Value and Conclusion
|9.5||The Phanteks PH-TC14PE is the best-performing air cooler I have ever tested. Its look and size give it a great appearance, and the overall build quality is superb. Phanteks offers this unit in many different colors, which allows enthusiasts to pick a color that matches their color scheme perfectly. The cooler's performance is exceptional; I cannot stress enough that its performance is very good. It rivals the likes of Corsair's H110 and H100 in my tests and that is no easy feat. The option to add a third fan can further improve performance by another few degrees Celsius. The noise levels are also fantastic, with the PH-TC14PE coming in third at 45 dBA when its fans are set to 100%, but the Noctua NH-L12 is still a touch quieter overall. The fact that this Phanteks cooler does so well in both categories makes it an excellent option for those wanting class-leading performance without a lot of noise. Being backed by a solid five-year warranty is also great because it shows that Phanteks stands behind their product.|
The mounting hardware could, while not terrible, use some further improvement. It may not be feasible with the current design, but attaching the crossbar to the cooler would be a nice change. The crossbar with its thumbscrew to holds it in place can be a pain to install for those of us with larger hands. If you have a long, magnetic screwdriver, you can avoid this problem completely. The large size of the Phanteks PH-TC14PE makes the use of system memory with tall heatsinks impossible. Continuing on with the size of its heatsink, it weighs in at a fairly hefty 1250 g with two fans and adding a third fan will increase its weight even more. Still, its weight is not nearly as bad as some coolers of the past. The few issues I encountered with the Phanteks PH-TC14PE are fairly minor at best.
The Phanteks PH-TC14PE has, honestly, surprised me. This is a cooler I will place into one of my own personal PCs. Its low noise output, excellent performance, and the option to pick a color that matches my system's theme have definitely made me a fan of the Phanteks PH-TC14PE.
If you are looking for quiet, top-tier performance, the Phanteks PH-TC14PE offers both while being the best air cooler I have tested to date. With the ability to further improve performance by adding a third fan, you cannot go wrong by selecting this CPU cooler.