Keep Your Gaming PC Cool with the Best Liquid CPU Coolers
You don’t actually have to get super technical to give you CPU liquid cooling. Thanks to a wide variety of all-in-one (AIO) liquid coolers on the market, adding a closed-loop liquid cooler to your processor is simple. When you compare it to some of the big and bulky air coolers, these AIO liquid coolers can even be easier to install, as you don’t have to try mounting a heavy metal heatsink onto the top of your CPU. Instead, you’ll be attaching a smaller water block onto your CPU and mounting the larger radiator elsewhere in your gaming PC.AIO liquid coolers have some major benefits, too. The limited space they need around the CPU itself means you’re free to install taller sticks of RAM. Liquid coolers can also do a better job cooling your CPU while also producing less noise than many air coolers. So, if you’re ready to get wet with an AIO cooler (figuratively; your AIO liquid cooler shouldn’t leak!), here are our top picks.
TL;DR – These are the Best Liquid CPU Coolers:
1. Corsair Hydro Series H100i Pro
Best Liquid CPU Cooler
Corsair Hydro Series H100i Pro
Corsair has been a mainstay maker of AIO liquid coolers for nearly two decades now and all that expertise has led to the Corsair Hydro Series H100i Pro. The Hydro series is very popular for a variety of reasons, including easy installation, excellent performance, low-noise, and a reliable pump.
The company’s latest cooler combines a copper plate and aluminum radiator for serious cooling potential. As a 240mm, it should also fit any setup from full tower PC cases to even some Mini ITX cases.
2. Deepcool Captain 240 Pro V2
Best Budget Liquid CPU Cooler
Deepcool Captain 240 Pro V2
Coming in at a reasonably low $ 139 price, the Deepcool Captain 240 Pro V2 is a great liquid CPU cooler that keeps up with much more expensive products. It looks like few other AIO coolers on the market too, thanks to a clock dial face on the pump.
While that pump design is a pretty unique feature, so is the coolers RGB implementation at this price. All the lights on the cooler and its fans are fully addressable, so you’ll be able to take full control over the color and patterns of your illumination.
3. NZXT Kraken X53
Best 240mm Liquid CPU Cooler
NZXT Kraken X53
The NZXT Kraken X53 is the successor to our longtime favorite NZXT Kraken X52 that features some major improvements to look better and cool more efficiently. It comes fitted with Asetek’s latest 7th generation, so you’re getting the best flow and longest reliability compared to other cooler equipped with older water pumps. In our personal experience, we’ve seen this cooler have no problem keeping an Intel Core i7-9700K running well under 50-degrees celsius.
On top of all the cooling performance you get out of the NZXT Kraken X53, it still features the most unique looking infinity mirror lighting setup. Thanks to some optical trickery, this cooler can create seemingly unlimited rings of RGB lighting that go on forever. We’ve featured the 240mm X53 here, but the Kraken series is also available in all sorts of sizes from 120mm to 360mm.
4. EVGA CLC 280mm
Best 280mm Liquid CPU Cooler
Evga has recently been breaking into all kinds of new hardware territory and is a newcomer to the closed-loop cooling market. Still, the company knows how to craft some sweet hardware, and its new 280 CLC is one of the best bang for the buck models available. It utilizes a 280mm radiator with twin whisper-quiet fans, and also has beautifully designed LED integration on the water block.
Topping it all off is its killer software dubbed EVGA Flow Control, which allows you to control the fans, RGB lighting on the block, and the pump RPM as well. The pump is built with Asetek’s Gen5 pump technology, which is known for its reliability and efficiency. At around $ 115, the performance, noise, and quality are well worth it, and it is one of the best values in the market right now.
5. Thermaltake Water 3.0 Triple Riing
Best 360mm Liquid CPU Cooler
Thermaltake Water 3.0
Thermaltake’s WATER 3.0 is the Cadillac of closed-loop cooling if your Cadillac has LED ground effects and flashy rims. Thermaltake’s offering is slightly pricier than other options, but you’re getting top-shelf cooling thanks to its 360mm high-efficiency radiator, three thermal design power fans, and a highly reliable pump. Plus, just look at it!
6. Cooler Master MasterLiquid ML240P Mirage
Best RGB Liquid CPU Cooler
Cooler Master MasterLiquid ML240P Mirage
Let’s be real, as important as keeping your CPU cool is, we all really buy liquid CPU coolers for their RGB lighting. If you’re ready to accept that truth, you should consider the Cooler Master MasterLiquid ML240P Mirage.
This AIO cooler is fully lit like none other with a transparent pump design that lets you see your liquid cooling work in real-time. Combined with all the zany RGB effects you can program on the exterior of the pump and fans, and this is one of the most hypnotizing things you can add to your fully RGB gaming PC.
7. Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora
Best Refillable Liquid CPU Cooler
Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora
The Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora offers just about everything you could want in an AIO water cooler. It features a 240mm radiator to provide plenty of cooling performance, and the radiator is paired with two 120mm Aurora Lux Pro fans capable of 60 CFM of airflow. There’s a healthy dose of RGB lighting on display here as well. Both fans offer rings of RGB lighting while the pump includes a transparent window with RGB lighting inside. And, of course, this cooler sets itself apart because you can refill the fluid inside to extend its useful lifespan.
8. NZXT Kraken Z63
Best Liquid CPU Cooler with a Display
NZXT Kraken Z63
In the last couple of years, multiple manufacturers have tried to popularize liquid CPU coolers with screens embedded in them to varying success. But leave it to NZXT to perfect the idea with the gorgeous Kraken Z63.
Rather than just showing off rainbow circles in an infinite mirror, this flagship NZXT features an LCD screen you can use to show important information like your CPU and GPU temperatures. Alternatively, this little screen is also great for displaying completely unimportant things like animated GIFs. Aesthetics aside, this cooler comes equipped with a pair of strong 140mm fans and Asetek’s latest water pump.
9. ekwb EK-AIO 240 D-RGB
Best High-Performance Liquid Cooler
ekwb EK-AIO 240 D-RGB
EKWaterBlocks has your high-performance gaming rig covered with its capable EK-AIO 240 D-RGB cooler. It’s ready to use right out of the box on Intel and AMD systems, and it’s compatible with the RGB control of many motherboards. Both of the included fans and the water block offer RGB lighting, so your rig won’t just stay cool but will also look cool. The included Vardar S 120mm fans can produce 2.89 mmH2O of static pressure and 66 CFM airflow to ensure the 240mm radiator can consistently releases heat from your system. The hoses on this kit are especially flexible, letting you bend and fit them into even cramped cases while the nylon sleeve around each hose keeps it safe from damage.
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