Ideally, people install 120mm case fans, which is the standard for any case. But if you want more airflow on lower RPM and noise, then you have to go with the bigger option, 140mm fans. Here is a list of the best 140mm case fans if you want to choose the bigger option.
These fans are usually not installed in a smaller chassis. Unless you own a mid-tower or full-tower case, you will not be able to fit a lot of them. At times even one of these can pull in as much air as a 120mm one on lower RPM.
You can find a variety of case fans in the market these days. From powerful to aesthetic ones, you can buy great fans with a combination of RGB and high speed. Although, a faster fan does not always mean it will perform well.
The blade design and bearing technology affect how well a case fan usually works. There are three factors that tell you if a fan is really good or not.
We will be covering all three of these in a short buyer’s guide up ahead.
140mm Case Fan Buyer’s Guide
So as we said earlier, there are three factors that will tell you how great a fan performs. We will be using a few terms to define the performance of the fan. Here is an elaborate description of what each term means and explains.
Airflow is the amount of air that a fan can blow into the case. Usually measured in CFM (Cubic Feet Per Meter), the airflow depends on the fan blade and overall fan construction along with speed.
The more efficient fan design is, the better it is going to be able to push air through. Fan speed also plays a part, as a slower fan speed will decrease the overall fan performance.
If the airflow is the amount of air that the fan pushes then the static pressure is the pressure by which the fan is throwing the air in the case. Basically a fan might blow in a lot of air in a case, but if there is an obstruction in its path, it will just end up diffusing without reaching all of the corners.
So even if a fan has high airflow, it won’t be able to cool components that are behind an obstruction. For that, you need something with high static pressure. Although high static pressure fans are used for coolers to push air through fins, lately they are used for cases as well.
Measure in mmH2O, static pressure is going to help in making sure air is reaching all components and cooling them thoroughly. Static pressure is especially beneficial if your case has drive cages or taller RAM that might block air.
High fan speed is important to achieve higher airflow and static pressure. If you lower fan speed it will affect the overall airflow and static pressure. But high speed does not always ensure performance, sometimes a poor blade design will impede it.
But with an optimal blade design, a high-speed fan will increase the airflow of the case. So instead of finding a really fast fan, try to find a reasonably fast fan with good airflow and static pressure balance.
Airflow Case Fan Vs. Static Pressure Fan
There are always obstructions inside a case, whether it is from drive cages or tall memory modules. Even a GPU might block off the path of the air.
So finding a high airflow fan is not always going to help you cool a case. You need a fan with a good balance between static pressure and airflow. Otherwise, you will end having excess heat buildup regardless of the airflow.
If you are installing the fan on a radiator or CPU cooler then a high static pressure fan will mean better cooling. But when talking about case fans usually a well-balanced case fan performs the best.
Bearing and Fan Blade Design
While some fans, even though they have high speed, do not have good airflow or static pressure. That is because of the bearing and fan blade design. The overall construction of the fan will determine how good a fan works.
A good bearing will make sure there is no friction, good fan blade design will increase the airflow and static pressure. If a fan construction is good there will be no friction in any part of the fan. Friction can cause fans to be noisy and work poorly.
Also, bearings have a life span, advanced bearing technology means fan life span will be bigger. Companies provide warranty depending on how well their bearings work.
A high-speed fan will definitely be louder because regardless of how good a bearing is, it’s not perfect. But if there is friction anywhere in the fan design it will create a whirring sound.
Even if there is no friction, there is a limit to how much sound a bearing can suppress at higher speeds. That is why Noctua provides people with LNA, a Low Noise Adapter that reduces the fan speeds and reduces noise. The noise level is indicated with dBA.
The Best 140mm Case Fans 2021
The Noctua case and cooler fans have an award-winning performance because they are perfectly balanced. They have a good ratio of airflow and static pressure while keeping the noise levels at minimum.
The Noctua brand is proud of its fan design. Their patented bearing and fan design have won them countless awards over the years. Many tech enthusiasts have made Noctua’s case fans a standard.
The NF-A14 PWM is one of the best 140mm case fans in the market at the moment. The Noctua logo, an owl, is famous for being the quietest in its flight. The NF-A14 PWM is a prime example of what their logo represents.
The fan has an amazing balance between airflow, static pressure, and noise levels. It comes with an LNA or low noise adapter to reduce the noise of the fan by capping its speed.
Since this fan is PWM, the fan speed can be adjusted but the LNA really does help in reducing the fan noise. Even at 1500 RPM, which is the fan’s max speed without any adapter, it only produces 24.6 dBA of noise.
The fan has an airflow of 140.2 m³/h which roughly converts to 80CFM. Since 140mm is a bigger size, it is able to achieve better airflow than its smaller variants.
The static pressure on the fan is also pretty decent. It has 2.08 mm H₂O static pressure, which is pretty strong, at least strong enough to cover the whole casing.
The airflow and static pressure are in a good ratio, the sound level is barely audible at max speed. The balance and performance are what places it at the top.
The company’s patented bearing has been used in the NF-A14 PWM, the SSO2 design. It is based on the SSO bearing technology, which was considered a really good one in its own right. But the SSO2 improves it further, which is why the company backs the case fan with a 6-year warranty.
ARCTIC claims that it has improved the Fluid Dynamic Bearing for long sustained life. The fan design is also pretty unique and seems to be the reason behind its great performance.
So we all know ARCTIC MX-4, the go-to thermal paste for most people that are mounting a new cooler on their CPU. ARCTIC seems to be carrying on its affordable and reasonable pricing in its case fans as well.
Although they are affordable, they are not a low quality either, but the BioniX P140 is just a par above. It seems that a new fan blade design has taken the fan’s performance to a new height.
The ARCTIC BioniX P140 uses Fluid Dynamic Bearing to reach a high speed of 1950 RPM. The fan speed is adjustable and can be lowered if the voice of the fan on the highest speed is a bit noisy.
The 140mm case fan has an airflow of 77.6CFM which is pretty close to the airflow of Noctua NF-A14. But it has a higher static pressure than the Noctua case fan. The static pressure stands at 2.85 mmH2O at full speed.
The fan has high static pressure meaning it is designed as a cooler and radiator fan instead of a case fan. But it works just as well as a case fan due to high airflow as well.
The sound level is around 23.5dBA, it might be thanks to the improved fluid dynamic bearing the company is using. It is creating even less friction improving the life span of the fan and reducing the noise to a minimum.
The fan is a great value as well, it costs only $21 on Amazon, which is pretty cheap considering it performs so well.
This isn’t the most expensive fan in Corsair’s arsenal, that has to be the QL Series of fans. But the LL140 has such gorgeous diffused RGB that gives the feel of a flowing rainbow to it.
Corsair seems to be on top of the scene when it comes to RGB components. Whether it is the Vengeance RGB Pro or it is the Hydro RGB Liquid AIO Cooler, it has some of the best RGB in the market.
The LL140 is no exception, it has dual RGB loops which have individually addressable LEDs. Using the iCUE software you can put on a display of colors using various effects.
As gamers, we love our RGB, and Corsair gives us gamers what we want, performance with RGB aesthetics. The case fan runs at 1300 RPM max, which can be controlled through PWM, using your BIOS or software.
The LL140 does not have as great airflow as the best overall, it is only 51.5 CFM. The static pressure is also not as powerful as the Noctua or ARCTIC BioniX. The static pressure of the case fan is 1.52 mmH2O, but the ratio of static pressure and airflow is pretty good. In fact, it is the superb ratio between the two that this fan is also preferred as a radiator fan as well.
There are a total of 16 addressable RGB LEDs in two loops that diffuse on the semi-transparent fan blades. Lastly, the fan can get a bit loud, although not as audible as other competitors at 25dBA.
LL140 from Corsair is priced at around $39 on Amazon, which is a premium price to pay for a case fan. But if you are an RGB enthusiast, you might not find a better case fan than this.
If loud case fans annoy you, you would want to switch them out with something quieter. The F14 Silent is a good alternative if you require peace and silence but also somewhat airflow along with static pressure.
ARCTIC fully focuses on cooling solutions that are affordable by masses. The F14 Silent is a good example of that, not only is it super quiet and performs well, but it is also affordable.
The affordability of ARCTIC products often makes them the go-to for budget PC builders. Whether it is thermal paste or case fans, they are pretty reasonably priced while they give a great performance.
The F14 Silent as its name suggests focuses heavily on keeping your case quiet. The case fan has a max speed of only 800 RPM while the airflow is 46CFM, which is great for the low noise and max-speed.
The airflow is balanced by a static pressure of 0.45mmH2O which indicates this case fan is targetting airflow in the case. But having that static pressure does make a huge difference when you have obstructions blocking the case.
The fan blades are white with a black frame, using a fluid dynamic bearing which has very little friction. ARCTIC F14 Silent costs about $8.5 on Amazon, which is super cheap.
Here we have another case fan focusing on peace and quiet, but the Silent Wings 3 by be quiet! brand has a higher airflow while being almost inaudible.
The be quiet! name is pretty famous amongst tech enthusiasts who often prioritize low noise. The Silent Wings 3 only produces 15.5dBA at its highest RPM.
The max speed on this case fan is 1000 RPM while it has a powerful airflow of 59.5CFM. The fan also has a pretty decent static pressure of 1.08mmH2O, which creates a good balance with the airflow.
The fan uses a fluid dynamic bearing that has a considerably long life, however, the fan design focuses on silent operation. It is a tad bit expensive though but it is worth its price due to its great performance.
The be quiet! case fan can be bought for $25 on Amazon, which is not a great price for someone who prefers peace and quiet.
The Corsair ML140 PRO uses a unique bearing design to create low friction. The maglev or magnetic levitation bearing allows the fan to provide a very balanced airflow and static pressure.
The maglev bearing also gives the fan its long life as well, with the brand backing the life span of the fan with a 5-year warranty. Corsair ML140 PRO RGB also has that amazing signature RGB that the brand is famous for.
The fan has a top speed of 1200RPM but thanks to the magnetic levitation bearing the fan has a sound level of 20.4 dBA at its max speed. The sound level to the fan speed ratio is incredible, as fans with this much speed are more audible than this.
Not only that, but the maglev bearing also creates minimal friction allowing the fan to provide airflow of 55.4 CFM at 1200 RPM max speed. The fan also has a powerful static pressure of 1.27 mmH2O which makes it a good choice as a radiator fan as well.
The balance between the airflow and static pressure makes this case fan ideal for use in either situation. Not to mention the RGB gives you that gamer aesthetic that most gamers love.
The fan is a bit expensive, priced at around $30 on Amazon, and there are cheaper options available in the market. But the performance of the fan and its long life do make it worth its price.
Phanteks is only underrated otherwise by no means is it a less capable case fan in the 140mm category. It pushes 85.19 cubic feet per minute of airflow, which is more air than Noctua or Corsair products. It also has a lower noise level of 19.0 decibels, and to top it all comes at a lower cost.
The fan is nearly inaudible when running on low or moderate speeds. To achieve the best air flow to noise ratio, you’re recommended to use it at 900 RPM.
Moreover, the Phanteks PH-F140 comes with various adapters, including a 4 to 3 pin, voltage reducer if you want to keep RPMs low, and a molex power adapter.
The build quality is also fairly impressive. There are metal plates on the back of the fan that allow it to push large amounts of air out, as well as ensure a long lifespan.
All in all, this Phanteks case fan won’t disappoint you for all your cooling needs.