we go, now I have a whole list of words to describe the large size of this cooler and will hopefully spice up this review, let's take a closer look at this cooler from Noctua.

 

First Impressions:

Yup, this is an enormous cooler; even the box is pretty sizable. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves, but as you can see, this cooler is of considerable size.

 

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Noctua NH-D14 - Side View
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Noctua NH-D14 - Bottom View (No Fans Installed)

 

In the picture below you can get a little better idea of what the NH-D14 is all about. The fan on the outside of the cooler is the 120mm fan and the fan in the middle is the 140mm fan. Both of these fans come with adapters to lower their speed to 900 RPM. At full speeds the 140mm fan runs at 1200 RPM and the 120mm fan runs at 1300 RPM.

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Noctua NH-D14 - Side View
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Noctua NH-D14 - Side View

 

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Noctua NH-D14 - Rear View
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Noctua NH-D14 - Bottom View

 

Ok, so from the pictures so far you've probably figured out this cooler is large, but it's not until we put it up beside the Zalman CNPS10X Flex heatsink we just tested (full review here) that you can really see just how ample this cooler really is.

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Noctua NH-D14 - Top View
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Noctua NH-D14 - Zalman CNPS10X Flex Comparison

 

As usual Noctua has a very nice way of packaging all the accessories for their coolers and you won't have to sort through a pile of pieces to figure out what you need for your CPU (Intel and AMD are packaged separately). Noctua also provides individual instruction manuals for both AMD and Intel. The fine Noctua folks have also included a screwdriver to help you get your cooler installed, so technically you will need no tools of your own to get this cooler installed and rolling.

 

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Noctua NH-D14 - Accessories

 

There we go, now that we've got a closer look let's move to the next section of this review.

 


 

Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler Specifications:

 

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All Specifications taken from Noctua.at

 

Features

6 heatpipe dual radiator design
Providing more surface area, better heat-distribution and superior airflow efficiency than conventional tower style heatsinks, the NH-D14’s six heatpipe dual radiator design was developed to provide ultimate quiet cooling performance in dual fan mode.

Dual NF-P14/NF-P12 fan setup
The NH-D14 sports a premium quality dual fan setup consisting of Noctua’s award-winning NF-P12 (120mm) and NF-P14 (140mm) fans, both of which feature Vortex-Control Notches, SCD technology and SSO-Bearings in order to achieve a perfect balance of performance and quietness.

Asymmetrical design for high compatibility
An asymmetrical design that gives more clearance towards the RAM slots ensures good compatibility despite of the cooler’s size. The NF-P12 fan can be moved upwards or left off in order to further improve compatibility.

Excellent component cooling
Hanging out at the bottom of the fin-stacks, the NF-P14 fan doesn’t only contribute to the NH-D14’s superb CPU cooling capabilities but also provides massive airflow over surrounding motherboard components and heatsinks, thus ensuring excellent component cooling performance.

SecuFirm2™ multi-socket mounting system
Noctua’s enthusiast grade SecuFirm2™ multi-socket mounting provides broad socket compatibility (LGA1366, LGA1156, LGA775, AM2, AM2+ and AM3) and meets the highest demands in safety, contact pressure and ease-of-use.

NT-H1 thermal compound
Noctua's much-acclaimed NT-H1 is a well proven pro-grade TIM solution that provides minimum thermal resistance, excellent ease-of-use and outstanding reliability.

 

 

Specifications

Socket compatibility Intel LGA1366, LGA1156, LGA775 & AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3 (backplate required)
Height (without fan) 160 mm
Width (without fan) 140 mm
Depth (without fan) 130 mm
Height (with fan) 160 mm
Width (with fan) 140 mm
Depth (with fan) 158 mm
Weight (without fan) 900 g
Weight (with fan) 1070/1240* g
Material Copper (base and heat-pipes), aluminium (cooling fins), soldered joints & nickel plating
Fan compatibility 140x140x25 & 120x120x25mm
Scope of Delivery
  • 1x NF-P14 premium fan
  • 1x NF-P12 premium fan
  • 2x Ultra-Low-Noise Adaptor (U.L.N.A.)
  • Y-Split Cable
  • 4x Vibration-Compensators (for using NF-P12 as case fan)
  • 4x 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
Airflow 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

 

 


 

Noctua NH-D14 Installation:

Mounting of the NH-D14 is pretty standard, bracket on the back, brackets on the top and the heatsink easily attaches to the brackets. For such a big cooler I was expecting a little more hassle, but overall installation took no longer than normal. Noctua is even nice enough to include a screwdriver so you won't have to search for that missing screwdriver before you can get started.

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Noctua NH-D14 - Mounting Bracket (Rear)
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Noctua NH-D14 - Rear Mounting Bracket Installed

 

As you can see in the picture below (right), you do have to remove the middle fan go get the heatsink attached to the brackets. The fan comes out easily and you've got a good look at the screws that need to be tightened.

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Noctua NH-D14 - Mounting Bracket (Front)
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Noctua NH-D14 - Middle Fan Removed

 

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Noctua NH-D14 - Installed
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Noctua NH-D14 - Installed

 

So there we go, the NH-D14 is all ready to go. For such a big cooler it doesn't really interfere with any of the other components (memory, chipset coolers), however if you have huge fins on your memory or chipset you might want to make sure this is going to have enough room before you go out and get a NH-D14 because otherwise you might run into issues.

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Noctua NH-D14 - Installed
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Noctua NH-D14 -

 

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Noctua NH-D14 - Installed

As you can see in the last picture, the NH-D14 makes our double-slot Radeon HD3870 look small in comparison.

Installation....done, let's get to the testing!

 


 

 

Testing:

Test Setup:

For Intel (LGA1336) testing we will be using the Intel Core i7 920 CPU, which produces 130 Watts of heat. This could be considered a mid-range processor, and while most Dual-Core processors produce ~50-80 Watts of heat, this should give you a pretty accurate estimate of what type of temperatures a cooler will provide you with.

For both AMD and Intel testing, we have taken all temperatures using CoreTemp v.0.99.4. CoreTemp takes a temperature from the CPU core, and allows for much more uniform results across different motherboard and CPU platforms. These temperatures may seem higher than other temperature recordings; because chances are they are taking temperature recordings using the diode underneath the CPU, which isn't able to be as accurate, and can really fluctuate between different brands of motherboards.

For all tests we are using the Highspeed PC Top Deck Tech Station, and we are using no additional cooling in our testing. All temperatures are recorded in a controlled environment that is set to 23 degrees Celsius (73.4 Fahrenheit) to provide fair results between coolers.

For all tests we use Arctic Cooling MX-2 High-Performance Thermal Compound (Paste), We use the same thermal paste in all our testing so that we can keep our results consistent. If a cooler is shipped with thermal paste pre-applied, it will be removed and we will re-apply it with Arctic Cooling MX-2 to provide fair results.

Intel Test System:

 

Here comes the testing results....

 

 

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Click on Chart for Larger View

 

For our testing we ran the fans at full speed (1200 RPM for the NF-P14 and 1300 RPM for the NF-P12) and then again at low speeds (900 RPM) for both fans.

As you can see in the chart below the results are very good. Also what is interesting to note is that dropping the fans to low speeds (900 RPM) the temperatures only jumped around 2 degrees yet the noise was reduced by a noticeable amount. Even at full speeds these fans aren't very loud, but if your PC is already pretty quiet then you might want to drop the speeds to low (and you get very good performance still).

In the next chart we will compare the NF-D14 to some of the other coolers we've tested.

 

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Click on Chart for Larger View

 

So when we compare the NH-D14 to the other coolers we've tested it comes out on top, even when running at low speeds. It offers over 20 degrees cooler performance that stock cooling, and edges out the nearest competition by at least 5 degrees. The NH-D14 is significantly bigger than any of the coolers we've tested on this list, but for someone who is looking high-end performance the NH-D14 is a great choice. There really isn't much else to say about the cooling results, the charts do most of the talking for themselves.

 

 


 

Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler Final Thoughts:

Ok, so the results are in, the dust has settled, and we've found the Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler to be quite the product. I made reference to the large size of this cooler repeatedly through this review but once you see the performance numbers of this cooler you'll quickly forget about the gigantic size of the cooler. The Noctua NH-D14 is a nice mix of performance and noise and even when running the fans at their low speeds the performance was stellar.

As is always the case with Noctua, the quality of this cooler is top notch. This cooler is very big but it is definitely not fragile.

Installation of the Noctua NH-D14 was easier than I thought it might be, Noctua has engineered this cooler nicely and installation is pretty straightforward. Noctua even includes a screwdriver with this cooler just in case.

This cooler is enormous, however due to its design shouldn't interfere with any of the other components in your system (Memory, Chipset Coolers, etc.) unless you've got massive heatspreaders/coolers on your Memory or massive heatsinks on your chipsets. You will definitely want to check out your case/setup to make sure you've got room, however most mid-tower cases with normal heatsinks on the memory and chipsets should be able to accommodate this cooler without any issues.

 

The biggest drawback of this cooler is the price tag. With a MSRP of ~$85 USD this makes the NH-D14 a bit pricey for some, however if you want top performance and also want it to be quiet you probably won't mind spending a bit extra and going with a cooler like the Noctua NH-D14.

At the end of the day this cooler is a serious contender and its great performance make this a good choice for a high-end air cooler. While this cooler may be massive in size it's very well engineered to fit into most cases but if you think space might be an issue in your case you will definitely want to measure before buying this cooler. Overall the Noctua NH-D14 is one impressive cooler and also offers great performance all while remaining nice and quiet. Thanks to the performance, high quality construction, and quiet operation we have awarded the Noctua NH-D14 our "Editor's Choice - Gold" award. If you're looking for high-end performance and have the room for the NH-D14 you will most definitely want to give this cooler some serious consideration.

 

Pros:

  • Top Performance
  • Nice and Quiet (When on Low Fan Speeds)
  • High Quality Construction
  • Compatible with all recent CPU's

 

Cons:

  • It's Big! (Might not fit in smaller cases)
  • Not Cheap (MSRP ~$85 USD)

 

 


BCCRating

Gold 

 

I'd like to thank Noctua for sending us the NH-D14 CPU Cooler. If you have any questions, comments, or general feedback, please leave it at the "Comments" link below.