Premium performance and smooth running of any computer is the desire for many owners. To achieve this, effective and efficient hardware and software to run it are pre-requisites. Key to achieve efficiency is the ability of the computer to run on incredibly low temperatures even at optimum operation.
A top-notch cooling system is therefore vital, and the solution can be found in Noctua’s NH-D14 and its successor NH-D15 that provide the anesthetic feeling of owning a super performing computer at costs that are overridden by the output.
NH-D14 VS NH-D15
Manufactured in 2009, the Noctua NH-D14 tandem tower heatsink has the reputation of being a better cooler as the temperatures increase, enhancing efficiency.
By design, NH-D14 is easy to assemble. It has two fans mounted on using two-wire clips each that are easier to attach and remove in a uniform way. Further, it has rubber strips that act as silencers, dampening vibration, and reducing mechanical noise during operation. NH-D14 is designed with jagged zig-zag edges over a flat plane that maximizes its ability to permit airflow between the fins with minimal resistance and turbulence noise.
NH-D14 size provides a massive surface area for heat dissipation, hence lower processor heat levels even at maximum speed. Its 2-2.7 pounds does not significantly increase the weight of the computer and pressure of the motherboard.
By design, NH-D14 has copper/aluminum hybrid heatsink electroplated with nickel. Copper, which is an excellent heat conductor, is used in the heat pipes coated with a thin layer of nickel, to withstand corrosive environments with high temperatures. Nickel's ductility and toughness diminishes NH-D14 loss of cooling performance over time, hence enhancing its durability. It comes along with IC Diamond paste.
NH-D15 costs around $80
This is a 2018 upgrade of NH-D14 that has taken care of some of the flaws, improving performance and ease of assembly.
NH-D15 is designed with a hybrid approach in the heatsink fin leading edges, characterized by a low angle V-shaped slope towards the center and bits of smooth zig-zag edges, unlike NH-D14. This maximizes its ability to permit airflow between the fins with minimal resistance and noise. It is more less the same size as NH-D14 but weighs between 2.2 and 2.7 pounds when fully assembled. Once installed, it provides a bigger RAM clearance.
Like its predecessor, NH-D15 has copper/aluminum hybrid heatsink electroplated with nickel, enhancing cooling and durability. It has two easier to mount and dismount spectacular NF-A15 PWM fans that spin up to 1560 rpm compared to the NH-D14 that spins up to 1300 rpm.
In addition, it has a widened heatsink as well as increased distance between the heat pipes for higher cooling performance. The NH-D15 comes with two RC-7 Low Noise Adapters so that the heatsink can run silently. It also comes with a Y-Cable and a tube of NT-H1 TIM.
With its efficient top-tier cooling capability, NH-D15 costs around $90
In a nutshell, computer enthusiasts would find themselves torn between the two premium models were it not for the NH-D15’s asymmetrical design that provides more clearance towards the PCle slot, superior RAM clearance and its performance that can provide 33.8-37.4°F better performance.
This notwithstanding, investing in either of the two would provide an awe moment in computing.