Best CPU Coolers 2023 – Air and Liquid Coolers

We may earn revenue from the products available on this page and participate in affiliate programs. Learn more

Selecting the best CPU cooler for your PC build is an important decision.

Sure, stock coolers can do an excellent job of keeping the temperatures down, but…

If you’re looking for overclocking potential, or less noise during load, you’ll need to invest in one of the best CPU coolers of 2023.

Best CPU Coolers 2023


  1. Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO – The Legendary Best CPU Air Cooler
  2. Noctua NH-D15 – Best of All Time
  3. be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 – The Silent Performer
  4. Scythe Mugen 5 – Best Budget CPU Cooler
  5. Cooler Master Hyper 212 RGB Black – The Best RGB CPU Cooler
  6. Le Grand Macho RT – Best Air CPU Cooler 2023
  7. Phanteks CPU Cooler – Quite, Performing, yet Expensive!
  8. Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8 – Best Overclocking CPU Cooler
  9. DEEPCOOL Captain 360EX – Best Cheap CPU Cooler
  10. Corsair Hydro Series H150i – Best AIO Liquid Cooler 2023
  11. Thermaltake Floe RGB – RGB AIO Liquid Cooling System
  12. NZXT Kraken X72 – Best Selling Liquid Cooler
  13. NZXT Kraken M22 – Best Budget AIO Liquid Cooler
  14. DEEPCOOL Castle 360EX – Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler

Stock CPU coolers have improved over the years, but they are nowhere near the performance of a third-party CPU cooler that is custom-made for performance.

Related Guide: Stock Coolers vs. Aftermarket Coolers

We tried to include the best CPU air coolers and the best CPU liquid coolers on the list.

So whatever your needs, you’ll find an excellent CPU cooler for your build on this list.


Top 10 Best CPU Coolers in 2023

Not all CPU coolers are built the same way.

The same goes for their price, and some are pricier than others. Thankfully, many great CPU coolers are available for you to check and purchase.

These are some of the best CPU coolers of 2023 we found.

They are not in any particular order simply because they are vastly different from each other, so we recommend going through the whole list before you select the best one for you.

The Legendary Best CPU Air Cooler

Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - The Legendary Best CPU Air Cooler

  • High-performance product.
  • Compatible with Intel and AMD CPU sockets.
  • 4 Direct heat pipes.
  • 40,000 hours fan life expectancy.
  • Power consumption of 2.64W.
Check Price on Amazon

The Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO remains a top choice for CPU Coolers.

It is famous for its durability and high performance due to a very reliable 120mm PWM cooler and fins that are well-optimized to offer a balanced cooling experience between high and low cooling operations.

At the same time, it remains a very efficient product in terms of power consumption.

The blade design is primarily there to support the airflow, which makes a significant difference.

The product comprises four heat pipes attached with a patented C.D.C. (Continuous Direct Contact) system, which supports and improves heat induction.

The product is highly recommended to use with Intel Core i7 Extreme, Intel L.G.A., and AMD processors.

Hyper 212 Evo is for those gamers who want to experience gaming in a high-intensity environment.

The manufacturers have kept gaming as a benchmark when building this product, which is why it is so high-performing.

At the same time, its compatibility with an array of chipsets opens a great opportunity here.

All those passionate gamers and tech-savvy individuals who like to build PCs from the ground up can use this product again in building a new PC.

So, not only is it a durable product, but it allows you to save some dollars on spending on another CPU cooler because of its master class compatibility, which makes it a budget option also.

This product tends to make a bit of noise when used in highly intensive gaming environments.

While this is quite normal, almost all CPU Coolers make some noise at one point. The customers highly think that Cool Master Hyper 212 EVO will not leave a shred of noise.

It would not be a disappointing experience to put up with, just that on an occasional basis, customers will have to experience a little noise.

Buy this product with the comfort of knowing that it is versatile and can be used long-term. It performs up to the mark and remains a good deal for the amount it costs, making it a perfect option for gaming PCs.

  • High-performance product with top rating
  • Ideal for the gaming environment
  • Compatible with Intel and AMD sockets
  • Reduces CPU temperature by 25 degrees
  • Cost-effective product
  • The material can see a few improvements

Best of All Time

Noctua NH-D15 - Best of All Time

  • Top performance product.
  • Compatible with Intel and AMD chipsets.
  • Consists of aluminium based dual tower heatsink.
  • Consists of 2 Low-Noise-Adaptor fans.
  • 6-year warranty.
Check Price on Amazon

The Noctua NH-D15 is highly inspired by its predecessor, which is the Noctua NH-D14. This latter model remains an award-winning product and has been a top recommendation by many international hardware sites and magazines.

It remains quite a premium product for every gamer out there who wants to immerse into gaming without worrying about their CPU accumulating heat. Its material, built quality, and color makes it a high-end product that a customer would take pride in owning.

It comprises a dual fan of 140mm, which carries out the job of sinking out heat from the system. Noctua is a company that is known for its A.O.O. Standard aerodynamic designs for better heat flow.

It is also compatible with high RAM modules, so you do not have to worry about installing a large memory and using this product simultaneously.

Meanwhile, its compatibility with AMD and Intel LDA chips makes it a very versatile product that users prefer.

Overall, the product is safe to use on a long-term basis and can tackle any highly intensive gaming environment. Apart from smart heat induction, the product also silences the fan noise. Often customers complain about their cooling systems making noises, so the manufacturer Noctua paid attention to their concerns and took care of the noise problem in this particular product.

The job of mounting this product onto your CPU is also quite simple. The product also comes with a long-standing warranty by the official company.

Customers generally do not like the beige and brown color of it.

For many, it does not fit into their gaming setting and lacks the vibe of it. Gamers tend to build state-of-the-art-looking PCs, and a product with a color like that might not seem suitable.

Additionally, the price of the product also raises many eyebrows.

If you are the kind who prefers performance overlooks, then this product is ideal for you. Plus, it has a warranty and a long life, which justifies the price tag. Take it as a one-off investment.

  • Great cooling performance.
  • Easy to install.
  • Long life.
  • No noise at all.
  • Excellent build quality.
  • Unappealing color.

The Silent Performer

be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 - The Silent Performer

  • Consists of inaudible silent PWM fans.
  • Compatible with Intel and AMD chipsets.
  • Supports all levels of RAM.
  • Seven high performing heat pipes.
  • 3-year warranty.
Check Price on Amazon

The manufacturing company “be quiet!” has built a good reputation in the market for high-performance computer hardware. This product remains an excellent example of their engineering and expertise in the line CPU Coolers.

The Dark Rock Pro 4 comes with a robust look. It has seven heat pipes, which can double the work of a standard cooling fan. The shape and design of the wings allow for smoother and more consistent airflow and no accumulation of hot air inside the bulky and heavyset system.

They have a black coating and are made of ceramic particles, making it even easier for hot air to flow out. It is also a very innovative product that remains compatible with Intel and AMD chips so that customers can install it in any class of chipsets.

The product is Made in Germany, which can tell much about the quality, durability, and performance – just like German automobiles! The product also has a very easy installation, so you do not have to read manuals all the time or see a do-it-yourself tutorial on YouTube actually to mount it in your system.

Just follow the instructions neatly and make sense of them. That feature alone makes it one of the best CPU Coolers of 2022.

Gamers looking for a long-term with minimal noise can buy this one, as it can support all kinds of usage.

Its compatibility with different modules of RAM is a huge plus point for those looking to take things to the next level.

Many customers would prefer a neat amount of thermal paste added to the product.

However, it is certainly not the case.

At the same time, the product is a bit large in size and heavy, so if you are looking for a compact and smaller product, this might not be the ideal choice.

This product highly supports the gaming environment due to its design. It has the right kind of capabilities for the job of cooling and can be the ideal product you are looking for, given that you can compromise on its dimensions and size.

  • Top performance product.
  • Big Heatsink.
  • Sleek and stylish design.
  • Ideal for gaming.
  • Does not give out the noise.
  • Bulky product.

Best Budget CPU Cooler

Scythe Mugen 5 - Best Budget CPU Cooler

  • Consists of six pipes, each in 6mm length with copper base plate.
  • Carries a massive Kaze Flex fan (120mm) with upto 1200 RPM.
  • Compatible with Intel L.G.A. and AMD chipsets.
  • Easy to mount product.
  • Goes up to only 24.3 dB(A) at maximum fan speed.
Check Price on Amazon

This product is also very innovative in its design and built quality. It comprises a large fan called the Kaze Flex fan that is 120mm in size.

The fan allows for good airflow, and static pressure maintains everything. At the same time, it is a very low-noise product, so if you are worried about the fan making a tremendous noise, you should take comfort in knowing that this product will resolve the problem.

Customers are often keen on the pipe capacity and sizes; in this product, you can have six that can do a heavy-duty job. It allows for the consistent outflow of heat, which remains fundamental for keeping the temperature down and at an optimum level throughout the entire CPU operation.

It has flexible RAM compatibility, so you are good at making any choice you want in terms of RAM. That said, the product is also compatible with Intel L.G.A. and AMD chips, so you can have some flexibility regarding what you prefer to have in your system.

The weight is light, and the overall product has earned a good reputation ever since it was launched in the product. The manufacturer also boasts a total lifespan of the product equal to 120,000 hours.

This tells you that it is a long-term investment, and if you wish to build another system, you can reuse this product without spending a lot of money when you reasonably have a strict budget to follow.

You may find that the product does not offer as much cooling as you would expect. Customers have often reported that the product took them by surprise, primarily in terms of its cooling capabilities.

Another product that sets ideal for cooling purposes.

If you have big expectations, install an additional fan, and you are good to go.

  • Top performance product.
  • Long-lasting product.
  • Absolutely no noise at all due to Kaze Flex fan.
  • Efficient Heatsink.
  • Can add a second fan to maximize cooling.
  • Moderate cooling capabilities.

The Best RGB CPU Cooler

Cooler Master Hyper 212 RGB Black - The Best RGB CPU Cooler

  • Four heat pipes.
  • Compatible with Intel and AMD sockets.
  • Smart Fan sensor.
  • RGB LED controller.
  • Weighs about 2.06 lbs.
Check Price on Amazon

We have seen above what the Cool Master Hyper 212 Evo can do, and this product is simply an extension of its quality and brilliance as a CPU Cooler.

It comes with a sleek and stylish design meant for those who want to install this for gaming purposes and nothing else.

Although it is not a hard and fast rule, you can utilize any sort of arrangement you prefer. It comprises fins that ensure consistent and uninterrupted airflow during high operation. The product comes with four heat pipes that provide efficient and direct heat outflow from the system.

Customers would love the new SF120R RGB Fan, as it remains the most in-demand computer hardware on the market. This product is quite dynamic and has personalized control functionality, as users can benefit from a push and full configuration to support super-fast heat evacuation.

It also carries an RGB LED, which lets you customize the colors and enjoy some cool effects with only a touch of a button.

The Cool Master Hyper 212 RGB Black Edition is designed to support your goals of building efficient and robust PCs. It can last a long time, so you need not worry about replacing it in the future. Plus, if you are keen on building more than one PC, you can quickly shift it to another system due to its easy installation and mounting benefit.

Many customers are not simply impressed by the RGB LED and would like things to be slightly more old-fashioned.

But many often choose this product for its high-performance capabilities, so they must compromise on the L.E.D. light factor.

The product is packed with highly technical equipment and can do the job just fine. It is a highly recommended product for gaming PC.

  • High-performance product.
  • Little to no noise.
  • L.E.D. light offers a cool appearance.
  • Smart Fan sensor prevents components from getting jammed.
  • Excellent built quality and durability.
  • A wobbly fan may cause a bit of noise.

Best Air CPU Cooler 2022

Le Grand Macho RT - Best Air CPU Cooler 2022

  • Consists of 6 heat pipes.
  • Easy to mount product.
  • Great reviews on the web.
  • Copper base.
  • Cost-effective product.
Check Price on Amazon

This product is pretty popular in Europe because it is made by a European company specializing in hardware and components.

Le Grand Macho RT is a quick solution to all your heating woes and remains cost-effective. Its built design and quality can endure intense operational environments. You can use this product while keeping in mind it is pretty compatible with any RAM module.

At the same time, Le Grand Macho RT is compatible with both AMD and Intel, so that is sorted out for you. One of the most significant plus points about this product is that it works perfectly on a VGA card, meaning that you do not necessarily need a heavy-duty graphics card to run this.

So, all low-level gamers or software users can quickly run this product in their systems. Its heatsinking capabilities allow for seamless operation without any hurdles. The product has good reviews on almost all hardware-based magazines and websites, so if you want to purchase it, go for it.

On the other hand, if you want to level up the cooling function of your product, then you can easily add additional fan units to it. Customers, over time, prefer this and are always looking to buy products with additional installation capabilities, making it one of the best air CPU coolers.

Although the product can provide cooling of the appropriate level, you will still need to add a fan in the long run.

It may be that your requirements have changed over time, and it is a matter of meeting your most apparent needs for a CPU Cooler unit.

The good thing is that add-ons with this product are pretty cheap, so it would not cost you as much to upgrade.

If you feel a bit withdrawn from making a purchase, then know that it is one of the best CPU Coolers in the market at such a price. With an added fan, it can just work perfectly for intense operations.

  • High-performance product.
  • No noise at all.
  • Easy to mount.
  • Long term product.
  • Large cooler.
  • Not a heavy-duty product.

Quite, Performing yet Expensive!

Phanteks CPU Cooler - Quite, Performing yet Expensive!

  • Comes with a patented Physical Antioxidant Thermal Shield (P.A.T.S.).
  • Good product reviews.
  • Long life.
  • Large Heatsink.
  • Lightweight.
Check Price on Amazon

Phanteks is a relatively new brand in the cooler market, and the Heatsink we see here is the first one they create.

Among its technologies, heat pipes stand out, which are copper tubes with a liquid inside, which facilitates heat dissipation, and this time they are 8mm in diameter; the standard is 6mm.

Apart from this, two exclusive features were included, such as the PATS (Physical Anti-Oxidant Thermal Shield), which deflects the heat generated by other external sources, such as rams, northbridge, and southbridge, to increase its dissipation power. On the other hand, we have the CPSC Technology (Cold Plasma Spraying Coating), which implies more thermally efficient welding between heat pipes and aluminum fins, facilitating faster heat dissipation.

The Heatsink comes in a medium-sized box with a weight that exceeds one kilogram. You can see that Phanteks promotes the different colors of this cooler, which are red, blue, black, white, and orange; also, on the sides are the specifications. The Heatsink is quite large in question.

In fact, due to its design, likely, it does not enter many cabinets due to bumping into the side, or it may have problems with the memory sticks due to its width. Aluminum fins are nickel-plated in some specific color, and this is a detail that very few brands have and that, in the end, in something as colorful as this is greatly appreciated.

So, the Phanteks deserve to be displayed in a cabinet with a side view of the mounting hardware.

The product is difficult to install.

First, you have to adjust a screw in the middle that will support it, but for this, we will need patience and a long screwdriver, preferably magnetized, since it is difficult that the screw does not come out when we try to place it.

This can be a bit of a turn-off if you are a fan of quick installations, as with other products.

The Phanteks has an impeccable finish consistent with its surname, “Premium Edition.”

  • High-performance product.
  • Compatible with both AMD and Intel chipsets.
  • P.A.T.S. improves cooling.
  • Durable product with excellent components.
  • Ideal for gaming.
  • Difficult to install and setup.

Best Overclocking CPU Cooler

Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8 - Best Overclocking CPU Cooler

  • Ideal for intense usage.
  • Single tower design.
  • Eight heat pipes.
  • L.E.D. Lighting.
  • Recommended for gaming.
Check Price on Amazon

AIO cooler vs. air cooler – Cooler Master, the renowned manufacturer of peripherals and cooling systems, puts in our hands one of its products aimed at enthusiastic users and overclockers.

It is a processor heatsink with a striking design and the promise of excellent performance. We see a single tower design accompanied by up to two 140mm fans, its base is entirely copper and has eight heat pipes to dissipate heat. This design promises a gigantic cooling performance.

The Heatsink of a tower is quite a considerable measure. Its large aluminum fins, which provide excellent thermal conductivity, will be the owners of much of the space our team will have; the use of eight heat pipes with exclusive Cooler Master technology promises at least 19% extra performance against other copper-based heatsinks.

Its installation is extremely simple, and the manual explains quickly and in detail the installation and use of the Cooler Master MasterAir Maker 8; within this point, we also highlight the correct labeling of the last piece of the bundle, a solution designed to help even the Newbie hardware lover.

Its design is one of the many high points we find in the MasterAir Maker 8, starting with its high-quality construction and finishes, relatively smooth lines, and imposing design.

The lighting in the fans and the upper sector of the tower gives us a great look. The large aluminum tower finished with beautiful touches in translucent plastic gives the MasterAir Maker 8 a design to envy.

The product is a bit heavyset, meaning it occupies space and has more weight than usual items.

At the same time, it usually costs more than the standard market products, which would be a bad factor for some users.

It is highly efficient, and users tend to justify its high price for its ability to provide efficient cooling for extended periods.

If you are willing to pay top dollar for a top product, then this product remains an ideal choice because it is packed with everything you can ask for in a CPU Cooler gadget.

  • Immaculate design.
  • High cooling performance with 3D vapour chamber.
  • L.E.D. lighting.
  • One of the quietest products out there.
  • Stylish design.
  • Expensive.

Best Cheap CPU Cooler

DEEPCOOL Captain 360EX - Best Cheap CPU Cooler

  • High-performance product.
  • Stylish design.
  • Compatible with Intel L.G.A. and AMD chipsets.
  • L.E.D. lighting.
  • Powerful pump.
Check Price on Amazon

The Deepcool Captain 360EX radiator has an impressive length of 395mm, which automatically raises the question for the future owner about selecting suitable housing for its installation.

At the same time, the thickness and width of the radiator are pretty standard – 27x120mm. Deepcool Captain 360EX is a reasonably quiet, powerful, and easy-to-install and operate a liquid cooling system that can easily cope with any processor in overclocking of those installed in supported connectors.

If it were more powerful, Captain 360EX would have shown much better results, and so it is only slightly superior to the younger brother in the person of Captain 240EX RGB. It is nice that this C.B.O.’s artistry is reasonable, and the refrigerant can be replaced if necessary.

Based on the preceding, the most optimal C.B.O. in the Deepcool Captain line, based on cost and performance, can be considered the usual 360EX. You can make an absolute leader in terms of silence and power.

This seems to be the ideal product for intensive gaming environments, and customers are generally encouraged to use it however they want. It is built with excellence and operates in more challenging environments.

The product’s modern design also makes it look quite cool from all sides. So, when you mount it on your P.C., it will give it an aggressive look which remains quite the need for gaming!

Among the shortcomings of the system, it is possible to note the hose inputs that are poorly located on the side, which do not allow you to turn the system the other way around and can conflict with high memory or other elements of the motherboard.

In addition, the treatment of the base of the water block is poor.

Although the downside of this product is your remote chances to add additional fans, it is already ideal for intense operation, given its standard operation. It is considered to be one of the best PC coolers.

  • The powerful pump enables maximum water circulation.
  • Saves up space in your system.
  • L.E.D. lighting gives a cool effect.
  • High-performance product.
  • Works best in gaming environments.
  • May be difficult to install with upgraded with additional fans.

Best AIO Liquid Cooler 2022

Corsair Hydro Series H150i - Best AIO Liquid Cooler 2022

  • Neat assembly and attention to detail.
  • High-quality and quiet fans with magnetic levitation technology.
  • Long and flexible hoses with swivel water block fittings.
  • Simple and easy installation on any of the supported platforms.
  • High cooling efficiency.
Check Price on Amazon

The Corsair H150i Pro’s device fans are made without backlighting, and non-addressable RGB LEDs adorn the water block.

Where the Corsair H150i Pro is imposing a fight is in the segment of liquid cooling systems with a 360-mm radiator. There are plenty of competitors in the market for cooling systems, and Corsair, with its new H150i Pro, relies on efficiency and quiet operation.

As our testing has shown, both factors have a place to be. This S.J.O. turned out to be quiet, and if there is a “correct” processor, its performance will also be revealed. Good support for the Corsair H150i Pro is also provided by the Corsair iCUE software control capabilities, where the user gains control of the fans and the pump.

Also, with this utility, the backlight is regulated. Based on the Corsair Hydro Series H150i Pro liquid cooling system, you can create a conditionally silent computer equipped with a processor with excellent heat release. The controlled RGB backlight of the pump will help decorate the system unit’s internal space.

We note good quality, easy-to-use flat cables without braid, connection to the SATA power connector, rotation control of all three fans and a pump, and advanced, pleasant design.

All of these details may sound a bit complicated, but it is confirmed that this product remains one of the best liquid CPU coolers out there in the market that you can get hold of.

Best suited for the most intense and aggressive gaming environments where you need an extra touch of technology to make everything work.

This product may not be helpful for those who just want to use a few software and light gaming on their P.C.s. plus; the price tag may push many to reconsider buying this product.

Approach this product with the idea of picking up a CPU cooler suitable for high performance. This can allow you to ignore the factor of backlighting.

  • Liquid cooling.
  • Fan speed.
  • SATA power.
  • RGB LED.
  • Radiator.
  • Lack of backlight on fans.

RGB AIO Liquid Cooling System

Thermaltake Floe RGB - RGB AIO Liquid Cooling System

  • Top-rated product.
  • Compatible with Intel L.G.A. and AMD.
  • RGB software enabled.
  • High-efficiency radiator.
  • Easy to install.
Check Price on Amazon

This product lies in the category of L.L.S. Recently, closed-type liquid cooling systems (L.S.S.) continue to gain popularity, which is associated both with the users themselves who want to obtain a finished product with high cooling efficiency and do not require maintenance, as well as stand out among friends and increased competition among manufacturers seeking offer the user a wide range of similar cooling systems.

The Thermaltake Floe Riing RGB 240 TT Premium Edition liquid cooling system is a balanced solution with a high cooling efficiency comparable to air super coolers and a low noise level, facilitated by the standard 120mm Thermaltake Riing Plus 12 RGB fans with tremendous speed-up to 1500 RPM.

The latter also has RGB lighting and a water block, customizable using proprietary software so that it will stand out among classmates. This product is an excellent choice for owners of older Intel and AMD processors.

High heat dissipation at low noise levels has been demonstrated. This C.B.O. will be the best option for cooling in a case with transparent walls.

The pluses include the ability to control from a smartphone, several modes of fans, and quality performance.

Let us Discuss the disadvantages of this product, shall we?

The first is its high cost, but if you want to “transform” the system due to RGB backlighting, you can hardly find any alternatives unless you buy a standard S.J.O., separately RGB fans, which together will lead to the same price.

The second important point is that the fans and the pump are connected exclusively to the standard control unit with their control program, so if the case, motherboard, and video card have RGB lighting, it will be problematic to synchronize their work with the backlight of the S.J.O.

So, this product does carry a high price, but its efficient components and smart cooling system can make it all worth it. This is highly recommended for gamers who want to take their gaming modes to another level and remains one of the best water coolers for PC.

  • Classic design with 240mm radiator.
  • High cooling efficiency.
  • Silent operation of fans.
  • Simple installation procedure.
  • RGB backlight for fans and pumps.
  • Problems synchronizing RGB backlight L.S.S. with other components of the system unit, also with RGB backlight.

Best Selling Liquid Cooler

NZXT Kraken X72 - Best Selling Liquid Cooler

  • Product carries advanced lighting modes for a brighter experience.
  • Comprises of CAM.
  • Radiator fans.
  • Six years of warranty.
  • Nylon tubing.
Check Price on Amazon

The NZXT Kraken X72 liquid cooling system is delivered in a strictly designed box made of thin corrugated cardboard on the outer planes of which the product is shown, and its description is given. The main features and technical characteristics are listed.

The inscriptions are predominantly in English, but something is duplicated in several languages, including Russian.

A brochure, cardboard covers, and plastic bags are used to protect and distribute parts. Based on the NZXT Kraken X72 liquid cooling system, you can create a conditionally silent computer equipped with a processor with a maximum heat release of about 185 W.

We note good quality, anti-vibration inserts in the fan frame, the braiding of hoses and cables (at least helping to maintain a uniform style of the computer’s interior), relatively long hoses, connection to the SATA power connector, static or dynamic RGB illumination of the pump, as well as advanced CAM software for flexible management of the cooling system and monitoring the status of the P.C. as a whole.

The NZXT Kraken X42, X52, and X62 liquid cooling systems received the Original Design editorial award for the original adequate lighting, excellent technical characteristics, and functional CAM software.

The NZXT Kraken X72 system belongs to the same series and can rightfully share the award. It is a highly recommended product to integrate into your gaming P.C. and let it do its magic as you play in some highly intensive gaming graphics.

Liquid cooling will always offer a much higher TDP (thermal design power) than air cooling, so if you plan to overclock your CPU, we suggest going with the new all-in-one liquid CPU cooler NZXT Kraken X72 that’s capable of cooling higher TDP processors.

The biggest downside of this product is its software which can lag and even experience some bugs.

So, if you are installing the setup or doing some configuration, you may experience some glitches.

However, the hardware components and the performance of the product overshadow this minor problem in the product. Users guarantee that you are in for a great experience using this product.

It is an award-winning product, and it ensures everything that it boasts about it is managed efficiently. Users marvel at owning this product, which is highly recommended for gamers.

  • Award-winning cooling system.
  • Easy to install.
  • Cost-effective product.
  • Highly technical equipment for cooling.
  • Top-rated product.
  • Bugs experienced in the software.

Best Budget AIO Liquid Cooler

NZXT Kraken M22 - Best Budget AIO Liquid Cooler

  • Easy to install the product.
  • CAM software integrated.
  • RGB lighting.
  • Radiator fans.
  • Three years of warranty.
Check Price on Amazon

The new Kraken liquid cooling systems are equipped with the most advanced controls that have ever been used in this type.

Users can adjust settings to ensure optimal performance even in the most intense gaming sessions using the CAM software interface. Everything, including the pump, radiator, and fans, has been redesigned to bring the ability to use your system to the maximum of its capabilities!

The new high-performance pump is suitable for performance. It contains customizable RGB lighting that users would love. “CAM” software is designed to control the system’s functionality fully and remains a top priority. It includes a Includes Aer P120 radiator-optimized fan that offers an extraordinary level of cooling.

Advanced backlight modes can also take care of the lighting woes that gamers experience. The product is also durable because it is reinforced, extended tubing for increased durability.

Company NZXT is known for its computer components, mainly computer cases. Power supplies, manipulators, coolers for gaming laptops, and other accessories are also available. Unlike the Silver Stone company, whose cases are created mainly for HTPC (media centers), NZXT Co., Ltd. adheres to another direction – gaming systems. Customers should know that the company’s product line, especially the M22 is a benchmark.

It was founded in 2004 in Los Angeles, California (Los Angeles, California). Her first product was the Guardian P.C. “Test of the pen,” which was successful. To date, the list of NZXT products like M22 already includes dozens of types of computer cases that can satisfy the needs of users who have demanded to assemble a powerful gaming computer.

Other products of the company adhere to the gaming direction. Availability, coupled with good quality products, has done its job. NZXT products are quickly becoming very popular worldwide and have repeatedly won prestigious awards.

This brand is on par with such well-known brands as Chieftec, Lian Li, Thermaltake, Zalman, and the already-mentioned Silverstone.

The price of the product can be a bit disappointing for some users.

Nonetheless, its benefit can justify the price in the long run. So, you have good decision-making when you choose to buy this product.

If you do not have budget constraints, this product is highly recommended, considering all the fantastic and intense add-ons it has.

  • Top performance product.
  • Supports both AMD and Intel L.G.A.
  • Made for gamers.
  • Good L.E.D. lighting capabilities.
  • Quite Expensive

Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler

DEEPCOOL Castle 360EX - Closed-Loop Liquid Cooler

  • Comprises of anti-leak technology.
  • 25% more skived fans.
  • Compatible with Intel L.G.A. and AMD chipsets.
  • Three fine-tuned TF120 S fans.
  • 5V RGB.
Check Price on Amazon

Up to now, we have only gotten acquainted with air cooling systems from DEEPCOOL. This cooling water system has proved to be pretty simple to install and an efficient performance device that can easily cope with the hottest modern processor in overclocking and supports a wide range of current processor sockets.

The quality of its manufacture is good, the refrigerant can be replaced if necessary, and the package has everything you need and a few more pleasant accessories.

Castle 360EX RGB is superior in power and silence to air super coolers and low-cost air-conditioning systems, although it does not reach the level of top solutions on the market. It all depends, probably, on the performance of the pump and the caliber of the hoses installed here.

The presence of an L.E.D. strip and RGB backlight in the upper part of the water block is undoubtedly good. Still, it is unlikely to be a decisive factor in choosing this C.B.O. First, and you can take the technically identical 360EX without an RGB prefix (only a red backlight diode is built in there) and save money.

If RGB is needed, the backlight implementation can hardly be called outstanding. It is a top-rated product that also remains quite popular among other gamers.

This product remains standard in the market for gaming PC because, for some time, it has been able to perform well.

Of the shortcomings noticed during use by customers, it is worth noting the hose inputs that are not located on the side, which do not allow you to turn the system the other way around and can conflict with high memory or other elements of the motherboard.

This is a similar factor experienced by customers of the advanced version of this product – the Captain 360EX RGB.

The manufacturer’s name stands out in convincing customers to purchase this product for an excellent gaming experience. It is ideal for users who like to use computer hardware’s most robust and durable components.

  • Efficient cooling system.
  • Customizable logo.
  • Compatibility with all modules of RAM.
  • Easy installation of the product.
  • Expensive.

These were the best CPU coolers of 2022, and we hope you found something you like on this list. Read on to learn how we selected the best CPU coolers and about our testing process.

Also, check out our in-depth guide on the best low-profile CPU coolers.

CPU Coolers Ultimate Buyers Guide

It may seem like purchasing a CPU cooler for your build is simple, and in most cases, it is.

However, if you want to get more performance out of your build, you’ll need to invest in a third-party CPU cooler and ditch the stock one that came with the processor.

CPU Coolers Ultimate Buyers Guide

What Does a CPU Cooler Do?

Modern processors have a built-in temperature sensor that ensures the processor never overheats.

However, if the temperature goes above a certain threshold, the processor will throttle the performance until the temperature normalizes again.

This means you’ll get less performance from the components inside your PC.

Thermal throttling is a genuine issue for several different users.

Thermal Throttling
Courtesy of TechSpot!

Power users who like to render 3-D models, architects who want to modify huge files, and even gamers who want to get the best performance and frame rate out of their build.

A CPU cooler tries to move the heat away from the competence and exhaust them outside the chassis.

This ensures the temperature remains optimal and your performance never gets throttled.

The basic functionality of a CPU cooler is simple: heat pipes made from copper are filled with a liquid that vaporizes when heated.

CPU Cooler Heat pipes

The vapor then travels to where the cooler, where it gets, goes down and condenses.

The whole process releases the heat that was captured by the liquid.

A large area of cooling fins is primarily used along with a fan to enhance the cooling effect further.

Do You Need a Third-Party CPU Cooler?

While stock CPU coolers that ship with the processor are good enough for most cases, they are not equipped to handle extreme performance.

Stock Cooler vs Premium Cooler

A third-party CPU cooler is needed to push the processor to its boundaries.

PC Overclocking: If you are looking to overclock your processor, a third-party CPU cooler becomes a necessity rather than an option.
(Stock coolers cannot handle that amount of heat generated by performance.)

Noise Levels: You may also want a third-party CPU cooler to reduce noise levels. (Some stock CPU coolers can get a little noisier depending on how noise-proof your chassis is, so it makes sense to invest in a better, cooler CPU cooler and reduce the noise.)We’ve included a lot of different CPU coolers that provide almost silent operation, so if you’re looking to build a nearly silent PC, there are many great options available.

Gaming PC Looks: If you are a person who prefers a particular look when building a PC, a stock cooler will look downright ugly to you. So getting a customizable or even a better-looking third-party CPU cooler is the best way to go.
(There are some downright gorgeous-looking CPU coolers of 2023, so it will be easy to go for the one that perfectly fits your needs.)

List item
List item
List item

Types of CPU Coolers

There are 3 significant types of CPU coolers, but they can be further categorized:

  1. Air CPU Coolers
  2. Water CPU Coolers
  3. AIO/Liquid CPU Coolers

We will discuss the benefits of each of them and help you decide what type of CPU cooler is best for your build.

1. Air CPU Coolers

As the name implies, air-based CPU coolers rely on good old-fashioned air to cool down your processor.

Air CPU Coolers

They use copper heat pipes and aluminum fins to lower the temperature. Usually, there is a fan, but you can find air-based coolers that are entirely passive and noiseless.

Air CPU coolers are super simple to install and don’t require anything extra.

These are the most common CPU coolers you’ll find in the market.

There are not many drawbacks to using an air CPU cooler; however, if you are an extreme overclock enthusiast, you may need more than they are required for you.

But for regular users with heavy loads or gaming needs.

2. Liquid CPU Coolers

Water CPU Cooler

There was a time when the water CPU coolers were all in the rage.

Not only did they look amazing, but they also provided good quality cooling experiences.

However, these days they are not so common.

There are several reasons for their unpopularity.

The biggest one is the installation process which can be cumbersome for many users, and the 2nd is the chance of them leaking and potentially destroying your whole build.

So it is tough to find them in average builds these days.

How Does a Liquid CPU Cooler Work?

Liquid CPU coolers work like a wonder for overclocking enthusiasts. For all PC users in general. Before starting the discussion on how a liquid CPU cooler works, you will first have to understand the composition of different parts of a liquid CPU cooler.

Hoses/Pipes: Hoses are an integral part of a liquid CPU cooler. These provide secure pathways for the coolant in the cooler to travel from one component to the other. Hoses are adequately sealed with the components to avoid leakage.

Liquid Cooler Hoses or Pipes
Liquid Cooler Pipes

Radiator: The radiator is responsible for spreading the heat sucked from the heated CPU into the open air outside the cooling unit.

Liquid Cooler Radiator

Reservoir: Reservoir is a little storage space that helps retain the coolant inside the liquid CPU cooler. You can see the level of liquid stored in the reservoir before starting the cooler to fill it sufficiently.

Liquid Cooler Reservoir

Fan(s): Liquid CPU coolers may have one or more fans depending on their size and functionality. Fans are primarily used to pass air through the radiator to help remove the heat.


Pump: The pump is probably essential to any liquid CPU cooler. It helps pump the liquid coolant throughout the CPU cooler to keep it working properly.

Liquid Cooler Pump

There are many different liquid CPU coolers available in the market with varying sizes and shapes, but they all have the same components discussed above.

Moreover, some manufacturers try to distinguish themselves from the competition by adding proprietary components that aren’t present in their competitors’ products.

When you buy a new liquid CPU cooler, you can read the booklet with it to understand the working of every component included in the package.

How CPU Generates Heat?

The CPU installed in your computer works like a brain to process all the information thrown at it, and in this process, it uses electricity. This process generates a lot of heat, which is usually proportional to the CPU’s complexity of tasks and overall capacity.

The heat generated during a CPU’s working process must be carried away. That is because if you end up ignoring all the heat, it might degrade the internal components of your CPU.

Additionally, CPUs are designed to slow down as their temperature keeps rising and can stop working (your computer shuts down) if they reach a specific temperature, which, in most cases, is around 100 degrees Celsius.

This is where CPU coolers come into the equation. They are essential in their core function, which drives the heat away from your CPU and out of your computer using a sophisticated mechanism.

Liquid CPU coolers are one of the many different types of CPU coolers available in the market.

How a Liquid Cooler cools down the Processor?

It All Starts From The Heatsink

The liquid CPU cooler in your computer has a plate that sits directly on top of the heatsink of your CPU. That’s because the CPU heatsink collects all the heat being generated by the working of your CPU.

This process is vital to keep the CPU under a tolerable temperature limit. However, the heatsink is not self-sufficient in driving away all or even most of the heat generated by your CPU under a moderate to heavy workload.

Coolant Plays An Important Role

The liquid CPU cooler has a plate (Sink) that sits on top of the CPU’s heatsink. This sink is connected to the pump and reservoir through hoses.

The pump directs the coolant toward the sink, and the coolant absorbs most of the heat accumulated in the sink. After absorbing heat, coolant is directed towards the radiator, from which it loses its heat, and the cycle continues.

Radiator Fans Provide Ambient Air

Radiators of liquid CPU coolers are fitted with fans, which help direct ambient air through the radiator. This way, the heated coolant present in the ducts of the radiator cools down and gets ready to be cycled through the whole system once again.

The heat exchange between sink and coolant and between coolant and air happens almost immediately.

System Fan Directs The Hot Air Out

After this process, some of the heated air is left in the system, which increases the overall temperature of the system. This is where the system fan(s) come in. This fan helps direct the heated air out of the system to keep things cool.

The Cycle Continues

After going through the radiator, the cooled coolant gets ready to go into the sink once again through the hose, which connects the lower part of the radiator to the sink.

When it comes to choosing the best coolant, it usually depends on the manufacturer of your liquid CPU cooler. While some liquid CPU coolers work best using water, others need specially-made liquid coolants to function properly.

Special liquid coolants consist of water mixed with other specialized materials. Its specialty is that they have a higher boiling point than water and can therefore absorb more heat without boiling.

Moreover, these coolants are custom-made to speed up the heat absorption process, which helps keep your CPU cooler even under heavy workloads.

A high boiling point ensures that no coolants vaporizes, as vaporization can result in mineral deposits within your liquid CPU cooler.

Mineral deposits in liquid CPU coolers are known to decrease the overall cooling efficiency of the liquid cooler. They can also restrict the overall flow of coolant in the whole system.

One massive benefit of Liquid CPU coolers is that they can be attached to multiple components inside your computer, like the processor and GPU, to cool them down efficiently.

Moreover, these coolers are quieter as compared to their alternatives. This is why many PC enthusiasts use liquid CPU coolers in their computer builds.

3. AIO CPU Coolers

All-in-one CPU coolers combine the benefits of liquid CPU coolers and the ease of installation of air CPU coolers into one package.

AIO CPU Cooler

You’ll be getting the cooling power of water, but you will need to put anything inside it yourself.

As they are closed loops, they won’t need any maintenance and have a minimal chance of leaking if adequately handled.

All-in-one CPU coolers provide some of the best performance. They can look downright gorgeous in a proper build, and this is the way to go if you are an enthusiast who wants to overclock their processor.


Our buyer’s guide will help you make a conscious decision that will keep your CPU cooler and give you more incredible performance even in the summer.

We tried including top-of-the-line CPU coolers in all categories, but mistakes have missed some that are equally remarkable.

Feel free to inform us if we have missed an epic CPU cooler that deserves to be on the list.

Best CPU Cooler 2023 conclusion

Photo of author

Luqman Khan

Luqman is the founder of and an obsessed gamer! Overseeing the site's coverage of gaming hardware and software. He is also the founder of a Computer Gaming Lounge. He has been into gaming and PC Building since 2009. He is also obsessed with DOTA 2 and Rainbow Six Siege.