Noctua NH-L9i Low-Profile CPU Cooler
I wanted to start off by looking down inside of the 92mm fan and show you not only the traditional colors of Noctua, but also to show how compact the NH-L9i is from the top. This is how Noctua knows you won't have issues with memory or a video card, this thing is only slightly larger in its footprint than a stock cooler.
The cooler comes completely assembled from the mounting legs at the bottom, on through the heavy fan mounting plate screwed to the side with the Noctua name on it, right on into the fan, you are really only four screws and a ran connection from use at this point.
The side of the cooler shows how snug the 55 aluminum fins are packed together. Even with such little spacing, Noctua still took steps to make sure to fold over the edges for both structural support as well as spacing support; you don't want these fins all packing up together.
At this end you can not only see the wiring for the 4-pin PWM connector to power the fan, but you can see the termination of the two 6mm diameter heat pipes as they exit the side of the cooler and the thicker metal end used to support the fan that gets screwed on to this side as well.
This side is a dead match to its opposing side. In reality, the folded over edges of the fins is just a secondary measure to keep the spacing correct. Since the fins are directly soldered to the heat pipes, the spacing is going to stay pretty even anyways.
As I mentioned, everything comes ready to go with the NH-L9i, even the mounting legs are already on the bottom and screwed into place. Protecting the base of the cooler is a thick plastic that has been applied to keep the finish just as it left the factory.
The base of the NH-L9i is very flat across the entire surface and the base is much larger than the IHS so the height of the mounting legs is not an issue. If you look closely you can see grooves arches across the base, as Noctua likes more surface area for the TIM over a mirror polished finish to get the job done.
The mounting legs are offset at the end to allow for the appropriate socket height and are simply drilled and tapped to accept the threads from the screws that go in from behind the motherboard.
I went ahead and removed the fan so that you had a chance to see in between all of these fins. You can see there is a wide strip of metal that goes from right to left that has the base on one side and the U-shaped heat pipes soldered to it. You can also now see the fan mounting holes that are bent over bits of the side panels.