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Need an air cooler to replace my aging H80

So, as the title states, i got my H80 when they where first released.
It’s been doing a great job ever since. But it’s starting to get noisy, temps aren’t where they used to and i see a potential failure in my future. Plus an AM4 upgrade is inevitable and i don’t have mounts for that.

WIth all that said, i think i’d like to kiss AiO’s goodbye and get a new Air Cooler. My current rig is a i5 6500 on a MSI B150m Night Elf. It’s chucking along in a Fractal Define Mini with a 1070ti in it.
Since i can’t overclock, performance isn’t a major concern. I’d like something beefy enough to cool my CPU while making minimal noise. From what i’ve gathered, i shouldn’t have major issues with size. Even the D15 should fit my case.

With no budget given, What would you go for to keep my CPU cool and quiet? Is the NH-D15 still the best option, or is something like a dark rock (pro) 4 the better decision here? I’ve had Silent wing fans in the past and was thouroughly impressed. I haven’t had anything Noctua yet, but everyone says they know their stuff.
What do you reccon is my best option here?

Why would you slap a kilo of metal over a non OC core i5 in a non OC board?
If you are keen on Noctua, go U12S. It’s small, it’s quiet, it does perfectly fine job for those kinds of stuff…
You can also color coordinate and get Arctic Freezer 34 Duo (I say Duo because it comes with 2 fans you can run in crazy low speeds and basically be silent).
Or of course you can get D15 and use the case airflow and run the monster with no fans…

Being proud owner of D14 - yeah. Noctua know their stuff…


I’m running 3 case fans now. The 1070ti seems to put out a lot of heat. The case feels pretty toasty in it’s current state, given the define mini isn’t exactly “Airflow optimized”.
I know that the D15 is way overkill. I just thought that having a bigger cooler would allow me to run it quieter, which is what you indirectly said too.

The D15 is quiet expensive, so the Dark Rock Pro being 20 bucks less is quiet compelling. The U12S looks great. I just wasn’t sure if it would work that well in a low airflow case with a toasty GPU below it.
Arctic is out. My first Cooler was a Arcitc Freezer (back when my Age started with a 1…). I wasn’t too impressed with it’s performance. Arctic might have stepped up their game but i’m just not to keen on experimenting with them.

So looking around, i think it’s either U12S or Dark Rock 4. Both cost similar. Not sure really.

Since we’re talking about fanspeeds already: Any recommendation for a Fan Speed controller? My Board features two or so headers with PWM. I’ve used those cheap 5V splitters, but would like something higher quality with options to run 4 or 5 Fans at a variable, desired speed. Any tips?

Put the stock cooler on. This CPU isnt that high TDP. Anything else is a waste of money.


Intel gives those still XD
But I agree since none K stock cooler will be fine imo

Jeez - no… That’s garbage…
212 at the very least…

I don’t have it anymore. Also, the two days i ran that when i got the CPU it was loud AF.

Also, it’s not only about “sufficiently cooling” the CPU for max performance. It’s also about achieving very quiet operation and reasonable temps. That’s why i’m fine spending some money.

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so is an i5 6500

Theres no point, especially when hes talking about upgrading.

I run this cpu on my work machine, I barely see above 40c ever. Fix your airflow.


I don’t blame ya…

To be fair, that is the main reason I bought my case instead of the runner up - the integrated fan controller.
There are like a 17 trillion different fan controllers.

We are talking this garbage? No, stay away.
Get one of those:

The white connector sends the PWM signal back to the board, the rest just use the signal.
It doesn’t work with 3pin fans though…

bwahaHAHAHAHAHA :rofl:

U12S is like 2-3C warmer than D14 or something… It’s small and massively better than the majority of 140 coolers and most 120AIOs…
Basically it can cool anything…

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No need to be like that.
The CPU is 3 years old at this point. I got it in 2016 to pair with my then GTX570. And it still holds up reasonably well in Gaming. Yeah, it’s not 9900k, but it works.

Most coolers you get atm are compatible with both 1151 and am4. So the potential CPU upgrade should be no Problem.

I also didn’t say that my Temps are high. They are around 40-45 C depending on workload. They used to be sub 30. And i’m not worried about that. The H80i is giving up and i need to replace it before it becomes a problem.

I dont know what I’m being like. I’m telling you the truth in my eyes. I’m saying, spend as little money on it as possible because its not worth it. Save for your new build.

An i5 6500 is not a great CPU. Putting a noctua cooler on it is like putting nitrous in a prius. Put the noctua on the AMD when you build it.

If you want quiet operation, tune your fan curve.


If you want new cooler then get something that can be used on AM4 platform too. Like @Adubs said 6500 isn’t that beefy CPU so no need to go all out when cooling it. If you don’t have stock cooler then get something cheap OR something that you can use with your future build.

If you go with “something cheap” option my lucky guess is any tower cooler that can fit 120mm fan should be relatively quiet with 6500.

And for your question about Noctua, I’ve only used their fans, which are awesome. I bet their coolers are top quality as well.

So i guess it’s hope the h80 makes it to the ryzen 3 release. Worst case, i can get a replacement through amazon in a day or so.

Let me ask you this. What are you going to do with it once you get your new machine built?

I agree with @psycho_666 get a Cooler Master 212 Evo and slap it into your next build unless you do custom cooling.

FYI: Don’t throw away the box and brackets/backplates.

If you aren’t going to OC the next build, it paired with a EK, Noctuna, Gentle Typhoon or Scythe fan it should be plenty.

I wouldn’t change it out at all, unless the noise is bothering you. If so I agree grab a cheap 212.

This is why I don’t do water-cooling. Air cooling never degrades.

So first off, i guess i need to thank you.
I just ripped my case open after a Session of Overwatch to see what was going on. Several things might be at work here.

  • The H80 is definitly going. It somehow got stuck i think. Tubes where really hot. After me moving the case it kicked back in. I Also increased the Fanspeed on the Radiator Fan. Temp are better now, but still to hot. Around 40 on the package and 30-35 on the cores while idle. Maxing out around 60 while running prime95.

  • The Mainboard is rather hot too. I ripped both of the noisedampeners out from the Side Panel and the top. Since my GPU is hitting around 70 in Games, i threw one of the FD Fans on the side Panel. Now running two front, one side, one back. I would have prefered one in the top, but because of the Aio Tubes it won’t fit.

  • Since the case has rather restrictive airflow for the front fans, i increased those by quite a bit too.

All of this seems to do a bit, but not as much as i had hoped. I guess the whole cooling concept is due for a redesign. I just feel like, with the Define Cases being so popular, i can’t be just me that has a Problem with heat.

With all that said, we are hitting summer here now. It’s currently 28C, so higher Temps are expected i guess. I might need to relocate my PC a bit to cope with the noise. With it standing basically besides my desk at desk height, it amplifies the Problem. Guess i’ve been doing a whole bunch of thing non-optimal here. Since i wear headphones (open-back though) 90% of the time anyways, i can deal with this. And with the Ryzen 3000 i’ll do a proper redesign of all of this.

No Plans yet. I have a 1050ti laying around that got replaced by the 1070ti. A Second Linux only PC is certainly an option. Maybe replacing/Extending my QNAP NAS or moving it into the Living Room for some lighter gaming and htpc usage. Though my NVidia Shield has me covered for this. So yeah. Not sure. I’ll find a use for it for sure though.

Could be the pump failing but could have also been semi air locked as they tend to evaporate some over time too. If you hear your pump making noise like its got rocks in it, theres definitely air in that system.

This is fine, prime 95 is an unrealistic workload.

rotate the block or rad to move the tubes out of the way

Something you didnt mention is if the fans are intake or exhaust, I’m assuming you’re running 2 front in, 1 side in, 1 rear out. This would be ideal for reducing dust but isnt doing your GPU any favors as its probably not getting much for airflow.

What case specifically are you using?

So you plan on using it… which means either way you’re going to need another cooler. The 212 evo is a pretty good all rounder but I still would go cheaper personally. I’ll leave that up to you. 212 evo would be the most I would spend on it.


On a completely different side note. If you’re going to be building a new rig and are going to get a new case, I can not recommend the Define R6 enough.

I got one when I build my latest PC at the start of the year and its perfect. Its customisable, brilliant airflow, silent, just a wonderful case in general.

Or if you’re after something smaller, then the Define Nano. Two of my friends have them and they love them. Its what you’d expect from a fairly modern Fractal case but in a smaller form factor.

Yeah, I really love my R5 and would get a R6 if I needed a new case.