System Overview & Testing
For testing we will be using our X79 system.
It is made up of the following components.
Processor: Intel Core i7-4960X Extreme Edition
Motherboard: ASUS P9X79 Pro
Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680
Memory: 16GB Kingston 10th Anniversary
Power: Thermaltake Smart 750W
Storage: 750GB SATA II Drive
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12S
Case: Cooler Master Cosmos II with 5 fans
For testing we will be using the Intel Burn Test with the AVX instruction set. We use this instead of Prime 95 as it will push the processor much harder. We have it set on the maximum setting and let it ruin through 3 passes. This gives us a realistic idea of the temperatures the processor would hit when it is under full load.
Keep in mind this is an Extreme Edition processor. These run much hotter than normal chips so keep that in mind. Since making our change to the Core i7-4960X Extreme Edition we have only tested a handful of air coolers on it so we do not have that much of a comparison. First up is our idle temperatures.
Now for our load test.
As you can see this is the best performing air cooler that we have tested on our new X79 setup!
Noctua did provide us with a second NF-A15 PWM fan so we also tested with two fans installed. Those results are below.