AIO newbie here- what stores or websites have good reviews?

philb2

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My rig is based on an ASUS X570 Strix-E, AMD 3900X CPU, and 32 GB RAM. I'm still using the stock AMD Wraith cooler. I'm tired of how the stock cooler spins up and then spins down after just a few seconds, and does that a lot. I'm running on stock settings, no overclocking except AMD PBO. So I am finally ready to pull the trigger on an AIO cooling solution. I bought and had to return an Arctic Cooler Freezer II 420 because it would not fit my Phanteks Enthoo Pro case for a top mount. I have carefully measured clearances for radiator and pump so I don't make that mistake again.

I like do to my own research. I have been looking at various AIO coolers on Newegg. How much credibility is there with the reviews on Newegg (or Amazon, etc.)? Any good review sites? Do I believe every 1-star review by someone who had a bad experience on install, or a failed pump after a short time?

Of course, I'm interested in suggestions from the guys here, Any recommended vendors? Any vendors to avoid? Since my case has solid sides, no windows, RGB lighting is not something I can really use. And I would like to spend under $200.

In advance, thanks.
 

Zepher

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there is software that can adjust the fan curve so that it doesn't ramp up and down at the slightest increase in load.

But for AIO's, I I've been using Corsair for over a decade now with no issues with any of them. I installed a Corsair H100i Pro RGB on my friends 3900X 3 years ago and he hasn't had any issues.
If you go with Corsair, you an choose the Elite or older XT models that don't come with RGB fans
https://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Dynamic-Radiator-Software-Compatible/dp/B09YC9FZ8M
1670737748968.png
 

pavel

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drutman

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Arctic Cooling AIOs have a 6-year warranty. Does the NZXT's?


Corsair is all over - in all the big box stores, computer stores etc. - but, are overrated, imho. They're kinda loud (from review) and the proprietary/closed software is pretty bad.
NZXT software is telemetry heavy too.
 
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SeymourGore

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Not sure what fans Corsair units are going with these days, but when I used one, I switched out my SP for ML fans and noticed a fan noise improvement.
 

Zepher

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Not sure what fans Corsair units are going with these days, but when I used one, I switched out my SP for ML fans and noticed a fan noise improvement.
Some models come with ML's. My platinum came with ML RBG fans, I have a used Capellix and I think that one has ML RGB as well, it's sitting on the shelf, haven't had a chance to install it.
 

pavel

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Do you guys use a fan controller - argb controller for e.g.? Sorry, if this is a dumb question.
 

Zepher

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Do you guys use a fan controller - argb controller for e.g.? Sorry, if this is a dumb question.
I use a Corsair Commander Pro for my case fans, radiator fans are controlled by the AIO.
The Commander Pro is also used to control the lighting on all the fans and RGB Strips.
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Nenu

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Arctic Cooling AIOs have a 6-year warranty. Does the NZXT's?

The 6yr warranty is only for the fans, I found out after I bought one just over 2 yrs ago, when digging a little deeper.
Its still a great AIO though but my foggy memory says warranty is 2 years.
tbh I'm amazed I remembered that much with 3 Christmas' having passed since :)
 

pavel

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The 6yr warranty is only for the fans, I found out after I bought one just over 2 yrs ago, when digging a little deeper.
Its still a great AIO though but my foggy memory says warranty is 2 years.
tbh I'm amazed I remembered that much with 3 Christmas' having passed since :)
I tried some digging but I'm not sure where you got that.....????
 

Nenu

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I tried some digging but I'm not sure where you got that.....????

Interesting.
The last time I looked at the details at the page bottom, only the fan section mentioned 6yr warranty, and the fans sold separately had 6yrs too, but nothing else.
https://www.arctic.de/en/Liquid-Freezer-II-420/ACFRE00092A
It now looks like the whole unit has 6yrs.
I wonder if this applies to mine too...


Ahaa, just found this undated article on their website:
https://www.arctic.de/en/blog/extended-warranty-period-for-all-liquid-freezer-ii-coolers
Out of conviction, we are extending the warranty of our top Liquid Freezer II water cooling series to a full six years from the date of purchase. And we‘re going one step further by granting the extension not only going forward, but also retroactively for all coolers that have already been purchased.

So yep, you are right, they now have a full 6yrs :)
 

Zepher

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Interesting.
The last time I looked at the details at the page bottom, only the fan section mentioned 6yr warranty, and the fans sold separately had 6yrs too, but nothing else.
https://www.arctic.de/en/Liquid-Freezer-II-420/ACFRE00092A
It now looks like the whole unit has 6yrs.
I wonder if this applies to mine too...


Ahaa, just found this undated article on their website:
https://www.arctic.de/en/blog/extended-warranty-period-for-all-liquid-freezer-ii-coolers


So yep, you are right, they now have a full 6yrs :)

I think that happened after Gamers Nexus and others found flaws with the coolers if this is the line with gasket that degrades and could cause issues with cooling.

 

pavel

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I think that happened after Gamers Nexus and others found flaws with the coolers if this is the line with gasket that degrades and could cause issues with cooling.


Right - I checked their website and they now have 'QC checks' printed on their boxes - which refers to that flaw. GN gave them positive feedback for at least conceding the problem, attending to it and rectifying it as well. I thought that was a bit worrisome but it appears that they fixed it and if not, at least there's the 6-year warranty - although the last thing I'd want to do is deal with that problem.
 

RanceJustice

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Thought this was a good thread - last I checked that the vast majority of AIOs are more or less rebrands of the same (Asetek?) cooler thanks to patents, with different fans, RGB or lack thereof, and controller software. NZXT, Corsair, BeQuiet, EKWB, etc... pretty much every 'standard looking' AIO out there with a 27" thickness aluminum radiator + the pump+block assembly (with or without a little LCD screen on it depending on model). There are a very few exceptions to this - the one of which I am aware is the Arctic Cooling Liquid Freezer II (noted above), which has a 38mm thickness aluminum radiator and the CPU block+ pump looks different than any of the mainline asetek ones. When I checked it was the highest performance AIO, but it was made during the past hardware generation so I am not sure how it will stand up to Zen4 / Raptor Lake systems. I'm curious myself if there has been any development in this arena, but it can be sometimes difficult to pick apart the small differences between similar kits (ie sometimes better/more fans will make one better than the other but the core setup itself is dependent on what revision of the asetek model design it was, the power of the pump etc.. and these things are not usually made clear) much less how the stand against the few different ones like the Arctic.
 

Nenu

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Thought this was a good thread - last I checked that the vast majority of AIOs are more or less rebrands of the same (Asetek?) cooler thanks to patents, with different fans, RGB or lack thereof, and controller software. NZXT, Corsair, BeQuiet, EKWB, etc... pretty much every 'standard looking' AIO out there with a 27" thickness aluminum radiator + the pump+block assembly (with or without a little LCD screen on it depending on model). There are a very few exceptions to this - the one of which I am aware is the Arctic Cooling Liquid Freezer II (noted above), which has a 38mm thickness aluminum radiator and the CPU block+ pump looks different than any of the mainline asetek ones. When I checked it was the highest performance AIO, but it was made during the past hardware generation so I am not sure how it will stand up to Zen4 / Raptor Lake systems. I'm curious myself if there has been any development in this arena, but it can be sometimes difficult to pick apart the small differences between similar kits (ie sometimes better/more fans will make one better than the other but the core setup itself is dependent on what revision of the asetek model design it was, the power of the pump etc.. and these things are not usually made clear) much less how the stand against the few different ones like the Arctic.
Radiator size primarily and max fan speed determine the power handling, assuming the CPU block is decent for a larger rad - which it is on Arctics.

If you need higher power handling get a larger radiator version.
If that wont fit in your case put it outside the case or get a case that will take it.
 

RanceJustice

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Radiator size primarily and max fan speed determine the power handling, assuming the CPU block is decent for a larger rad - which it is on Arctics.

If you need higher power handling get a larger radiator version.
If that wont fit in your case put it outside the case or get a case that will take it.
Thanks,, I'm just trying to sort out any differences in design and overall capability. I'm likely to pick up a 360mm rad version and thankfully my cases are capable of such a thing without any problem. I'm just looking at any developments in the AIO sphere over the last year and especially since the arrival of the current-gen CPUs to see what makes the best option to handle (at most) overclocking an AMD 7950X or 7950X3D . Last I checked the Arctic was one of the best thanks to the thickness of the radiator at 38mm vs the standard 27mm for AIOs, and the nice pump and CPU block, but since I've seen possible reports of others, such the Alphacool Eisbaer line (which at least on the high end seem to have full copper radiators, but because of this plus the rarity in the US can be quite expensive. Also I think the Extreme is only in 280mm not 360mm? ) and perhaps a few others worth a look.
 

evhvis

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Thought this was a good thread - last I checked that the vast majority of AIOs are more or less rebrands of the same (Asetek?) cooler thanks to patents, with different fans, RGB or lack thereof, and controller software. NZXT, Corsair, BeQuiet, EKWB, etc... pretty much every 'standard looking' AIO out there with a 27" thickness aluminum radiator + the pump+block assembly (with or without a little LCD screen on it depending on model). There are a very few exceptions to this - the one of which I am aware is the Arctic Cooling Liquid Freezer II (noted above), which has a 38mm thickness aluminum radiator and the CPU block+ pump looks different than any of the mainline asetek ones. When I checked it was the highest performance AIO, but it was made during the past hardware generation so I am not sure how it will stand up to Zen4 / Raptor Lake systems. I'm curious myself if there has been any development in this arena, but it can be sometimes difficult to pick apart the small differences between similar kits (ie sometimes better/more fans will make one better than the other but the core setup itself is dependent on what revision of the asetek model design it was, the power of the pump etc.. and these things are not usually made clear) much less how the stand against the few different ones like the Arctic.
EK-WB use different pump and radiators than asetek based ones and seems to be getting closer to custom loop performance based on the reviews of their newest line. Their old pump was most likely a bit better than the Asetek ones and my guess is that they stepped it up a bit with both waterblock and pump in the new line. Artic Cooling would be another brand that stands out in the AIO market IMO. Artic Cooling also makes non-asetek AIOs. Those two are probably the top brands performance wise atm. with EK's new line looking like it is a bit ahead of Artic Cooling.
 

pavel

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EK-WB use different pump and radiators than asetek based ones and seems to be getting closer to custom loop performance based on the reviews of their newest line. Their old pump was most likely a bit better than the Asetek ones and my guess is that they stepped it up a bit with both waterblock and pump in the new line. Artic Cooling would be another brand that stands out in the AIO market IMO. Artic Cooling also makes non-asetek AIOs. Those two are probably the top brands performance wise atm. with EK's new line looking like it is a bit ahead of Artic Cooling.
What new line? What would be a few models and where are they available?
 

rhkcommander959

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Thought this was a good thread - last I checked that the vast majority of AIOs are more or less rebrands of the same (Asetek?) cooler thanks to patents, with different fans, RGB or lack thereof, and controller software. NZXT, Corsair, BeQuiet, EKWB, etc... pretty much every 'standard looking' AIO out there with a 27" thickness aluminum radiator + the pump+block assembly (with or without a little LCD screen on it depending on model).

I came here to say just this!

The biggest difference will be the fans. If you want control over RGB, Corsair has done it the best IMHO, but you could mix and match with their fans on anothers' LCD-screened AIO too, I don't think corsair has an lcd AIO yet but I haven't checked lately.

280mm or 360mm for high end modern CPUs
 
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