Noctua NH-L9i Low Profile CPU Cooler Review

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Closer look

The Noctua NH-L9i is modest little cooler that is designed to take the worries of having to combat the heat (lack of anyways) made by the lower TDP processors. Chances of you using these low power processors are not overclocking but probably using them in a home theater setup of some other less demanding purposes.

The cooler was designed to be used with Intel socket 115x platforms utilizing a CPU that is not requiring over 77w of thermal design power. This would include a long list of processors within the Sandy and Ivy Bridge sector. But of the two platforms stated only the SB contains processors over 77 TDP by default. List below:

Sandy Bridge













The cooler is very low-profile measuring just 37mm tall or 1.45 inches for us Americans. We are talking about a cooler that will fit the need of many ITX builders as well as those building 1U rack systems as well.

As you can tell the L9i is a flat-top style cooler where the fan is mounted on top of the heat sink and blows down or upwards depending on the user's preference. Many would elect to point the air down as it would have two benefits: cooling the processor as well as other components serving the CPU socket.

The L9i uses two 6mm heat pipes to help the array of aluminum fins to tackle the heat made by the processor.

One of the not listed features that I like best is the cooler comes pre-assembled. No need to worry about fitting the fan to the cooler nor do have to worry about mating the SecuFirm2 mounting hardware to the base.

Speaking of bases the one present on the L9i is extremely shiny and flat. But we all know that shine doesn’t necessarily lead to performance.

The fan used on the cooler is of a 92mm variation. The specifications are really PWM-mode the numbers are as follows: 300 to 2500 RPM with a maximum dBA of 23.6. When using the MNA adapter the numbers drop to 1800 RPM and 14.8 dBA.

There aren't many pieces when it comes to the accessories that travel with the cooler. There are four extra screws if you decide to use a thicker fan, security screws to complete the SecuFirm2 hardware, NT-H1 thermal compound.