Testing Results & Conclusion
Using data compiled from previous cooler testing, we will compare the NZXT Kraken M22 with coolers similar in price. Our Intel i7 5930k mounted atop our MSI X99S XPower AC motherboard and clocked to 4.2Ghz at 1.20v is designed to push coolers to their thermal limits, while our Corsair Graphite 760T chassis provides safe residence and controlled airflow for our testing hardware.
We’ll place the Kraken M22 up against the EK Fluid Gaming A120 kit, Enermax LIQFUSION 240 RGB and be quiet! Dark Rock 4. While it would seem like the M22 is fighting outside its weight class here, we might discover a few surprises lurking about.
The compact NZXT Kraken M22 performs better than EK’s entry-level aluminum watercooling kit, and goes toe-to-toe with the large, be quiet! Dark Rock 4 air cooler. The Enermax LIQFUSION 240 RGB cools slightly better than the rest of the field, but it uses a much larger 240mm radiator to do so.
The Kraken M22's single Aer P120 fan speed lands it smack in the middle of all our liquid coolers here. Pump RPM, reported here, offers little for our test comparisons, as each uses a vastly different pump design.
After looking at our registered fan speeds graph, our noise level chart falls right into place with the ultra-quiet fans on the EK Fluid Gaming A120, with the be quiet! Dark Rock 4 leading the silent charge. However, at only 26.2 adjusted decibels, the Kraken M22 is still very quiet.
Given that each cooler performed within a few degrees Celsius of one another, and our decibel readings were neck-and-neck, our acoustic efficiency chart accents the slight performance differences between each of the coolers of the group.
With a retail price of just a penny under $100, the NZXT Kraken M22 falls just below the median price of the testing group. The be quiet! Dark Rock 4 is overall the budget cooler of this group, at right around $75. The Enermax LIQFUSION 240 RGB cooled the best overall, but posted the highest noise levels. And while the EK Fluid Gaming A120 posted the lowest decibel levels, it holds the highest in unit price of our bunch.
The NZXT Kraken M22 is an incredibly compact, high-performance liquid cooler that delivers sleek styling and vibrant RGB lighting options, while offering support of current AMD and Intel processor sockets. Just don't try to strap one to your Threadripper system, as that platform isn't supported by this cooler.
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