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Best AIO Water Coolers 2019 – Liquid CPU Cooling …
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Best Closed-Loop Liquid CPU Coolers
Best Closed-Loop Liquid CPU Coolers You Can Buy TodayBest 360mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler: CoolerMaster MasterLiquid ML360R RGB 1. CoolerMaster MasterLiquid ML360R RGBBest 360mm Closed-Loop Liquid CoolerSpecificationsThickness: 1. 1” (2. 3″ w/fans)Width: 4. 8″ (120. 7mm)Depth: 15. 5″ (393. 7mm)Fans: (3) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 1366, 115x, 775, AMD AM2(+), AM3(+) AM4, FM1, FM2(+)Warranty: 2 yearsReasons to buy+Excellent cooling ability+Sleek design and aesthetics+Lower price than other 360 AIOsReasons to avoid-Cable / controller management could be betterWhen it comes to keeping overclocked CPU load temperatures in check, Cooler Master’s MasterLiquid ML360R RGB is the new chilling champ. As the 360 variant of our previously reviewed MasterLiquid ML240R RGB, the newly available MasterLiquid ML360R adds 33 percent more radiator surface area for even more cooling prowess. The result? It cools even better than the mighty NZXT Kraken users, gamers, system builders and overclockers in the market for a new large CPU cooler should take note. The Cooler Master ML360R RGB is our current 360 AIO thermal performance leader. And while $160 isn’t exactly cheap, there are plenty of competing products that cost more while delivering less-impressive CoolerMaster MasterLiquid ML360R RGB reviewBest 360mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler Alternative: Alphacool Eisbaer Pro Aurora 360 (Image credit: Tom’s Hardware)2. Alphacool Eisbaer Pro Aurora 360Best 360mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler AlternativeSpecificationsDimensions: 400 x 124 x 30/2mmPump Height: 2. 25 inches / 57. 2mmWeight: 69. 6 oz / 19748gFans: (3) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 3647, AMD AM4, TR4, sTRX4, sWRX8Warranty: 2 yearsReasons to buy+Threadripper cooling performance+G1/4 watercooling direct compatible+Dripless disconnects for simple expansion using Alphacool componentsReasons to avoid-Could be quieter-Lacks software controlsThe Alphacool Eisbaer Pro Aurora 360 features a full-cover CPU block sizable enough to fully cover Threadripper’s ample surface area, although it supports mainstream sockets like AM4 as well. There’s also a powerful, fast-flowing pump with built-in reservoir and an all-copper radiator, allowing the Eisbaer Pro Aurora 360 to morph into a custom cooling loop, one piece at a time.
Priced around $217, it’s more costly than some other solutions, but does provide hands-down the absolute best cooling potential. And power users building high-end AMD Threadripper or Intel HEDT desktop workstation or gaming systems will have higher budgets, with a different focus than those looking for a more frugal desktop gaming or mainstream PC nsidering the cost associated with most of the CPUs and motherboards alone supported by the Eisbaer Pro Aurora, system builders in this realm of performance usually draw from a unique set of criteria, which a frequent aim for ‘the best at any price. ‘ And that, quite simply, is what the Alphacool Eisbaer Pro Aurora 360 exemplifies. Whether you intend to run it as is, or expand into a custom cooling loop, you won’t be let down by this versatile piece of cooling Alphacool Eisbaer Pro Aurora 360 review Best 360mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler With a Display: MSI MEG CoreLiquid S360 (Image credit: Tom’s Hardware)3. MSI MEG CoreLiquid S360Best 360mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler With a DisplaySpecificationsThickness: 1. 125″ / 28. 6mmWidth: 4. 75″ / 120mmDepth: 15. 5″ / 393. 7mmFans: (3) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 115x, 1200, 1700, AMD AM2(+), AM3(+), FM1, FM2(+) AM4, TR4, sTRX4, SP3Warranty: 3 yearsReasons to buy+Top-notch cooling performance+Brilliant, customizable LCD display+Useful software suiteReasons to avoid-ExpensiveMSI’s MEG CoreLiquid S360 delivers top-notch cooling performance, quiet(er) cooling fans and an excellent implementation of a simple-to-use MSI Center UI and a brilliant display above your CPU to deliver system performance stats, or even your favorite photo or animated GIF. At $280, it’s definitely a premium cooler, but MSI backs up that price with some real performance those without concern for the high price, looking for excellent cooling and endless customization options via the display, the MSI MEG CoreLiquid S36 is worthy of serious consideration. Its toughest competition may come from Corsair’s H150i Elite, although we haven’t had a chance to test that cooler MSI MEG CoreLiquid S360 reviewBest 280mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler: Arctic Liquid Freezer II 280 (Image credit: Arctic)4. Arctic Liquid Freezer II 280Best 280mm Closed-Loop Liquid CoolerSpecificationsThickness: 1. 5″ (2. 75″ w/fans)Width: 5. 5″ (139. 7mm)Depth: 12. 5″ (317. 5mm)Fans: (2) 140 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 115x; AMD AM4Warranty: 2 yearsReasons to buy+Great cooling performance+Unique pump and auxiliary fan design+Low operational noise levels+Attractive priceReasons to avoid-Boxed unit ships with pump and fans managed by single PWM splitter-Lack of RGB lighting (for those looking for the option)While our thermal measurements indicate that it’s integrated voltage regulator fan is little more than a gimmick, great CPU temperatures at ultra-low noise levels prove the Liquid Freezer II 280 far-more-valuable than its far-costlier Arctic Liquid Freezer II 280 AIO reviewBest 240mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler: Corsair H100i RGB PRO XT (Image credit: Tom’s Hardware)5. Corsair H100i RGB PRO XTBest 240mm Closed-Loop Liquid CoolerSpecificationsThickness: 1. 0″ (2. 13″ w/fans)Width: 4. 75″ (120. 7mm)Depth: 10. 9″ (277mm)Fans: (2) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 1366, 115x, AMD AM2(+), AM3(+) AM4, FM1, FM2(+), TR(X)4Warranty: 5 yearsReasons to buy+High-performing 240mm AIO cooling+iCUE software suite allows for customized cooler and lighting control+Priced well for premium performanceReasons to avoid-Noisy fans at 100% speed-Awkward, small screws used to secure fans to radiator-RGB lighting is pump-onlyThe Corsair H100i RGB PRO XT takes over where the H100i Pro left off by providing enthusiast levels of thermal load management from a 240mm AIO and making use of Corsair’s iCUE software suite for RGB lighting control, fan curve configuration and pump performance settings. Paring the capability of the cooler with a set of user-friendly software tools provides a great deal of value for system builders of any technical proficiency, in real time. Read: Corsair H100i RGB Pro XT reviewBest 240mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler Alternate: Deepcool Gamer Storm Captain 240 ProThe Gamer Storm Captain 240 Pro makes up for in low noise what it lacks in cooling power compared to Corsair’s H100i Pro, to the point that the Captain 240 Pro has a significantly better cooling-to-noise ratio. We favor it for anyone who needs virtual silence at 50% fan speed, where most users in most environments won’t hear it. Even those able to push a CPU hard enough to require 100% fan speed will find its hushed murmur less than half as noisy as the H100i 120mm Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler: NZXT Kraken M22 Best 120mm Closed-Loop Liquid CoolerSpecificationsThickness: 1. 1″ (2. 25″ w/fans)Width: 4. 7mm)Depth: 6. 15″ (156. 1mm)Fans: (1) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 1366, 115x, AMD AM2(+), AM3(+) AM4, FM1, FM2(+)Warranty: 6 yearsReasons to buy+Great cooling for a compact AIO+Handsome, sleek design+CAM software is attractive &+intuitiveReasons to avoid-$99. 99 price is higher than other 120mm AIO solutions-RGB controls only apply to CPU block face-CAM software sends data to NZXT cloud servicesThe NZXT Kraken M22 is an incredibly compact, high-performance liquid cooler that delivers sleek styling and vibrant RGB lighting options, while offering support for current AMD and Intel processor sockets. Specifically, if you’re building a small home-theater PC or a compact gaming build, the Kraken M22 offers surprising cooling potential in a condensed cooling don’t try to strap one to your Threadripper system. The demanding thermals and massive surface of those high-end CPUs aren’t supported by this NZXT Kraken M22 reviewBest AMD Threadripper: Enermax Liqtech 360 OC TR4 7. Enermax Liqtech 360 OC TR4Best AMD ThreadripperSpecificationsThickness: 1. 125″ (2. 65mm)Depth: 15. 50″ (393. 7mm)Fans: (3) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: AMD TR4, SP3Warranty: 2 yearsReasons to buy+Excellent cooling performance+Aggressive pricing+Easy installation+Full coverage of Threadripper CPUsReasons to avoid-No software UI for real-time management-No RGB or LED lighting on fans (might be a plus, for some)In the Liqtech 360 TR4 OC, Enermax has graced the Threadripper world with a cooler that covers these large enthusiast processors in full, providing performance similar to custom liquid cooling with the easy installation and moderate cost of an AIO cooler. Enermax also keeps costs down by avoiding RGB lighting and the relevant software integrations. The lack of lighting might turn away some buyers who prefer millions of colors and a software UI. However, Threadripper fans seeking excellent cooling performance, and who wish to set up some simple fan-cooling curves, will find just that in the Liqtech 360 TR4 Enermax Liqtech 360 OC TR4 reviewBest Reconfigurable Closed-Loop Cooler: Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora 240 CPU Digital RGB (Image credit: Tom’s Hardware)8. Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora 240 CPU Digital RGBBest Reconfigurable Closed-Loop CoolerSpecificationsThickness: 2. 25” (57. 2mm)Width: 4. 88” (124mm)Depth: 10. 75” (273mm)Fans: (2) 120 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 1366, 115x, AMD AM2(+), AM3(+) AM4, FM1, FM2(+), TR4, C32, G34Warranty: 2 yearsReasons to buy+Quick disconnects for no-spill expansion+Solid thermal performance+Built with DC-LT pump and copper radiator water cooling componentsReasons to avoid-Tubing length could be longer to allow for more diverse installations-Pump has coolant top-up port, but coolant must be purchased separatelyAlphacool’s Eisbaer is a factory-filled hybrid design, featuring a closed-loop-style pump and CPU cold plate with open-loop style fittings that including an anti-leak, in-line quick connector. Alphacool offers wide range of factory-filled companion parts, from additional radiators to GPU blocks, to suite nearly any expansion need. It’s perfect for buyers who lack the time to assemble, purge, and leak test their own scratch-built component systems, as well as those who have more cash than Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora 240 CPU Digital RGB reviewBest Custom Cooling Kit: Alphacool Eissturm Hurricane Copper 45 9. Alphacool Eissturm Hurricane Copper 45Best Custom Cooling KitSpecificationsThickness: 1. 8” (45mm)Width: 5. 75” (146mm)Depth: 18. 5” (470mm)Fans: (3) 140 x 25mmSocket Support: Intel 2066, 2011x, 1366, 115x, 775, AMD AM2(+), AM3(+) AM4, FM1, FM2(+), TR4Warranty: 2 yearsReasons to buy+Great cooling performance+Professional-grade components+Very good value for a full watercooling kitReasons to avoid-Pricey compared to AIO alternativesWith an enormous 3x 140mm radiator, this kit allows for enough thermal expansion of the loop to include a graphics card waterblock (or even two), if desired. By using industry standard G1/4 threaded fittings for all components, the cooling loop almost begs you to add more components to the party. A radiator of this size and potential allows for this kind of load because of the quality design and engineering that went into building it. A pump of this pedigree pushes coolant like few others are capable. Quality-milled components and attention to detail are seen on each and every piece within the anyone looking for a complete, high-quality watercooling kit in a single box, this Alphacool Eissturm Hurricane Copper 45 kit is an excellent choice for those with room in their chassis for the monstrous 3x 140mm radiator and large pump/reservoir Alphacool Eissturm Hurricane Copper 45 ReviewMORE: Best Air CPU CoolingMORE: How To Choose A CPU Cooler
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Matt began piling up computer experience as a child with his Mattel Aquarius. He built his first PC in the late 1990s and ventured into mild PC modding in the early 2000s. He’s spent the last decade covering emerging technology for Smithsonian, Popular Science, and Consumer Reports, while testing components and PCs for Computer Shopper and Digital Trends. When not writing about tech, he’s often walking—through the streets of New York, over the sheep-dotted hills of Scotland, or just at his treadmill desk at home in front of the 50-inch 4K HDR TV that serves as his PC monitor.
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The Best AIO Coolers for Your PC in 2021 | Digital Trends
If you want a CPU cooler without the noise, using one of the best AIO coolers is for you. An AIO (all-in-one) liquid cooler includes all the parts you need to start water cooling your CPU. Over a traditional air cooler, a good AIO liquid cooling component may allow you to push your processor further in overclocking while keeping noise to a minimum.
Most builds call for a 240mm AIO: To that end, we recommend the Corsair iCUE H100i RGB Pro XT, thanks to its slew of lighting options and excellent included fans. You can jump up or down depending on your PC build size or cooling needs.
Note: Before diving in, you’ll need to take note of your CPU socket before picking up an AIO water cooler. Every CPU cooler is a little different, so you’ll need to know what CPU socket your motherboard has to see if the cooler supports it.
The best AIO coolers at a glance
Corsair iCUE H100i RGB Pro XT
Arctic Liquid Freezer II
NZXT Kraken X53
Corsair H80i v2
Cooler Master MasterLiquid ML240L v2
EK-AIO 240 D-RGB
NZXT Kraken Z63
Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora
Intel: LGA1200, LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA1366, LGA2011, LGA2066
AMD: AM4, AM3, AM2, sTRX4, sTR4
Dimensions (length by width by height)
277 mm by 120mm by 27mm
Two Corsair ML120 fans
400 to 2, 400 rpm
The Corsair iCUE H100i RGB Pro XT is the result of Corsair’s years of making AIO coolers. Now fitted with support for the iCUE software, you can sync up all of your various RGB accessories for a unified look inside your build. Additionally, the software allows you to check on your CPU and coolant temperature to make sure everything is running smoothly.
In addition to a 240mm radiator, the kit comes with two Corsair ML120 fans. They have a massive range that you can control with PWM, from 400 rpm up to 2, 400 rpm. In iCUE, you can also configure a profile to turn the fans off when temperatures are low.
The Corsair iCUE H100i RGB Pro XT is an easy AIO to recommend. Corsair is behind some of the best desktop CPU coolers, and the cooler clocks in at only around $120. Socket support is excellent, too, with mounting options for all recent Intel and AMD processors, including Threadripper.
Intel: LGA1151, LGA1150, LGA1555, LGA1156, LGA2011-3, LGA2066
398mm by 120mm by 38mm
Three Arctic 120mm fans
200 to 1, 800 rpm
When it comes to raw thermal performance, the Arctic Liquid Freezer II is the best 360mm AIO cooler on the market. It reaches similar performance to competing coolers at NZXT and Corsair while being very inexpensive. The 360mm option is only $125, while the NZXT Kraken X73 — another 360mm AIO — clocks in at nearly $200. The price is even more impressive when you consider the cooler’s features. In particular, the pump is controlled by PWM, allowing it to modulate with the workload rather than run at full speed all the time.
The Liquid Freezer II also includes a 40 mm fan next to the pump, set to sit over your motherboard’s VRM chips. In more extreme overclocking sessions, this may improve stability. Otherwise, it includes three Arctic 120 mm fans to keep air flowing.
This cooler is all about performance and price. It gets those two bits right, but not without some concessions. It doesn’t feature any sort of lighting, and the design may not be to everyone’s tastes.
Still, the Arctic Liquid Freezer II hits a sweet spot that other coolers can’t compete with. Socket support is a little limited, but the Liquid Freezer still supports most recent chips. On AMD, it supports AM4 CPUs, and on Intel, it supports all LGA115x sockets, as well as 2011-3 and 2066 with a square Independent Loading Mechanism (ILM).
Intel: LGA1200, LGA1151, LGA1150, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA1366, LGA2011, LGA2011-3, LGA2066
AMD: AM4, TR4, sTRX4
Radiator dimensions (length by width by height)
230mm by 123mm by 30mm
Two Aer P120 120mm fans
500 to 2, 000 rpm
Although significantly more expensive than the Liquid Freezer II, NZXT’s third generation of Kraken X coolers are worth their asking price. This 240mm model clocks in at around $130, which still isn’t too expensive. The design is much more appealing than Arctic’s offering while achieving similar levels of thermal performance.
For looks, the Kraken X’s infinity mirror pump cap is a showstopper. It bounces light around inside the cap to create the illusion of infinite LED rings. Like nearly all NZXT products, the Kraken X53 is fully integrated with CAM, allowing you to monitor temperatures and tweak your lighting settings. Over the X52, the X53 also includes an NZXT Hue 2 connection on the pump, offering power for up to six Hue 2 accessories. If you want to trick out your rig with synced-up RGB, the NZXT Kraken X53 is for you.
Unsurprisingly, socket support is excellent, with support for TR4 and AM4 on AMD, and LGA115X, 20XX, and 1, 200 on Intel. NZXT rates the Kraken X53 for six years of continuous use — 60, 000 hours, technically — which is around what we’d expect for most AIO coolers. NZXT offers a six-year warranty, though, so you’re covered from any defects for the rated life of the cooler.
AMD: AM4 (requires CW-8960046 bracket), AM3, AM2
154mm by 123mm by 49mm
Two Corsair SP120L 120mm fans
2, 435 rpm
120 mm AIOs usually aren’t very good, but the Corsair H80i v2 is the best 120 mm AIO around. Without proper surface area on the radiator, most 120 mm coolers just aren’t up to snuff when it comes to cooling power. The Corsair H80i v2 solves that problem. The radiator is twice as thick, clocking in at 49mm compared to the standard 25mm. The H80i v2 doesn’t match the cooling performance of a 240mm radiator, but it gets a lot closer than a standard 120 mm one. And the Corsair H80i is still relatively cheap at around $100.
To get through the extra thick radiator, Corsair includes two SP120L PWM fans, so it’s easy to set up a push-pull configuration, but you’ll need to factor in the extra thickness of such a configuration when mounting.
As for support, the Corsair H80i v2 comes with Intel mounting hardware for socket 1366 up to LGA1200 (Intel’s redesign of LGA1151, designed for Comet Lake CPUs). Basically, if you have an Intel processor introduced after 2008, you’re fine. AMD support is a little sparser. The cooler technically supports AM2 up to AM4, but the box only ships with mounting hardware for up to AM3. You’ll need a separate AM4 bracket. Thankfully, Corsair sells them for only a few dollars. There’s no RGB on this one, either, though you can control fan speed and monitor temperatures through Corsair’s iCue software.
Intel: LGA1200, LGA1151, LGA1150, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA2066, LGA2011-3, LGA2011
AMD: Am4, Am3+, AM3, AM2+, AM2, FM2+, FM2, FM1
157mm by 119. 6mm by 27. 2mm
Two Sickleflow 120RGB 120mm fans
650 to 1, 800 rpm
Cooler Master offers a range of “lite” AIOs, which are basically previous iterations of Cooler Master’s MasterLiquid line with increased socket support and double FEP tubing. At around $80, the Cooler Master ML240L v2 is the best budget AIO available. It comes with a 240mm radiator, two RGB fans, and a small RGB controller. Thermal performance isn’t great, and the noise level is higher than some more costly options. However, the ML240L clocks in around $50 cheaper than most competing 240mm AIOs. Plus, you can always swap the fans out later for more lighting options and slightly better noise levels.
The Cooler Master ML240L comes with nearly universal socket support, too. On Intel, it supports LGA1200, LGA20xx, LGA115x, and LGA1366, and on AMD, it supports AM2 to AM4, as well as FM2 and FM1. For the price, it’s hard to beat the ML240L.
Intel: LGA1200, LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA2011, LGA2011-3, LGA2066
275mm by 120mm by 27mm
Two EK-Vardar S 120ER D-RGB 120mm fans
550 to 2, 200 rpm
If you want the best RGB AIO cooler, the EK-AIO 240 D-RGB goes off the deep end. Short of a small black strip where the tubes connect, the mounting block has a translucent, slightly diffused surface, washing out the lights inside into a beautiful display of color. EK is the place for custom water cooling, and the EK-AIO 240 shows why.
When it comes to raw thermal performance, EK beats the Corsairs and NZXTs of the world. It includes two EK-Vardar S fans that run from 550 rpm to 2, 200 rpm and includes support for other RGB PC components through Asus Aura Sync, Gigabyte RGB Fusion, MSI Mystic Light, and ASRock RGB Sync for the fans and pump.
The EK-AIO 240 is a better option due to the fact that it’s inexpensive. At around $120, it’s cheaper than the 240mm counterpart at NZXT, and the same price as Corsair’s ever-popular H100i. Like a lot of the other options on this list, it’s available in 120mm and 360mm variants, too. On Intel, the EK-AIO 240 supports LGA115x and LGA20xx, as well as LGA1200. On AMD, it just includes an AM4 bracket. You can control the fans directly through your motherboard, but if you’re short on spots, you can pick up an EK-Loop Connect controller for another six PWM connections.
Intel: LGA1200, LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA2011, LGA2011-3, LGA2066, LGA1366
AMD: AM4, sTRX4, TR4
The NZXT Kraken Z63 is unnecessary at $250, but that’s the point. It’s basically the Kraken X53, just with a larger radiator and a useful LCD display on the pump. It may seem a little gimmicky, but the display allows you to quickly see critical metrics from NZXT’s CAM software, including your fan speed and temperature. If you don’t want to monitor anything, you can throw a GIF on the display for the 2021 equivalent of putting an action figure in your gaming computer.
The Z63 comes with a 280mm radiator, but NZXT offers 240mm and 360mm variations, too. Like the Kraken X53, the Z63 comes with two 140mm Aer P fans, and it supports most modern sockets. That includes TR4 for Threadripper, though you’ll need to pick up a separate Threadripper mounting bracket from NZXT for that.
A big part of the NZXT Kraken Z63‘s high price is the LCD display, but if you’re in the market for a premium cooler with flare to match, there isn’t a better option.
Intel: LGA775, LGA1056, LGA1155, LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA2011, LGA2011-3, LGA2066
AMD: AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1, FM2, FM2+, AM4
400mm by 124mm by 30mm
Three Alphacool 120mm PWM fans
800 to 2, 000 rpm
The Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora is a CPU cooler that you can refill. Unlike other AIO liquid coolers, you can swap out the fluid, upgrade the hoses and fittings, and even expand the loop. The most recent model supports digital RGB on the fans and CPU block, too, allowing you to trick out your lighting however you want.
The looks are right, but Alphacool didn’t sacrifice thermals with the Eisbaer Aurora. The radiator is made out of copper for a little extra cooling potential, and the nickel-plated copper CPU block has been slightly enlarged compared to previous versions. For CPU support, the Eisbaer Aurora supports most modern processors, though it doesn’t officially support Threadripper chips.
Frequently asked questions
What should you look for in an AIO cooler?
The most important part of an AIO CPU cooler is the radiator size. A larger radiator offers better cooling performance, but you need to make sure it can fit inside your case. Otherwise, look at the socket support to make sure you can use the cooler with your motherboard and buy from a reputable brand.
How reliable are RGB AIO coolers?
Most AIO coolers have a lifespan of six years, regardless of if they have RGB or not. You can expect an AIO cooler from a reputable brand to run for six years without issues, but every cooler is a little different. We recommend looking up individual AIO cooler reviews to see if others have had issues with reliability.
What should you know before you buy an AIO cooler?
Before buying an AIO cooler, you need to know about the risks it may pose to your PC. Although failures are few and far between, every AIO cooler is still putting water dangerously close to your precious PC components, so there’s always a risk that the cooler could leak or fail and damage your parts. The fact that AIO coolers are closed makes matters worse because you can’t open the loop to see if there are any problems.
The best way to mitigate risk is to keep an eye on your cooler to see if there are any signs of leaking, and to monitor your CPU temperature to see if the pump is failing. As long as you keep an eye on both, you can find most problems before they do any catastrophic damage.
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How Long Do AIO Coolers Last? Safety & Maintenance For Best
There are plenty of people out there who are afraid to use AIO coolers because they are afraid that they won’t last, that they will leak, or that they just won’t work as well as promised.
That’s a shame because AIO coolers are really great pieces of tech that can help you keep your system cool, especially if you are a gamer or you overclock your system.
AIO coolers (or All-In-One coolers) are quite popular for many reasons, largely because once the bulk of the work is done (installing it), you won’t have to do much other than look over them to see if they are operating correctly.
How Long Do AIO Coolers Last?
As long as you take care of your AIO cooler, it will last a good 5 to 7 years. Some people will get more time out of their coolers and other people will get less time. Manufacturers tend to rate their pumps to last up to 70, 000 hours, which is just around 8 years.
Do AIO Coolers Need Maintenance?
In order to get that lifespan out of your AIO cooler, you will need to do some maintenance. Customer water loops need a lot more maintenance than regular AIO coolers do: you will need to maintain everything.
With AIO coolers, you will need to ensure that the fans and the radiator are working properly and that they are free from dust, which tends to accumulate on them. This is one of the reasons why people love AIO coolers so much, you really don’t need to do all that much, and ensuring there isn’t dust on those parts takes just a few seconds and very little elbow grease to clean.
Do AIO Coolers Leak?
At some point, AIOs will all fail for one reason or another, but that doesn’t mean that it will leak. AIO coolers do not leak all that often, and your AIO is most likely going to fail because of an issue with the pump, not with leaking.
If leaking were a problem that happened often, you’d hear about it from more than a few people on the internet. Additionally, if there is a leak in your AIO cooler, you can report it to the manufacturer and the warranty should cover all of the damage.
Remember that AIO coolers have been designed so that nothing enters and nothing can come out. You cannot change the liquid inside the coolers, so ideally, nothing will be able to leak out either. This is why they are called “closed-loop” systems.
Corsair AIO Warranty
Corsair provides a warranty for all of its products, including AIO coolers, starting from the day of purchase from an authorized Corsair reseller. Each product will have its own warranty length that you can find in the user manual.
According to the website, their most popular products have the following warranties:
• Hydro Series products have a 5-year warranty
• Hydro X Series Core products (blocks, pumps, and radiators) have a limited 3-year warranty
• Hydro X Series Accessory products (coolant, tubing, and fittings) have a 2-year warranty
• ML Series products have a 5-year warranty
• Air Series products have a 2-year warranty
• All fan products have a 2-year warranty
Corsair’s warranty does not cover any hardware damage that comes from poorly installing the system, installing the system incorrectly, or any other issues related to installation or use of your custom water-cooling system.
If you disassemble your product and then try to put it back together, you will void your warranty as it is nearly impossible to do this by doing irreparable mechanical, electrical, or chemical damage.
AIO Cooling vs AIR For Gamers and Overclocking
If you are a gamer who overclocks on a regular basis, then you need to choose an AIO cooler. You will want to choose something that has a larger radiator because it will give you the best overall cooling performance.
How Reliable Are AIO Coolers?
AIO coolers are extremely reliable, far more reliable than customer water loops and air cooling. This is because custom water loops have many, many more places where they can fail and they require much more maintenance.
A custom water loop will require you to change the liquid on a fairly regular basis, maintain the reservoir, ensure that all of the fans are clean, and more. AIO coolers only require you to maintain the fans. They also have a much longer life than custom coolers.
What Do I Do If My AIO Cooler Leaks?
If your AIO cooler leaks, you are in a very rare situation, but that doesn’t mean that it is any less scary. You need to think about the safety of your hardware, first and foremost.
If your cooler leaks, you may be able to save your computer, depending on if you act quickly and how bad the leak is.
Whether you have a custom loop or an out of the box AIO, there are some steps you can take to keep your computer safe:
1. Start by completely turning your computer off as soon as you can: meaning as soon as you entice the leak. Don’t try to shut it down the normal way. Instead, either shut it off by pulling it out of the wall or by cutting the power to it in some way. Unplug it and leave it unplugged. The sooner you can do this, the more likely you will be able to save it.
2. Clean up all of the liquid that you see with a towel that doesn’t give off lint. Depending on how severe the problem is, you may need to remove components and try to dry them individually.
3. Check over every component for any residue that you may see or any damage that is visible to the eye. You may want to clean components with rubbing alcohol because the water can sometimes cause your computer to short circuit.
4. Keep everything out in the open and dry for at least 72 hours before you try to put everything back together and turn your computer on to see if anything was damaged.
5. Be sure to look over your equipment again and use another towel to remove any dust that has accumulated in the last three days.
When you put everything back in its place, be sure to use best practices and go slowly. Patience is really the key to recovering from an AIO leak. If you have suffered damage because of the leak, your warranty should cover the problems.
If you have a custom water loop, you may not be covered with a warranty. This is why custom loops aren’t suggested unless you really know what you are doing and you are willing to take the risks. Remember that custom loops require you to do a lot of maintenance.
Should I Get An AIO Cooler?
If you are on the fence about getting an AIO cooler, you definitely should. Do not be afraid to get one simply because you are afraid of leakage. The cooler performance is so much better, especially if you are going to overclock for gaming. Additionally, they look pretty cool on your gaming set-up as well.
They fit better into cases and air coolers have clearance issues that AIO coolers don’t typically have (but some can, so be sure to look at measurements). Some people prefer them because they don’t put weight on the motherboard and damage it, as they hang from the case.
Simply put, AIO coolers look great and perform better than any other type of cooling.
Overall, standard AIO systems are easy to install, easy to maintain, last a long time, and have a significant impact on the internal temperature of your system. They don’t leak all that often and if they do, your warranty should cover it. All in all, a win-win situation for most users.
Frequently Asked Questions about aio review
Are AIO reliable?
AIO coolers are extremely reliable, far more reliable than customer water loops and air cooling. This is because custom water loops have many, many more places where they can fail and they require much more maintenance.
What is the most reliable AIO?
The best AIO cooler is the NZXT Kraken X63. This 280mm liquid cooler from NZXT is our pick if you’re looking for a seriously good all-rounder. The virtually silent fans on the radiator have fluid-dynamic bearings, giving them a longer lifespan and quieter operation than any other fan technology.Oct 1, 2021