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Old December 27, 2017, 12:28 PM
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Default Noctua Never Looked So Good

This is what happens when you take an exceptionally good performing but butt ugly cooler and an aesthetically very nice looking cooler and merge them together.

I am currently working on a new Threadripper build. As part of that build, I really wanted to use an air cooler. But as good as the NH-U14S TR4-SP3 (the only "real" choice for air cooling Threadripper), aesthetically (at least to me) is butt ugly and would stick out like a sore thumb and not match the rest of the aesthetics I'm going with in my system. Don't get me wrong, you want things to standout in your computer, but not stick out like sore thumb. So I set out to fix this issue.

On my current rig, I have an MSI Core Frozr L cooler on my CPU. And I have to say, I love the dragon emblem on it. I really didn't want to lose the dragon shield from my case, so I decided to try to import over to my new Noctua NH-U14S. Turns out, the process would actually be really simple and would only add a couple mm to the overall height of the cooler.

The Noctua NH-U14S is 165mm tall, so at most it go up to 170mm with the cap, because the listed height includes the heatpipes, which now sit inside the pocket of the cap. And lighting components above the heatpipes are very thin, so will add 5mm height to the overall cooler tops. My case has a max CPU cooler clearance of 185mm, so I will not have clearance issues as a result of this mod.

Surprisingly, I didn't have to mod the actual cooler at all to get this cap on the cooler. Due to the shaping Noctua did on the fins and the left and right screw holes on the cap, they were in literally the perfect positions for allowing me to mount the cap my simply upside down screwing the cap to the cooler using the groove in coolers fins. I did however have to modify the cap. I had to use a dremel to cut the screw shaft poles out of the cap on the top and the bottom to allow room for the heatpipes from the cooler to sit. Otherwise the cap won't sit properly on the top of the cooler. And I had to also use the dremel to cut the top most notch of the left and right screw shaft poles. Not the whole shaft. Just the top most notch so again the cap will sit cleanly again the top of the cooler, but you still need the shaft there to allow to actually screw the cap to the top of the cooler. Then I used my phillips head screw driver to boar out the top edge of the holes just to widen them enough to all a screw to get past the edge and bite into the plastic. Then used two #4-10x3/16" screw to fasten the cap to the Noctua cooler.

And finally to complete the cooler's new look, the default fan had to go. So I bought the Noctua Chromax NF-A15 HS-PWM chromax.black.swap fans and used the red rubber vibration dampers. You can see the result in the above pictures I've attached to this status. I've also included pictures of what each cooler looked like before on their own, and how my modded cooler looks like now after the face transplant. I couldn't be happier with the result. In my opinion, Noctua has never looked so good. I hope all of you like it and would like to know what you think of this coolers new look.
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Old December 27, 2017, 12:40 PM
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This is a really cool mod. I saw that MSI fan when I was in Memory Express last week. Loved the look of it, but not the price. Went with a 212 Evo that was on sale for 30 bucks.
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Old December 27, 2017, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sagath View Post
This is a really cool mod.
Well, it is a heatsink

I am happy Noctua finally gave people the option of not-brown, they were always great performers.
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Old December 27, 2017, 01:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lpfan4ever View Post
Well, it is a heatsink

I am happy Noctua finally gave people the option of not-brown, they were always great performers.
Hey, Dad, get back to work.
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Old December 29, 2017, 04:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Lpfan4ever View Post
Well, it is a heatsink

I am happy Noctua finally gave people the option of not-brown, they were always great performers.
They've been a part of my builds for so long, flesh colored fans are now sort of a theme.
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Old December 29, 2017, 09:37 AM
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Damn that's a good idea, and looks really good.

I keep meaning to go back to water so I can Dual-GPU without choking the cards since my Strix's are too thick, but my Megashadow air cooler has done such a good job since my 1366 build I'm always hesitant.

Might have to switch to blower cards next time so I can SLI on air.
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Old December 29, 2017, 10:21 AM
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Nice Mod! That is really sick looking.
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Old January 2, 2018, 01:13 AM
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Sorry for the long delay in my responding. Been working the last week building, reinstalling EVERYTHING, reconfiguring and trying to get my system back up and running the way I like it. Thanks to everyone for their supportive comments for that mod. I couldn't be happier with the way it turned out. I've attached some new pics to this post showing the core upgrade I did on my system. I also did some testing a couple days ago to see what this chip could do with cinebench etc and was glad to see it beat AMD's benchmark of 3022 where mine hit 3071 but averaged from one run to the next between 3047 and 3051. I've included a screen shot of a couple utilities, although bare in mind that the listed score on cinebench is my save score from when I ran it yesterday. Didn't feel like killing all the programs I'm running right now just to post a fresh benchmark score. And no, I'm not overclocking the CPU, or the score would be a lot higher. But I don't feel any need to push this chip harder, so I'm more than happy to run this at stock for the meantime. I may overclock it later, but for the meantime, I'm happy with it as is.

My system upgrade still has some ways to go before it's done. This core upgrade was only phase two of my system rebuild. Phase one was the new case and basic styling. Phase 2 was the core upgrade. CPU (Threadripper 1950X), Motherboard (MSI X399 Pro Carbon), Memory (32GB G.Skill F4-3200C14Q-32GTZ), System Drive (Samsung M.2 250GB 960 Evo). Phase 3 will be an additional 500GB M.2 Samsung 960 Evo for hot swapping demanding open world games. A bigger traditional HDD for housing the rest of my games, as I'm running out of space on my current one. And finally a new graphics card. After that, then I will look into deciding on the final aesthetic components and lighting I will get to finish off this build.

I did run into one issue with the cooler after installing it. Due to the dual fan configuration I installed on the cooler, I ended up running into resonance issues with the cooler which got worse and louder the higher the fans spun. What I found was I could run one fan full speed (either one, didn't matter which fan, but just one at a time) and the other fan I had to restrict it's spin speed to eliminate the resonant noise produced by the cooler. So to fix this, I put one fan on the CPU fan header and the rear fan on the Pump fan header. Then spent two hours setting up custom fan curves on each of the fan headers in the BIOS to allow full cooling while eliminating any possible noise resonance. I set it up so that the front fan gets full range from lowest to highest speed, but the rear fan I've limited it's maximum spin while giving it a curve relative to the front fan's various speeds. Took a couple hours, but very happy with the cooling performance I'm getting while keeping the system quiet when under light loads. But thanks to the BeQuiet case I'm using, even at full speed, the cooler rarely gets loud and is practically inaudible when at 900rpms or below. So I keep the front fan's base speed at 900rpm minimum since I can't hear it at that point and below anyway.

Anyway, I'm off to go play a game. Hope you guys/gals found this interesting. It was a hell of a lot fun for me to build. Now back to saving up for the rest of the parts I need. It already took me a year to save up to get the parts to get this far in my upgrade.
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Last edited by bignick277; January 2, 2018 at 01:19 AM.
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Old January 2, 2018, 08:05 AM
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have you done any temp testing with single fan vs. dual fan setups?
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Old January 2, 2018, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Friendly View Post
have you done any temp testing with single fan vs. dual fan setups?
No I didn't. Several other people had already done it. Basically, the extra fan really only accounts for an extra 2C cooling capability for the cooler, which really isn't anything to write home about. But aesthetically, I greatly preferred the look of the cooler with 2 fans instead of one, which is why I went ahead and installed 2. But due to the resonance issue I was encountering, ended up having to reduce the rpm's of the second fan. But still, some extra cooling is still better than no extra cooling. Plus, those fans are a real pain in the @$$ to take off and put back on. So I really didn't want to hassle with removing and reinstalling the fans if I could avoid it lol.
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