I am very much a fan of small form factor systems. I do prefer to build my own, versus having them built for me, and the reasons are very simple. For starters, I get to pick the case that I want to fit my parts into, I get to ensure that the cable management is the best it can be, and I to use the best parts I can fit into my planned build. But most importantly, I'm taking every measure possible, to introduce the best cooling products into the system. And when it comes to mini-ITX or small form factor system cooling, I always seem to turn to Noctua.
Ever since I played with their first low profile cooler for small form factor systems, the NH-L9i, I've been quite hopeful that Noctua would continue to develop more products for this growing segment of the PC DIY market. They didn't disappoint me because at COMPUTEX 2015, they announced more low profile cooler concepts. They even had a few super tiny 60mm fans, that would be perfect exhaust fans for some of the very tiny cases out in the market. Especially since Noctua could make them quieter and more efficient. That's why I was so pleased to see the new Noctua NH-L9x65 Cooler and NF-A6x25 fans finally hit the market.
The new Noctua NH-L9x65 CPU cooler is very much a high performance improvement over the NH-L9i. While the the NH-L9i was a fantastic cooler, that performed extremely well, and did so in a very small size, as we found out, it wasn't compelling when it came to lowering temperatures over stock solutions. The new NH-L9x65 still maintains the fantastic 95mmx95mm footprint and clearance for surface mount components on tiny motherboards, but it ups the performance with a taller 65mm height, and two heat pipes, yet is still manageable in most short height builds.
Of course, you can always change out the inlcuded NF-A9x14 PWM fan for something fatter, if you have the space for something a bit taller. Noctua has also simplified installation with their SecuFirm2 mounting system which supports most Intel and AMD sockets. And of course, a tube of their excellent NT-H1 thermal compound is included in the box.
Also adding to the mini-ITX arsenal of cooling solutions is their new Noctua NF-A6x25 cooling fans, which are 60mm in size, yet still offer PWM 4 pin support, and speed range of 3000 to 2300 RPM. Add to that a low noise adapter, and you can have both cooling and silence in your small form factor build. It even has Noctua's SSO2 bearings which further increases the smoothness and helps to control noise and vibration. This might very well be the most over-engineered 60mm fan of all time.
The Noctua NH-L9x65 will retail for around $52.90 USD, while the Noctua NF-A6x25 fans will set you back about $17.90 USD a piece, which makes them the most expensive 60mm fans of all time as well. The original press release is posted below.
Vienna, March 11th 2015 - Continuing its recent focus on premium grade cooling components for compact systems such as ITX based gaming or Home Theater PCs, Noctua today released its new NH-L9x65 low-profile cooler and a 4-pin PWM version of its popular NF-A6x25 60mm fan. While the latter adds PWM support for automatic speed control to the proven NF-A6x25 design, the NH-L9x65 is a taller, performance-enhanced version of Noctua's award-winning NH-L9 low-profile coolers.
"Our NH-L9 coolers have become a default choice for customers seeking premium grade quiet coolers in the sub-40mm class, but with a height of only 37mm, their performance is inevitably limited", explains Mag. Roland Mossig (NoctuaCEO), "The new NH-L9x65 provides the increased performance necessary to cool high end CPUs quietly while still offering excellent case and component compatibility."
Due to its compact heatsink and the renowned 14mm thin NF-A9x14 PWM fan, the NH-L9x65 stands only 65mm tall (the same height as low-profile expansion cards), which makes it ideal for use in compact HTPCs or Small Form Factor cases that offer limited clearance for CPU coolers. With 65 instead of 37mm height and four instead of two heatpipes, the NH-L9x65 is more powerful than its smaller siblings yet retains their 95x95mm footprint, which guarantees 100% RAM and PCIe compatibility on Intel based ITX mainboards and makes the cooler more convenient to work with as it doesn't overhang near-socket connectors.
Topped off with the professional SecuFirm2™ multi-socket mounting system for Intel and AMD, Noctua's renowned NT-H1 thermal compound and 6 years manufacturer's warranty, the NH-L9x65 fuses everything users have come to expect from Noctua's larger coolers into a compact premium package for space restricted systems.
"With the trend towards highly compact, ITX based builds, 60mm fans are in demand again", says Mag. Roland Mossig (Noctua CEO), "Since more and more ITX mainboards offer PWM speed control on the case fan header or even multiple PWM headers, we're now providing a 4-pin PWM version of our popular, award-winning NF-A6x25 model."
The new PWM version of the NF-A6x25 sports Noctua's custom designed NE-FD1 IC for fully automatic speed control via 4-pin fan headers and comes with a Low-Noise-Adaptor to reduce the maximum speed during PWM control from 3000 to 2300rpm. Its superb running smoothness, SSO2 bearing and Noctua's trusted premium quality make it an elite 60mm choice for the highest demands.
Prices and availability
The new models are currently shipping and will be available shortly. The manufacturer suggested retail prices are as follows:
NH-L9x65: EUR 44.90 / USD 52.90
NF-A6x25 PWM: EUR 14.90 / USD 17.90
Designed in Austria, Noctua's premium cooling components are internationally renowned for their superb quietness, exceptional performance and thoroughgoing quality. Having received more than 3000 awards and recommendations from leading hardware websites and magazines, Noctua's fans and heatsinks are chosen by more than a hundred thousand satisfied customers around the globe.