Noctua NH-U12P SE 1366 Reviewccokeman - February 9, 2009
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The NH-U12P is unchanged from the current design, with the exception of the socket 1366 mounting kit and second NF-P12 fan that is included in the SE 1366 kit. The NH-U12P is a composite copper aluminum based heatsink that features 4 copper U shaped heat pipes that run through the copper base and aluminum upright tower style fin array. The fin array offers plenty of space in between the fins for an unobstructed path for the airflow moved by the two NF-P12 fans. Fans can be mounted on both sides of the NH-U12P with the included mounting clips. These attach to the heasink via a slot seen on the side view of the NH-U12P.
The base and heatpipes are made of copper that has been nickel plated for a uniform look. The four heatpipes go through what appears to be a two piece base assembly. The top piece is the mounting point for the SecureFirm2 mounting assembly. The base of the NH-U12P is noticeably choppy with the marks left from the cutter easily visible. Not as bad as some coolers I have seen, but rough nonetheless. I wonder just how much this will impact the performance of this high end heatsink.
The fans that Noctua has included with this kit, are their award winning NF-P12 120x25mm fans that use a 9-bladed design with vortex control notches in each blade to reduce the noise signature, while still maintaining excellent static pressure to move air through restrictive fan grills and heatsinks. If you look at the blades, you will notice the vortex control notches are offset from one blade to the next. This helps increase static pressure without the noise penalty normally associated with increasing static pressure. The NF-P12 fans are rated to run at 1300 R.P.M and push roughly 55 C.F.M worth of airflow. The wiring is sleeved with a rubber-like material that is quite flexible.
The Noctua NH-U12P SE 1366 is a large heatsink assembly. It may not fit into some smaller chassis, so some forethought into the size of your case is in order before you spend your hard earned dollars. To see just how much room it would take up, I installed the Intel Core I7 based system into a CoolerMaster Mystique 632 - a nice mid-tower design just to see what I was left with for room. This chassis was used for all of the testing as both heatsinks fit the chassis.
Can the Noctua NH-U12P handle the load? That is the question.