Noctua A-Series Fans Review

Noctua has recently released their Noctua A-series fans lineup, that includes the NF-A9x14, NF-A6x25 and NF-A4x10 whose dimensions are 92x14mm, 60x25mm and 40x10mm respectively.

The sizes are somewhat strange and can cover other devices other than HTPC’s but the technology used is at the same standards as we know from other Noctua products.

 


Noctua was founded in 2005 and their headquarters are located in Austria. They specialise in silent PC cooling products and until now they have successfully combined great performance with reduced noise levels.

 

Packaging

All three fans’ packaging follow the same classy Noctua pattern as the previous products; a cardbox that can be unfolded from the front side to see the product features and the actual fan from the transparent part. At the back side we can find specifications and brief product descriptions in various languages.

 

A Closer Look – The A-Series And Their Advanced Design Features

A4x10

 

In the A4x10 box we can find:

 

  • Low-Noise Adaptor (L.N.A.)
  • 3:2 Pin Adaptor
  • OmniJoin Adaptor Set
  • 30cm Extension Cable
  • 4 Vibration-Compensators
  • 4 Fan Screws


Of course in all bundles there is an easy to understand manual with schematics.

Using the OmniJoin adaptor set, you can replace any fan from devices other than PC’s with no hassle, by connecting the cables inside the adaptor and fastening the screws.

At the front side of the fan we can find a sticker indicating the power specifications of the fan.

It is impressive how Noctua have managed to implement so many design innovations into such a small fan.

 

A6x25

The A6x25 comes with:
  

  • Low-Noise Adapter (L.N.A.)
  • Ultra-Low-Noise Adapter (U.L.N.A.)
  • 3:4-Pin Adaptor
  • 30cm Extension Cable
  • 4 Vibration-Compensators
  • 4 Fan Screws


The same design pattern is followed like the previous fan.

 

A9x14

In the larger A9x14 bundle we can find:

 

  • Low-Noise Adapter (L.N.A.)
  • 4-Pin Y-Cable
  • 30cm Extension Cable
  • 4 Vibration-Compensators
  • 4 Fan Screws


Obviously, there are no design and build differences with the previous two fans.

In a nutshell, with the accessories provided you will surely not encounter any kind of problems installing the fans either with the traditional screws or the rubber pads provided.

 

All of the fans have a solid build and it seems that there are no manufacturing flaws in any way. Of course, all of them incorporate PWM technology that automatically adjusts RPM according to temperature levels.

Let’s take a look at the technology used and some of the features of the fans taken from Noctua’s website:


Flow Acceleration Channels
Boundary layer separation from the suction side of the fan blades leads to increased vortex noise and lower airflow efficiency. In order to suppress this phenomenon, the Noctua’s A-Series impellers feature suction side Flow Acceleration Channels. These channels alter the flow distribution on the suction side of the blades and speed up the airflow at the crucial outer blade regions. As flow separation is more likely to occur when the speed of the fluid relative to the fan blade is low, the increase in speed achieved through the Flow Acceleration Channels leads to significantly reduced flow separation, which permits lower vortex noise and higher airflow efficiency.

OmniJoin
Many devices featuring 40mm fans use proprietary fan headers, so the NF-A4x10 comes with Noctua’s OmniJoin Adaptor Set. Just cut the original fan’s cable, fix it to the adaptor using the supplied 3M Scotchlok™ connectors and you can plug the NF-A4x10 to proprietary fan headers!

Noctua’s NE-FD1 IC
Noctua’s custom-designed NE-FD1 is a next-generation PWM fan driver IC that integrates Smooth Commutation Drive (SCD) technology for quieter operation and allows for ultra-low power consumption. Its superb linearity and security features such as locked rotor or reverse voltage protection make it an ideal driver IC for premium-class PWM fans.

SSO2
The self-stabilising oil-pressure bearing (SSO-Bearing) system has always been at the heart of Noctua’s award-winning premium fans. Silent enthusiasts and industry clients alike swear by its proven, time-tested quality. SSO combines the proven concept of oil-based hydrodynamic bearings with an additional magnet that supports the self-stabilisation of the rotor axis. Due to the axis being stabilised by the magnetic field, Noctua’s SSO Bearing achieves higher precision and better longevity than conventional ball-, sleeve- or hydrodynamic bearings. 

 

Test Procedures and Results

We measured the airflow and the noise generated in the A Series to determine the performance of the fans(always relating to their size) in accordance to noise levels.

 

Verdict

After the testing, we could really say that the Noctua A-Series fans lived up to the Noctua name. They managed to deliver exceptional airflow while remaining silent.

The A4x10 is a tiny fan that can cool and fitted into various devices other than computers. Only the feeling that you will have a Noctua fan, even small, inside your device will ensure maximum cooling efficiency and low noise levels.
The A6x25 can be used in small factor PC’s and servers, while the biggest, the A9x14 can be used on top of CPU coolers.

Noctua has covered a wide range of cooling options with the A-Series. The fans may be a little bit more expensive than average, but you surely get what you pay for in terms of performance and lifespan, because, as always, you also get a 6-year warranty on all fans.

Specifically, the price list is:

 

  • NF-A4x10 12,90€
  • NF-A6x25 14,90€
  • NF-A9x14 16,90€


They are surely more expensive from other simple fans but they are really worth to buy.

Pros

(+) Performance
(+) Build quality
(+) Quiet

Cons

(-) Price (for some)

 

Thus, we would like to give the Noctua A-Series fans our Editor’s Choice award.

 

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