Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler Review

Overclocking and tweaking are a way of life for most enthusiast users. We love squeezing every little bit out of our rigs, and pushing limits, to get the most we can out of our machines and our hobby. What are some of the bottle necks of overclocking and tweaking? For one, hardware is of course the first major factor. Two having a bios that will allow you to over clock etc. Once you have the check list of all the enthusiast grade components you can begin. The number one OC killer as I am sure any enthusiast can tell you is temperature. When you start increasing voltages you start getting your CPU nice and toasty. This is simply unacceptable if you want a stable clock speed, this is where after market coolers like the Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler come into play. Let’s see what kind of benefits a cooler like the Noctua NH-U12P has over your run of the mill stock cooler:

Product provided by: Noctua

Price: $59.99

Closer Look:

The packaging, as with all Noctua products, is very well designed. I love the addition of a window in the packaging it lets you see what you are getting without ripping the packaging apart. As with the Noctua thermal paste there is the pretty Redhead on the packaging which is also a nice addition to the packaging. Everyone likes pretty Redheads on there computer parts packaging. The one thing I don’t understand is what the dude on the computer is doing. But I digress; the packaging includes all of the pertinent information one would need in order to make an informed purchase.



The cooler it self is a very well designed piece of hardware. The heatsink fins are very rigid and durable. The overall height is towering, but still just the right amount or girth to height ratio needed in order to fit easily into more cases while still maintaining the best possible cooling solution. Although I love the look of copper, the chrome on the Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler looks incredible. I personally love the design of the coolers similar to this one such as the True and Core Contact Freezer.



A key component to a solid thermal connection between your CPU and your cooler is how well machined the cooler and CPU are. Most of the time lapping a CPU is not needed but nine times out of ten you will need to do some lapping on CPU coolers. The engineers at Noctua are doing something right. The Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler is very well lapped right out of the box. If  you are the anal type I am sure you can lap the Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler even more, but straight from the box it is good to go.


The addition of 8 heat pipes to the design of the cooler is a testament to its ability to keep your CPU nice and chili. The purpose of the heat pipes is to pull the head away from the CPU, and return cool temperatures to the CPU through the auxiliary heat pipes.



The raised design of the heat pipes insures that your cooler sits above some of the newer motherboards chipset heat pipes, other important capacitors, and the ram. The thickness of the cooler “foot” insures a measure of heat spreading on the CPU, insuring no “hot spots” which can be cause by cheaper coolers or poorly lapped coolers.



Let’s see whats included with the Noctua NH-U12P CPU Cooler

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