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Hardware Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler Review

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Lizard, 5 Jan 2010.

  1. Lizard

    Lizard @ Scan R&D

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  2. Cobalt

    Cobalt New Member

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    So the poor performance on the AMD system actually said nothing about its performance on AMD systems. Nice one BT.
     
  3. xaser04

    xaser04 Ba Ba Ba BANANA!

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    Seems to cool well, although it should do at that price!
     
  4. Horizon

    Horizon Dremel Worthy

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    At that price point it would have made sense to include the Corsair H50 in the charts.
     
  5. mrb_no1

    mrb_no1 Pie Eater

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    i wonder how much more thermal performance they can squeeze out of air cooling, are we not close to the edge of its capabilities....and so we move to watercooling.
     
  6. Abhorsen

    Abhorsen Member

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    On the last graph for some reason you highlighted the Titan Xmas edition instead of the Noctua?
     
  7. LeMaltor

    LeMaltor >^_^

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    Indeed, exhaust fans anyone?
     
  8. docodine

    docodine killed a guy once

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    Why aren't you using open test benches instead of normal PC cases? Surely you'll get more standardized results.
     
  9. mrb_no1

    mrb_no1 Pie Eater

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    docodine - i think they do it as it gives more real world results. Its easier for people to relate to the case that it is in rather than an open test bench which can completely destroy any relevance the results might have to a normal user comparing situations. As such this allows people to make informed decisions. You could also argue that when they overclock a new cpu, why not use ln2 cooling as they can surely achieve a greater overclock from chip, true! but less than 0.1 of the users on here will probably ever try it, and based on that idea i think most of have our electronics inside of a case.

    plus, from a scientific point of view, if they use same case in all heatsink tests, its a constant and therefore isnt a problem.
     
  10. Baz

    Baz I work for Corsair

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    The system has two exhaust fans in the roof of the case. All the other AMD coolers were tested in the same case with the same cooling layout and performed notably better, so there's obviously a flaw with the NH-D14 here to some degree. We're not going to retest all the other coolers just because the NH-D14 wasn't up to snuff - the whole point of having a set testing rig is that results are directly comparable. Stick a 120mm Delta fan behind this cooler and I'm sure you'd see a few degrees come of the AM2 temps, but it'd kind of miss the low noise point.

    Also, fixed the AM2 graph on page three.
     
    Last edited: 5 Jan 2010
  11. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog New Member

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    People were saying the same thing 5 or 6 years ago and I am sure even further before that... then they came up with heat pipes and air cooling got a new lease of life with icons such as the Artic cooling Freezer Pro 7 and now the Titan Fenrir. As CPU manufacturers are always trying to keep their processors within certain temp thresholds air cooling will never be killed off, in my opinion anyway. I mean just look at the temps that CPUs run at now (at stock, not fair to compare overclocked examples) compared to the infamous temps of the P4 series. Then there is future developments such as Vapour Chambers as used on some ATi GPUs and other things that I am sure the cooling manufacturers are working on that we don't know about yet.
     
  12. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog New Member

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    It does seem a bit strange though to use a test rig that has a different layout from that of most people's machines, with no rear exhaust. A bad idea is always a bad idea, no matter how long you run with it and force the issue.
     
  13. mclean007

    mclean007 Officious Bystander

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    I'm going to stand up for Team BT here and say that my interpretation of the testing procedures is that they aim to test hardware in as wide a range of scenarios as possible within time constraints. In an ideal world, a HSF would be tested on every platform in every case, with every set of components, but clearly that is impossible. So BT does the next best thing and picks a few combinations of hardware to test, the hope being to highlight any incompatibilities and/or deficiencies. There is nothing wrong with that, so long as each HSF is tested in the same combinations of hardware as its peers (which BT does), so we can get a fair comparison.

    Testing on an AMD rig with only top exhausts allows us to see how the HSF performs in terms of ease of installation on AMD boards, ease of installation in cases with top vents, and performance on a system with both those features. What the test highlighted was that this particular HSF can only be installed in one orientation in an AMD rig, and this caused problems for a case with only top exhaust vents. That is a perfectly valid conclusion. They aren't saying don't get this for an AMD board, just to be aware that installation flexibility is limited on current AMD platforms and that this might cause problems with some people's setups. Given the HSF made adequate contact with the AMD heatspreader, we can infer that the inferior performance on AMD was an airflow issue caused by the combination of limited mounting options and lack of rear exhausts, and, in the absence of the airflow issue highlighted, it would perform in line with its Intel performance, i.e. within a degree or two of the Titan Fenrir.

    I guess in conclusion what I am saying is, if you skim BT's reviews and only read the performance graphs and conclusion, you are likely to be misled. Read in full, and you will get the full picture. IMHO there is nothing wrong with this review or with the HSF testing procedure.
     
  14. pullmyfoot

    pullmyfoot superbacon

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    yeah I was like WTH. they should have done one with a proper setup instead of leave it at that.
     
  15. xaser04

    xaser04 Ba Ba Ba BANANA!

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    Whilst I agree with much of your post, I think SchizoFrog's point was that most of us have cases that have a rear exhaust. Testing in a case without one (fitted in this case) seems a little odd. I may be wrong here but he wasn't questioning why multiple test setups weren't used, merely why a rear exhaust has not been used in these sort of reviews since the get go.
     
  16. trig

    trig god's little mistake

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    i've never really agreed with bit's testing procedures on these things. open test benches is the only way to give truly accurate/un-biased results. you can point out that a fan can only mount with the air exhaust in one direction, and people can then make an informed buying decision. additionally, and i think it's kinda funny that bt omits this piece of information now, but they tend to use the thermal paste that comes with the kit. now, i can see a point to doing that, but since most enthusiasts will use their tim of choice (as5, etc) then i think it would be better if they tested all on one particular tim. but that's just me...
     
  17. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    I was curious about the AMD system's results, as well. You mentioned that the Noctua cooler's design prevents it from being rotated to blow the hot air out the top of the case.

    This is definitely an important thing to mention for anyone running an AMD system with a similar case style. In that respect I'm glad you mentioned it, because not only is the information useful, it also helps to explain the results.

    To get a more comparative test, would it have been appropriate to rotate the other AMD system coolers to also blow hot air horizontally, instead of vertically (since you couldn't rotate the Noctua cooler). Would that have allowed all the coolers on the AMD system to perform on a more equal platform?

    EDIT: To add to that, I infer from the article that the AMD system is tested with a different case. Won't this skew the results somewhat? It doesn't truly show how a cooler fares with AMD vs Intel - we've seen through other tests that case design can play an important role in system cooling.
     
  18. TSR2

    TSR2 New Member

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    However, surely it would have been more sensible to design the Nocuta to be able to exhaust towards the roof of the case on an AMD system, even at the expense of horizontal, given that there is often some form of exhaust there (and it is becoming more fashionable to have one as it is seen as improving performance owing to convection)? At least BT put in a note to explain.
     
  19. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    So it's massive, costs £70, and isn't really much better than the Fenrir or TRUE.

    Fab!... I'll take ten of them please :)


    These coolers are getting stupid. The strain on the mobo must be huge. I notice mine flex a little with a TRUE on it, but this monster? No thanks.

    Seriously... if you're into spending £70+... just work a little harder for a little longer and water cool the damned thing :)

    If you need anything beyond what a TRUE or Fenrir can deliver, then you probably should be water cooling anyway.
     
  20. HandMadeAndroid

    HandMadeAndroid That's handy.

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