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Noctua NH-C14
Written by Scott Harness   
Friday, 10 December 2010 00:00

thumbNoctua NH-C14

- Noctua have a reputation for creating monster heatsinks that perform exceptionally well. Is there latest heatsink going to protect that rep? Let's get a good look at the versatile NH-C14.


The last cooling review I did was in fact the predecessor to today's review item. The Noctua NH-C12P SE14 impressed us with it's low profile and large size, as well as it's cooling performance. The new expands on this design and ups the ante with two 140mm fans.

You can even alter the configuration of the fans to ensure that the fits in your particular enclosure and with your particular hardware. The NH-C14 is however slightly smaller in surface area size compared to the NH-C12P, so it'll be interesting to see if the newcomer can keep up with it's older sibling.

's 'C' style heatsinks are designed to make the best use of space, allowing for low profile installations despite their size. With the multiple fan configurations have created a very versatile sounding heatsink in the NH-C14, so let's get a good look shall we?


Socket Compatibility Intel LGA1366, LGA1156, LGA1555, LGA775 & AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3 ()
Height (without fan) 105 mm
Width (without fan) 140 mm
Depth (without fan) 166 mm
Height (with fan) 130 mm
Width (with fan) 140 mm
Depth (with fan) 166 mm
Weight (without fan) 700 g
Weight (with fan) 850/1000* g (*with 2 fans)
Material Copper (base and heat-pipes), aluminium (cooling fins), soldered joints & nickel plating
Fan compatibility 140x140x25 & 120x120x25mm
Scope of Delivery
  • 2x NF-P14 premium fan
  • Low-Noise Adapter (L.N.A.)
  • Ultra-Low-Noise Adaptor (U.L.N.A.)
  • NT-H1 high-grade thermal compound
  • SecuFirm2™ Mounting Kits
  • Noctua Metal Case-Badge
6 Years
Fan specifications
Rotational Speed (+/- 10%) 1200 RPM
Rotational Speed with L.N.A. (+/- 10%) 900 RPM
Rotational Speed with U.L.N.A. (+/- 10%) 750 RPM
Airflow 110,3 m³/h
Airflow with L.N.A. 83,7 m³/h
Airflow with U.L.N.A. 71,2 m³/h
Acoustical Noise 19,6 dB(A)
Acoustical Noise with L.N.A. 13,2 dB(A)
Acoustical Noise with U.L.N.A. 10,1 dB(A)
Input Power 1,2 W
Voltage Range 12 V
MTBF > 150.000 h


box_box1 box_box1

The box for the Noctua NH-C14 is typical Noctua fair; a square box with outlined images of the item inside, feature boxes and a photo image of the product. Whilst there is no window to view the contents inside, you can easily see exactly what you are getting, and the box is large enough to give you some idea of how big the NH-C14 is.


box_box1 box_box1 box_box1

Opening the box we find a white smaller box sitting atop the contents. Removing everything gives us two boxes to look at. The larger box contains yet another box which houses the cooler itself.


box_contents box_contents box_contents

The smaller box holds the contents, which Noctua have not been shy about. You get an awful lot with the cooler, from a small but very easy to follow installation guide (including instructions for each socket type the cooler supports), thermal paste, fan speed adapters, a metal case badge and Noctua's clever SecuFirm2 mounting system parts. You also get a screwdriver, so absolutely everything you could need to install the NH-C14 is right there in the box. Also included in the common parts bag is a set of 4 rubber fan mounts, so if you do choose to not use both fans, you could mount the other in a 120mm case placement (if you have the room).


The heatsink itself is large with the twin fans making up a lot of this and it will certainly be one of the largest heatsink set ups you're likely to see.


The end of the heatsink is proudly stamped with the Noctua logo and you can see how the fins are shaped to help remove the dead zone in the middle of a fan.


Spinning the heatsink around, we get to see the six large heatpipes which start directly at the base, then curve up to support the fins and fans on top. It's quite imposing in person, and very solid looking/feeling.


hsf_fan1 hsf_fan1 hsf_fan1

Above and below the fins are two of Noctua's excellent NF-P14 140mm fans, with their standard 120mm fan mounts. Noctua's Vortex Control Notches are a feature on the fans, and aid in keeping the CFM high but the noise low. In Noctua's own word's, “The two Vortex-Control Notches at the trailing edge of each blade make the flows along the suction and pressure side mix more smoothly, allowing for less turbulence and velocity loss, which leads to increased efficiency as well as a significant reduction in noise emission."


Each fan is mounted with a rubber mount point to eliminate any vibrations.



One of the things we loved about Noctua's NH-D14 heatsink was the mounting clips for the fans. Sadly, this didn't make it onto the NH-C12P sample we had (though I think was later added?), but thankfully is a feature of the NH-C14 we have here. A single folded wire (on each side) provides tension for the fan mounts, and clips under barbs shaped into the heatsink fins themselves. In practice, this means you can very easily un-clip and re-attach the fans even while the heatsink is still mounted on your motherboard, and it's completely tool-less. It's inevitable that at some point your heatsink is going to need cleaning and this approach just simplifies the process. That said, if you have a smaller enclosure, the fan underneath could be a pain to remove simply because of it's size and the local hardware being in the way of sliding it out.


Each of the fans has a thickly sleeved 3 pin fan header cable.


hsf_base1 hsf_springloaded1

Moving to the base, we can see that it's not a mirror finish, but like the entire heatsink it's nickel coated so it shouldn't tarnish. Using a set square it's obvious that it is completely flat and finished perfectly. On each side of the base is a spring loaded screw which attaches to the mount you install on your motherboard using the SecuFirm mounting system.


Before we continue on to some images of installation, I just wanted to share the above image from the Noctua website. What this indicates is that you can install one fan either below or above, or both fans as you see fit/your enclosure allows.

So for example, if you had some OCZ Reaper ram or Corsair Dominator which have larger than usual heat-spreaders, then you could remove the bottom fan and ensure that you get enough clearance. If on the other hand, if you are installing into an HTPC case which is low profile, you might need to keep the heatsink height low, in which case you can remove the top fan. If you have none of these troubles, then you can use both fans in a push/pull configuration. Choice and options is a good thing; we like that.


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