Best AIO cooler for CPUs

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These are the best liquid chip chillers to suit all budgets, form factors, and processors.

The best AIO coolers make water-cooling your CPU a breeze. What was once a complicated and slightly daunting process of running water-filled tubes between your components has been simplified to an all-in-one unit that’s often easier to fit than the best air coolers.

A good quality AIO cooler not only keeps your rig cool and quiet but can also directly impact the performance of your system thanks to the way the turbo modes of modern CPUs work, which is why they regularly top our all-encompassing Best CPU coolers list. But there are hundreds of coolers to choose from. Where to begin?

What follows is a list of our favourite AIO coolers, all of which have been tested by us. We know our readers have different wants and needs, so we’ve picked a range of options to suit all budgets and use cases. Which one you go for will depend on your particular needs. There’s a lot to consider; there’s the radiator size and case compatibility, the cooling capacity, value for money, noise levels, reliability, and yes, looks are important too. 

Perhaps the most important consideration of all is choosing one that will fit your case. Can it house larger radiators? You’ll also want to choose a cooler that can handle the TDP of your processor. A 120mm cooler is a no-no with an AMD Ryzen 9 5950X or Intel Core i9 12900K. Do you overclock? Are low noise levels a priority or is cooling ability your main concern? You’ll want to look at the fan specifications and noise ratings. 

Once you’ve settled on a list of criteria, then you can consider whether you want RGB or not or whether you have other components from the same manufacturer (so you don’t have to install yet another control app). Some AIOs even come with LCD or OLED screens atop the pump, so you can really tailor your own unique look. They’re pretty, but pricey.

Best AIO coolers

1. EK-AIO Basic 240

A step up from even the best air coolers

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Socket support: Intel LGA: 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1200, 2011, 2011-3, 2066, AMD AM4
  • compatibleScale: 240mmFull radiator
  • dimensions: 275 x 120 x 27mmFan
  • speeds: 550–2200RPM
  • Noise level: Up to 33.5dB(A)

REASONS TO BUY

  • Cooling performance nips at the heels of 360mm coolers
  • Good value for money
  • No RGB

REASONS TO AVOID : If cooler aesthetics bother you at all, it is rather plain-looking

In the world of liquid cooling, EK is a name that needs little introduction. The EK Basic series focuses on value for money and performance. Plus, it doesn’t feature any RGB at all, which helps to keep the pricing down too. If this appeals to you then the EK AIO Basic 240 is well worth a look.

The EK Basic 240 really stands out thanks to its build quality. It’s hefty and well built. The included EK- Vardar fans are very good and have a wide operating speed range. It’s good to have some high-speed headroom on tap if you need it. Most of the time it stays essentially silent.

What really impresses us is the cooling performance on offer. We find it goes very close to 360mm levels of cooling capability, It does get noisy if you try to push an overclocked Rocket Lake CPU, but then pretty much every other cooler does too.

The EK-AIO basic 240 is perfect for builds with a stealthy focus or closed case builds where lighting doesn’t matter. With its build quality and high performance, it’s a cooler that you can surely set and forget, out of sight, out of mind and out of earshot.

2. Deepcool Gammaxx L240 V2

Awesome bang for buck 240mm liquid cooling

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Socket support: Intel LGA20XX, LGA1366, LGA1200, 115X, AMD AM4, AM3, AM2, FM2, FM1
  • Scale: 240mm
  • Full radiator dimensions: 280 x 120 x 27mm
  • Fan speeds: 500–1800RPM
  • Noise level: Up to 30dB(A)

REASONS TO BUY

+Terrific value

+Good cooling ability

+Effectively silent at idle

REASONS TO AVOID

-Can get loud under significant CPU load

Deepcool is well known for its capable AIOs at affordable prices, and the Gammaxx L240 V2 is one of the cheaper 240mm coolers on the market. That makes it a great option for users looking to step up from air cooling into the world of AIO cooling.

The Gammaxx 240mm features basic RGB lighting on the pump head and fans. There’s a more expensive ARGB version should you really want it. Deepcool likes to talk about its ‘Anti leak technology’ which seeks to maintain an optimal pressure balance inside the loop. Which certainly can’t hurt.

The Gammaxx 240 is capable of cooling most processors, too, though like many of the chip chillers on this list it draws the line at AMD’s Threadripper beasts. But it keeps the rest running with remarkably low noise levels, which is one of the main reasons we recommend it. 

At idle the L240 is effectively silent. As you’d expect, you will start to see an increase in temperatures and noise levels with high TDP processors, especially when overclocking. Our 5800X CPU with PBO enabled is about the maximum we’d consider appropriate for a 240mm cooler. Under load, the fans can and do ramp up quite a bit.

If you’re after a 240mm AIO that’s inexpensive and quiet under less demanding loads, then the Deepcool Gammaxx L240 is a great choice. Sure, it’s noise levels can get high if you push it hard, but at this price it comes highly recommended.

3. Corsair Hydro Series H60 V2

Liquid cooling at air cooling prices

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Socket support: Intel LGA 1200, 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1366, 2011, 2066, AMD AM4, AM3 & AM2
  • Scale: 120mm
  • Full radiator dimensions: 157 x 120 x 27mm
  • Fan speeds: Up to 1700RPM
  • Noise level: Up to 28.3dB(A)

REASONS TO BUY

+Good performance for its small radiator size

+Generally quiet operation

+Very affordable

REASONS TO AVOID

-Would struggle with super high-end CPUs

The Corsair H60 has been around for some time. Over the years it’s seen its tubing, fan, pump and mounting upgraded. The 120mm AIO form factor won’t suit everyone, but those who require a compact cooler to suit something like a small volume ITX build will find it can perform as well as a decent mid-range air cooler. Notably, it lacks RGB, though there is some white lighting around the head.

The H60 V2 is well suited to processors under about the 95w level. Sure, it will be beaten out by a decent tower cooler or AIO with a larger radiator, but their dimensions often rule them out of SFF builds. Heat is the enemy of an SFF system, so the H60’s ability to eject hot air outside the case will benefit the whole system. Corsair includes its SP PWM fan, which operates at speeds of between 600 RPM (at which level it really is silent) up to 1700 RPM. It becomes clearly audible at that point.

The Corsair H60 V2 is perfect for a compact system. It’s affordable and should outperform most low-profile air coolers and doing so without having to resort to unreasonable noise levels. It won’t suit a high core count or overclocked processor, but then you shouldn’t expect it to. With the right partnering components, it’s an easy recommendation.

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