A couple of years ago, there was a rather small company called Noctua, they offered a variety of fans and heat sinks for sale and their company was based in Austria. Today, Noctua have made themselves known for having some of the best quality fans and heat sinks on the market. Noctua’s heat sinks have been renown for being built to last and designed with a multitude of things in mind such as silence, airflow, static pressure and quality. Thus far Noctua have also come into an element of their own when designing their coolers, notably the NH-UH12P and the so called “king of coolers,” the Noctua NH-D14 which I have on my test bench today. Despite the increase in competition from the newcomer Phanteks, the veteran Thermalright, Prolimatech and other cooler designers, Noctua have still made a name for themselves as one of the best in terms of cooling and quietness. However, with the recent influx of new heat sink designs Noctua may have a bit more of a fight on their hands than when the NH-D14 was first released which should at the very least make for a very interesting review.
The D14 as it is commonly called, is a twin aluminium finned radiator cooler with a total of six heat pipes which are in a U shape configuration. The heat pipes go from one tower of aluminum fin stacks down to the base, and back up to the other stack of aluminum fins. The included mounting bracket fits an entire range of platforms, from both the Intel and AMD side of things. For this product package, there are two fans included with the D14, the NF-P12 120mm SSO bearing fan and the 140mm NF-P14 SSO bearing fan. Both of which are made specially for quiet and efficient operation.
After so many years, will the D14 still be able to hold on to the performance crown which it claimed when it was released? Or will Noctua have to abdicate its crown to one of its competitors? Let’s find out… but first, here is a little about Noctua’s history.
Noctua comes from a cooperation of the Austrian Rascom Computer distribution Ges.m.b.H. with the Taiwanese cooling specialist Kolink International Corporation, pooling more than ten years of experience in the development, manufacturing and marketing of high-end cooling components. Established in 2005, Noctua took the international silent enthusiasts’ hearts by storm and quickly developed into one of the most acclaimed suppliers of premium quality quiet cooling products. Today, Noctua is present in more than 30 countries across the globe and working with several hundred sales partners. Chosen by noise conscious PC users, system integrators and industry clients alike, Noctua has become synonymous with impeccable quality, excellent customer service and class leading quiet cooling performance.