Test – Noctua NH-L9i et NH-L9a : Specs | CPU | Hashrate | Review | Config

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Test – Noctua NH-L9i et NH-L9a
: Specs | Price | CPU | Profitability| Hashrate| best Coins | Config | Advantage (Pros) and Disadvantages (Cons) and other important features that will help you make better decision.

Hi everyone!

I am continuing the tests of Noctua products with 2 coolers today, or rather 1 cooler which has 2 variants, the NH-L9i (intel) and NH-L9a (AMD). With a height of 3.7 cm and a slim fan of 9.2 cm, they are particularly suitable for mini-ITX configurations in a very restrictive case in terms of the height of the cooler that these little monsters have in store for us? This is what we will see!


The boxes are almost identical except for the change of sockets from Intel to AMD and vice versa. Everything is in the Noctua spirit here as usual with a very sober and classy box highlighting the main characteristics of the coolers such as 100% memory compatibility, the NF-A9x14 PWM fan (tested here) and the height of 3.7cm maximum.

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On the side we find the technical characteristics of the coolers, namely the dimensions, the maximum RPMs of the fans, the sound level, the weight etc. There will be everything you need here, no surprises!


When opening the box, nothing can differentiate the 2 models, everything is stored with small onions in hard foam, it is great class!





Here are the beasts! On the left for the NH-L9i version and on the right for the NH-L9a version, the intel version is exactly the size of the side fan (9.2cm) while the AMD version is a little longer to adapt perfectly to the socket and at the same time offer a small additional cooling surface. The build quality is as usual at Noctua really excellent and the 2 coolers really exude quality! Everything is securely in place, no fins are twisted, and the weight is surprisingly large for such small coolers. The number of calloducts is 2 for each of the coolers.

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The finish of the copper base is not mirror but takes advantage of strapping starting in the center of the plate to enlarge as one gets closer to the edges.


Noctua NH-L9i Noctua NH-L9a
1 NH-L9i 1 NH-L9a
1 LNA adapter (1800 RPM) 1 LNA adapter (1800 RPM)
1 NT-H1 thermal paste tube 1 NT-H1 thermal paste tube
The necessary screws The necessary screws
1 Noctua metal sticker 1 Noctua metal sticker
1 manuel 1 manuel
1 back plate
4 plastic washers in case of problems
incompatibility with the supplied back plate

The bundle is as usual at Noctua very sufficient and offers everything you need to mount the cooler without worries! The AMD version also offers a back plate that replaces the original one, if this plate is not compatible (because of a component that may be on the back of the motherboard) then 4 plastic washers are present, Noctua has thought of everything! Note that the thermal paste tube can be used to mount the cooler (or other) a large number of times.

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Noctua NH-L9i Noctua NH-L9a
Sockets Intel: LGA 1150 / 1155 / 1156 AMD: AM2(+) / AM3 (+) / FM1 / FM2 (+)
Cooling capacity ~ 95Watts ~ 95Watts
Weight (Without fan) 345 g 390 g
Weight (With fan) 420 g 465 g
Dimensions (With fan) 37 (H) x 95 (L) x 95 (P) mm 37 (H) x 92 (L) x 114 (P) mm
Calloducs name 2 2
Fan supplied 1 1
Maximum number of fans 1 1
Fan Noctua NF-A9x14 PWM Noctua NF-A9x14 PWM
Fan dimensions 92 x 92 x 15 mm 92 x 92 x 15 mm
Rotation speed Up to 2500 RPM (1800 RPM with LNA adapter) Up to 2500 RPM (1800 RPM with LNA adapter)
Sound level in dB 23.6 dB (14.8 dB with LNA adapter) 23.6 dB (14.8 dB with LNA adapter)
Guarantee 6 years 6 years
Suggested price 39.90€ TTC 39.90€ TTC

As we can see at the level of the NH-L9i it is only compatible with the LGA115x chipset, point of 775, 1366 or 2011 which is normal for the latter 2 because they have a TDP too high to be cooled by the small! The dimensions are as seen in the very compact photos, the weight is surprisingly high for such a small thing, with 420g for the Intel version and 465g for the AMD version there is no doubt that Noctua loaded the NH-L9 cooling surface.
Noctua announces the maximum noise level of 23.6dB which is supposed to be rather quiet, even if a 9.2cm fan running at 2500RPM has a good chance of being really heard, we will see that during the tests!
The price of 39.90 € TTC places it at the top of the basket for this type of product, as usual at Noctua, but the quality is there.

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Test platforms

For the tests 2 machines are available, a machine based on an Intel processor and an AMD machine:


  • Processor: Intel Core i5 4670K @ Stock
  • Motherboard: Gigabyte Z87-UD5H TH
  • Memory: Kingston HyperX 4 x 2 Go 1600Mhz
  • Hard disk: WD Raptor 150 Go
  • Food: Seasonic X650
  • Drivers: Catalyst 14.9.2 beta
  • Operating system: Windows 8.1 64bits


  • Processor: AMD FX8370E @ Stock
  • Motherboard: Asrock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer
  • Memory: Kingston HyperX 4 x 2 Go 1600Mhz
  • Hard disk: WD Raptor 150 Go
  • Food: Seasonic X650
  • Operating system: Windows 8.1 64bits

The test protocol

The 2 processors having a high TDP for the small NH-L9i and NH-L9a (89Watts for the Intel Core i5 4670K and 95Watts for the AMD FX8370E) there will be no overclocking planned, they are not anyway. not made for that! The temperatures under load are an average of all the cores for 3 tests of 30 minutes on OCCT, the temperatures at rest were taken after 15mins on the desk (still an average of the 4 cores).

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The temperatures


First observation, the NH-L9x are able to cool their respective processors! It was really not easy seeing the size of the machines. However, the Intel Core i5 4670K processor rises to more than 70 ° which, even if this is very far from the maximum temperatures, is still a little warm, knowing that the processor is not overclocked. On the AMD side, the NH-L9a manages to keep it at 62 °, which is a bit hot for an AMD processor but remains reasonable.
To summarize the NH-L9x manage to cool processors releasing 95 Watts, which is really very good compared to their small size, it goes without saying that an HTPC configuration based on Core i3 or Pentium G will not have any problems. of temperatures with them.

Noise pollution

Attention : Part to be taken with a grain of salt, unfortunately not having access to the appropriate equipment and using an android application to take the readings the measurements below are only indicative! The readings were taken 15cm from the cooler.


At rest the NH-L9x are almost inaudible, they will certainly be covered by the noise of the power supply or any other fan of the box, which is a very good point when using in an HTPC, on the other hand it is clear that they will be heard because of the 9.2cm fan spinning at 2500RPM. However, the sound level generated is not subject to parasitic noises coming from the motor and we only hear the noise of the breath, even if it is rather high.
As I said above, the processors used really push the NH-L9 to its limits and a less greedy processor will significantly lower noise pollution under load, as well as temperatures.

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Here we are at the end of this test, what about the NH-L9x series from Noctua? First of all they are designed for use in a very small mini-ITX case, where no cooler fits the NH-L9x will be there to save the day with 3.7cm in height and dimensions not exceeding the size of the socket itself. The build quality is irreproachable as usual with Noctua, the bundle provides everything you need to mount the cooler without problems and the assembly is done very quickly (4 screws and presto it’s mounted).
In terms of performance, they are able to cool a 95 Watts processor, although not without being quite noisy at this level, however, it will be necessary to favor a Core i3 or Pentium G type processor to keep appreciable silence.

Available at a price of 39.90 € incl. Tax, the Noctua NH-l9x will be excellent choices of coolers when mounting a mini-ITX office configuration or even a very small HTPC.

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The +

  • Cut
  • Memory compatibility
  • Excellent finish
  • 6 year warranty
  • SAV Noctua

A big thank you to Jakob from Noctua who allowed me to do this test.

Where can I find the Noctua NH-L9i and NH-L9a?

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