Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler - Test Setup and Testing

Article Index
Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler
NH-D14 Installation
Test Setup and Testing
Final Thoughts and Conclusion




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....



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.


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.