Although the installation of the PH-TC14CS is not difficult at all, the shape and nature of the cooler require the removal of the motherboard from the case, even if the motherboard tray has an opening behind the CPU area. The socket 1155 installation is demonstrated in this review.

 Phanteks PH TC14CS CPU Cooler Review

To begin with, the backplate needs to be inserted from the rear of the motherboard with the four bolts installed. Note the grooves for the CPU socket pins; even though the backplate is square and may be inserted in any direction, only two directions are correct.

 Phanteks PH TC14CS CPU Cooler Review

Once the backplate is inserted into place, the cooler's retention brackets need to be secured onto the four bolts with the use of four thumbscrews and plastic spacers. The thumbscrews may be tightened further by using a typical Philips PH2 screwdriver. Note that the orientation of the mounting brackets will also affect the orientation of the cooler itself, therefore the brackets need to be installed in parallel with the motherboard's expansion slots, otherwise the body of the cooler will be blocking the first expansion slots of the motherboard after its installation.

 Phanteks PH TC14CS CPU Cooler Review

After the retention braces are well secured on the motherboard, a thin layer of thermal grease needs to be applied on the CPU. Next, the cooler needs to be secured on the core by tightening the spring loaded screws with the provided hex tool. This step will take quite some time and is almost impossible to be performed with the motherboard still installed inside a case.

 Phanteks PH TC14CS CPU Cooler Review

As you can see from the picture above, the Phanteks PH-TC14CS is anything but a small cooler. With both fans installed, it is only a few centimeters shorter than the massive PH-TC14PE. The user may choose to sacrifice some thermal performance and remove one fan, in order to either allow the installation of tall RAM modules or to shorten the cooler even further.