Noctua has recently released chromax.black edition of NH-L9x65 CPU cooler. This chromax version is the same cooler except that it now comes in black and is fully compatible with Intel LGA1700 and AMD AM5 sockets which were not available at the launch of the original NH-L9x65 cooler. This is a low-profile cooler having a total height of 65mm including the 14mm height of the NF-A9x14 HS-PWM chromax.black fan. The cooler has 4x heat pipes with a small footprint of 95x95x65mm.
This cooler retails at USD 69.90 at the time of this writing which is official MSRP.
Noctua NH-L9x65 chromax.black Specifications
The above is a specification of the heatsink.
The above is a specification of the fan.
Packaging and Unboxing
The cooler comes inside a cardboard made black color packaging box which is Noctua’s standard for the chromax.black edition coolers. Noctua has listed the specifications and features of the cooler around the packaging box.
Noctua has changed the way it packs its coolers. There is an egged carton inside the main packing box that has the cooler tucked in between.
The following is provided:
- 1x Cooler with Fan
- 1x NM-IBP4 Backplate
- 2x NM-IMB2 Mounting Bars
- 4x NM-ICS1 Clip On Spacers
- 4x NM-STS1 Thumb Screws
- 4x NM-IBT5 Bolts
- 4x NM-IPS1 Black Spacers for Intel LGA115x/1200
- 4x NM-IPS3 Blue Spacers for Intel LGA1700
- 1x NM-AMB121 Mounting Bar for AMD
- 1x NM-AMB12b Mounting Bar for AMD
- 4x NM-APS4 Grey Spacers
- 4x NM-ALS1 Long Screws
- 1x NT-H1 Thermal paste
- 1x Screw Driver
- 1x NA-RC7 LN Adapter
- 1x Noctua Badge
- 1x User Guide
Let’s start with the heatsink first.
The NF-A9x14 HS-PWM chromax.black fan comes pre-installed on the heatsink. It is mounted using clips hence it is easier to manage. As you can see, this fan covers the entire heatsink. This fan has a dimension of 92z92x14mm. You can optionally install a 92x92x25mm size fan as well on this cooler which needs to be purchased separately.
I have removed the fan and now showing the top view of the heatsink itself. It is a soldered assembly of 4x copper heat pipes and 49 fins. The complete assembly is black color coated. You can see two large-size cutouts on both ends of the heatsink. This is done to provide exposure to the pre-mounted spring-loaded screws for easy handling. The heat pipes are in U shape coming from base to up top in a set of two.
I am showing one side of the heatsink in the above picture. There is no branding on this end. We can see two terminating ends of the heat pipes whereas the other two are in U shape making their way back inside the heatsink. They will terminate on the opposite end. The opposite end has Noctua branding in the center.
Looking at the side of the heatsink, we can now clearly see the spring-loaded screws. We can also spot that all heat pipes also have their terminating points on the base as well. There are insets over the top to catch the hands of the fan clips.
There is a nickel-plated copper base finished in a chrome mirror on this cooler. The mounting arms are secured using 4x Philips screws and are removable. This will come in handy when switching to Torx based mounting system from Noctua. The base has a dimension of 38mm x 40mm. The heat pipes are 6mm thick.
Noctua has provided 1x NF-A9x14 HS-PWM chormax.black edition fan with this cooler. HS stands for High Speed. This is a chromax edition of the regular beige/brown color fan. This fan has 9x blades. There are cut-to-size anti-vibration pads on the mounting corners. There is a stepped inlet design on the frame of the frame. I am not going into details since I have covered Noctua fans in the past many times.
The backside of the fan has 4-arm assembly in an X shape. Each arm is wider and it will obstruct the airflow to break the more focused airflow. The aim is to throw air on the entire heatsink. It is achieved by using these arms.
This fan has a mesh-sleeved cable with a 4-pin PWM connector to power the motor of the fan. Speaking of the motor, this fan uses SSO2 bearings from Noctua. The fan has a maximum speed of 2500 ±10% RPM. Maximum static pressure is 2.11 mmH₂O. A fan takes input power of 2.52W with the 12V DC. The maximum airflow is 33.86 CFM. Maximum acoustical noise is 23.6 dBA. There is a Low Noise Adapter cable as well that would lower these ratings to provide low noise output.
We are not covering the installation of the coolers any longer since the user manual is there for this purpose. I did not record any observations during the installation. The installation is simple and convenient.
Let’s talk about the clearance of this cooler. I have tested the cooler on an ITX motherboard.
As you can see there is no clearance issue for the DIMM slots. You can use RAM of any height with this cooler.
There is no clearance issue for the first PCIe x16 slot on the ASRock B650E PG-ITX WiFi motherboard.
The heatsink of this cooler does not obstruct the top area of the motherboard.
There is no clearance issue towards the Rear of the motherboard either.
This cooler has a height of 65mm which should be good enough for any ITX case.
We have used the following configurations for testing:
- AMD Ryzen 7 7700X
- ASRock B650E PG-ITX WiFi
- Sabrent Rocket 32GB DDR5 Kit @ 4800MHz CAS 40
- MSI GeForce RTX 3090 Gaming X Trio 24G
- Western Digital Black SN850 500GB NVMe SSD
- Be quiet! Straight Power 11 850W Platinum PSU
- Open Air Test Bench
Test table is:
|Voltage Efficiency Curve
|Curve per Core
|Thermal Paste Application
|A single Vertical Line in the center
|Stress Run Time
|PC Idle Time
The ambient temperature was 19°C to 20°C. Since the variation in the ambient temperature is within 1°C, we are reporting absolute temperatures in the graph. The testing is done on an open-air bench system. Once inside the chassis, the temperatures are expected to rise and would largely depend upon the optimal airflow inside the chassis.
Disclaimer: Every silicon is different hence no two same SKUs are likely to take same voltage to yield same performance at same thermals per se but margin would be close. Not every stress test run may yield the same result which could be due to various reasons like thermal paste application, ambient temperature variation, mounting pressure of the cooler, etc. This is why we have listed our variables and their settings.
This cooler was holding at 92ᵒC under heavy stress test and did not let the CPU throttle down as the core clocks were maintained. There is no other cooler hence I don’t have a graph. The fan is not that loud at full speed and you can use Auto PWM settings or make a custom fan curve anyway.
Noctua is going all chromax.black slowly but steadily as per their plans. They have recently released chromax.black edition of two coolers; NH-D9L and NH-L9x65. These coolers are not new but rather a black version of the regular edition. The black color cooler has a better appeal and aesthetics. I have NH-L9x65 chromax.black edition this time. This cooler is compatible with Intel LGA115x/1200/1700/20xx and AMD AM4/AM5 sockets. This cooler is also ready for the upcoming LGA 1851 socket from Intel.
The heatsink comprises 4x 6mm thick copper heatpipes having a soldered assembly with 49 fins. The complete assembly is black color coated. There are 2x spring-loaded screws pre-installed on the main mounting bracket. The mounting bracket is removable. This would be handy if you want to switch to Torx based mounting system from Noctua. The heatsink has a dimension of 95x95x65mm (LxWxH). This height includes the fan’s height which is 14mm. There is a chrome-finished nickel-plated copper base measuring 38x40mm.
Noctua has provided NF-A9x14 HS-PWM chromax.black fan with this cooler. It has a dimension of 92x92x14mm. Optionally, you can install a 25mm thick fan on this cooler as well which would increase the overall height to 76mm. This will provide a better static pressure due to more thickness. The overall design of the cooler makes it an ideal fit providing utmost clearance from all perspectives be it RAM, PCIe slot, or the surrounding components of the socket.
The fan uses Noctua’s SSO2 bearings. It has 9x blades and has anti-vibration pads on the mounting corners. The fan has a maximum speed of 2500 ±10% RPM. Its maximum static pressure is 2.11 mmH₂O. It draws input power of the 2.52W with the 12V DC. The maximum airflow rating is 33.86 CFM. Maximum acoustical noise is 23.6 dBA. The LNA cable reduces the speed to lower the sound output.
Noctua has provided all accessories that could be required to install this cooler on the socket excluding the alcohol swab. Pun intended! There is a Philips Screw Driver and NT-H1 thermal paste as well. Noctua has provided the latest SecuFirm II black color mounting kit with this cooler. The installation is easy on the AMD AM5 socket. You would need 10 components to install this cooler on the AM5 socket. Speaking of the Intel LGA1700 socket, you would need 15 items which is unlike Noctua but it has to be done to provide a single backplate for all supported Intel sockets.
Since this is a low-profile cooler, overclocking it not its cup of tea. It is best suited for SFF/HTPC builds for stock cooling. I have tested this cooler on AMD Ryzen 7 7700X using PBO Advanced. The cooler keeps the CPU at steady 92ᵒC without throttling under heavy stress testing. This is a good performance from this little master. Noctua is offering a 6-year warranty on this cooler so I have no complaints at all.
This cooler retails at USD 69.90 at the time of this writing which is official MSRP.
- Adequate Thermal Performance
- AMD AM5 and Intel LGA1700 Socket Support
- 65mm Height
- Universal RAM Clearance
- Utmost Clearance for near socket areas
- Excellent Build Quality
- Noise Performance
- 6-Year Warranty