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NZXT Kraken X42 Liquid CPU Cooler Review

By: Chad Sebring | CPU Liquid Coolers in Cases, Cooling & PSU | Posted: Mar 24, 2017 1:52 am
TweakTown Rating: 97%Manufacturer: NZXT

Chad's CPU Cooler Test System Specifications

 

 

 

To see our testing methodology and to find out what goes into making our charts, please refer to our CPU Cooler Testing and Methodology article (October 2016) for more information.

 

 

Thermal Results

 

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With the processor stock, PWM control enabled, and the CUE software ran in both Silent and Performance modes, we obtained our results. In silent mode, the Kraken X42 is near the bottom of the chart with a 60.5-degree result. Switching to performance mode removed a bit more than four degrees with the 56.25-degree showing, which is pretty good when it comes to cooling the 6700K.

 

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At this time, the only thing we changed was the clock speed and its running voltage, we are still using PWM and CUE to control the Kraken X42. In silent mode, we saw the processor reach 81.25-degrees, and CAM sent us a notice that this is too hot for the long haul. In performance mode, we gained nearly ten degrees in our favor, with the NZXT Kraken X42 moving up to sixth place overall.

 

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To obtain the overclocked and maximum voltage test run, we went back to CAM and set the pump and fan to fixed mode, where we changed the curves to deliver full power all of the time. With the Kraken X42 giving it all she's got, we only moved from 71.75 to 68.25, which shows how well performance mode works; without all the noise.

 

 

Noise Level Results

 

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In silent mode, the fan was spinning at 491 RPM, and in performance mode, the fan was turning at 746RPM. The noise coming from the fan is near nil, with 23dB taken in silent mode, and 25dB taken in performance mode.

 

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Even with the processor delivering much more heat to the X42, we see that NZXT moves the pump faster, from 3380RPM in the first round to 4250 for this round, and the fans stay slower. In silent mode, the fan topped out at 506RPM and 24dB, and in performance mode, we saw 747RPM and only 26dB of noise.

 

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In fixed mode, the pump displays 5387RPM as its top speed, and at this time the head unit was audible at 27dB. Along with the jump in pump speed, the fan is now spinning at 1884RPM, and the noise is high at 70dB. We can see why NZXT moves the pump speed over fan speed.

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