The following system was used to test the cooler:
– Processor: Intel i9 9900K @ 5GHz
– Motherboard: ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming X
– RAM: GOODRAM IRDM PRO 16GB DDR4 @ 3600MHz
– GPU: MSI GeForce RTX 2070 Super Gaming X Trio
– SSD: Crucial MX500
– HDD: WD 1 TB Blue
– PSU: Seasonic Snow Silent 750W Platinum
– Case: Phanteks Enthoo Luxe White
– Thermal compound: Noctua NT-H2
Software used for testing the cooler:
– AIDA64 Extreme Version: 6.30.5500
– Intel Burn Test v2.54
– Prime95 29.1
The cooler was tested with the CPU at the default turbo frequency of 4.9 GHz and overclocked to 5 GHz with a core voltage of 1.261 V.
Also, the included fans have been used at their maximum speed.
The room temperature was approximately 26°C (78°F), with 2°C margin of error.
The idle test consists of the CPU sitting idle at the desktop for 30 minutes, the temperature was measured at the end of the test.
The settings of the software used are the following:
Intel Burn Test v2.54 – Stress level: Maximum
Prime95 29.1- small FFT
AIDA64 Extreme Version – FPU Benchmark & Temperature monitoring.
Each test was conducted for 40 minutes.
Full Load – IntelBurnTestV2
Full Load – AIDA64 CPU, FPU & Cache
The noise level was measured at three different distances from the fans (10cm, 20cm, 30cm.) the noise was measured with a margin of error of ± 2 db.
The Noctua NH-U9S Chromax.black has a great memory clearance, thanks to the reduced dimensions and the offset design of the heatsink. The front fan does not reach the first RAM slot of the motherboard.
The PCIe expansion slot clearance is also good, with approximately 34mm of space between the heatsink and the backplate of the graphics card. The space available is enough to make the top M.2 socket accessible.
The Noctua NH-U9S chromax.black is just as good as the regular NH-U9S cooler. The only difference between the two is the all black matte coating applied on all components of the cooler except the baseplate. The NH-U9S chromax.black model is on average 10USD or EUR more expensive than the regular cooler. A price difference which is found with all chromax.black products available right now.
The cooling performance is very good for a cooler that has a heatsink of this size and which uses just a single 92mm fan. The maximum temperature reached by the CPU while using the NH-U9S chromax.black is 67°C. However, if the CPU is overclocked to 5GHz, then the temperature increased to 93°C. Thus, the best usage for the NH-U9S chromax.black is with a high end gaming system that will see only occasional low level overclocking.
The build quality is outstanding and on the same level as the Noctua NH-D15. The all mate black coating is evenly applied on all components of the cooler. This includes the heatpipes, aluminum cooling fins and the included fan. In addition, while the body of the cooler is covered by the coating, the CPU contact surface of the base is left exposed.
The clearance offered by the cooler is very good, mainly thanks to the reduced dimension of the heatsink and the offset design of the heatpipes.
The installation process is made very simple thanks to the Noctua SecuFirm2™ multi-socket mounting system which is one of the best around. This mounting system also uses only solid metal components and a metal backplate.
In conclusion, the Noctua NH-U9S chromax.black is a great CPU cooler that will work best in a high end gaming system. The performance is great, especially for a cooler of this size which uses a single 92mm fan. Thanks to the all-black coating used on all chromax.black products, the NH-U9S chromax.black looks great and will compliment any system.