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Successor to the award-winning NH-C14, the NH-C14S is an elite class top-flow CPU cooler that is extremely efficient, highly compatible and remarkably adjustable. Thanks to its deeper fin stack and the renowned NF-A14 PWM fan, the single fan NH-C14S provides similar quiet cooling performance to its dual fan predecessor while being even more versatile: With the fan installed on top of the fins, the cooler is compatible with RAM modules of up to 70mm height. With the fan installed underneath the fins, the total height of the cooler is only 115mm, making it suitable for use in many HTPC cases. At the same time, the new offset layout allows it to clear the top PCIe slot on most µATX and ATX motherboards. Topped off with the trusted, pro-grade SecuFirm2™ multi-socket mounting system, Noctua’s proven NT-H1 thermal compound and full 6 years manufacturer’s warranty, the NH-C14S is a premium quality top-flow solution for the highest demands. 
Details
Based on the award-winning NH-C14

Based on the award-winning NH-C14

Having received more than 200 awards and recommendations from leading international hardware websites and magazines, the NH-C14 has become an established reference for 140mm top-flow coolers. With its deeper fin stack and more efficient NF-A14 PWM fan, the new S-version provides similar performance and further improved compatibility.
C-Type top-flow design

C-Type top-flow design

The c-type top-flow design of the NH-C14S not only allows for superb quiet cooling performance while maintaining a much lower profile than today's 140mm tower-style coolers but also ensures excellent airflow over RAM modules and near-socket motherboard components.
Low Profile Mode

Low Profile Mode

Run with the NF-A14 fan installed underneath the fin stack, the NH-C14S stands only 115mm tall, which is much lower than tower coolers with 140mm or 120mm fans and allows it to fit many desktop style or HTPC cases.
High Clearance Mode

High Clearance Mode

Run with the NF-A14 fan installed on top, the NH-C14S provides extended clearance underneath the fin stack. This way, it is fully compatible with chipset coolers and RAM modules with heat-spreaders of up to 70mm height.
Offset design for PCIe clearance

Offset design for PCIe clearance

Compared to the original NH-C14, the layout of the NH-C14S has been offset in two axis. Thanks to this measure, the heatsink will clear the top PCIe slot on most µATX and ATX motherboards when the bendings of the heatpipes face the PCIe slots or the I/O panel.*
NF-A14 140mm premium fan

NF-A14 140mm premium fan

Featuring sophisticated aerodynamic optimisations such as Flow Acceleration Channels, the NF-A14 is renowned to be among the best quiet 140mm fans on the market. Combined with the deeper fin stack of the NH-C14S, it allows the cooler to achieve similar performance levels as its dual fan predecessor despite only using a single NF-A14.
PWM support and Low-Noise Adaptor

PWM support and Low-Noise Adaptor

The NF-A14 premium fan supplied with the NH-C14S supports PWM for convenient automatic speed control through the motherboard. In addition, the maximum fan speed can be reduced from 1500 to 1200rpm using the supplied Low-Noise Adaptor for even quieter operation.
SecuFirm2™ mounting system

SecuFirm2™ mounting system

Noctua's SecuFirm2™ mounting systems have become synonymous with quality, safety and ease of use. Supporting Intel LGA115x (LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155, LGA1156), LGA2011 (LGA2011-0 & LGA2011-3) and AMD (AM3(+), AM2(+), FM1, FM2(+)), the SecuFirm2™ mounting included with the NH-C14S guarantees perfect contact pressure and maximum convenience on all current sockets.
Compatibility with past and future sockets

Compatibility with past and future sockets

Complying with the open SecuFirm™ standard, the NH-C14S can be made compatible with the older LGA1366 and LGA775 sockets using the optional NM-I3 mounting kit, which is provided by Noctua free of charge. If technically possible, Noctua will also provide upgrade kits for future sockets.
NT-H1 thermal compound

NT-H1 thermal compound

Having received more than 100 awards and recommendations from hardware journalists around the world, Noctua's NT-H1 is a proven professional grade TIM solution that provides minimum thermal resistance, excellent ease of use and outstanding reliability.
6-year manufacturer’s warranty

6-year manufacturer’s warranty

Noctua products are renowned for their impeccable quality and outstanding longevity. Like all Noctua fans, the supplied NF-A14 features an MTBF rating of more than 150.000 hours and the entire NH-C14S package comes with a full 6-year manufacturer’s warranty.
*Please refer to our motherboard compatibility list for detailed information.
NH-C14S
Cooler Specification
Intel LGA2011-0 & LGA2011-3 (Square ILM), LGA1156, LGA1155, LGA1151, LGA1150 & AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1, FM2, FM2+ (backplate required)
Height (without fan)
115 mm
Width (without fan)
140 mm
Depth (without fan)
163 mm
Height (with fan)
115 / 142 mm
Width (with fan)
140 mm
Depth (with fan)
163 mm
Weight (without fan)
820 g
Weight (with fan/s)
1015 g
Material
Copper (base and heat-pipes), aluminium (cooling fins), soldered joints & nickel plating
Max. TDP
see TDP guide
Fan compatibility
140x140x25mm (with square frame)
Scope of Delivery
  • 1x NF-A14 PWM premium fan
  • Low-Noise Adaptor (L.N.A.)
  • Fan clips for second fan
  • NT-H1 high-grade thermal compound
  • SecuFirm2™ Mounting Kit
  • Noctua Metal Case-Badge
Warranty
6 Years
FAN Specification
Bearing
%s
1500 RPM
Max. Rotational Speed with L.N.A. (+/- 10%)
1200 RPM
Max. Acoustical Noise
24,6 dB(A)
Max. Acoustical Noise with L.N.A.
19,2 dB(A)
Input Power
1,56 W
Voltage Range
12 V
MTTF
> 150.000 h
NH-C14S
NH-C14S
NH-C14S Videos
SecuFirm2™ Intel LGA115x installation
SecuFirm2™ Intel LGA2011 installation
SecuFirm2™ AMD installation (NM-AMB1)
Video Reviews
The following video reviews have not been created by Noctua. Responsibility for the information and views expressed in the videos lies entirely with the authors.
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30.12.2016 // ZeDen.net
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NH-C14S Review

Indubitablement les performances sont là, et le silence admirable, une réussite pour Noctua
Test verdict: "On a une débauche de luxe avec ce ventirad, de l'emballage à la finition du radiateur et du ventilateur." (Johann Voltzenlogel, ZeDen.net)
21.10.2016 // OCClub.ru
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NH-C14S Review

Очевидный плюс NH-C14S – универсальность. Комплектный вентилятор можно установить в нескольких позициях, в зависимости от возможностей корпуса. Также есть потенциал на дальнейший апгрейд. Докупить второй аналогичный вентилятор и все. Второй очевидный плюс NH-C14S – сама конструкция. Кулеры такого типа охлаждают не только процессор, но и околосокетное пространство. Если у материнской платы на самые крупные радиаторы на узле VRM, то дополнительный отвод тепла совсем не лишний. С хорошим разгоном практически обязателен. И напоследок еще о конструкции. Благодаря большому (в 2 мм) расстоянию между ребрами, охладитель эффективен даже при низких оборотах вентиляторов.
Test verdict: "Там можем ли мы рекомендовать к покупке Noctua NH-C14S? Однозначно ответ да. Это отличный качественный кулер, который принесет определенное удовольствие даже во время распаковки и установки. Более того, нельзя не отметить подход Noctua к клиентам. Если выйдет новый сокет, к которому требуются другие крепежные пластины, то Noctua бесплатно вышлет владельцу кулера новые скобы. Это, согласитесь, приятно." (Oleg Ubeiko, OCClub.ru)
12.09.2016 // RelaxedTech.com
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NH-C14S Review

Noctua's NH-C14S is better in every way compared to the original NH-C14. Not only is it more efficient but it also performs much better while being much quieter. The additional heatpipe in the center of the heatsink and the improved NF-A14 fan make a noticeable difference in both cooling and noise performance.
Test verdict: "We strongly recommend the NH-C14S to anyone who's looking for a high quality top-flow design cooler that will give you fantastic cooling performance while providing high RAM and video card clearance." (Henry Peshkepija, RelaxedTech.com)
20.08.2016 // Hardware-Factory.com
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NH-C14S Review

Noctua liefert mit dem NH-C14S ein Gesamtpaket ab, welches in den Punkten Qualität und Silent-Tauglichkeit außergewöhnlich stark ist. Das im Gegensatz zum NH-D15 geringere Kampfgewicht zollt der Kühlleistung ihren Tribut und so muss der Top-Blow-Kühler seinen Hut vor den Platzhirschen aus der Doppelturmkühlerriege ziehen. Diesen Nachteil kann der NH-C14S aber beim Platzbedarf kompensieren, ohne dass die im Test verwendete und übertaktete Haswell-CPU überhitzte. So kann der kleine aber dennoch 820 Gramm schwere Kühler aus Österreich seine Stärken immer dann ausspielen, wenn die Gehäusebreite oder ein schwer realisierbarer Luftstrom im Gehäuse den Betrieb eines großen und leistungsstärkeren Turmkühlers verhindert.
Test verdict: "Bei unserem Test des NH-C14S glänzte der Kühler mit einer tadellosen Produktpräsentation und Verarbeitungsqualität mit der sich andere Kühlerhersteller messen müssen. Gepaart mit einem hohen Dynamikbereich des Lüfters erreicht das Produkt mit der markanten Farbgebung unsere Bestnote in Form des Hardware-Factory Gold-Awards. " (Thomas Radigk, Hardware-Factory.com)
08.08.2016 // MacFay Hardware
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NH-C14S Review

Au niveau performances, on fait comme pour le D15S, on va lancer un burn du CPU sous SiSoft Sandra, pour une durée de deux heures, températures enregistrées en fichier log au début, après 1h et a la fin. Une fois avec le ventilateur réglé en auto via SpeedFan et une seconde fois, ventilateur bloqué à 100%. Une fois de plus, on peut constater que Noctua tient ses promesses ! Avec une température maximale relevée de 45°c au bout de deux heures de burn et dans boîtier aussi petit, c’est vraiment pas mal du tout ! Il est toutefois vrai qu’avec un CPU au TDP de seulement 55W, la tâche n’était pas ardue, mais au vu du peu de flux d’air possible dans le boîtier, nous n’en n’espérions pas tant !
Test verdict: "Noctua signe la encore une belle réussite ! Un processeur « relativement » peu encombrant, adapté aux configurations les plus petites (ITX y compris) pour des performances qui n’ont pas à pâlir face aux concurrents !" (Damien Chevalier, MacFay Hardware)
29.07.2016 // hardwareBG.com
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NH-C14S Review

През последните няколко години компанията Noctua създаде много сериозно име в IT средите, особено когато става дума за охладители за процесори, или пък вентилатори за монтаж в компютърните шасита. Макар конкуренцията винаги да е била много сериозна, а понякога и доста добре ценово ориентирана, с високото ниво на качество на своите предложения, Noctua съумяха да се позиционират в най-високите нива на производители на споменатите компютърни продукти. Едва ли са много хората, които не са чували за вездесъщият процесорен охладител Noctua NH-D14, който междувпрочем съвсем скоро ще е напълно съвместим с процесорите на AMD с архитектура Zen и Socket AM4, благодарение на новите крепежни елементи, които от Noctua ще раздават (за пореден път) безплатно на всеки потребител, който може чрез документ да докаже, че притежава дънна платка и процесор за Socket AM4, както и разбира се охладител Noctua. Но да не се разсейваме излишно, ами да обърнем внимание конкретно на фокуса на този материал – процесорите Skylake и тяхното охлаждане.
Test verdict: "Noctua е един от най-сериозните и постоянните производители на процесорни охладители, които присъстват на компютърният пазар и година след година радват своите потребители не само с нови модели охладители, но и с някои специфични “бонус програми”, като например безплатни монтажни елементи за поставяне на по-стари модели охладители върху нови процесорни платформи." (Тодор Богданов, hardwareBG.com)
28.07.2016 // XFastest.com
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NH-C14S Review

貓頭鷹 Noctua相信玩家們並不陌生,貓頭鷹所推出的散熱器產品許多玩家愛不釋手,不論是各種散熱器都提供相當不錯的解熱效果與低噪音,不過很多玩家對下吹式散熱器總是覺得散熱效果無法像塔型散熱器這麼優秀,這次Noctua所推出的NH-C14S會完全顛覆你的想法,NH-C14S採用六支6mm熱導管,搭配大面積散熱鰭片與自家出品的NF-A14 14公分超大PWM風扇,風扇轉速最高為1500rpm,最大噪音為24.6dBA,支援目前主流INTEL與AMD平台,NH-C14S自由度相當高,可安裝雙風扇,也可安裝單風扇,若採用單風扇的使用者可選擇安裝在上層與下層,可應用在不同工作環境,並且在CPU導熱塊部分有稍微偏移設計,可避開與PCIE插槽衝突的情形,事不宜遲馬上來看看貓頭鷹 Noctua NH-C14S下吹式六導管靜音CPU散熱器的散熱表現啦!!
Test verdict: "貓頭鷹 Noctua NH-C14S下吹式六導管靜音CPU散熱器表現相當不錯,外觀上可以看出廠商用心,在各部位做工與質感都相當不錯,風扇部分採用自家超大14公分風扇,且風扇規格同樣是相當不錯,還有防震膠墊設計,整體帶來不錯的散熱效果,且相當安靜,在預設頻率的測試環境下幾乎聽不到噪音,支援平台部分相當齊全,主流與較舊款的平台都有相對應的扣具可使用;效能表現方面,底部採用拋光處理提供相當不錯的導熱效果,CPU預設頻率的測試環境下表現相當優異" (Peter Liu, XFastest.com)
25.07.2016 // ITNdaily.ru
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NH-C14S Review

Продукты от Noctua традиционно вне конкуренции по верхней ценовой планке. Оправдана стоимость Noctua NH-C14S или нет, каждый пользователь решит самостоятельно. В актив этого кулера стоит занести оригинальный и универсальный форм-фактор и бесшумную работу при адекватном TDP.
Test verdict: "На рынке представлено не так уж много производительных СО горизонтального типа, ориентированных в том числе и на Socket LGA 2011. Рекомендуем." (Евгений Никифоров, ITNdaily.ru)
01.07.2016 // SmallFormFactor.net
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NH-C14S Review

- High build quality
- Future-proofed mounting system
- Customizable to suit your system and needs
- Great performance
Test verdict: "[F]resh builds laser-focused on ultimate performance or low fan noise would do well to consider this as a prime candidate for CPU cooling" (John Morrison, SmallFormFactor.net)
03.06.2016 // techPowerUp.com
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NH-C14S Review

Noctua's NH-C14S is definitely impressive since it offers performance almost on par with the NH-D15S, but with better memory clearance. It also has the added bonus of cooling surrounding motherboard components. Like all Noctua coolers, it's very quiet, coming in at just 43 dBA with the fan at maximum RPM. Did I mention that it offers exceptional clearance? Not just for memory since its offset design means it does not interfere with the motherboard's first expansion slot. This makes the NH-C14S a suitable candidate for many mini-ITX and micro-ATX systems, especially with its maximum height of 115 mm in low-profile mode. As expected, build quality is top notch, and installing the NH-C14S is a breeze with Noctua's tried and tested SecuFirm 2 mounting system. Add in the solid packaging, a good accessories bundle, and an awesome warranty, and you end up with a very attractive product.
Test verdict: "If you do prefer a C-type design cooler that cools more than the CPU and need top-tier performance with no noise, the NH-C14S may just be what you are looking for." (Raymond Lemar, techPowerUp.com)

Installation Manual (PDF)

Information Sheet (PDF)

FAQs

In which orientation should top-flow coolers (NH-C series, NH-L12) be installed?

How can I check whether my case is wide/high enough for the cooler?

I can't open the socket due to the mounting bars!

Does the package include a backplate for AMD AM2(+)/AM3(+)/FM1/FM2(+)?

How can I check whether my AMD mainboard has a standard AMD backplate that’s compatible with the SecuFirm2™ mounting system and how should I proceed with the installation?

I get a CPU fan error using my Noctua PWM fan, is it faulty?

Does the mounting-system support LGA2011 based Xeon CPUs?

How should I clean my Noctua cooler?

Why is the cooler’s contact surface slightly convex?

Is the cooler compatible with LGA775 and LGA1366?

I’ve used all the NT-H1 thermal compound that came with the cooler, can you send me more?

Which sockets are supported or can be supported using upgrade kits?

Is the cooler compatible with the LGA2011-3 socket?

My Noctua PWM fan starts to spin when the PC boots but then stops, what is wrong?

My Noctua PWM fan runs at a much higher minimum speed than advertised, what is wrong?

What Thermal Design Power (TDP) is this cooler recommended for and how much Watt (W) of heat can it dissipate?

Can I install a Noctua cooler in my system from Acer, Dell, HP or Lenovo?

I'm experiencing fan speed issues with my motherboard from Supermicro, what can I do?

How big is the NH-C14S and how much clearance does it provide for RAM and mainboard heatsinks?

Is the cooler compatible with the LGA1151 socket?

Why doesn't the supplied backplate fit my LGA2011 motherboard?

My case supports CPU coolers of up to XXXmm height, which model should I choose?

How to remove the base protection cover?

I have difficulties installing the cooler, can you help?

Should I take the cooler off before transporting my system?

Are there any concerns using Noctua CPU coolers on Intel Skylake (LGA1151) CPUs?

Is it a problem that the CPU heatspreader is not covered completely by the heatsinkbase on LGA2011-3?

Why doesn't the base of Noctua coolers have a polished, mirror like finish?

How can I check if my 4-pin fan header supports PWM?

Can I keep using the backplate / mounting system of my previous Noctua cooler for my new one?

How much torque should be applied when tightening the screws of a Noctua CPU cooler?

In which orientation should top-flow coolers (NH-C series, NH-L12) be installed?

When using top-flow coolers in a tower-style case, we strongly recommend installing the cooler with the heatpipes in horizontal position or with the bends of the heatpipes pointing downwards. Please avoid installing the cooler with the bends pointing upwards as this may result in reduced cooling performance. In desktop cases, the cooler can be used in any orientation.

Orientation

How can I check whether my case is wide/high enough for the cooler?

Most case manufacturers provide specifications for maximum CPU cooler height/clearance. Please refer to these specifications in order to verify that the cooler will fit the case. If no specifications are available, please contact the case manufactuer or measure the distance from the motherboard tray to the side panel (tower cases) or top panel (desktop cases). If this distance is bigger than the height of the cooler + 15mm (mainboard spacers + mainboard + CPU), the height/width of your case should be sufficient.

I can't open the socket due to the mounting bars!

Please first loosen one of the two thumbscrews that hold the mounting bars in place. Then untighten the second screw so that you can swivel the mounting bar and open the socket. Depending on the position of the mounting bars, you may need to swivel both.

Open Socket

Open Socket

Does the package include a backplate for AMD AM2(+)/AM3(+)/FM1/FM2(+)?

No. As most AMD mainboards come with a stock backplate preinstalled, the cooler doesn’t include an AMD backplate. If your mainboard doesn’t have a backplate, please contact our support team at support@noctua.at.

amd backplate

How can I check whether my AMD mainboard has a standard AMD backplate that’s compatible with the SecuFirm2™ mounting system and how should I proceed with the installation?

The SecuFirm2™ mounting system requires a standard AMD backplate (either plastic or metal) with screw threads as shown on the pictures below. These backplates are pre-installed on the rear side of most AMD mainboards (see first picture below) and fixed to the retention module with four screws (see second picture below). If your retention module is fixed with plastic bolts instead of metal screws, please contact support@noctua.at in order to obtain an appropriate backplate.

In order to proceed with the installation of your Noctua cooler, please remove the four screws and the retention module but keep the backplate in place so that you can see the screw threads from the top side of the motherboard (see third picture below). You can then proceed with the installation of the SecuFirm2™ mounting kit as described in the manual (see fourth picture below).

AMD backplate

AMD backplate

AMD backplate

AMD backplate



I get a CPU fan error using my Noctua PWM fan, is it faulty?

Noctua PWM fans feature a minimum speed of 300rpm to allow for ultra quiet operation when your CPU is at idle state and doesn’t require higher cooling performance. Some mainboards display error messages such as “CPU fan error” during the booting process when the fan speed is below a certain level. If you get such error messages using your Noctua PWM fan and if such options are available in your BIOS, please either adjust the minimum fan speed monitoring limit to 200rpm or increase the minimum PWM duty cycle. If your BIOS doesn’t offer these options, please disable CPU fan errors. For detailed information on BIOS fan settings, please consult your mainoard’s manual or contact your mainboard manufacturer.

Does the mounting-system support LGA2011 based Xeon CPUs?

There are two different types of ILM (Independent Loading Mechanism) for Intel’s LGA2011 based Xeon CPUs: Square ILM with 80x80mm hole spacing and Narrow ILM with 56x94mm hole spacing. The Square ILM socket is mechanically identical to the LGA2011 socket for Core i7, so the mounting-system is fully compatible, but it is not compatible with Xeon mainboards that use the Narrow ILM:

Xeon Compatibility

How should I clean my Noctua cooler?

Dust: Fans and heatsinks inside computer cases tend to accumulate dust over longer periods of usage. In order to maintain maximum performance, please clean your fan and heatsink regularly. For cleaning, please first remove the fan from the heatsink and clean it using a duster, slightly moist tissue or canned air. Please be careful not to use too much force in order to prevent any damage to the fan. Please do not use a vacuum cleaner as this may apply excessive force to the fan and do not put the fan under running water as water residues inside the motor may lead to short circuits. Please also note that the fan is not designed to be taken apart by the user. Removing the impeller from the frame will break the sealing of the bearing and results in a loss of warranty. Before reinstalling the fan, clean the heatsink itself with a duster or vacuum cleaner. Do not use water to clean the cooler. Finally put the fan back on and connect it to your motherboard fan header or fan controller.
Thermal paste residues: Whenever you take off the heatsink from the CPU, we recommend to clean the CPU as well as the base of the cooler before re-applying thermal paste and re-installing the cooler. You can either just wipe the base and the CPU clean with a dry, lint-free tissue or, for more thorough cleaning, use a lint-free tissue moistened with either a mild solution of washing-up liquid or isopropyl alcohol. Do not put the cooler or CPU under running water. Note that both the base of the heatsink and the CPU should be dry, free from residues of thermal compound and free from grease before re-applying thermal paste and re-installing the cooler.

Why is the cooler’s contact surface slightly convex?

As the Integrated Heat Spreaders (IHS) of today’s CPUs are slightly concave, the cooler’s contact surface has been deliberately designed to be slightly convex in order to ensure optimal contact. This way, more contact pressure will be applied at the centre of the IHS directly above the DIE, which results in better heat transfer and improved overall performance.

Is the cooler compatible with LGA775 and LGA1366?

The cooler does not support LGA775 and LGA1366 out of the box, but can be made compatible using the NM-I3 mounting kit. Noctua provides the NM-I3 kit free of charge if a proof of purchase (scan, photo or electronic copy of the invoice) of the cooler and an LGA775 or LGA1366 motherboard or CPU are presented. In order to install the cooler using the NM-I3 kit, please first unscrew the center screw of the original one-piece fastening bracket (you can reach through the fin stack using the long screw driver supplied with the cooler) and remove it. Then install the two fastening brackets of the NM-I3 kit as described in the NM-I3 installation manual.

I’ve used all the NT-H1 thermal compound that came with the cooler, can you send me more?

Please kindly note that the NT-H1 thermal compound supplied with our coolers is a consumable item so our manufacturer’s warranty does not include providing additional thermal compound. You can purchase NT-H1 from our resellers.

Which sockets are supported or can be supported using upgrade kits?

Please refer to our socket compatibility chart.

Is the cooler compatible with the LGA2011-3 socket?

Yes. Due to the heatsink mounting mechanism being identical on LGA2011-0 and 2011-3, the cooler supports both types of LGA2011-3.

My Noctua PWM fan starts to spin when the PC boots but then stops, what is wrong?

Some mainboards feature 4-pin fan headers that actually don‘t use a PWM signal on Pin 4 to control the fan speed but rather reduce the voltage on Pin 2 (like a standard 3-pin fan header). In this case, it may occur that the mainboard reduces the voltage so much that the fan stops. Please refer to your mainboard manual to check whether or not your mainboard has 4-pin fan headers that control the fan speed by reducing voltage on Pin 2 rather than by changing the PWM duty cycle on Pin 4:

4 pin fan header types

Note that mainboard manufacturers use different terms to indicate that Pin 4 is not being used for PWM control (e.g. “+5V”, “VCC” or “NC”), but if one of these terms is used, you can be sure that the fan header does not support PWM. If Pin 4 is described as “Speed Control” or “PWM” or the like, you can be sure that the fan header supports PWM.

Unfortunately, the description of Pin 2 is not always a clear indication as some manufacturers use terms such as “Fan PWR” or “Power” for both types of fan headers. However, if Pin 2 is described as “Speed Control”, you can also be sure that the fan header does not support PWM based speed control. If Pin 2 is described as “+12V”, this is a clear indication that the fan header supports PWM.

Please also note that in some cases, the descriptions of the pin layouts in the mainboard manuals may not be correct and some models actually allow you to switch the fan headers from voltage control mode to PWM control mode in the BIOS even though the pin descriptions do not indicate PWM support. We thus recommend to look for these options in the BIOS before taking other measures. In case of doubt, please contact your mainboard manufacturer.



To resolve the issue, you can:

  1. Choose a higher fan speed profile in the BIOS (e.g. „normal“ instead of „silent“, etc.) or deactivate automatic fan speed control and use a Low-Noise Adaptor instead.

  2. Use the mainboard‘s fan speed control software or 3rd party tools like Speedfan to regulate the fan speed. Unlike BIOS based fan speed control, the supplied software usually checks whether the fan has stopped and increases voltage accordingly or at least offer more options to set up the fan properly.

  3. If your mainboard features other 4-pin fan headers that use PWM for speed control, you can run multiple fans from these headers using Y-split cables. Make sure not to exceed the specified maximum power draw of the fan headers (usually 10-12W) though.

My Noctua PWM fan runs at a much higher minimum speed than advertised, what is wrong?

The specified minimum speed refers to the speed at 20% PWM duty cycle. There can be several reasons why the fan doesn‘t go as low as indicated:

  1. Many mainboards do not go below 40%, 50% or even 60% PWM duty cycle on case fan headers. Please refer to your mainboard manual to verify whether the fan header actually goes down to 20% duty cycle. If that's not the case, in some cases you can use the fan speed control software supplied with your mainboard to overcome these limitations and reduce the fan speed even further. However, 3rd party tools like SpeedFan offer greater flexibility and better options to work around the limitations imposed by the mainboard vendors.

  2. Some mainboards feature 4-pin fan headers that actually don‘t use a PWM signal on Pin 4 to control the fan speed but rather reduce the voltage on Pin 2 (like a standard 3-pin fan header). As the fan speed at minimum voltage is usually higher than the speed at 20% PWM duty cycle, the fan can not reach as low minimum speeds under voltage control as under PWM control. Please refer to your mainboard manual to check whether or not your mainboard has 4-pin fan headers that control the fan speed by reducing voltage on Pin 2 rather than by changing the PWM duty cycle on Pin 4:

    4 pin fan header types

    Note that mainboard manufacturers use different terms to indicate that Pin 4 is not being used for PWM control (e.g. “+5V”, “VCC” or “NC”), but if one of these terms is used, you can be sure that the fan header does not support PWM. If Pin 4 is described as “Speed Control” or “PWM” or the like, you can be sure that the fan header supports PWM.

    Unfortunately, the description of Pin 2 is not always a clear indication as some manufacturers use terms such as “Fan PWR” or “Power” for both types of fan headers. However, if Pin 2 is described as “Speed Control”, you can also be sure that the fan header does not support PWM based speed control. If Pin 2 is described as “+12V”, this is a clear indication that the fan header supports PWM.

    Please also note that in some cases, the descriptions of the pin layouts in the mainboard manuals may not be correct and some models actually allow you to switch the fan headers from voltage control mode to PWM control mode in the BIOS even though the pin descriptions do not indicate PWM support. We thus recommend to look for these options in the BIOS before taking other measures. In case of doubt, please contact your mainboard manufacturer.


    If your mainboard features other 4-pin fan headers that use PWM for speed control, you can run multiple fans from these headers using Y-split cables. Make sure not to exceed the specified maximum power draw of the fan headers (usually 10-12W) though.

What Thermal Design Power (TDP) is this cooler recommended for and how much Watt (W) of heat can it dissipate?

Please refer to our TDP guide for information on maximum recommended TDP and heat dissipation.

Can I install a Noctua cooler in my system from Acer, Dell, HP or Lenovo?

Systems from Acer, Dell, HP or Lenovo often use motherboards which differ slightly from the specifications issued by Intel and AMD. While those changes are usually subtle, they can led to compatibility issues with coolers that where built to comply with these specifications.

Even in case the cooler is mechanically compatible and can be installed, other issues can occur, e.g. proprietary fan connectors, BIOS errors due to a low fan speed, shutdowns, etc. Some of these problems can be avoided with some technical knowledge, but especially BIOS related can often not be resolved.

Due to the large number of possible issues with systems from Acer, Dell, HP and Lenovo, which can't be resolved with different mounting parts alone, Noctua does not officially support such machines.

I'm experiencing fan speed issues with my motherboard from Supermicro, what can I do?

The BIOS of many motherboard models from Supermicro expects a certain minimum fan speed (usually 700rpm), which is higher than the minimum fan speed that can be achieved with Noctua's PWM fan models. The BIOS may interpret the low minimum RPM of Noctua fans as a fan error and thus try to run the fan at 100% for a short period before going back to automatic control.. This can result in oscillating fan speeds and fan speed warnings in the BIOS or the fan management console.

Unfortunately there is usually no option to set a lower minimum value that would suit the low minimum speed of Noctua PWM fans.The issue can thus only be resolved by either disabling automatic fan speed control in BIOS, which will cause the fans to run at a constant speed, or by requesting a modified BIOS file from Supermicro, which takes the minimum fan speed of Noctua fans into account (charges might apply).

How big is the NH-C14S and how much clearance does it provide for RAM and mainboard heatsinks?

Please refer to the following drawing for the exact measurements and clearance for RAM and motherboard heatsinks:

C14S

Is the cooler compatible with the LGA1151 socket?

Yes. Due to the heatsink mounting mechanism being identical on LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155 and LGA1156, the cooler also supports LGA1151.

Why doesn't the supplied backplate fit my LGA2011 motherboard?

The supplied backplate is for LGA115x only and there is no backplate required for installation on LGA2011. Please refer to the installation manual for how to install the heatsink on LGA2011.

My case supports CPU coolers of up to XXXmm height, which model should I choose?

Please refer to our TDP guide in order to select the cooler that offers the best cooling performance at a given height.

How to remove the base protection cover?

Noctua CPU coolers are shipped with a plastic protection cover at the bottom side of the cooler, which protects the contact surface against scratches and other damage.

The base of Noctua CPU coolers is made from hard-wearing nickel plated copper, so there's nothing to worry about if you buy a Noctua cooler from second hand or if your cooler didn't come with a protection cover. Please proceed with the installation as explained in the manual.

You can simply remove the cover as shown below:

Base Protection Cover

I have difficulties installing the cooler, can you help?

Please refer to the installation manual and our video installation guides for detailed instructions on how to install the cooler.

Should I take the cooler off before transporting my system?

As it is not possible to reliably calculate or control the forces that act upon a system during transport (e.g. in shipping), we generally recommend, for safety reasons, taking the cooler off. Noctua cannot be held responsible for any damage that may arise due to excessive stress during transport if you keep the heatsink installed.

Are there any concerns using Noctua CPU coolers on Intel Skylake (LGA1151) CPUs?

Our SecuFirm2™ mounting systems undergo comprehensive compatibility tests before being approved for new platforms. We have neither detected any problem with regard to the Intel LGA1151 platform (“Skylake”) during these tests nor have we received any reports from our customers, sales partners and system integrators that would indicate any possible issue. Our SecuFirm2™ mounting systems (with the exception of some compact L-type models) rely on coil springs to create the required contact pressure, which gives a certain flexibility both with regards to tolerances in stackup height and shocks or other forces. Compared to spring-less mounting systems, which exclusively rely on the bending of the mounting brackets in order to create contact pressure, this allows to reduce the mechanical stress on CPU, socket and motherboard and thus helps to prevent possible damage from excessive forces. However, as it is not possible to reliably calculate or control the forces that act upon a system during transport (e.g. in shipping), we generally recommend, due to safety reasons, to take off coolers with a total weight of more than 700g (incl. fan).

Is it a problem that the CPU heatspreader is not covered completely by the heatsinkbase on LGA2011-3?

No. Depending on the orientation of the cooler, 1-2mm at the outer edge of the heatspreader may not be covered by the heatsink base. As the heat is concentrated at the center of the CPU and the outermost parts are irrelevant for heat-transfer, this is no problem at all.

Why doesn't the base of Noctua coolers have a polished, mirror like finish?

As most of today's PC enthusiasts use high-viscosity thermal compounds, the contact surface of Noctua coolers is optimised for use with this type of pastes. The micro-grooves at the contact surface ensure that high-viscosity thermal compounds are dispersed to a uniform thin layer across the whole contact area and that no air pockets remain between the cooler and the CPU. With a polished, mirror like surface, the risk of uneven dispersion is much higher. As too thick layers of thermal paste and air pockets drastically deteriorate heat transmission, the micro-grooves are is of vital importance to the overall cooling performance of Noctua coolers when used with today's high-viscosity thermal pastes.

How can I check if my 4-pin fan header supports PWM?

Some mainboards feature 4-pin fan headers that actually don‘t use a PWM signal on Pin 4 to control the fan speed but rather reduce the voltage on Pin 2 (like a standard 3-pin fan header). As the fan speed at minimum voltage is usually higher than the speed at 20% PWM duty cycle, the fan can not reach as low minimum speeds under voltage control as under PWM control. Please refer to your mainboard manual to check whether or not your mainboard has 4-pin fan headers that control the fan speed by reducing voltage on Pin 2 rather than by changing the PWM duty cycle on Pin 4:

4 pin fan header types

Note that mainboard manufacturers use different terms to indicate that Pin 4 is not being used for PWM control (e.g. “+5V”, “VCC” or “NC”), but if one of these terms is used, you can be sure that the fan header does not support PWM. If Pin 4 is described as “Speed Control” or “PWM” or the like, you can be sure that the fan header supports PWM.

Unfortunately, the description of Pin 2 is not always a clear indication as some manufacturers use terms such as “Fan PWR” or “Power” for both types of fan headers. However, if Pin 2 is described as “Speed Control”, you can also be sure that the fan header does not support PWM based speed control. If Pin 2 is described as “+12V”, this is a clear indication that the fan header supports PWM.

Please also note that in some cases, the descriptions of the pin layouts in the mainboard manuals may not be correct and some models actually allow you to switch the fan headers from voltage control mode to PWM control mode in the BIOS even though the pin descriptions do not indicate PWM support. We thus recommend to look for these options in the BIOS before taking other measures. In case of doubt, please contact your mainboard manufacturer.


If your mainboard features other 4-pin fan headers that use PWM for speed control, you can run multiple fans from these headers using Y-split cables. Make sure not to exceed the specified maximum power draw of the fan headers (usually 10-12W) though.

Can I keep using the backplate / mounting system of my previous Noctua cooler for my new one?

Most Noctua SecuFirm™ mounting parts are cross-compatible, so if you’re replacing one Noctua cooler with another, it is usually possible to keep the original backplate and/or mounting system in place in order to re-use it for the new cooler. If you had your previous Noctua cooler installed on an Intel LGA115x (LGA1156, LGA1155, LGA1151, LGA1150), LGA2011 (LGA2011-0, LGA2011-3) or LGA1366 system and replace it with an NH-U14S, NH-U12S or NH-U9S, you only need to replace the original mounting bars with the NM-IMB3 ones supplied with the new cooler. For all other models, you can keep the entire mounting system in place on the aforementioned Intel sockets. On AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1, FM2, FM2+, you only need to replace the original mounting bars with the ones supplied with the new cooler.

How much torque should be applied when tightening the screws of a Noctua CPU cooler?

All screws should be tightened gently until they stop without using excessive force. Please do not exceed the following values for maximum tightening torque:
Screw typeMax. torque
NM-SSC1 screws for fixing the fastening brackets to the base of the heatsink0.5 Nm
NM-ITS1 thumb screws for fixing Intel mounting bars0.5 Nm
NM-ALS1 screws for fixing AMD mounting bars0.6 Nm
Spring-loaded screws for fixing the heatsink to the mounting bars0.6 Nm

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