Does a cpu cooler with heatpipes degradate over the time? [Noctua NH-U12P v1] - Overclock.net - An Overclocking Community

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Does a cpu cooler with heatpipes degradate over the time? [Noctua NH-U12P v1]

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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 03:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Does a cpu cooler with heatpipes degradate over the time? [Noctua NH-U12P v1]

Hello!
I have a Noctua NH-U12P bought about 8 years ago, it's been a lot of cpu's throught it, e8400, q6600, 2500k, 4790k and recently a Ryzen 2600X. Of couse Noctua has sent me two free socket adapters for it, 1st for 1155 socket, and recently for am4 socket, so very very happy with them, if you're reading me, gj on service guys
The problem is that with my 2600X on stock settings, I'm reaching 80º on OCCT, with a good airflow on my case, a Phanteks Enthoo Pro M SE with 4 14cm fans.
At first I was thinking it was problem of my cpu/bios config but yesterday I could test a Cooler Master 212 EVO and with it and the same test, it was on 73º, all same config.
I was thinking about maybe it wansn't well mounted, so I mounted again the noctua cleaning everything, and with the same thermal as CM 212, and thing went a little better, 77º, but still worse than the CM, and it shouldn't.

So, I'm not blaming about the Noctua, I think that 8 years of excellent service are enought but I was thinking about if this is a normal behaviour on heatpipes, to lose it's performance over the year, or maybe just my unit it's having some kind of problem.

So guys, what do you think, heatsinks with heatpipes degrade/lose performance over the years?

UPDATE: Answer from Noctua
Quote:
Greetings from Noctua!

Thank you very much for contacting us.

In theory it could happen that a heatpipe becomes leaky, thus losing the vacuum inside and its function gone. However, either this happens very early in the beginning already, in case of a production error, or after mechanical damage to the heatpipe, but not suddenly by itself.

As far as I can tell you have recently switched to a newer platform (AM4).
From tests with AM4 CPUs in our lab we know that the heatspreader of the CPU has an elevated outer edge, similar to a ring. A cooler with a flat base, like the NH-U12, will thus sit on this outer "ring" but won't have good mounting pressure in the middle, resulting in worse temperatures. This is one of the reasons why all current models from us, and most current heatsinks from other brands as well, come with a slightly convex base to make sure the mounting pressure is best where the chip underneath the heatspeader sits.

We can't guarantee that this is the reason for the temperature difference but it seems very likely, based on our internal tests and information we have about this matter.

Kind regards,
Your Noctua Support-Team

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Last edited by rul3s; 06-17-2019 at 07:54 AM.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 04:05 AM
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Normaly not. Heatpipes are out of copper, and that wont go "bad"

Vaporchambers are normaly good to. because the drop of liquid in it is sealed up well.

How was the spreading on the block of the cooler?
maybe there was only good contact in the center or worse only on the edges?

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 04:29 AM
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Vapor chambers can go bad: https://semiaccurate.com/2016/05/04/...chambers-fail/

In theory, this is possible with heat pipes, too.

However, this usually results in physically visible bending, cracking, warping etc. and not "silently" going bad.

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 04:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by Streetdragon View Post
Normaly not. Heatpipes are out of copper, and that wont go "bad"

Vaporchambers are normaly good to. because the drop of liquid in it is sealed up well.

How was the spreading on the block of the cooler?
maybe there was only good contact in the center or worse only on the edges?
The spreading was good, covering all the IHS, and with artic silver 5.

Quote: Originally Posted by ErrantPigeon View Post
Vapor chambers can go bad: https://semiaccurate.com/2016/05/04/...chambers-fail/

In theory, this is possible with heat pipes, too.

However, this usually results in physically visible bending, cracking, warping etc. and not "silently" going bad.
Tonight I'm going to check it again, but, I'm sure that if something was bended or similar I'd seen it yesterday when I dissasemble it.

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 05:21 AM
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Short answer:
CPU air coolers should never degrade.


Longer answer:
The performance should stay the same as long as it's functionally the same. If a heatpipe leaked or if there were an issue with the base, I'm sure you'd see much worse performance.

While the seal on the tip of a heatpipe is quite good, I'm sure it's possible for one to have a very slight leak.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 05:45 AM
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As others have said, yes, heatpipes do degrade over time, but in our coolers I have never known of any that degraded. I'm running a Thermalright Ultima 90 I got in 2007 with no degradation in cooling ability.

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 07:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Well, I've just send an email to Noctua Support explaining my problem, let's see what they say to me!

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 07:37 AM
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Maybe the room temperature was different when you tested the two coolers?
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 08:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by deepor View Post
Maybe the room temperature was different when you tested the two coolers?
Is fas about 30 minutes from all tests, and it was at night, maybe 1º of diference... anyway, noctua should perform much bettern than CM 212, and this was not hapenning.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 06:21 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by rul3s View Post
... anyway, noctua should perform much bettern than CM 212, and this was not hapenning.
Test bench reviews much?!
Haaha!!,"keep sleeping on that pillow"!!

In a case like the one you have, you eliminate the fan factor, so to speak, which leaves you with a comparison of heatsink vs heatsink, and since they're both very similar. There you have it.

Last edited by Shenhua; 06-13-2019 at 06:30 AM.
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