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Basic CPU AIO Questions.


lukemurtagh
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Hello all,

 

I am new to AIOs and watercooling in general. I am thinking of changing my current CPU air cooler for a Corsair AIO and I have some questions.

 

Firstly, which way should my radiator fans blow? The case I will probably be using will be a Meshify S2 and I will probably mount the radiator up top. I will have three 140mm fans in front, one at the rear, and so that leaves the fans in the radiator.

 

Secondly, which one should I go for? I am currently looking at the H150i Pro, but would welcome other suggestions. Would going for one with two fans be better for my overall fan setup? I’m worried multiple fans at the top may disrupt airflow.

 

Thirdly, should I replace the stock fans that come with the AIO I choose? I’ve heard the stock fans aren’t that good but obviously I don’t have any firsthand experience so any feedback on the stock fans would be appreciated.

 

Thanks! Answers to any or all of my questions are much appreciated!

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1) Ideally, you would prefer for the radiator to exhaust directly out of the case. It is waste heat after all. However, the efficiency of the radiator cooling process is linked to the temperature of the air entering the radiator. The top 2-3 inches of your case are always going to be warmer that the bottom or certainly external air. On the other hand, dumping heat into the case is going to warm up something else slightly. So from a focused perspective, the answer depends on how close you typically run to the CPU maximum temperature (where 2-3C might matter) and how much wattage the CPU/GPU produces. A small 4/'6 core CPU with a low TDP really doesn't add much wattage to the case. On the other hand, a 330W GPU would produce a steady stream of heat on the aft side of the radiator.

 

2) All that said, most people are going to be confined by what their case allows them to put where. It would be silly to skip over a 360mm radiator and take a 120mm set-up, just because it worked as exhaust. If you want to use the H150i 360mm in the top as exhaust, go right ahead. Coolant temperature is not going to be an issue and and in that case, the cooler external air is being dumped directly into the H150i above. This should work well.

 

3) Fans - No reason to replace the stock fans from a performance perspective. You would find improvements there very easily and the entire point of a 360mm radiator is you don't need high fan speeds to keep things cool. As far as stock fans go, the ML-Quiet series are better than any other I am aware of. Putting a 3000 rpm fan on this cooler would serve no purpose. The only reason to replace them is for aesthetic reasons. If you want RGB fans or a different color, by all means.

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