Not many firms can offer a higher tier product line than the consumer grade ones. This is where the Noctua’s IndustrialPPC series comes into play. Their purpose hovers around highly demanding applications that require superior flow rates and ultimate dependability.
Even though they are built to work in challenging environments, that doesn’t stop us to test their cooling performance in a desktop application.
First, about Noctua :
Established in 2005, Noctua took international silent enthusiasts’ hearts by storm and quickly developed into one of the most acclaimed suppliers of premium quality quiet cooling products. Today, Noctua is present in more than 30 countries across the globe and working with several hundred sales partners. Chosen by noise-conscious PC users, system integrators and industry clients alike, Noctua has become synonymous with impeccable quality, excellent customer service and class-leading quiet cooling performance.
Designed in Austria, Noctua’s premium cooling components are internationally renowned for their superb quietness, exceptional performance and thoroughgoing quality. Having received more than 6000 awards and recommendations from leading hardware websites and magazines, Noctua’s fans and heatsinks are serving hundreds of thousands of satisfied customers around the globe.
Pricing and availability
*At the time of the review:
– For the NF-A14 140 mm 2000 RPM
£ 23.49 – via Amazon.co.uk
$ 29.95 – via Amazon.com
– For the NF-F12 120 mm 3000 RPM
£ 23.49 – via Amazon.co.uk
$ 29.95 – via Amazon.com
– For the NF-F12 120 mm 2000 RPM
£ 23.49 – via Amazon.co.uk
$ 29.95 – via Amazon.com
Presentation and specification
*Courtesy of their website:
The industrialPPC range, which stands for “Protected Performance Cooling”, is conceived for industrial heavy duty applications that require enhanced cooling performance and advanced ingress protection.
Thus they are ruggedised high-speed versions of their standard models and ready to work in challenging environments.
To differentiate theme even further, they have an all black design with removable dampening corners. (Noctua kindly shared their whole range of upgrades named Chromax for these fans for maximum color scheme coordination.)
Award-winning NF design
Having received more than 100 awards and recommendations from the international press, Noctua’s NF series has become a proven premium choice for 120 and 140 mm cooling needs. Its renowned efficiency has convinced tens of thousands of customers all over the world.
High rpm industrialPPC version
Thanks to its elevated top speed, the NF industrialPPC series provides a significant performance boost over the retail versions. Combined with the industrialPPC series’ robust polyamide construction and advanced protection features, this makes the fan ideal for challenging industrial applications.
The industrialPPC 24V models use a dedicated wide input range version of Noctua’s NE-FD2 three-phase PWM motor driver IC. Supporting operating voltages from 6 to 30V, these models are ideal for 24V-based industrial applications and voltage- or PWM-based speed control.
Lower speed and noise levels in 12V PC environments
While the industrialPPC 24V model has been designed with 24V industrial applications in mind, it runs at a different maximum speed in 12V PC environments and can be slowed down further via PWM, thus combining industrialPPC features and design with Noctua’s signature quietness.
Three-phase motor design
While most axial fans use single-phase motors with 4 slots, Noctua’s industrialPPC fans feature a three-phase design with 6 slots, which provides smoother transitions between the slots and thus allows for even higher running smoothness, further reduced vibrations and unprecedented energy efficiency.
Certified IP67 water- and dust protection
The motor and PCB of the IP67 version are completely cast in a special, highly heat conductive resin that combines thoroughgoing protection and effective motor heat dissipation. Complying with the ingress protection rating IP67, this fan is not only fully dust tight but also completely waterproof up to 1m water depth.
Fibre-glass reinforced polyamide construction
Both the impeller and the frame of Noctua’s industrialPPC fans are made entirely from fibre-glass reinforced polyamide. This material can withstand temperatures up to 140°C and makes the fans even more robust and break-proof than Noctua’s standard fibre-glass reinforced PBT fans.
Flow Acceleration Channels
The NF series impeller features suction side Flow Acceleration Channels. By speeding up the airflow at the crucial outer blade regions, this measure reduces suction side flow separation and thus leads to better efficiency and lower vortex noise.
Noctua’s AAO (Advanced Acoustic Optimisation) frames feature integrated anti-vibration pads as well as Noctua’s proprietary Stepped Inlet Design and Inner Surface Microstructures, both of which further refine the fan’s performance/noise efficiency.
Stepped Inlet Design
Noctua’s Stepped Inlet Design adds turbulence to the influx in order to facilitate the transition from laminar flow to turbulent flow, which reduces tonal intake noise, improves flow attachment and increases suction capacity, especially in space-restricted environments.
Inner Surface Microstructures
With the tips of the fan blades ploughing through the boundary layer created by the Inner Surface Microstructures, flow separation from the suction side of the blades is significantly suppressed, which results in reduced blade passing noise and improved airflow and pressure efficiency.
Integrated Anti-Vibration Pads
Integrated Anti-Vibration Pads made from extra-soft silicone minimise the transmission of minute vibrations while maintaining full compatibility with all standard screws and other mounting systems.
The NF industrialPPC series features the further optimised second generation of Noctua’s renowned, time-tested SSO bearing. With SSO2, the rear magnet is placed closer to the axis to provide even better stabilisation, precision and durability.
Metal bearing shell
In order to guarantee the highest possible degree of manufacturing precision, minimum tolerance and excellent long-term stability, the NF series industrialPPC sports a CNC milled bearing shell made entirely from brass.
6-year manufacturer’s warranty
Noctua fans are renowned for their impeccable quality and outstanding longevity. Like all Noctua fans, the NF industrialPPC series features an MTTF rating of more than 150.000 hours and comes with a full 6-year manufacturer’s warranty.
Custom-designed PWM IC with SCD
Supporting fully automatic PWM speed control, the NF industrialPPC series uses Noctua’s custom-designed NE-FD2 PWM IC for three-phase motors. The NE-FD2 integrates Noctua’s proprietary Smooth Commutation Drive (SCD) technology, which suppresses PWM switching noises and thus makes the fan quieter at lower speeds.
And for the NF-F12 series we have the additional:
Focused Flow™ Frame
Designed for pressure demanding applications such as heatsinks and radiators, the Focused Flow™ frame features eleven stator guide vanes that straighten, channel and focus the airflow, which allows the NF-F12 to rival the performance of conventional fans running at much faster speeds.
Custom designed for the new Focused Flow™ frame and to work in tandem with the eleven stator guide vanes, the NF-F12’s seven blade Heptaperf™ impeller has been carefully optimised to achieve a perfect balance between power and quietness.
By the looks of it, Noctua made sure to import as many of their technologies from their desktop series to the PPC while adding further protection, versatility and durability.
Now, for an even more complete perspective of the specs of our samples today, he have the following:
Now, would you look at those airflow numbers !
Any fan over 2.xx mm H₂O is really good.
These, all are at least equal to 4.xx and the 3000 rpm model goes almost to 8.xx !
We are taking levitation power here. Of course, that is the maximum if it is used at 24V.
Still, on 12V input they will be over our rule of thumb number.
Then another great feature that catches our eye is the IP67 certification which means:
IP = Ingress Protection Code
6 = Dust Tight – complete protection against contact
7 = Survives being submerged in water up to 1m deep (normally for 30 minutes)
Then 6 years warranty and over 150.000 guarantee hours of operation before failure, you can’t go wrong there.
So far, this is an impressive rap sheet.
Shall we continue?
Packaging and Visual Examination
Noctua does a great job at presentation and box designs. But for these Industrial series they took a minimalist approach. An all black box with the signature brown/dark red color on the sides. Only the exact fan model is written and with a small Noctua logo on the upper right side.
*Click on the pictures to zoom in
On the back we have the main specs listed.
As previously mentioned, on the side the fan model is once more presented. As you can see, we have the versions that accept up to 24V.
Inside, the fan(s) are centered and ready to be taken into action. No extra accessories are included besides 4 mounting screws.
And here they are. All employ the same general construction, same rotors, fully sleeved and same build quality but the main differences regard the frame technology and blade geometry in favor for the 120 mm fans.
We need to point out as well the fact that all are made from fibre-glass reinforced polyamide, are painted in black matte frame and made to withstand temperatures of up to 140°C ! Thus making them even more rigid and break-proof than the original Noctua fans.
Let’s focus now on the 120 mm ones – on the left the 3000 RPM version and on the right the 2000 RPM one. As you can see the 11 stator guide vanes which compose the new FocusedFlow frame technology. Then with the help of technologies like Varying Angular Distance and Vortex-Control Notches, Noctua achieves to spread the noise emission over a broader frequency range and offer superior airflow.
Here are the technologies explained extremely well.
Then the 140 mm NF-A14 fan at 2000 RPM which shares all the technologies with its small brothers minus the Focused Flow and Varying angular Distance.
All fans from the IndustrialPPC series feature interchangeable anti vibration and noise dampening pads.
Speaking of, there are the choices for the replaceable corners (NA-SAPV1 Chromax – UK Amazon & US Amazon ) and even the anti-vibration mounts (NA-SAV2 Chromax – UK Amazon & US Amazon). All come in up to 6 color choices.
Who says you can’t have a rainbow everyday?
The side pads come in a number of 16 pieces per box which is enough for 2 fans (if you use them on all sides of a fan) and the mounts are 20 per box. So 4 per fan will cover a total of 5 fans. Excellent !
Testing methodology & Installation
We have something special as for our testing bench today.
- We will test all the fans on our Reeven Justice 120 mm heatsink
- To make things even more interesting we will use an Intel Extreme series CPU – something that it is capable of dumping a lot of heat – the QX9650, a 130w TDP coal miner even in stock form. The CPU will be overclocked, of course.
As the main torture test, we will employ the Intel Burn Test run set at “High stress” settings and then some 3D benchmarks as well
- Room temperature is set at ~ 20°C
- For the noise testing, we used our Pyle PSPL01 placed 30 cm away from the setup – all other fans will be off an the fans of the GPU(s) will be off as well or set minimum
- Thermal paste used – Noctua NH-H1
- We will compare the results to other high performance fans from Noiseblocker and the included stock fan from the Reeven Justice cooler.
- All fans will be left on the auto % rpm curve for idle and the benchmarks; then only for the absolute performance index we will ramp them up to 100 %
- Any results over 90° C in any condition are considered a fail
Processor: Intel Extreme QX9650 @ 3.6 Ghz – 1.375v
Cooler: Reeven Justice RC-1204 120 mm single tower CPU cooler
Case: GameMAX Titan MidTower ATX
Motherboard: XFX 750i NVIDIA SLI ATX
RAM: 4 GB (2×2) OCZ Reaper X DDR2 800 Mhz CL4
GPUs:Quad-SLI NVIDIA GTX 295 (EVGA + DELL)
HDD: WD Black SE 160 GB
PSU: Corsair TX 750w V2
– Noiseblocker 140 mm Eloop B14-PS – 1200 RPM | 4 Pin (PWM) | 12.0 V | 24 dBA | 142.6 m³
– Noiseblocker 120 mm Eloop B12-PS – 1500 RPM | 4 Pin (PWM) | 12.0 V | 21 dBA | 98.7 m³
– Reeven 120 mm RY1225S15BP – 1500 RPM | 4 Pin (PWM) | 12.0 V | 30 dBA | 139.4 m³
– Windows 10 Pro x64 Build 1607
– NVIDIA GeForce WHQL 342.01
– Core Temp v1.7 R6 – To see the temperatures in real time
– CPU-Z v1.71 – To verify the CPU’s statistics
– Intel Burn Test v2.54 – Main torture and stability test
– MSI Afterburner v4.11 – To record the FPS and load/temperatures
– Valley Benchmark v1.0 – A popular testing suite
– SpeedFan v4.52 – To manually control the RPM curve
And for the Tomb Raider game we run the included benchmark suite for a more real life scenario.
Resolution set at FHD / 1920 x 1080 with everything set to maximum quality settings and no V-sync.
And here are some quick confirmation samples:
Now let’s begin the testing.
*Do note that the Noctua fans are running at a different speed at 12V, which is a little over half the stated RPM for the 24V.
Even though on paper the Reeven fan has high airflow numbers that doesn’t necessary means proportional performance.
Due to the high optimization in airflow and so many technologies that the Noctua and even the Noiseblocker fans incorporate, they are no match for a sleeve bearing type fan like the Reeven.
So the battle is between the Eloops and the Industrial PPCs which are almost neck and neck, with very small differences between them. Remember the Noctua fans are only operating at 12 volts thus barely half of their true potential. Now you realize how powerful they really are.
Noise wise, at 12V, the IndustrialPPC fans have very reasonable numbers, characteristic of Noctua pedigree.
Noctua outdid themselves yet again!
These are some serious overbuilt products. At first glance, the minimalist design might fool you but as soon you put them to work these are outstanding pieces of tech.
With so many technologies under the hood there is no denying the fact that when companies aim and persevere to offer maximum quality, their products will impose a lot of respect.
Even though these IndustrialPPC series fan are not built per say for desktop application, their versatility nature can cover those scenarios as well, thus a testament of their broad range of application.
In an age of fast consumerism, products like these are rare. We are really impressed with these IndustrialPPC fans and thus they will take our maximum rating today because Noctua covered basically every aspect of how a versatile and perfect fan should be.
+ Outstanding endurance capability – can handle working environments up to 140 degrees C !
+ IP67 certification – thus dust proof and water-resistant up to 1M
+ Maximum airflow and noise performance given thier true purpouse
+ Epic built quality and they truly are overbuilt products
+ Highly versatile – can handle up to 24V of input
+ Black design – for easiness of integration
+ Upgraded construction – made from fiber-glass reinforced polyamide
+ They incorporate a lot of R&D and patented proprietary technologies
+ Interchangeable anti-vibration pads with a lot of color options via the Chromax line
+ 6 years warranty & Over 150.000 MTTF
+ Very competitive price – and what they offer we feel it is worth it
– None – they are that good
– No RGB ? 🙂
Glob3trotters “Editor’s Choice” & “Maximum Tech” Award(s) – 5 out 5