Best CPU Coolers of 2018 – The Best CPU Air Coolers For Gaming
On the hunt for the best CPU cooler for your rig? We have some good suggestions for you. Since there is a ton of variety among the best CPU coolers – there truly is something for everyone. If you’re trying to save a few bucks, there are loads of great air-based solutions that you can get some great thermal performance out of. The best CPU coolers come in every shape and size and we’ve tested and compiled the list of best CPU coolers in the market for 2018.
be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 3 – $89.90
For $89.90, be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 3 is one of the most affordable CPU coolers you can buy. Given, too, that most online stores offer a rebate on this fan, the Dark Rock Pro 3 is a prodigious value.
Being one of the quietest air coolers on the market, the Dark Rock Pro gives the NH-D15 a run for its money in terms of clean performance. Also, it’s about the same weight and price as Noctua’s top cooler.
- The Dark Rock Pro comes with two Silent Wings PWM fans—120mm and 135mm—and supports an extra 120mm fan. Plus, it looks a lot more stylish than the NH-D15’s beige and brown color scheme
- Noise is 26 dBA even at 100 percent PWM function
- It does operate under the PWM control, so has more variability in speed than a voltage controlled fan. So far it is indeed quite, quieter than the very quiet case fans
Noctua NH-D15 – $89.95
You might not be overly familiar with Noctua’s name, they’re relatively small in the CPU cooler game, but their entire business is centered around designing coolers, so you know that when you buy one of their products, you’re getting a product by people who really know their craft.
- Excellent component cooling
- Asymmetrical design for high compatibility
- Dual NF-A15 PWM 140mm fan setup
- 6 heat pipe dual radiator design
Cryorig R1 Ultimate CR-R1A – $89.99
The R1 Ultimate is packaged in a very large, attractive box that has a foil-stamped Cryorig logo, as well as a large image of the R1 Ultimate with the fans installed from a top-down view. A brief product blurb denotes that “The R1 Ultimate Dual Tower cooler is the apex of air cooling of cooling innovation and design, with two XF140 low noise high-performance fans.” The box is very colorful, with a rainbow of color running along a stripe on the bottom side.
- Direct Compress Soldering for 10% more contact surface compared to traditional soldering and the more contact surface the faster the heat conduction.
- Heatpipe Displacement Optimization spread heat conduction on the fins more compared to traditional linear alignment.
- The increase of airflow speed in Jet Fin Acceleration SystemTM allows heated air to leave the tower faster.
- Heatpipe Convex-Align System allows for more heat pipes in a given area, optimized heat pipe placement in the copper base, and improved alignment with your CPU.
NZXT Kraken X62 – $156.29
With the brushed metal head unit, the tinted top lens, quite the RGB LED show, sleeved tubes, and a sleek looking radiator with the NZXT name molded into the sides of it.
The new Kraken coolers do bring it stylistically, but at the heart of these offerings, it is the CAM software and a new way of looking at how to make an AIO perform better that will swing many customers. Using CAM, you have full control of everything from the fan speeds, to the pump speeds, and of course, this is also where you can set the LEDs to work just about any ways you can conceive of having them illuminate. NZXT chooses to adjust the speed of the pump, forcing coolant through the system faster to keep temperatures at bay.
- Individually addressable RGB and infinite mirror design
- CAM Powered for complete software control
- Includes Aer P radiator-optimized fan
- Advanced lighting modes for a fully dynamic lighting experience
- Reinforced, extended tubing for increased durability
- Industry-leading 6-year warranty
Corsair Hydro Series H60 – $59.99
The Corsair Hydro Series H60 is a fantastic choice for cooling. With a micro-channel cold plate and a split-flow designed manifold, the H60 brings remarkable technologies to an affordable price point. If that weren’t enough, the H60 also features a fan custom-designed to offer enhanced static pressure, which means better cooling.
- The modular design makes installation simpler, and it’s compatible with Intel and AMD processors
- Minimal coolant evaporation helps ensure long life, and the flexible design gives you better leak protection and makes installation easier in tight spaces
- The 120mm fan incorporates custom-engineered blades for better static pressure to noise ratio, offering improved performance at lower noise levels
- Copper has better thermal conductivity for more efficient heat transfer to the manifold. Pre-applied thermal compound lets you save a potentially messy installation step