Noctua NH-D14 SE2011 CPU Cooler

Discussion in 'Hardware Reviews' started by dimentionalrift, Sep 5, 2012.

  1. dimentionalrift

    dimentionalrift New Member

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    Hello everyone, this is a very brief review of my brand new Noctua CPU Cooler.
    I always wanted a liquid cooling system for my computer...didn't care if it was risky, expensive or just plain stupid of me...to me liquid cooling was like the Everest of PC technology.
    So when my motherboards cracked in half (a long, sad/funny story for the comedy section) and I had to buy new gear I decided to finally making that step and getting me a liquid cooling system.
    Came across the H series from Corsair, seemed really cool and all, and so I got one.
    The H80 looked really nice, and according to specs and reviews from people who know how to handle hardware correctly and not hit when it doesn't work, so I got it with the rest of the stuff I assembled (can be seen in my signature below).
    However my excitement was short-lived, because when I got home and tried to install it, I couldn't!
    I have a Xaser VI Thermaltake case, which is quite big (605 x 250 x 660 mm), and apparently the PSU is located at the top, not the bottom.
    Because of that, the rails that hold the PSU prevented me from installing the radiator over the exhaust fan at the back - ruining the rest of my day.
    Luckily the guys at the shop were understanding enough to let me trade it for something more conventional, such as an over-sized, multi-award winning air cooler...and I took the bait without asking twice - I was desperate.
    Since I purchased an LGA2011 CPU they gave me the Noctua D14 LGA2011 special edition.
    And I have to say that I am not regretting it in the least!
    A buddy of mine showed me where to get a CPU temp monitoring program, I put it in the background, and went on to play several games in succession.
    After about 4 hours I went back to the temp program and results were really impressive:

    Core 1 - 40C
    Core 2 - 41C
    Core 3 - 38C
    Core 4 - 40C
    Maximum temperature - 51C (Core 2)

    Now a bit about the product itself.
    Aside from the insane amount of Styrofoam packing, the cooler comes neat and clean, the instructions are very clear - both verbal and visual, there are spare parts in an event you are nervous and things slip between your fingers (in the event you are an amateur idiot who drools over all things shiny, do us all a big favor and let a professional or a lab do it for you).
    The only real trouble I had was with two spring screws that had to go in together, but me being a very physical guy I tend to be overly tender with all things electronic, expensive and new (the cooler is not that expensive - about 75$) so it might just be a problem for me.
    The package comes with its own tube of thermal grease, so no need to panic if you don't have any.
    The cooler by itself is very impressive, with a 120mm fan sandwiched between two massive heat-sinks and another 120mm in the front (with a net weight of just a little over 1000g).
    I probably should point out that having an X79 chipset means I have a built-in back-plate, therefore I had considerably less work to do to install it, where as a user with any other socket will have to first remove the motherboard to install the back-plate.
    Also important to mention is that the fans run between 400-900 RPM, meaning you never hear them (unless you have an open-case system, and even then they are pretty silent).
    All in all, a very good cooler, compatible with any socket out there, both Intel and AMD.
    Also read several post from people who have it and managed to achieve stable high-grade overclocking on CPUs like the i7 920 (2.6GHz to 4.2GHz).

    Hope this review hold up to the standards of the forum.
    If doesn't, tell me how to improve it.
    If it does, then I will be posting reviews of the rest of my new hardware, piece by piece.

    DRift, signing out :cool:
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  3. snickothemule

    snickothemule brb gonna go fist the world lol Junior Contributor Award Winner!

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    Nicely done good sir. I have one of these in my system and I absolutely adore it. Was very straight forward to install, the fans make no noticeable noise, the fans are simple to remove to clean and the controls are easy to install. Heat control is phenomenal, in any future builds I make, I'll be using this cooler.

    [​IMG]
  4. Squall-Leonh@rt

    Squall-Leonh@rt Maybe I'm a Lion

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    nice case snicko
  5. dimentionalrift

    dimentionalrift New Member

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    I think I need to start posting photos of my build too...

    Ok, next stop, the GTX...

    P.S: I would have loved to put my case up on the desk next to me like that, but the case weighs over 23Kg, and is way too big for it...plus my desk is 75cm off the ground, and the case is another 60cm in height, making it a bit claustrophobic for me...:D
  6. SCHUMI_4EVER

    SCHUMI_4EVER Hackin 'n Slashin Staff Member Award Winner!

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    Technically in order to review how well a cooler cools you would have to run a stress test program like Intel Burn Test or OCCT or something along those lines since most games don't place anywhere near enough load on a high-end processor to be able to determine how well the cooler copes with high load.
  7. dimentionalrift

    dimentionalrift New Member

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    But you don't run these tests on a day to day basis, and you play games on a day to day basis...so what's the point of testing the cooler on something that is useless to you?
  8. SCHUMI_4EVER

    SCHUMI_4EVER Hackin 'n Slashin Staff Member Award Winner!

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    Because it's nothing special being able to contain a CPU's heat under gaming conditions.

    Let me put it this way. Let's say you get a sports car. Most of the time you'll only drive that on speed limited roads but any old pile of crap on wheels can achieve 120KMH there so what you really want to do is put the pedal to the metal and check where this thing's limits are under race conditions.
  9. dimentionalrift

    dimentionalrift New Member

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    I appreciate the analogy but it is incorrect.
    Take a super car for instance - most of them have at least 10 cylinders and over 550HP.
    When you drive them on a highway you never use more than 6, while the rest never operate - when a moving part like a piston in a cylinder doesn't move for a long time it dries up and stalls when eventually you give it a go.
    With CPUs it is a different story, because unlike engine parts, they're not made of metal, they don't move and their temperature limit is probably 5 times lower if not more.
    When you stress test a silicon-based item its life-expectancy will drop much lower as opposed to stress testing a metal object like an engine block.
    The only thing I find useful in benching programs is that it can pump your ego up when you get a 5 digit score at the end, especially if it looks like this - 3x,xxx.
  10. SCHUMI_4EVER

    SCHUMI_4EVER Hackin 'n Slashin Staff Member Award Winner!

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    that depends on whether you're in the safe zone or not

    also I wasn't talking about something like 3DMark....I meant a program that will be check how hot your CPU gets and thus how well cooled it is and whether the overclock you applied is completely stable.
  11. PsyMan

    PsyMan Banned

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    Massive heatsink and noctua fans... it's no wonder that the thing is so cold there. Expect temperatures to increase by about 20 degrees in max load scenarios (folding, prime95, etc). This however is normal for lga2011 processors (much cache etc. lead to higher temps compared to sandy bridge). "Other" coolers reach temps around 70s (without o/c) under those conditions.

    Now you have only one issue to sort. Good luck upgrading RAM modules without removing the heatsink. Does it cover all 8 of the slots? :p
  12. dimentionalrift

    dimentionalrift New Member

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    Are you really banned?
    Any way, the cooler covers all 8 slots, but I have four 4GB modules...I doubt I'll need more than 16GB of RAM in the foreseeable future - I don't know any app that uses 3GB, not to mention 10GB or 16GB...
    I think I'll need a new CPU and a new GPU long before I'll need more RAM memory...
  13. PsyMan

    PsyMan Banned

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    maybe...


    I suppose it'll be alright. It's just that bulky components make interaction with components a nightmare. I can never imagine myself dealing with taking a huge heat-sink out just to run a RAM stick diagnostic....

    ... but those are the words of someone who would also never use water cooling (leakage chance when the thing needs to be serviced... of course I'm too lazy to remember that after 3-5 years) but uses a 30$ case to house 1000$ components.

    No sense :p
  14. Ahielia

    Ahielia I'm sexy and I know it!

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    Because it tests how hot it will get when under max load, that is also how you find out how good the cooler actually is.
    It's also the best way to test stability, as max load is achieved pretty much instantly, for CPU on Prime 95 at least.
  15. dimentionalrift

    dimentionalrift New Member

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    :lol:

    Couple of questions:
    1) What do you mean by RAM diagnostics (checking visually for damage or software diagnostics, like "PC health" in Bios)?
    2) Where did you get a 30$ case that can house 1000$ worth of components, or are those components that small they just fit right in?
    3) Are you insane? Based on your signature, by calling everyone else insane and then laughing histerically you put your own sanity in question...:p
  16. PsyMan

    PsyMan Banned

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    1. I mean taking a stick out if it dies (or seems dead).
    2. It's a common ATX case for ATX components... no wonder they fit in there.
    3. Of course I'm not insane. Of course no one would admit sanity issues either so let's just move on. :p
  17. SCHUMI_4EVER

    SCHUMI_4EVER Hackin 'n Slashin Staff Member Award Winner!

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    Yeah that's what I had meant too.
  18. cma6

    cma6 New Member

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    Can one have both the Noctua-DH14 SE2011 and a liquid cooling system installed?
    I have the Thermaltake Extreme LCS installed.
  19. SCHUMI_4EVER

    SCHUMI_4EVER Hackin 'n Slashin Staff Member Award Winner!

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    No. Water Cooling and Air Coolers don't go together.
  20. Strike105X

    Strike105X ヒットハード&高速 Award Winner!

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    I have to say without stress testing and showing what the product can do its merely a presentation or a share experience, this is not a review, reviews are there to present us with all aspects and capabilities of a product you haven't done that. Now don't get me wrong its seems nice and i hope you enjoy it, i also don't have anything against this thread and you enjoying the cooling its just that this ain't a review that's all.
  21. lagunareturns

    lagunareturns Active Member

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    It can happen, you just mount the noctua not on the cpu since the water cooler is mounted on to the cpu and mount it on the radiator of the water cooler instead, you may have to force it on to the radiator but it will help keep water cooler running efficiently.

    I did something similar and forced an extra set of fans on to the radiator of water cooling system and it went 10c cooler across the board. Sure any more fans wont help it get any cooloer, it just the fans supplied with the water cooler were just good enough but people tried extra fans and got better performance...

    Heck I do it to keep a mean overclock without my system restarting, no joke, I removed the extra fans and system resets after a short while, with extra fans and it runs without any probs...

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