6 Best Noctua CPU Coolers To Get in 2024 [Intel/Ryzen]

Written By Mushfiq Rahman

Noctua is one of the top CPU cooler manufacturers right now. This is due to the amount of research that goes behind their product. Just take the D15, for example. It’s been eight years since it was last updated. And it is still topping the performance charts.

And it’s not just for high-end PCs only. Noctua has a whole lineup of coolers that fits into different budgets and form-factor. This article shows which Noctua cooler is the best for you, depending on the dimensions of your case.best-noctua-cpu-cooler

If you are in a hurry: The Noctua NH-D15 is the best cooler that Noctua offers, with class-leading cooling while remaining very silent.

So, let’s take a look at all the products now.

5 Best Noctua CPU Coolers

ModelAwardHeatsink Type
Noctua NH-D15 ChromaxEditors ChoiceDual
Noctua  NH-U12S ReduxBest in BudgetSingle
Noctua NH-L9Best Low Profile CoolerSingle
Noctua NH-L12SBest Cooler for HTPCsSingle
Noctua NH-P1Best Fanless CoolerDual
Noctua NH-U14S-TR4Best Cooler for ThreadripperSingle

1. Editors Choice: Noctua NH-D15 Chromax Black



Dimensions: 165 by 150 by 161 mm | Fans: 2x 140 mm NF-A15 PWM | Fan Speed: 300-1200 RPM | Airflow: 83 cfm  | TDP (NSPR): 183 W | Heat Pipe: 6 | Ram Clearance: 66 mm (Single Fan), 32 mm (Dual Fan) | Supported sockets: Intel LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA115x, LGA 2011, LGA 2066 and AMD AM4 & AM5

  • »Top-notch cooling.
  • »Low noise even at full load.
  • »Easy installation.
  • »Compatibility with most memory modules.
  • »Adjustable fan to help fit with motherboard heatsink.
  • »Price gets closer to AIO coolers.

Why We Picked It

Noctua NH-D15 Chromax Black is simply the best CPU cooler that we have tested. It features a dual-heatsink with two excellent 140mm A15 fans. Coming at a height of 165mm, it is quite large in size. But that also means you can run overclocked CPUs with it.

The cooler is quite easy to set up. It is compatible with the latest Intel 13th gen and AMD’s Ryzen 7000 series of processors. You get all the mounting brackets in the box. We tested it using AMD 5600X, and it used the same stock backplate. That meant we just had to screw in the brackets and install the cooler without even removing the mobo.

The included fans are great at dissipating the heat too. We ran a stress test using AIDA 64 on the stock and OC profiles. We got temperatures of 45 and 55 degrees, respectively. We expected the noise levels to go up during this time, but it never crossed 45 dB during the most intensive tests.

This is a great showing for such a large cooler. We expected noise levels to be over the top, but that was not the case.

The only thing you need to ensure is the compatibility of the cooler with your case. The front cooler can be adjusted to support the motherboard’s I/O ports. You also need to see if the memory’s size meets the required clearance of 32 mm.

Apart from that you get six years of warranty. There is no RGB, though. If the brown-beige accent does not go with your build, there is also a matt-black option too.

Who It’s For

  • Those who want the best air-cooler for your CPU.
  • Need silent fan operation.
  • Does not care about RGB.

What We Liked Most

  • Just how easy it is to install. There are no complicated mounting mechanisms here.
  • Low temperatures even under load.
  • Barely noticeable noise.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Expensive than the competition.


The Noctua NH-D15 is the best CPU cooler you can buy now. With class-leading temperatures, quiet operation, and a simple installation process, it is highly recommended with little to no flaws.

2. Best in Budget: Noctua NH-U12S Redux


Dimensions: 158 by 125 by 71 mm | Fans: 1x 120 mm NF-P12 PWM | Fan Speed: 450-1700 RPM | Airflow: 71 cfm  | TDP (NSPR): 129 W | Heat Pipe: 4 | Ram Clearance: 41 mm | Supported sockets: Intel LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA115x, LGA 2011, LGA 2066 and AMD AM4 & AM5

  • »Affordable pricing.
  • »Same cooling as U12s.
  • »Installation is a breeze.
  • »Does not come with accessories.

Why We Picked It

The Noctua U12S redux is a budget offering coming at under 50 dollars. It shares many good things with the legendary U12s, which still remains one of the best coolers you can buy.

Starting with the dimensions first, the cooler is quite slim at only 58 mm with a single fan installed. Also, the fins give you 45 mm of RAM clearance which can be increased by moving the fan up if your case supports it. There are four heat pipes that are not soldered with the fin stack.

Installation is as simple as it gets. This is something very common among all Noctua coolers. You get a separate backplate for Intel coolers, while for AMD processors, you can use the stock one.

Time for testing, then. Running the Redux at full loads got us 60 degrees with a Ryzen 9 5950X. When we ran the same test at higher clock speeds, we got a maximum of 84 degrees. Consider this a worst-case scenario, as the CPU used here consumes much more than the Redux’s rated 130 watts of cooling.

The noise was quite lower at stock speeds at 32 decibels. When pushed harder during the overclocking load test, it got a bit loud at 41 decibels. This was a bit higher than Noctua’s U12S.

Still, the noise is low compared to other coolers in the same price bracket. But sadly, it couldn’t make the quietest CPU cooler list.

As for the accessories, some things are missing compared to its older brother, the U12S. You don’t get a separate thermal paste, fan clips, or low-noise adapters. But I really liked the gray accents, which is something new from Noctua.

Who It’s For

  • Want a good CPU cooler for a mid-range CPU.
  • Does not want to spend too much on the cooler.
  • Would add a second fan in the future.

What We Liked Most

  • Really affordable pricing.
  • Great cooling performance.
  • Good compatibility with memory and case.
  • Upgradability in the future.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Does not come with a separate Noctua NT-H1 thermal paste.


The Noctua U12S Redux is a good choice on a budget, giving you similar performance as the higher-priced U12S if you don’t mind some added acoustics.

3. Best Low Profile Cooler: Noctua NH-L9i



Dimensions: 114 by 92 by 37 mm | Fans: 1x 92 mm NF-A9X 14 | Fan Speed: 500-2200 RPM | Airflow: 33 cfm  | TDP (NSPR): 61 W | Heat Pipe: 1 | Ram Clearance: 100% Compliant | Supported Sockets: Intel LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA115x, LGA 2011, LGA 2066 and AMD AM4 & AM5 | RGB Support: No

  • »Really compact size. This should fit even the smallest of mini-ITX cases.
  • »Great cooling from the included small heatsink.
  • »Near-silent operation.
  • »Cost’s higher than the competition.

Why We Picked It

The Noctua NH-L9 is a small CPU cooler perfect for very slim cases. It has a height of only 37 mm, which should not be a problem for most cases.

There are both Intel and AMD versions. They come with the required mounting brackets and screws. Noctua also provides a great-performing NT-H1 thermal paste in the box. Plus, add Noctua’s low-noise adapter to reduce the noise level even further.

We targeted a 65W load for this cooler and ran a stress test. The temperatures never exceeded 67 degrees during this time. When running a game, we saw slightly higher temperatures of 69 degrees. During both times, the noise level stayed at a low 38 decibels. This is a great showing by the included 92 mm fan, which can push out air at the high static pressure needed for such a small heatsink.

There are two color schemes you can choose from, chromax black or the usual beige-brown. As usual, you do not get options for an RGB build here.

Who It’s For

  • Want a good CPU cooler for the most compact CPU cases.
  • Need a silent cooler.
  • Does not need RGB.

What We Liked Most

  • Very compact. It should fit even the smallest of cases.
  • Hardly any noise. Performs as well as a passive cooler.
  • Low temperatures under load.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Priced premium than the competition.


If you are looking for a compact, low-profile cooler, look no further than Noctua NH-L9. You get great temperatures, superb cooling, and little to no noise.

4. Best Cooler For HTPCs: Noctua NH-L12S



Dimensions: 128 by 146 by 88 mm | Fans: 1x 120 mm NF-A12x15 PWM | Fan Speed: 450-1850 RPM | Airflow: 55 cfm | TDP: 88 W | Heat Pipe: 4 | Ram Clearance: 48/35 mm | Supported sockets: Intel LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA115x, LGA 2011, LGA 2066 and AMD AM4 & AM5

  • »The best cooler for an SFF case.
  • »Silent performance.
  • »Flexible RAM clearance.
  • »Low clearance with RAM when attaching the fan to the low position.

Why We Picked It

The Noctua NH-L12S is the second low-profile cooler in this roundup. Compared to the compact L9, this has much better cooling due to the larger fan and heatsinks. Also, you get four heat pipes which help dissipate the heat.

The L12S supports the latest Intel 13th Gen and AMD 7000 series of processors. Mounting brackets are included in the packaging, along with the excellent NT-H1 thermal paste.

Even with the fan attached to the top, its height is 88 mm. If you have the smallest of cases, this is something to note. The good news is with the top profile, you get a RAM clearance of 48 mm.

A good 120 mm PWM fan can push out 94 cubic meters of air. A low-noise adapter is included that can bring down the airflow to 70 cubic meters and reduce the noise. As usual, you get mounting brackets and a backplate for Intel processors. Noctua’s excellent NT-H1 thermal paste is included too.

So how did it fare in our tests? When running loads targeted at its 95 W capacity, we got a maximum CPU temperature of 61 degrees. A rerun of the same test at a higher clock speed bumped this to a reasonable 79 degrees. As for the thermals, the noise was very good at only 25 and 32 decibels. In fact, I could only hear the quiet humming of the fan spinning after I placed my ears next to the cooler.

These are very acceptable results considering the size of the heatsink. You can bring the noise even lower when you add an anti-vibration fan bracket included in the packaging.

Who It’s For

  • Want the best cooler for a compact build.
  • Need the quietest fan without compromising cooling.

What We Liked Most

  • Great temperatures even when put under load.
  • Absolute silent performance.
  • Compatibility with large memory.
  • Ability to change the fan position to fit in your case.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Fans in low-profile may not have enough RAM clearance.


The Noctua NH-L12S is the best-performing low-profile cooler that we have tested. With little to no noise, you get superb cooling. Also, it is highly customizable to fit different sizes of small form-factor cases.

5. Best Fanless Cooler: Noctua NH-P1



Dimensions: 158 by 154 by 152 mm | Fans: 0  | TDP: 43 W | Heat Pipe: 6 | Ram Clearance: 100% compatibilty | Supported sockets: Intel LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA115x, LGA 20xx and AMD AM4 & AM5

  • »Large heatsink than the previous model.
  • »Easy installation.
  • »Great cooling.
  • »Affordable.
  • »Low clearance with RAM and motherboard heatsink.

Why We Picked It

The Noctua NH-P1 is a one-of-a-kind CPU cooler in the sense that you do not get any fans with it. If you are familiar with passive coolers with some very low-end GPUs, then its design will be right up your alley.

Let’s start with dimensions first. It is humongous, coming to a height of 158 mm. Do check whether your case has that amount of clearance first. Also, you only get a memory clearance of only 40mm, which means only the most basic memory should be used alongside this cooler.

The fins are placed wide apart to allow the heat to move upwards. There are six heat pipes that dissipate the heat away from the CPU. The interesting thing here is that you can attach a fan to this cooler. Noctua provides clips for that in the packaging. But that would essentially destroy the main purpose for which you are getting the P1, right?

Compatibility with processors is excellent, the latest Intel and AMD processors are supported. You get the required mounting brackets and a tube of NT-H2 thermal paste included in the box.

Let’s get down to performance. Noctua rates this passive cooler for only 43 watts. That means you cannot expect to run anything more than a 65 W processor. Running a Cinebench-R23 on a Ryen 5-3600, we averaged around 84 degrees. This obviously is much higher than what you would get with a 120 mm single fan cooler.

But considering that you will only use such a cooler for an HTPC pc, where media playback or web browsing is the expected workload. In such cases, the NH-P1 makes sense where the temperatures would be under acceptable levels while making zero noise.

Who It’s For

  • Does not tolerate even the quietest of fans.
  • Has a case and motherboard with enough clearance.
  • Need a dust-free PC.
  • Running a low-workload routine on your PC.

What We Liked Most

  • Good performance from its category.
  • Great build quality.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Very Expensive. You can almost get a good 240mm AIO cooler for the price.
  • Only suitable for very low workloads.


The Noctua NH-P1 is a niche product. Users of a completely fanless PC will find this product relevant if you are willing to spend the extra cash.

6. Best Cooler for Threadripper: Noctua NH-U14S-TR4



Dimensions: 165 by 150 by 78 mm | Fans: 1x 140 mm NF-A15 PWM | Fan Speed: 300-1200 RPM | Airflow: 82 cfm | TDP: 162 W | Heat Pipe: 6 | Ram Clearance: 100% compatible | Supported sockets: AMD sTRX4, TR4, SP3

  • »Low temperatures while making very little noise.
  • »Adjustable heatsink and fan.
  • »Good contact with Threadripper IHS.
  • »Very huge in size. Only fits the largest of cases.

Why We Picked It

Noctua’s NH-U14S TR4 is very similar to the regular U14S. The only difference lies in the contact plate, which is large enough to cover a Threadripper’s IHS.

The cooler with the fan attached has a height of 165 mm. The heatsink does not fall over the memory slots, and you can fit the smallest memory modules without any heat spreaders attached. But this may not fit the RAM perfectly once you attach the fan next to the memory slots. However, you can move the fan upwards to increase the RAM clearance.

Another nice thing that Noctua has provided is the ability to move the entire cooler up the motherboard. This will remove any obstacle between the PCI Express slots and the large heatsink.

Speaking of performance, it did well, considering the powerful CPU thrown at it. We tested it using a Threadripped 1950X. On Prime95, we measured an average of 84 degrees running at 4.0 GHz. At reduced clocks, we got an average of 58 degrees. When running Cinebench R15, we got an average of 76 degrees.

As for acoustics, the noise was quite low at 45 decibels. This is thanks to the included NF-A15 fan. When you think that you are running a HEDT processor, this is just an amazing performance from the U14S.

For the accessories, you get the usual goodies in the box. A low-noise adapter, an NT-H1 thermal paste, anti-vibration pads, and fan clips are included. Mounting brackets are provided, which makes the installation very easy.

Noctua provides the same cooler that has full compatibility with Sapphire Rapids Xeon processor. It will give you the same great cooling and silent operation.

Who It’s For

  • Want a silent cooler for Threadripper PCs.
  • Has a large case to accommodate it.

What We Liked Most

  • Great temperatures even after applying grueling loads.
  • Silent performance.
  • Highly adjustable.

What We Didn’t Like

  • It is large. It may not fit in all cases.


For someone running professional workloads using a HEDT CPU, the Noctua NF-U14S is the perfect cooler to pair with it. Lower temperatures and near-silent working ensure you are getting the maximum performance out of your system. Overall, highly recommended by us.

How We Chose The Best Noctua Cooler

To choose the best Noctua cooler for you, see that it meets certain criteria for your build. Mostly you must ensure that it fits your case. Let’s see what other things must be taken into account.

Height and Memory Clearance 

For a large case, this is not an issue. But smaller builds have problems fitting a large CPU cooler. For that, you must take the cooler’s overall height into account. If you have two fans attached, then memory clearance becomes an issue. Some Noctua coolers provide the option to move the fan up and get you some space to work with.

Socket Compatibility

Most Noctua coolers support the latest Intel and AMD processors. But still, you should check beforehand if it is compatible with your CPU. Then you do not have to worry about the mounting hardware when you install it on your rig.

Cooler Performance

We test the temperatures of a particular CPU cooler by running stress-testing applications. AIDA 64 and Cinebench R23 are two of them. The temperatures are recorded using HWiNFO. We record the average temperatures after successive runs.

The noise levels are also something to note. If they are too high, that is also noted. A good cooler must keep the temperatures down under 90 degrees to avoid thermal throttling while keeping the noise levels down.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best Noctua CPU cooler?

The Noctua D15 is the best CPU cooler that you can get. It can keep the temps of high-end CPUs even when they are overclocked. If your case supports it, this is the best air-based cooler you can buy.

Is Noctua NH D15 better than a liquid cooler?

The Noctua D15 performs in-par with even some 240 mm AIO units while keeping the noise levels down significantly. AIO coolers have fans that spin considerably at higher speeds, but the D15 gives you almost the same temps while being near silent all the time.

Are Noctua fans noisy?

Noctua fans are very silent on the contrary. You can only hear them after setting it to spin at the highest speeds.

How long do Noctua coolers last?

You get a six years warranty with Noctua coolers. This means it will easily last you for years, even after you are thinking of making a CPU upgrade.

About The Author
Mushfiq is a CSE graduate currently serving out piping-hot tech tips. He is a self-confessed computer nerd and fell in love with computers when racing with the OG Most Wanted. He also pledges lifelong allegiance to MCU. You will find silly comedies on his movie watchlist, mostly due to Steve Carell. Apart from computers, the night sky fascinates him the most.

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