Noctua NH-U12P SE2 CPU Cooler Review

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External Impressions

Noctua NH-U12P SE2 cooler

With the NH-U12P out of the box we can get a good look at it. At first glance I thought to myself, “yup, it’s another tower cooler.” Then I started looking closer.

Noctua NH-U12P SE2 top

Looking from the top we can see the Noctua owl logo stamped into the cooling fins and the tops of the heat pipes sticking out. Now you most likely noticed there are a few extra holes in the cooling fins. The main ones of interest are the large holes to the outside of the heat pipes. This will allow you to access the tensioning screws that end up under the cooling fins due to the AMD socket orientation.

Noctua NH-U12P SE2 fins

Looking at the bottom we can see how the cooling fins are soldered to the heat pipes.

Noctua NH-U12P SE2 base

Now surprisingly the cooler had no protective film on the base. Although the base was flat the finish was not all too great, but as we have seen in the past this cooler performs very well.

Noctua NH-U12P SE2 fan color

Now for the fan, the first thing you notice is the flesh tone plastic housing with brown fins. I know, not the most appealing colors in the world. The fan better perform exceptionally well for me to put up with these colors. The power cable is extremely long, ~12 inches. I think that it could have been good 6 inches shorter.

Noctua NH-U12P SE2 fan blade

Looking a little closer to the fan blades we can see one of the things that gives the fan its amazing low 19.8 dBA rating: the Vortex Control Notches (you can read more about the design HERE on Noctua’s site). The other noise reducing feature is the self-stabilizing oil-pressure bearing (SSO bearing) of the Noctua NF-S12 and NF-R8 series surpasses current types of ball, sleeve or liquid bearings in terms of long-term stability and quietness. You can read more on the design HERE.

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