Noctua NH-U12S & NH-U14S Review


Well having had the chance to give Noctua’s latest range of CPU coolers a whirl, how did they do?  We all know Haswell runs hot but as said once before, can it tame the flaming beast? The short answer is yes, they perform well.  Compared to the last cooler I reviewed, the Enermax ETS-T40, these coolers are not only quieter, but cooler by a large margin.  As you can see from the performance, the delta temperatures between the NH-12s and the NH-14s are pretty similar.

The NH-14s does have the slight advantage overall due to the bigger 14cm fan, but the NH-12s still performs very well, brilliantly in fact. In terms of looks, Noctua have continued their trend with the beige coloured fans.  I can’t say I am a big fan of this as I feel they don’t match current hardware.  I do however believe they are releasing a range of fans that are black, so I would be interested to know if they were planning any black coolers.  If so I would definitely buy one and this is coming from someone who generally water cools. The mounting system on both Noctua coolers was a delight, probably one of the best mounting systems on the market in my opinion.

Mounting both coolers took little effort and removing them was even easier.  Got to give credit to Noctua for their mounting system and especially the way it’s presented in the packaging. If I was to be critical of the NH-12s and NH-14s, it would be for the colour, but in saying that, it is certainly unique and it’s nice to see companies doing something different.  You have the option to go push/pull if you wish and I can imagine it shaving a couple of degrees off the overall temperature.

If you’re looking for a CPU cooler that does what it says on the tin, then either of the Noctua coolers would be suitable.  If I was to pick from both of them, I would most definitely choose the NH-14s, mainly because I prefer a cooler CPU.  Price wise you’re looking at £52.99 for the NH-U12S and £54.95, they are price very competitively. With the main purpose being in being as quiet as possible, they are not only just that, but cool like a full tower cooler, which is fantastic.  Noctua have done a great job and I am looking forward to seeing more. Big thanks to Noctua for the samples and great job!

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