Noctua NH-D15S Review
Noctua NH-D15S Review
Noctua NH-D15S is an updated version of it’s predecessor NH-D15 which we’ve already tested before. The Noctua has changed its design in an asymmetrical form, so it has more clearance over RAM slots. These design changes make it more compatible for many users who had some issues with older NH-D15. It also comes with only one NF-A15 PWM fan between two heatsinks. But, let’s have a look inside the box.
Protection and more protection. If there’s a Brand which really care about transport security and packaging, then it would definitively be Noctua. Every part is separately packed, inside the cardboard box which is sitting tight protected with hard foam protection. There’s even cardboard plate between heatsink and fan just to ensure, there will be no damage made during its way to final user. Well done!
Quick look inside accessories box, we’ve found back-plate, mounting brackets for Intel as well as AMD socket, screwdriver, thermal paste additional fan clips, low-noise adapter and 3 separate instructions (AMD/LGA2011/LGA115x) which are by the way easy to understand.
Noctua’s SecuFirm2™ mounting systems have become synonymous with quality and ease of use. Supporting Intel LGA115x (LGA1150, LGA1155, LGA1156), LGA2011 and AMD (AM3(+), AM2(+), FM1, FM2(+)). The SecuFirm2™ mounting system provides perfect contact pressure.
Two massive heat-sinks have no problems with providing more than enough cooling performance even for oveclocked 5820K @4.2GHz. And it has only one fan. Of course, you can add additional fan which has to be ordered separately. There are additional fan clips for one more fan included in package already. Keep in mind should you wish to go overkill then you can add two more fans (overall 3 fans) but you will need to order 2 more fan clips. The clips design and form is almost perfect, very easy and fast to mount/dismount the fan.
As we can see the heat pipes are now asymmetrically designed to prevent conflict with GPU slot (graphics card in 1st slot). Contact surface is mirror polished and very flat.
Mounting brackets are so easy to mount ,no matter if you assemble 2011 socket or 115x with back-plate. Finally the heat-sink tower is fixed with two main screws using compensation spring to avoid over-pressure.
For proper air flow and static pressure is Noctua’s premium NF-A15 PWM fan in charge here. It starts at very low RPM in IDLE mode, and it’s barely audible in low RPM speeds..
As we have already mentioned the cooler heat-sink is moved to one side to allow clearance for graphics card. Also last 7 fins have cut-out to avoid conflict with high RAM modules.
It is definitively giant air cooler and it’s really heavy monster. But it delivers performance every enthusiast wish and need, without compromises. Although, color of the cooler is not really eye catching, but that’s a matter of taste. Good news is, that Noctua is finally releasing other colors of anti-vibration pads, so you can change those, at least.
Noctua NH-D15S Specifications:
To ensure that the results from one review to another are comparable, the Testing Methodology will be the same throughout all reviews, otherwise we will make a note if somethings changed and keep it separately from other results.
All testing was done on test Bench-table with a room ambient temperature of 22- 23°C and if temperature changes we will add delta T °C to the results.
Before testing we run 10 minutes of Prime95 followed by 30 minutes of idling. This warm up period was done at stock CPU core frequency. For noise testing we are using fanless PSU. We mostly do fan noise test over night so we have our room as silent as possible.
We take noise values from distance of 30cm.
Testing System 1 :
Software: OCCT 4.4.1, Easy Tune
For testing we are using OCCT software and between each test we leave the system at least 15 minutes to rest. Thus, the temperature comes back to the IDLE state. Followed by overclocking with help of Easy Tune Software (for Gigabyte mainboard) or for ASUS mainboard (CPU Ratio only). Each test lasted for 15 minutes. If the temperature of any CPU core exceeded 85°C the test was automatically turned off and the value of the results we have marked as “failed”. The resulting temperature in the tables are the average temperature of all cores. The results of the tests are influenced by many factors such as: the amount of thermal paste, pressure between the processor and CPU block, humidity, thermal conductivity of thermal paste, etc.. Therefore this results should be considered as indicative only.
Intel® Core™ i7-4790K Processor
Intel® Core™ i7-5820K Processor
|Fan max. RPM||noise dB(A) 1 fan pushing air against cpu socket|
|IDLE PWM mode||670||29.5dB(A)
|@4.4GHz PWM mode||1400||43dB(A)|
|@4.7GHz PWM mode||1500||45dB(A)|
Noctua is tuning its already very popular NH-D15 to perfection with new NH-D15S when it come to design and clearance with memory modules and GPU slot. The performance looks to be same as by its predecessor NH-D15, but D15S comes with one fan only, which also reduce the final price. For users who wish or need the ultimate beast, there is still an option to buy additional 2 fans to squeeze those couple 3-5°C of the heat-sink. Noctua NH-D15S do offer only 1 fan this time, so the price can be lowered to approx. €75 . As most users would need only one fan anyway. This cooler is big enough to consume almost all space around the socket. So additional fan may even be problem. You would definitively consider that you have enough space before buying additional fan. When it comes to performance, there are no compromises. The Noctua NH-D15S delivers amazing cooling performance even with one fan only. One thing many user would surely wish it so have the fan in black other some other color. For this year Noctua made it to pole position again and receives our Editor’s Choice as well as Best of 2015. We are looking forward to see some heavy competitors in year 2016.
Option to add additional fans