The NH-L9x65 surprised us a fair bit. Looking at the cooler fresh out of the box, looking over the specifications, let's just say our expectations were not that high. First, we see a 92mm fan that is only 14mm thick, delivering around 30CFM of airflow to the cooler. Then, we see that the cooler itself is very compact and takes up just a bit more room than the stock solution, but only because it is square rather than round. With four heat pipes, the odds looked better, but they are short, and only run through half of the cooler essentially. It was almost as if everywhere you looked it seemed as if cooler was not really a good solution, but when put to the test, it came out smelling like roses.
While our overclocked testing does take this cooler past its "safe zone", we are very pleased to see it was able to tame near 100W of power and still leave us free of throttling the CPU. In the stock testing, which is where this cooler is in its sweet spot, the results were much better than what the stock cooler would afford, and again, in roughly the same footprint.
We really like the move to SecuFirm2 mounting hardware. We also like that everything on the motherboard is fully accessible, and when it comes to cases with tight confines designed into them, a cooler like this will keep you from having to gut the entire rig to remove a stick of RAM or get to a SATA connector. Everything Noctua boasted about with this cooler is true, and while we feel they underestimated the power that the NH-L9x65 can actually handle in the right conditions, the 84W TDP rating is fair and safe in near all conditions.
We took a pause to try and find something wrong with this design, and to be completely honest, we are at a loss here. You do have to see this cooler for what it is, and not compare it to a triple radiator based AIO. Look at it as a stock cooler replacement that will definitely drop temperatures, not blast your ears with sound, leave you full access to everything, and won't break your wallet trying to pay for it either. Considering that what they accomplished was done with very little room, and we can have this cooler today for the reasonable price of $60, we feel that Noctua may have made a cooler for a niche category of users, but the design, while small, is more capable of tending to business than what Noctua gave it credit for.
Product Summary Breakdown
|Quality including Design and Build||97%|
|Bundle and Packaging||99%|
|Value for Money||90%|
|Overall TweakTown Rating||94%|
The Bottom Line: Noctua revives what a compact cooler can be! The NH-L9x65 can tame our beast, comes with rock solid mounting hardware, and comes in at a fairly good price.
PRICING: You can find the Noctua NH-L9x65 for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link below to see real-time pricing for the best deal:
United States: The Noctua NH-L9x65 retails for $60 at Amazon.
United Kingdom: The Noctua NH-L9x65 retails for £35 at Amazon UK.
Australia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at PLE Computer's website.
- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging]
- Page 3 [Noctua NH-L9x65 CPU Cooler]
- Page 4 [Accessories and Documentation]
- Page 5 [Installation and Finished Product]
- Page 6 [Test System Setup, Thermal Tests and Noise Results]
- Page 7 [Final Thoughts]
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