Noctua always seems to impress. Each time they come out with a cooler it has a specific purpose and it always accomplishes that goal. For the NH-U9S their goal was to make a high-performance CPU cooler that would still fit in small systems. They were able to accomplish this. It is not often that you find a CPU cooler that guarantees that there will be no clearance issues with memory or PCI-Express cards, even on mini-ITX motherboards.
When it comes to performance the NH-U9S performed at the top of the air coolers we have tested lately, even with the low noise adapter in use the cooler had very respectable performance. If you wanted to add even more performance you can add a second NF-A9 PWM fan, which we did and you can see those results on the previous page. During operation, even with two fans installed the cooler is not all that loud at all.
Even though typically you will only be installing a CPU cooler once you want the installation to go smoothly. Installation on the NH-U9S is extremely simple and the entire process can be done inside of your case as long as your motherboard tray has a CPU cutout. The installation process took no more than 5 minutes and the instructions were very easy to follow. Again there were no clearance issues at all with this cooler. I would like to point out though on socket 2011 if you happen to install a second fan it will not work if you have larger memory modules.
If you are looking for a smaller air cooler for a compact system this cooler is a great choice! Now the cooler is a little hard to find, but we were able to find it online for around $55. Overall ThinkComputers gives the Noctua NH-U9S CPU Cooler a 10 out of 10 score and our Recommended Award!
– Great performance
– Easy installation
– Quiet operation
– Can add a second fan
– No clearance issues at all
– None that I found