CPU Cooler Fit
CPU Cooler Fit
To test the amount of space surrounding the CPU socket, we mounted both a Noctua NH-D14 and a Noctua NH-D15 cooler to the CPU socket. Both a overly large CPU air coolers, sporting a dual fan construction and two huge vertical cooling towers.
With the NH-D14 cooler oriented in its standard configuration (blowing air towards the rear panel), there is adequate space along all sides to accommodate the cooler as well as any cards installed in the primary PCI-Express x16 slot. The cooler tower body and heat pipes easily clear the memory modules as well as the heat sinks along the sides of the CPU socket.
From the side view, you can better see the spacing between the cooler radiator towers and the memory modules. You may have issues using modules with larger heat sinks though.
With the NH-D15 oriented to blow air towards the back of the case, the cooler does not conflict with any of the board's heat sinks or components. The video card seated in the primary PCI-Express x16 slot comes close to contacting the cooler's radiator, but there is sufficient space between the two.
From the side views of the mounted cooler, you can see that the cooler is designed to provide more than adequate space for the memory modules, even ones that use larger heat sinks. However, you may have to adjust the mounting location of the front fan to accommodate DIMMs with larger sinks.
Noctua SecureFirm2 mounting system
Noctua's SecureFirm2 mounting system is a good method to quickly determine how well the CPU socket laid out to accommodate a larger cooler. The heat sinks along both sides of the CPU socket do not impede the cooler mounting brackets. The CMOS battery also is placed far enough to the left to not cause issues with the bracket or cooler mounting.