Noctua NH-D15 Review

👤by David Mitchelson Comments 📅25-04-14

The NH-D14 has stood the test of time and remained a prolific cooling solution for many years and so today has been very intriguing – not least to see how Noctua can improve on such a steadfast product. So how does this new flagship fare?

We’re no stranger to Noctua products and we’ve often mentioned how thoughtful they are when it comes to packaging. With NH-D15, they’ve turned it up a notch further by presenting each of the mounting kits, accessories, cooling fans and even the heatsink with a separate box – these finishing touches and the handy instructions manual deliver an insight into their design philosophy.

D15 itself is a beast to be tamed. Its twin-tower design will dwarf a standard ATX motherboard but we don’t mind that at all because this cooler is aesthetically very pleasing to the eye. Noctua has been designing D15 for considerable time now and this is evident by the engineering decisions and quality – the recessed lower fins are cleverly integrated to allow compatibility for taller memory.

The performance of a cooler is often the overriding factor when it comes to making a decision whether to invest or not and we can safely say that the D15 is a big improvement over the highly revered D14 and is worthy of the flagship moniker. In all our tests this cooler demonstrated consistent thermal prowess, even matching the performance of some leading liquid cooling solutions. D15 may not have topped the charts but an important factor needs to be noted, other coolers required significantly more RPM in order to achieve the result but D15 attained its milestone by using lower RPM and thus emitted less noise. Therein lies the fundamental principle to which Noctua operate – striking the balance between performance and noise.

At a cost of £77.95 GBP / $99 USD, the NH-D15 isn’t cheap, but neither is the quality of this cooler, or the entire bundle. The inclusion of two 140mm cooling fans is a particular highlight, and one which rivals don’t usually offer. Each fan has a value of £19 / $28 just on their own – when this is put into the equation, D15 is actually quite an attractive investment.

Noctua’s new flagship CPU cooler is a worthy successor to the highly revered NH-D14. In all our tests, we found NH-D15 to be very capable indeed. It achieves great results with very little noise. Noctua has clearly spent significant time designing this new cooler, it simply oozes quality on many levels and we’d gladly add it to our cooling arsenal.


+ Excellent packaging
+ Pleasing to the eye
+ Great performance
+ Brilliant memory clearance
+ Low-noise operation
+ Generous bundle including 2X140mm fans

- Big cost

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