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Noctua NH D14 Cooler review – The ‘Austrian Sandwich’

The NH D14 cooler arrives in a very understated box – a design I find particularly attractive for its muted colours and relaxed composition.


First impressions are obviously going to be based around the massive size – the box is huge and the cooler weighs in at 1,240g (1,070g without fans) with a diameter of  160mm x 172mm x 140mm.

It is well secured, being placed inside an internal box for heavy duty protection.

Opening the larger inner box reveals the NH D14 in all its glory – a monster heatsink by any definition of the term.

Opening the smaller internal box revealed a very neatly arranged set of components, split into plastic pouches for both shared components as well as Intel and AMD fittings.

The Intel set comprises a rear mounting backplate as well as various screws and brackets. For the purposes of this review we will be mounting onto an Intel based motherboard, more information on this later.

The AMD packet contains the relevant components for mounting onto a motherboard. When using an AMD processor there is no Noctua backplate needed, the reference system is used … you don’t need to remove the motherboard from the chassis which is a bonus.

Lastly we have a pouch which contains shared components, for both Intel and AMD configurations. Noctua include high quality thermal paste (Noctua NH T1 Premiere) which is always good to see. They also supply a low noise voltage resistor if you have particularly sensitive ears (called U.L.N.A.) – This lowers the RPM of the fans to 900 rpm while also reducing CFM from 92.3 to 63.4. Noctua rate the cooler at 19.8db in full speed mode or 12.6 db with the U.L.N.A. attached.

While we don’t often focus on the documentation supplied with a product, Noctua really do deserve special credit for their attention to detail. They supply a beautiful little fold out pamphlet which when opened …

… reveals a neatly arranged two piece design with Intel manual on one side and AMD on the other. The text is also a cut above many which originate from the far east – in that, all the instructions make perfect sense! Me no likely engrish.

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