Question Noctua D15 or D15S in Silverstone FT02?

PapaCrazy

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So indecisive I feel locked up. Planning an X570/5900x build with one of these coolers and feel like there's going to be compromises either way because of my case. What would you do in this situation?

D15
Pros
  • The no-compromise market leader in air cooling
  • Comes with 2 fans, and mounting clips for them
  • Always have the option to run 1 fan
Cons
  • Will create RAM clearance issues with 2 fans, unless I go low profile but that will limit my options, which feels like an issue with an AMD build
  • Very tall, so within 2 mm of my case's CPU cooler vertical clearance. Not so much worried about fit, but airflow and looks since it will be jammed up to the window.
D15S
Pros
  • No vertical clearance issues whatsoever because 5mm lower
  • Fits a wider variety of RAM
Cons
  • On the FT02, the D15S's offset puts it much closer to my PSU than GPU. I assume this is worse for cooling? Wouldn't the PSU radiate more heat the GPU's backplate?
  • I don't see an extra pair of fan clips for the D15S, so running two fans (maybe a 120mm bottom) is questionable.
What do you think I should do? Is there any benefit to the D15S or should I just go for the D15 and remove a fan if need be?
 

Phaaze88

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The NH-D15S does come with a second set of clips; the one I have was packaged with a second set.

IMO, the S variant is the superior one, and simply has more going for it.
Wider chassis and ram compatibility, yet sacrifices very little performance from 1 less fan; a 2nd fan won't change much unless it's a really high power cpu, and if Ryzen 5000 is just as power efficient as 3000 is, a 2nd fan won't be missed...
Unless you just want to min-max.

As for this:
On the FT02, the D15S's offset puts it much closer to my PSU than GPU. I assume this is worse for cooling? Wouldn't the PSU radiate more heat the GPU's backplate?
No.
-The FT02 has a chimney style orientation, and the psu is isolated from the system... unless you aimed the psu fan inside the chassis for some reason?

-Those folds you see on the heatsink reduce the effectiveness of fans placed along the sides of it, but it promotes more uniform front to back airflow, or in the FT02, bottom to top.
I ran several tests with this cooler in my H500P Mesh - even did a top panel mesh mod for it - and found that whether the chassis fans were top intake or top exhaust... having fans above it changed little, and in some scenarios, they were a detriment.
 

PapaCrazy

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The NH-D15S does come with a second set of clips; the one I have was packaged with a second set.

IMO, the S variant is the superior one, and simply has more going for it.
Wider chassis and ram compatibility, yet sacrifices very little performance from 1 less fan; a 2nd fan won't change much unless it's a really high power cpu, and if Ryzen 5000 is just as power efficient as 3000 is, a 2nd fan won't be missed...
Unless you just want to min-max.

As for this:

No.
-The FT02 has a chimney style orientation, and the psu is isolated from the system... unless you aimed the psu fan inside the chassis for some reason?

-Those folds you see on the heatsink reduce the effectiveness of fans placed along the sides of it, but it promotes more uniform front to back airflow, or in the FT02, bottom to top.
I ran several tests with this cooler in my H500P Mesh - even did a top panel mesh mod for it - and found that whether the chassis fans were top intake or top exhaust... having fans above it changed little, and in some scenarios, they were a detriment.
Thank you for mentioning the second set of fan clips, that makes a big difference. Do you think those fan clips would fit a 120mm fan? And would a 120mm do much for cooling?

If I do decide to stick with 1x140mm, I guess another benefit would be noise. I'm using 2x120mm Noctuas on a 2600k now, so 1x140mm would certainly be quieter.

No, the PSU fan is definitely sucking air in from the back of the PC.

Edit: Just tested the PSU and backplate with an IR thermometer after 15 minutes of Witcher 3. The GPU is definitely warmer. 40C vs 47C at peak.
 
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PapaCrazy

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Nice. Looks like the D15s has all the upsides. I especially like the idea of using taller RAM sticks. Thought I was gonna be stuck with Corsair LPX if I went DH-15. Whole lot more options now.

Thanks for the help!
 

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