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Noctua launches NH-L12 low-profile CPU cooler

by Parm Mann on 22 February 2012, 10:46

Tags: Noctua

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Noctua has introduced a new high-end CPU cooler designed exclusively for the small-form-factor or home-theatre PC crowds.

It's dubbed the NH-L12, priced at €49.90, and equipped with two PWM-controlled fans that promise to bring high-end cooling to tighter confines.

Sitting atop of the quad-heatpipe design is a 120mm NF-F12 fan, and on the underside there's a 92mm NF-B9. Noctua includes low-noise adaptors as part of the bundle, so while the fans are technically capable of speeds of up to 1,600RPM, that upper limit can be reduced to 1,300RPM to help keep noise levels in check.

 

Of course, size and form factor is what's really important here, so the cooler is designed to work in either dual-fan mode, or low-profile mode with the top fan removed.

The cooler stands 93mm-tall with both fans in place, but remove the top 120mm fan and the total height is reduced to a slim 66mm. Both fans are included as standard - as are mounting kits for all the latest Intel and AMD sockets - and Noctua backs up the cooler with a six-year warranty.

Exactly how good is it? According to Noctua, it provides "first rate performance in its class," but the NH-L12 "is not suitable for overclocking and should be used with care on CPUs with more than 95W TDP." In other words, it's great for your stock-clocked HTPC, but not ideal for your 4.8GHz gaming rig.



HEXUS Forums :: 6 Comments

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Nice looking product. When are you going to test it. I would like to compare it to my Scythe Shuriken Rev.B Quiet Low Profile CPU Cooler in my HTPC in a Lian-Li PC-C36 Muse for noise. It's only used as a HTPC so cooling performance is not top priority (i3 CPU not stressed that hard) but noise is important.

How do you run the fan? Blowing or sucking through the cooler? Does it depend on your case orientation and vents? I think a test is called for.
I'd be interested in whether this is big enough to be left fanless (assuming there's some airflow from a case fan…)
testing needed.

Obvious issue is that if used with bottom fan only will it foul RAM and if so what types. Could see it working with low profile ram but large heatsinks could be a problem
Exactly how good is it? According to Noctua, it provides “first rate performance in its class,” but the NH-L12 “is not suitable for overclocking and should be used with care on CPUs with more than 95W TDP.” In other words, it's great for your stock-clocked HTPC
TDP of 95W covers a lot of reasonable processors, so it's maybe okay for a mainstream user as well as the HTPC enthusiast.

It also might allow me to reuse that old Coolermaster ATC210VX case that I've got lying around. Problem with that is that it's got no 120mm fan mounts and motherboard-to-side clearance of about 140mm, so it's too narrow for a lot of the coolers out there. I certainly would have zero chance of fitting the hulking great NH-D14 that I'm using at the moment… So maybe also quite a useful piece of kit if - like me - you want to use a narrow tower case.
I like this but the only thing I don't like is the price but meh, Noctua coolers cost, can't complain have had a fair few in the past!