How do the NH-U12A, NH-U12S, and NH-U12S redux? Which one to choose?
How do the NH-U12A, NH-U12S and NH-U12S redux compare? Which one to choose.
Offering a perfect combination of strong cooling performance, outstanding quietness of operation as well as excellent case, RAM and PCIe compatibility, the NH-U12S has been among Noctua’s most popular CPU cooler models for many years. It’s a great default choice for customers who are looking for a well-rounded, signature Noctua solution and don’t require the extra performance headroom of the NH-U12A. The NH-U12S chromax.black is identical to the regular version except for its black colour.
The NH-U12S redux is a streamlined, more affordable version of the NH-U12S. As such, it is perfect for users who are looking for a highly compatible, no-frills 120mm cooler that doesn’t break the bank. Its raw cooling performance is on the same level as the regular NH-U12S with both models scoring a Noctua Standardised Performance Rating (NSPR) of 131 points. However, the NF-F12 fan of the regular NH-U12S is 2.7dB(A) quieter than the NF-P12 redux-1700 PWM fan of the NH-U12S redux (22.4 vs. 25.1 dB(A)).
Users who want the absolute best performance/noise efficiency in the 120mm class and don’t mind investing a bit more should go with the premium class NH-U12A: With an NSPR of 169 points and its dual state-of-the-art NF-A12x25 PWM fans running around 2.5dB(A) quieter than the NF-P12 redux-1700 PWM fan of the NH-U12S redux, the NH-U12A provides a significantly higher level of performance/noise efficiency that can rival many 140mm coolers.
Unlike the NH-U12S redux, the NH-U12A and regular NH-U12S feature Noctua’s premium grade soldered interface between the heatpipes and the fins. They also include Low-Noise Adaptors a tube of NT-H1 thermal paste for several applications whereas the NH-U12S redux comes with NT-H1 pre-applied. While the NH-U12A is shipped with two fans and the regular NH-U12S includes clips for installing a second fan, the NH-U12S redux can only be upgraded using the optional NA-FK1.
|NH-U12A||NH-U12S / |
|Number of heatpipes||7||5||4|
|Soldered interface of heatpipes and cooling fins|
|Fan(s)||2x NF-A12x25 PWM||1x NF-F12 PWM /
1x NF-F12 PWM chromax.black
|1x NF-P12 redux-1700 PWM|
|Acoustical noise rating||22,6 dB(A)||22,4 dB(A)||25,1 dB(A)|
|Low-Noise Adaptor||(optional with NA-FK1 second fan kit)|
|Fan clips for second fan||(optional with NA-FK1 second fan kit)|
|Thermal paste||NT-H1, tube (~5 applications)||NT-H1, tube (~5 applications)||NT-H1, pre-applied (1 application)|
|Mounting ecosystem compatibility||SecuFirm2™||SecuFirm2™||SecuFirm2™|
|Included mounting parts||SecuFirm2™ for Intel LGA20xx, LGA1200/LGA115x, AMD AM4, AM3||SecuFirm2™ for Intel LGA20xx, LGA1200/LGA115x, AMD AM4, AM3||SecuFirm2™ for Intel LGA20xx, LGA1200/LGA115x, AMD AM4|
|Free of charge mounting upgrades (if technically possible)|
|Warranty||6 years||6 years||6 years|
|MSRP||109.90 EUR / USD||69.90 EUR / USD /
79.90 EUR / USD
|49.90 EUR / USD|