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Are budget liquid coolers better than comparable air cooling?

Last response: in Overclocking
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July 6, 2012 8:12:46 PM

I've got a Phenom II X4 955 and I've caught the overclocking bug. Currently I have a Xigmatek Loki 92mm CPU cooler with a second 92mm fan attached, but I'm looking to upgrade :D  . I guess I'm looking for opinions on whether entry level liquid coolers like an Antec Kuhler 620 or a Corsair H60 would be that much better than, say, a hyper 212 EVO? Would either of these options be significantly better than the cooler I have? Here are some numbers...

3.8 GHz @ 1.3875V = 27C idle, 55C max with small FFTs on prime95.

Thanks y'all!

Augray
a b K Overclocking
July 6, 2012 8:21:59 PM

about the best you will get with phenom II quad is 4GHz, and my EVO gets about the same temps @4005MHz @1.45V

so if you want to, i would recommend the 212 + or evo, but is it really worth the cost?

and if you have a c2 stepping phenom then your probably at your limit anyways
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July 6, 2012 8:54:28 PM

I know, but something a little quieter would be nice, and idk, something about hitting 4GHz would be really cool to me. I have a c3 by the way.
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a c 150 K Overclocking
July 6, 2012 9:37:58 PM

No it wouldn't be better than an EVO.
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a b K Overclocking
July 6, 2012 11:44:42 PM

212+/evo are very quiet coolers
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July 7, 2012 12:23:40 AM

so if it's no better than air cooling and more expensive, then what's the point?
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a c 150 K Overclocking
July 7, 2012 12:42:58 AM

Augray37 said:
so if it's no better than air cooling and more expensive, then what's the point?

They want to market to people who don't know about REAL watercooling.

All-in-ones like the Corsair H series and Antec H20 series are "fake" watercooling devices. Not real ones [:lutfij:4]
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July 7, 2012 1:08:35 AM

I believe anything less than a Corsair H100 is a joke, and spending like half the price of the processor on a cooler is also a joke.

the point.., because they can!

just my 2 cents
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a c 150 K Overclocking
July 7, 2012 1:35:33 AM

The Corsair H100 is a joke.
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July 7, 2012 1:51:58 AM

_Brute_Force_ said:
I believe anything less than a Corsair H100 is a joke, and spending like half the price of the processor on a cooler is also a joke.

the point.., because they can!

just my 2 cents


Yeah cuz 4.5GHz OC on i7-2600k while keeping temp in the 60's witht he evo 212 during stress test must be fake. Actualy I wouldn't suggets anyone to use these hybrid solution. Air cooling or real water cooling.
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a b K Overclocking
July 7, 2012 3:41:22 AM

_Brute_Force_ said:
I believe anything less than a Corsair H100 is a joke, and spending like half the price of the processor on a cooler is also a joke.

the point.., because they can!

just my 2 cents


the noctua NH-D14 is $30 less than the H100, and gives the same performance
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July 7, 2012 10:54:47 AM

sorry guys, should've made myself a bit more clear, I was strictly talking about liquid cooling solutions! (since you know, its written in the title and all :D  )

The evo and the NH-D14 are my favorite coolers btw
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a b K Overclocking
July 7, 2012 2:23:22 PM

I tried the Antec 620 when I got a good deal on it for $50. I was really disappointed in the device. I read a crap load of reviews and user feed back praising the thing. But in the end I ripped it out, returned it, and put back my trusty Thermalright Venomous X with a Noctua NF-P12 PWM Fan.

Overall the Antec 620 was louder (annoying pump click) and less efficient (my temps were 4-6 degrees Celsius higher with the 620).

So I'm sticking with air until/if I decide to go full liquid cooling. Just my 2 cents.
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July 7, 2012 3:16:59 PM

The purpose of liquid cooling is to get the heat away from the processor to a spot with enough room for multiple large fans.
That way you can achieve better and quieter cooling than with an air cooler which is limited by the space and weight restrictions of the cpu socket area.

Cheap water coolers are NOT better than good air coolers. A single 120mm fan is a single 120mm fan, the surface cooled is very similar, and the temperature difference between "the area of the cpu socket" and "the area 3 inches away from the cpu socket" is not significant.

tl;dr: Cheap water cooling is NOT better than good air cooling. The budget pre-built watercoolers are made to look cool, and so people who have got no clue can brag to other people who have got no clue that they have a "watercooled" rig.
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a c 324 K Overclocking
July 8, 2012 3:03:09 AM

A Honda Civic and a Ferrari FXX are both classified as cars, but both perform much differently.

Same goes for Corsair/Antec liquid coolers when compared to real water cooling loops.
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a c 190 K Overclocking
July 8, 2012 8:19:44 AM

@NNA, 4GHz on PII is pretty much standard issue, the top is usually 4.2/4.3GHz unless you get lucky with a prime slice of silicon

http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=2330656
@Op, forget the Fisherprice coolers, if you want to go wet, you go big.
save up and post a new thread when your wallet has about $200/$250 in it, we can get you going for that on a cpu only loop
@Rubix, its a goddamn bughunt, but my Uv and coils might help? :p 
Moto
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July 8, 2012 9:02:21 PM

Best answer selected by Augray37.
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