A Closer Look
The Noctua NH-L12 is a low profile cooler that just stands 92 mm high in dual-fan configuration and 66 mm high in single-fan configuration.
Noctua has used metal clips for both fans, to hold them in place on the NH-L12. However, the 120 mm fan has built-in vibration absorption pads to lower noise levels. The mounting location of the 92 mm fan also benefits from vibration dampening through the pre-installed silicon rubber strips. Both of these additions lower the Noctua NH-L12's noise profile.
We can see that the heatpipes are kept fairly close to the cooling fins and base, which will keep them from interfering with components on the motherboard. The silicon rubber strips for the smaller 92mm fan are also visible, but the fan does take up a sizeable chunk of space so close to the socket, which could, depending on the mounting orientation, cause problems.
The nickel-plated heatpipes are of course soldered directly to the aluminum cooling fins. It should also be noted that the Noctua NH-L12 does not use HDT; instead, the heatpipes travel all the way through the base.
The base of the Noctua NH-L12 is fairly smooth and somewhat polished; it's no mirror shine, but it definitely speaks volumes if compared to the usual coarse copper base of previous coolers I have seen, like on the Corator DS LGA2011.