Upgrade to water cooling now!
Standard CPU Heatsink
For many years, air cooling is the standard in cooling computer components from overheating. Helps get rid of excess heat and lengthens your systems lifespan considerably. Because of this long time span, the idea of cooling your rig had enough time to evolve into various types, styles and sizes. Some methods I’m referring to are submerged cooling, open chassis cooling, custom water loop cooling, or all in one water cooling. Like any other technology, there will always be a newer, performs better than the old. I’ll only focus on one component that I feel like needs the highest priority when it comes to cooling, the CPU.
Next level cooling
Some users might argue that it may not be necessary to purchase a new CPU cooler that it’ll be just a waste of money. But you should always consider upgrading the stock cooler, even if it’s with just another air cooler. Stock coolers tend to perform poorly compared to larger sized air coolers with more efficient fans. But there is a draw back on that as well; large CPU coolers tend to stress out your motherboard because of their weight. And on top of that, dealing with dust build ups won’t be a fun process either. To solve this problem, I would highly recommend liquid cooling. I know what you’re thinking, water inside my system = bad news. There are two kinds of water cooling set ups; one way is a fully custom water loop that you’d have to put together all the parts yourself. This method isn’t recommended to just anyone, configuring this kind of setup takes time and experience; it’ll also require high maintenance in the future. Then there’s the more “set it and forget it” route, which doesn’t require years of experience to install while drastically improving your CPU’s heat performance. I’m referring to All-In-One water coolers. You only need to install it once and won’t require maintaining it constantly in the future. It’s the ideal route to take if you’re looking to explore and get into water cooling. The liquid used is a low conductive mixture that loops from the radiator to the CPU block which dissipates heat faster than air cooling does. Not only will the CPU run cooler at idle and under load, but it will also improve the overall airflow of the system by giving you tons of space to work with. Not to mention, it will reduce the noise coming from your computer considerably.
Because of the difficulty of building a system with a full water loop set up, we at Antec released our Kuhler H20 series, pre-built liquid coolers which are now known as Closed-loop liquid cooling systems. The pump, reservoir, tubing, radiator and a fan is all part of one system and doesn’t require the end user to assemble anything. These systems are pre-filled and ready to go; all you really need to do is mount it in your chassis and turn it on. These have relatively low maintenance requirement will last a long time. If you don’t have the time to get into complex liquid cooling systems, I recommend upgrading to closed loop coolers, it’ll bring get you the joy of liquid cooled system at a fraction of a cost and step away from the traditional air coolers.
One of the major concerns on these AIO coolers is leakage. Leaks are very rare, especially on closed-loop systems, but they do happen. All users must be aware of this and take precautions to avoid this. At times, they occur when installation instructions are not properly followed. For example, bending the tubing too much can cause cracks which will turn into leaks. Using longer screws than intended can puncture a radiator core during the mounting process. Or it could be just bad batch of parts, quality control issues or other manufacturing defects. Having that said, don’t be discourage! Those will never happen to high quality AIO liquid coolers; I highly recommend doing research before purchasing one. Bottom line is if you’re not prepared to deal with this low-risk factor of liquid cooling system, then it’s best to stick with air cooled components, but you will be missing out with all the benefits I mentioned from water cooling.
Generally the reasoning behind a water cooling system is not so much to improve your overclocking capabilities and break records any time soon. But to lower the temperatures to a more comfortable level under load, as well as reduce noise significantly. I’ll be honest, to some users, the only reason they upgrade to water cooling is that liquid coolers just sounds and looks “COOLER” than a standard air cooler. It is mainly used for aesthetics, showing off the components insider their rig through windowed side panel. I have no problem with that, if you worked hard on it, might as well show it off right? So there’s always two sides on everything, liquid coolers have the “cool factor” side and of course the superior performance and benefits overall. Bottom line is, it’s much better to cool with liquid coolers because the heat builds up slower in liquid (heat transfers more efficiently to liquid than air) and it’s faster to cool CPU blocks with liquids than air.
Kuhler 1250: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835209080