MSI's CoreLiquid K360 provided better than expected performance when testing Intel's i9-12900k, and kept it cool in scenarios most other coolers fail. Alder Lake’s thermal density makes cooling high TDP loads a lot harder than cooling previous generation CPUs, and the MSI K360 CoreLiquid rises to the challenge.
Today we're testing DeepCool's CASTLE EX360 AIO Cooler, can it tame Intel's i9-12900k when power limits are removed?!
In multi-threaded tasks the 12700 is just shy (~8%) of AMD's Ryzen 5900x on average, and a bit faster (~16%) in single threaded tasks. Cooling it is easy, and for most users the included stock cooler will actually suffice in most tasks - although it does run a bit noisy. With an expected retail price of ~$350, the i7 12700 packs a great value - especially when paired with a b660 motherboard. It's crazy to think that for the price of a 5900x, you can get this CPU and a motherboard
MSI's MEG CoreLiquid S280 has top tier cooling performance, and is one of the few coolers I would recommend for overclocking Alder Lake
DeepCool's CK560 is a nice mid-tower case that provides good cooling performance while running silently. This is a quality product that gets the job done well. I have no complaints about this product and would recommend it to anyone looking for a new computer case.
I'm giving Enermax' Aquafusion 360 the Silver Award because it's a good value AIO cooler ($120 USD) that technically passes all of my thermal tests (a test only one other cooler has passed), but It fails to get the Gold award because the fans get louder than they should in the hottest of loads.
The Noctua NH-U12A chromax.black performs well as an air cooler with Alder Lake, able to handle up to 220w long term loads when paired with Intel's i9-12900k - performing almost as well as the bigger NH-D15. The all-black asthetic of this cooler will appeal to those who are tired of seeing RGB plastered everywhere, and Noctua's top-notch customer support means you'll know this cooler will be supported for years to come.
The $619.99 i9-12900k provides incredible uplifts in both gaming and productivity, while the $299.99 i5-12600k is the star of the show providing better overall performance than Intel's i9-10900k and uses significantly less power to do so.