When it comes to upgrading or overclocking your current processor you need to keep in mind that a processor cooling kit is essential. When a processor is overclocked it produces more heat due to being forced to work harder and faster than before. How do we fight the heat? Either with liquid coolers or traditional air coolers. People have different opinions about both ways. And here is when the main question comes in.

Which one is better and why? The short answer here is that there’s not a “better” one. Each one is better in it’s own way. Keep reading as I will be explaining each one, presenting it’s advantages/disadvantages and giving you some reasons to or not to buy it.

Liquid Cooling:

cpu, liquid, cooler, water, cooler

I will start with liquid cooling. The way liquid coolers work is pretty simple and smart. Water gets sent from a pump into a water block in order to absorb thermal energy. Once the water absorbs as much heat as possible, it goes into the radiator where a fan is used for blowing the heat out of the computer reducing the water’s temperature. And the loop gets repeated over and over again.

Liquid cooling used to be uncommon, but in the past few years it became popular as more and more people do it. What made everyone move from traditional air coolers to the newer liquid ones? Well time to analyze the advantages and disadvantages of liquid cooling and you’ll figure it out on your own.

  • Great Performancei7-gif

  • Minimal Noise Levels

  • Aesthetics

  • Easy to install

  • Additional points of failure

  • Case Compatibility

  • Usually more expensive

 

  • Great Performance:

A tube of flowing water will always be able to carry more heat than a fan.

  • Minimal Noise Levels:

Since there’re no fans spinning at a high RPM rate in order to keep the processor as cooled as possible, then there’s absolutely no reason to worry about the noise your cooler will be generating. Liquid coolers run smoothly producing no noise at all.

  • Aesthetics:

Since you have an incredible computer you probably want it to look decent as well. Nobody wants to have a Ferrari engine operating under the hood of an old Cadillac. Same with your computer, when you look into your tower you want to see a nice, good looking cooling kit and not and old-fashioned fan spinning.

  • Easy to install:

A large radiator is easier to install than a large heatsink in most cases, since the water block is the only part you have to mount to the CPU, and there’s nothing obstructing the socket.

  • Additional points of failure:

A pump failure or a pipe leak could possibly destroy your processor or even more components. Even though the second sounds worse, a pump failure can be as deadly as a pipe leak. If the pump fails will cause the processor to overheat killing it this way and you won’t even notice.

  • Case compatibility:

If you own a new case, you won’t have to face this issue. However if your case is older you may have to deal with this one. Older cases don’t provide fan slots next to each other making the liquid cooling process impossible.

 

Air Cooling:

air cooling

Time to analyze the traditional air cooling now. The majority of computers has always been using air cooling methods to keep their devices running at safe temperatures using fans.

Air cooling is reliable and it uses a pretty simple working method. It lowers the air temperature by dissipating heat using fans. Those fans are responsible of providing an increased air flow which will transfer the heat out of the computer case.

fan-gif

  • Cheaper than liquid cooling

  • Only one possible point of failure

  • More quite for weak processors

  • Takes up too much space

  • Lower Performance

  • Difficult to install

  • Cheaper than liquid cooling:

Since air cooling requires only a fan to get the job done it’s kind of obvious that it’s a much cheaper method.

  • Only one possible point of failure:

The only part that can fail here is the fan which is really easy to identify. And even if the fan dies your processor won’t over heat right after.

  • More quite for weak processors:

Since a headsink does not need a pump it has a much lower minimum noise level. And if your processor isn’t that powerful it won’t generate that much heat, so you can simply adjust your fan’s RPM rate to a lower value in order to get the lowest possible noise levels.

  • Takes up too much space:

Some air coolers or at least most of them come at big sizes. This can block the top PCIe slot very often.

  • Lower Performance:

The best air cooler will perform roughly the same as a mid-range liquid cooler.

  • Difficult to install:

Air coolers are difficult to be installed due to their big size and especially when you have to deal with a narrow case.

Bottom Line:

It’s up to each one of us to choose the most suitable method of keeping our processors working at low temperatures. Many people would go for the liquid cooling as it’s more powerful. People who go for the air cooling they usually choose it as it’s cheaper and it’s safer in some cases.

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