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Noctua NH-U14S Heatsink Review
Noctua NH-U14S Heatsink Review
  94%   
Abstract: In this review Frostytech will be testing out Noctua's NH-U14S heatsink, a 170mm tall thermal solution built around six 6mm diameter heatpipes and featuring one 140x150mm fan called the NF-A15 PWM. The Noctua-branded NF-A15 fan features all kinds of fancy attributes designed to decrease noise, increase airflow, lengthen bearing life...

 Company link  Category  Published  Author 
Noctua   Cooling / Heatsinks   Dec 02, 2013   Max Page  


There are so many cooling companies in the PC market it's hard to know where to begin at times... If good cooling performance and low noise levels are at the top of your list, Noctua is a great company to short-list.

In this review Frostytech will be testing out Noctua's NH-U14S heatsink, a 170mm tall thermal solution built around six 6mm diameter heatpipes and featuring one 140x150mm fan called the NF-A15 PWM. The Noctua-branded NF-A15 fan features all kinds of fancy attributes designed to decrease noise, increase airflow, lengthen bearing life and cancel out errant vibrations. Given the pride Noctua have in their fans, Frostytech will be taking the extra step of testing the NH-U14S heatsink in stock and dual fan configurations, on 85W, 150W and 200W synthetic thermal test platforms. While front and rear fans are not absolutely necessary, this setup allows both fans to be run at lower speeds for decreased noise output, or at stock speeds for a little extra cooling edge.

Noctua's NH-U14S heatsink stands 170mm tall and has a footprint of 151x79mm in the single fan configuration. If you decide to add a second (exhaust) fan, that will bump the footprint to 151x110mm. Weighing 935 grams, the NH-U14S is heavy but not excessively so given its stature. The cooler is constructed from six 6mm diameter nickel plated copper heatpipes, a 120mm tall stack of nickel plated aluminum fins and a chunky nickel plated copper base plate. All joints are soldered for durability and lower thermal joint resistance.

Fans, whether it be one or two, are held in place with easy to use wire fan clips. To decrease annoying vibrational noises, rubber spacers wrap around the fan frame and "insulate" it from direct contact with the cooling fins.

Noctua's NH-U14S tower heatsink is compatible with Intel socket LGA2011/1366/1150/1155/1156 and AMD socket FM1/FM2/AM2/AM3 processors. The heatsink does not include an LGA775 bracket. The Noctua NH-U14S heatsink retails for around $62CDN ($62USD) online.

Noctua NH-U14S Heatsink
HEATSINK SPECSHEET
Manufacturer: Noctua
Model No.: NH-U14S
Materials: Nickel plated aluminum fins, copper heatpipes, copper/aluminum base.
Fan Mfg: (1) Noctua NF-A15

Fan Spec: 1500RPM, 12V, 0.08A

Fan Dim: 25x140x150mm

Heatsink & Fan Dim: 170x151x79mm
(170x151x110mm dual fans)
Weight: 935 grams
Includes: Multi-socket mounting hardware, thermal compound, fan speed adaptor, fan clips, screwdriver, instructions


Compatible with Sockets:
AMD: AM2/AM3/FM1/FM2
Intel: LGA2011/1366/1150/1155/1156
(not LGA775)

Est. Pricing: $62USD ($62CDN)

MOUNTING KIT UPGRADEABLE TO SUPPORT AMD SOCKET AM4?

Manufacturer Provided Mounting Kit Required to Support AMD Socket AM4 Motherboards? YES

Manufacturer AM4 Kit Request Form Link:
http://noctua.at/en/nm-am4-mounting-kit-order-form

Noctua state: "Owners of Noctua CPU coolers can obtain the Noctua NM-AM4 SecuFirm2 Mounting-Kit free of charge via this form. A proof of purchase (electronic version, photo or scan of the invoice) of both a Noctua CPU cooler and either a socket AM4 mainboard or socket AM4 CPU are required. There is a dedicated upgrade kit  (NM-AM4-UxS) available for NH-U14S, NH-U12S and NH-U9S"

For more details, heatsink exceptions and a complete list of incompatible coolers, see here.

Noctua NM-AM4 SecuFirm2 Mounting-Kit supported on following Noctua heatsinks Frostytech has tested: NH-C12PNH-C14NH-D14NH-D15 , NH-D9L, NH-L12, NH-L9x65, NH-U12 , NH-U12PNH-U9, NH-U9B . Noctua NM-AM4-UxS Mounting-Kit: NH-U14S, NH-U12S and NH-U9S.

Noctua have consistently delivered CPU coolers with modestly innovative thermal designs, a nod towards minimal noise output, top-notch build quality, flat mounting bases, standardized mounting brackets and easy installation hardware.

Perhaps this is the Austrian sensibility distilled to heatsink form? Whatever the factor is, this little thermal solutions company is doing its manufacturing right.

To ensure good thermal conductivity between the different components, the nickel plated copper heatpipes and nickel plated aluminum fins of the NH-U14S heatsink soldered together. Soldering decrease thermal joint resistance between the fins and heatpipes, or heatpipes and base.

The heatsink is designed to work with 140mm sized fans, which are held in position with wire clips that lock into a notch running along the outside edges. Fans can be used on either side of the cooling tower, or both sides in a push-pull configuration.

Installation Hardware

Noctua's NH-U14S heatsink is compatible with Intel socket LGA2011/1366/1150/1155/1156 and AMD socket FM1/FM2/AM2/AM3 processors. The CPU cooler ships with a variety of brackets, separated into several packages for AMD and Intel processors. For each CPU socket, small metal tabs are attached to the motherboard and a backplate positioned behind the motherboard, then everything fixed in place with spring-tensioned screws.

The multi-language manual makes installation pretty straightforward. Fans may need to be removed for the installation procedure, but this is relatively painless as Noctua have designed the wire fan retention clips with hand holds and included a small screwdriver.

A small syringe of thermal compound is included, along with an in-line fan speed resistor which can be added to lower the speed of the NH-A15 fan.

FrostyTech's Test Methodologies are outlined in detail here if you care to know what equipment is used, and the parameters under which the tests are conducted. Now let's move forward and take a closer look at this heatsink, its acoustic characteristics, and of course its performance in the thermal tests!


° Next Page 

Table of Contents:

 1: — Noctua NH-U14S Heatsink Review
 2:  360° View - Noctua NH-U14S Heatsink
 3:  Acoustic Sample and Heatsink Sound Levels
 4:  AMD Heatsink Temperature Comparisons
 5:  Intel LGA115x Heatsink Temperature Comparisons
 6:  Intel LGA2011 Heatsink Temperature Comparisons

List all Noctua heat sinks that Frostytech tested?

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