Noctua NH-U12A Review

👤by Matthew Hodgson Comments 📅03-04-19
Closer Look
The NH-U12A, without the fans, measures 158mm tall, 125mm wide and 58mm deep. It features 50 fins supplied by 7 heatpipes.

Those 7 heatpipes are bonded to each fin with solder; this method of fixing the fins ensures that, over time, the different thermal expansion coefficients of copper and aluminium cause the fit to loosen over time, impacting its effectiveness; soldering them together prevents this from happening and improves the thermal interface at the same time.

Arranging the heatpipes in this way helps to improve the distribution across each fin, reducing any ‘cold-spots’ that can occur when heatpipes aren’t arranged efficiently. The hole near the centre is used to remove the SecuFirm2 mount on the base of the cooler, should a different one ever be required. The included screwdriver works for this purpose.

Looking at the base of the cooler, Noctua have decided to use a flat coldplate instead of using direct contact heatpipes. This is likely a decision surrounding the use of their SecuFirm 2 mounting system to maintain rigidity around this area.

Re-attaching the NF-A12x25 fans, the cooler now looks like a Noctua design – that colour scheme is unmistakeable. With both fans attached the coolers depth is increased to 112mm, but thanks to an offset in the design, Noctua claim a 100% RAM compatibility with all Intel LGA115x and AMD AM4 motherboards.

The opposite side features a much larger overhang, and could therefore cause an intrusion on LGA20xx motherboards if you’re using DRAM modules, to the left of the CPU socket, taller than 42mm.

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