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Nine Big Air Coolers For Intel's Haswell CPUs, Reviewed

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July 14, 2013 9:27:48 PM

No NH D14?
Score
16
July 14, 2013 10:03:08 PM

Thermalright Archon SB-E X2, That's one big as* cooler!
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0
July 14, 2013 10:16:07 PM

The CM H212 Evo has been a crowd favorite for quite some time now. :)  I wonder how that might have performed. :D 
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6
July 14, 2013 10:50:07 PM

Water cooling is the best way forward: less noise, energy efficient and low maintenance.
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-24
July 14, 2013 11:27:28 PM

I hate to say it but all this article demonstrated to me is that Haswell is in no way better than Ivy Bridge. Even Ivy Bridge used 25% less energy with a 10% boost when compared to Sandy Bridge, and I can still get IB to 4.8 GHz on air.

Haswell= 10% more power for 10% more energy and 10% less headroom. Oh and it costs more...

Man I hope AMD can whip them back into shape with Steam Roller...
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1
July 14, 2013 11:30:25 PM

I can't even fathom why one would spend this much time to write an article like this and still leave the NH-D14 out.
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10
July 15, 2013 12:03:20 AM

Would love to see how the H60 (new version) compares as a point of reference.
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3
July 15, 2013 1:10:37 AM

It's funny how some of you guys still think Intel made Haswell with desktops in mind. This is a CPU architecture made for mobile. It's quite sufficient for desktops in every regard. Yes, it might not outperform IB by much, and it might run a bit hotter, but in a laptop, there is nothing that compares to Haswell.
Score
-5
July 15, 2013 1:25:06 AM

Madn3ss795 said:
No NH D14?
Noctua picked the NH-U14S instead of the D14. Please feel free to ask them why.

Since Noctua chose not to feature the NH-D14 this time, you might want to look at its closest competitor. The article links a comparison of Phanteks TCP14E and NH-D14. Since Phanteks chose to keep its big cooler in the running but Noctua chose otherwise, this was the closest "frame of reference" available.

s3anister said:
I can't even fathom why one would spend this much time to write an article like this and still leave the NH-D14 out.
I can't even fathom why you would repeat the first post without regard to any response. And speaking of a response, please read above.
Score
8
July 15, 2013 1:42:41 AM

Really disappointed that there was no be quiet! and Cooler Master representatives. I would enjoy seeing how a Dark Rock Pro 2 or a V8 GTS/V6 GT.
Score
1
July 15, 2013 1:49:45 AM

The comments are correct concerning the omission of the NH-D14 from this testing. It really doesn't matter a damn what "Noctua picked," that is not the issue. The FACT is the D14 is legendary for its cooling and to leave it out of any major test is just plain stupid. Don't forget that it won your last competition for best cooler.

To say compare it's performance with the Plantek's performance is lame. Use some common sense when you do these reviews.
Score
-5
July 15, 2013 1:52:38 AM

Shneiky said:
Really disappointed that there was no be quiet! and Cooler Master representatives. I would enjoy seeing how a Dark Rock Pro 2 or a V8 GTS/V6 GT.
Since I've never heard from anyone at Be Quiet, I've sent a message. Thanks for the reminder!

Cooler Master chose not to participate this time.

flong777 said:
omission of the NH-D14..doesn't matter a damn what "Noctua picked,"...FACT is ...test is just plain stupid..Use some common sense
Troll much? The FACT is that Noctua said use this. That's the end of the Noctua story, anything you'd like to add after that is counter-factual.

You'd be placing the blame wrongly, if there were any blame to place. Now if you want some clue as to how it should perform, read the noc-vs-phan review. It's linked. Good luck.

Score
3
July 15, 2013 1:59:57 AM

Quote:

Crashman said:
Since I've never heard from anyone at Be Quiet, I've sent a message. Thanks for the reminder!

Cooler Master chose not to participate this time.


Hope it works out. Really interested to see those models. I am quite certain they will make a bit of a difference in your performance charts. Good luck.
Score
1
July 15, 2013 2:34:11 AM

What about to improve the thermal performance of Haswell by removing Integrated Heat Spreader Removal and Replacing IHS Thermal Paste. You can get 10 or more degree C less temperature.
Score
0
July 15, 2013 2:57:59 AM

the true disapointment with haswell is the lack of significant improvement with delidding. While, like IB you can see a solid 10C drop in temps, haswell has a far more agressive heat profile then IB. With minimal bumps in voltage resulting in massive jumps in heat, meaning even with a delidding you could see very little improvement in your overclock, as the chip will still rapidly produce massive ammounts of heat, very fast.

While i understand Intel has their own formula for determaning TDP for their chips, i've said it before, by moving the VRM onto the chip, they invalidated their calculation. The Haswell performs and benches like a much hotter chip then it's advertised TDP. The first warning to benchers this was the case, was when benchers were getting thermal throttling from turbo mode on the stock intel heatsink, and then those same benchers hitting the thermal ceiling with a very small voltage bump and moderate overclock (4.2) with a solid air cooler the hyper evo. People can overclock 125W amd chips pretty aggressively with a lot of vcore on a hyper evo... meanwhile they were thermal throttling with a very modest bump in vcore on a tiny overclock.

This raises a question about the formula intel used to calculate the TDP of their haswell chip, as cpu coolers rated for far higher tdps were struggling with haswell. This article is a bit of an eye opener, as most of those cpu coolers are not jokes. The noctua isn't all that different from the old cpu cooler i used to use to keep my PhII x4 965be cooled. It managed to keep a PhII at a 3.7ghz overclock in a 35C room under 55C while running prime. So that's no joke of a cpu cooler. That it struggles so badly with haswell says something significant to me.

Simply put, you need a water system with a serious rad/fan combo to make a serious stab at a haswell overclock. Air isn't enough anymore.

Dinko Mat said:
What about to improve the thermal performance of Haswell by removing Integrated Heat Spreader Removal and Replacing IHS Thermal Paste. You can get 10 or more degree C less temperature.


yes... it will give you 10+C better temps. the problem is haswell basically heats up exponentially with more voltage. So this rarely gives you a lot more overclock headroom then you had pre-delidding. Ignoring those NO2 guys or the ones using some peltier or other exotic cooling solution, Haswell doesn't really benefit as much as IB does with delidding. another 0.1ghz or 0.2... at best. and that might be a bit optimistic. The real trick with haswell is getting the right batch... apparently some of the chips from certain asian foundries are atrocious overclockers with almost crippling heat problems...
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1
July 15, 2013 5:00:41 AM

I'd like to see how CLCs compare. Nice article.
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0
July 15, 2013 5:15:52 AM

Nice article. Would also like to see a follow-up w/CLCs.
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2
July 15, 2013 6:26:12 AM

No idea WHY in heavens name Thermalright is trying to promote the Archon, its expensive and HUGE without bringing much to the table. There are many better options.
Anyway, when do we get an article on aftermarket big air GPU cooling? I know its not an easy one due to compatibilty and warranties(EVGA cards should be a good bet too sidestep this issue), but hell I can not remember when Toms did one last.
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1
July 15, 2013 6:39:29 AM

Crashman said:
Troll much? The FACT is that Noctua said use this. That's the end of the Noctua story, anything you'd like to add after that is counter-factual.

You'd be placing the blame wrongly, if there were any blame to place. Now if you want some clue as to how it should perform, read the noc-vs-phan review. It's linked. Good luck.


In this case, you are definitely the one trolling here. You would think "The Authority on Tech" would do a more comprehensive roundup that would include the current reigning champion of big air cooling. C'mon, you had to have known that people were going to ask for the NH-D14. Why be so abrasive when you know people were going to complain?

If you are going to start telling your readers what they want, you may as well just write about Apple products every day and forget PC Hardware/Tech.
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1
July 15, 2013 7:03:56 AM

Speaking from a purely acoustic standpoint, the Phanteks and Thermalright models would seem to be good candidates to reduce fan speeds for quieter operation since they seem to have some thermal room, relative to the other coolers.
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0
July 15, 2013 7:18:01 AM

iknowhowtofixit said:
In this case, you are definitely the one trolling here. You would think "The Authority on Tech" would do a more comprehensive roundup that would include the current reigning champion of big air cooling. C'mon, you had to have known that people were going to ask for the NH-D14. Why be so abrasive when you know people were going to complain?

If you are going to start telling your readers what they want, you may as well just write about Apple products every day and forget PC Hardware/Tech.


Well, because we dont live in a perfect world, neither us readers nor tech media sites such as Tom's can always give what we want.

They did with what they got. If a manufacture want to send a different product than what's being requested, then what can a tech site such as Tom's do about it?

Everyone has this issue where they cant get everything they want to compare stuff. Anandtech, LinusTechTips, HardOcp, ect. Heck, for Linus, everyone ask why there isn't a GTX 690 in his reviews against other gpu's such as the GTX 780 and Titan.....


Just be happy that Noctua sent anything at all. For all we know, Noctua could of said, "Nope, we're not sending anything in for this review" or something along those lines.
Score
4
July 15, 2013 7:26:07 AM

Crashman said:
Shneiky said:
Really disappointed that there was no be quiet! and Cooler Master representatives. I would enjoy seeing how a Dark Rock Pro 2 or a V8 GTS/V6 GT.
Since I've never heard from anyone at Be Quiet, I've sent a message. Thanks for the reminder!

Cooler Master chose not to participate this time.

flong777 said:
omission of the NH-D14..doesn't matter a damn what "Noctua picked,"...FACT is ...test is just plain stupid..Use some common sense
Troll much? The FACT is that Noctua said use this. That's the end of the Noctua story, anything you'd like to add after that is counter-factual.

You'd be placing the blame wrongly, if there were any blame to place. Now if you want some clue as to how it should perform, read the noc-vs-phan review. It's linked. Good luck.



Any reason you can't test both, the one Noctua said test and the NH-D14? Crash, even toms has pined the NH-D14 as a flagship air cooler so it does make since to toss it in the review. I'm sure you recall oh around 10 years ago when any review site would have to include a TRUE (Thermalright) in there reviews for this reason or there results would largely get ignored. Why? Its the baseline measure we can use to compare results to other reviews.
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1
July 15, 2013 8:10:29 AM

Can you include a nzxt kraken and a few other sealed coolers to see if it is worth going with them over these larger air coolers?
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0
July 15, 2013 9:48:56 AM

No NH D14 < Missed one of the Best!!!!!!!!!!
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0
July 15, 2013 10:02:38 AM

I own 2 of the Phanteks PH-TC14PE coolers and 1 Noctua NH-D14 , and have received better cooling results with the Phanteks , but the Noctua is a tad quieter.
Score
2
July 15, 2013 10:29:30 AM

JamesSneed said:

Any reason you can't test both, the one Noctua said test and the NH-D14?

The one-per-brand limit is a time constraint. At 1.1 days per cooler (including photos and writing) this article already took two work weeks. Two per brand would have been impossible to schedule.


Score
-1
July 15, 2013 11:55:47 AM

I really don't understand why the Noctua D-14 was not tested??? Hello THG?

I am using the D-14 with three fans running VERY quit; two of their new 150mm fans running at 750 rpm behind the 120mm @ 900 on a 4770K in a bitfenix shinobi as it seems to unsurpassable with anything else this quiet and cool.

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-1
July 15, 2013 11:58:24 AM

Sorry Crash, didn't see your response. WT Noctua?
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0
July 15, 2013 12:18:22 PM

Quote:
"Troll much? The FACT is that Noctua said use this. That's the end of the Noctua story, anything you'd like to add after that is counter-factual.

You'd be placing the blame wrongly, if there were any blame to place. Now if you want some clue as to how it should perform, read the noc-vs-phan review. It's linked. Good luck."


Crashman - what a trollish answer to a common sense statement that not only I but multiple posters have brought up. You are the troll here if anyone is.

The poster right after me asked another common sense questions, "Is there any reason why you cannot test both the NH-D14 and cooler Noctua recommended? Is this poster a troll also? I don't think so. Like I said this is just common sense.

Don't run around calling people names when the omission of the NH-D14 is glaringly obvious to anyone who has researched major coolers.
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-1
July 15, 2013 12:41:12 PM

Sorry, small niggle, but you've got the Scythe and Silverstone images swapped on the first page.

And anyone else think the Dark Knight looks like a Gaia with a paint job and better fan?
Score
0
July 15, 2013 12:55:07 PM

I really hate to be "that guy" and stick up for the "man"... but really some people here aren't wrapping their heads around this very well. THG is a media/review company. That means they survive 100% on revenue provided by sponsors and advertisers. There is not a pile of money in this... so most of the tech they have in their office is DONATED for the review process by the tech companies looking for a little free advertisement.

Read how the air coolers were selected. THG put out a notice to the tech firms they were doing this article and invited them to provide tech for the purpose of the review. Noctua chose to use a new air cooler rather then it's best unit... likely for the purpose of selling the new product. Obviously that choice worked out as it got a recommendation from THG, so it's clearly a quality if not high end product.

If Tom's started to put other air coolers into the test, from companies without their consent, they will ruin their relationship with those companies, perhaps those companies won't send them parts the next time they ask if they want to provide anything for a review or monthly build or something. they can't afford to go out and buy new tech parts every time they need to make a build for an article so they have to respect the opinions and suggestions of the sponcering tech partners.

YES a nh-14 would probably perform pretty well in that test... though pretty well is relative. None of those air coolers were amazing effective, proving that none of them are really sufficient for haswell. From the benching that's been done on haswell chips, you really do need something more robust then an air cooler... a high end AIO water cooler, or a DIY water loop are probably required now if you want a haswell overclock over 4.5ghz and don't want to buy a bunch of chips looking for a golden overclocker. (there really are foundries which have huge issues with their haswell chips and temps... especially in SE asia, many of those chips won't go past 4.2ghz on air)
Score
6
July 15, 2013 1:05:05 PM

Crashman said:
11162724,0,1027081 said:
I really hate to be "that guy" and stick up for the "man"... but really some people here aren't wrapping their heads around this very well. THG is a media/review company. That means they survive 100% on revenue provided by sponsors and advertisers. There is not a pile of money in this... so most of the tech they have in their office is DONATED for the review process by the tech companies looking for a little free advertisement.

Read how the air coolers were selected. THG put out a notice to the tech firms they were doing this article and invited them to provide tech for the purpose of the review. Noctua chose to use a new air cooler rather then it's best unit... likely for the purpose of selling the new product. Obviously that choice worked out as it got a recommendation from THG, so it's clearly a quality if not high end product.

If Tom's started to put other air coolers into the test, from companies without their consent, they will ruin their relationship with those companies, perhaps those companies won't send them parts the next time they ask if they want to provide anything for a review or monthly build or something. they can't afford to go out and buy new tech parts every time they need to make a build for an article so they have to respect the opinions and suggestions of the sponcering tech partners.

YES a nh-14 would probably perform pretty well in that test... though pretty well is relative. None of those air coolers were amazing effective, proving that none of them are really sufficient for haswell. From the benching that's been done on haswell chips, you really do need something more robust then an air cooler... a high end AIO water cooler, or a DIY water loop are probably required now if you want a haswell overclock over 4.5ghz and don't want to buy a bunch of chips looking for a golden overclocker. (there really are foundries which have huge issues with their haswell chips and temps... especially in SE asia, many of those chips won't go past 4.2ghz on air)
said:


Thank you. Was hoping I would not need to point this out. :p 
Score
1
July 15, 2013 1:26:56 PM

What I would like to see is a test that uses one fan, swapped out for each cooler. That way the fan shows what actual cooler is best. Fans are easy to swap and lets face it, all fans are not created equally.

Just a thought.
Score
0
July 15, 2013 2:27:22 PM

The Zalman CNPS10X Optima has been as cheap as $3 after rebate and can be picked up for $10-20 after rebate quite regularly (Currently $17 AR on Newegg) I would have liked to see the ZALMAN CNPS9900MAX or COOLER MASTER V8 in this review as these coolers provide great performance and are can often be obtained for less than or around $30 after rebate.
Score
1
July 15, 2013 2:32:39 PM

Very nice article indicating some air cooling issues with the Haswell. I think this should have been done much sooner, so people can decide if they should upgrade to Haswell. Knowing whether the processor is overclockable on 'air' could be a deal breaker for some people.

BTW, does anybody know if the Haswell will thermo thottle on the Intel Stock cooler (on stock voltages)? Any reviews/comparison charts on that matter?
Score
0
July 15, 2013 2:56:54 PM

I'm confused, has there not been a product release from brands i'm actually familiar with? Xigmatech, Thermaltake, Coolermaster... Who is Ashura and did he just save me 10% on my car insurance?
Score
-1
July 15, 2013 3:02:00 PM

milktea said:
BTW, does anybody know if the Haswell will thermo thottle on the Intel Stock cooler (on stock voltages)? Any reviews/comparison charts on that matter?


some haswell WILL thermal throttle on stock settings with their turbo mode on the stock cooler. It depends on the batch, but generally the chips out of SE Asia tend to be very hot.

this article claims thermal throttling at stock settings, and thermal throttling with a robust air cooler on some chips at 4.2ghz http://www.bit-tech.net/news/hardware/2013/06/06/haswel...
this reviewer made it to 4.2 on the stock cooler http://www.legitreviews.com/article/2203/14/
there are some youtube reviews as well which highlight the problems with the stock cooler and haswell. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVaV7jaLXa0 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqr06oL_hwk
Score
0
July 15, 2013 3:10:52 PM

flong777 said:
Crashman - what a trollish answer to a common sense statement that not only I but multiple posters have brought up. You are the troll here if anyone is.
Read what you said. You started hurling insults dishonestly? Did you see me say that about any other post?
iknowhowtofixit said:
In this case, you are definitely the one trolling here.
Hurling insults in spite of information to the contrary is neither useful nor appreciated. It doesn't add to the conversation, it detracts from it. I probably should have used the word "flame" but that can be taken multiple ways.
zachster said:
I'm confused, has there not been a product release from brands i'm actually familiar with? Xigmatech, Thermaltake, Coolermaster... Who is Ashura and did he just save me 10% on my car insurance?
Xigmatek is in there, but you might have missed it with everything organized alphabetically.
Score
0
July 15, 2013 4:23:30 PM


Pity the Noctua still looks so horrid with the brown, etc. I'm surprised
you didn't praise the Phanteks more; certainly looks much nicer with
a black HS and white fans (3 of them I might add, testing with only 2
is a bit odd).

Ian.

Score
0
July 15, 2013 4:33:16 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
I own 2 of the Phanteks PH-TC14PE coolers and 1 Noctua NH-D14 , and have received better cooling results with the Phanteks , but the Noctua is a tad quieter.


That's why I chose the Phanteks for a 3930K - I kept reading reviews which showed it was slightly
better than the D14, and the mildly extra noise wasn't an issue, not with four GPUs in the case. :D 

The Phanteks was also a lot cheaper than the D14, looks nicer too.

Having said that, I agree with those who said water cooling should be a consideration for hw of
this category, ie. the heat levels involved. With the sucky ambient air temps at this time of year,
I've gone the extra mile this time, finished building a heat shield today for the back windows. :D 
Otherwise the sunlight during the day shoots the air temp up to 27C or so, at which point keeping
a 3930K below 80C becomes a tad tricky.

I was thinking of trying an H100, but I don't have the right type of case (it's a HAF 932). Anyone know
of a good info resource for the starting point of external water cooling setups? The case has holes for
piping, but not enough space for an internal fan asy like an H100 (PSU is at the top in order to permit
4 GPUs inside).

Ian.

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0
July 15, 2013 4:42:31 PM

mapesdhs said:

Pity the Noctua still looks so horrid with the brown, etc. I'm surprised
you didn't praise the Phanteks more; certainly looks much nicer with
a black HS and white fans (3 of them I might add, testing with only 2
is a bit odd).

Ian.





Acording to Linus from LinusTechTips, there suppose to be some black fans coming to market sometime this year. :) 
Score
0
July 15, 2013 4:43:43 PM

My Phanteks Setup:

FX8350 at 5.1 ghz.\1.384 volts\Phanteks PH-TC14PE\110 CFM Scythe Fans\Asrock 990FX Extreme 9.



Score
0
July 15, 2013 4:45:23 PM

Xigmatek should have kept the fan that comes with the Night Hawk. It was already putting in one of the smallest (and the lightest) heatsinks, they didn't need to give it a crappy fan as well. Then again, it might not have made a whole lot of difference.

Either way, kudos for them for submitting it. I think they just wanted a bit of face-time, since I think the cooler is only rated for 160w?
Score
0
July 15, 2013 4:58:47 PM

mapesdhs said:
SR-71 Blackbird said:
I own 2 of the Phanteks PH-TC14PE coolers and 1 Noctua NH-D14 , and have received better cooling results with the Phanteks , but the Noctua is a tad quieter.


That's why I chose the Phanteks for a 3930K - I kept reading reviews which showed it was slightly
better than the D14, and the mildly extra noise wasn't an issue, not with four GPUs in the case. :D 

The Phanteks was also a lot cheaper than the D14, looks nicer too.

Having said that, I agree with those who said water cooling should be a consideration for hw of
this category, ie. the heat levels involved. With the sucky ambient air temps at this time of year,
I've gone the extra mile this time, finished building a heat shield today for the back windows. :D 
Otherwise the sunlight during the day shoots the air temp up to 27C or so, at which point keeping
a 3930K below 80C becomes a tad tricky.

I was thinking of trying an H100, but I don't have the right type of case (it's a HAF 932). Anyone know
of a good info resource for the starting point of external water cooling setups? The case has holes for
piping, but not enough space for an internal fan asy like an H100 (PSU is at the top in order to permit
4 GPUs inside).

Ian.



My Antec Ninehundred and Two isn't built for the h100 either. $3 and some velcro strips from walmart with a little epoxy and a hobby knife made one hell of an awesome velcro quick install/mounting system for the rad. It's a tight fit but it works perfect.

You can also look into a h80i, that should fit your case perfect, and by most benches it is about as good as a h100; i would have gone for a h80i if i hadn't got such an amazing deal on this h100... ($50, new)
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0
July 15, 2013 5:51:25 PM

I have the NH-D14. All you whiners whining why it wasn't included go start your own tech website. Tom's has fully explained the reasons why it was not included.
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0
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