Product: AMD Phenom II 840 & 975BE CPUs, Noctua NH-D14 HSF
Company: AMD
Authour: James Prior
Editor: Charles Oliver
Date: January 26th, 2011
Noctua NH-D14 Unwrapped

Noctua
Noctua
Noctua has been making distinctive and most assuredly effective cooling products for a while now, with their trademark cream and brown coloring standing out from the crowd of black LED illuminated offerings from the competition. The NH-D14 is a tower heatsink style cooler, using six heatpipes and a split radiator design. This is similar to other very large tower coolers, like the Cooler Master V6 and Tuniq Tower, but different in that there the two fans - one intake on the front, the second in the center.


Noctua Twin Towers
Noctua Twin Towers

Noctua's NH-D14 comes in an unassuming but large package, nicely presented with all materials well packed. Despite FedEx's best efforts to use our sample as a soccer ball, the heatsink arrived in perfect condition - a testament to the durability of the materials, and the adequacy of the packaging. The dual fan arrangement is unusual, feature not only two different sized fans but different blade orientations as well. The front fan is a more traditional looking 120mm fan, featuring Noctua's Vortex Control Notches, SCD technology and SSO bearings as seen in our testing here.

120 + 140mm Fans
120 + 140mm Fans

The entire heatsink is a shiny nickel colored affair, with the base a polished and very flat pad. Mounting brackets for different sockets are included, replacing the standard AM3 socket mount on our test platform. The mount is a two stage design, with the various socket compatibility options provided to install Noctua's SecuFirm 2 system. This provides bolt through security and mounting strength while preserving simple heatsink installation and removal - no need to pull the mainboard out every time. The included instructions are clear and simple to follow, and a single simple test fit will show you how it's supposed to be installed.

SecuFirm 2 Mounting System
SecuFirm 2 Mounting System

The heatsink mounts onto the SecuFirm 2 mounting plates using two spring loaded screws. These don't remove from the heatsink tower, so you won't lose them. This also reduces the stress on the mainboard as the user screw force is distributed over the already install socket mount, rather than unequally and directly across the socket mounts during installation. The spring loaded screws bottom out when the heatsink is in place, stopping overtightening from crushing the board or processor - provided you installed the SecuFirm 2 mount properly. Included is a slim screwdriver, with L-shaped handle rather than traditional large shaped rubber or plastic grip. It's perfect for installing the heatsink and a welcome inclusion with the heatsink.

Spring Loaded Screws
Spring Loaded Screws

The two cooling fans can be connected directly to the CPU fan header using the splitter cable included. Additional ultra-low noise header adapters are included, specific for each fan, for running the fans from constant voltage sources but a low speed and thus noise. It is not recommended to combine the ULNA with the splitter; for quiet operation, both fans should be connected to individual headers via their respective ULNA adapters.

NH-D14 Installed
NH-D14 Installed

Noctua include a large looking tube of their NT-H1 thermal interface material, which should be good for 12-15 applications. The gray paste in non-conductive and should be effective for up to 3 years before needing re-applying. Storage time is up to two years, so if you keep the NH-D14 for its whole six year warranty lifespan, you'll need to get some more paste. At ~$17 a tube, you might consider other pastes, but it's a nice value add for the cooler package as a whole.

Socket Clearance
Socket Clearance

Installed, the cooler offers plenty of socket clearance, allowing the use of RAM with protruding heat spreaders in mainboards with tall chipset and VRM coolers. The dual fans should also help cool all these components too.



content not found


Copyright 2021 © Rage3D.com

You may not use content, graphics, or code elements from this page without express written consent from Rage3D.com

All logos are trademarks of their original owners. Used with permission.