Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
When it comes time to cool your CPU, you have a couple of mainstream options, without delving into extreme cooling. The first is air cooling, where a large body of metal is typically used, mounted directly to the CPU, where a fan is then applied to remove the heat. In years gone by, this was the standard solution, and performance is good, but it used to be rare that it was great.
On the flip side, you have the option to cool with "water," or whatever liquid compound is either already in the loop, or whatever concoction you may mix or buy to cycle the heat. In the olden days, which was up until a couple or a few years ago, it used to be that these were the better option, although there is a price premium associated with the second option of cooling a CPU.
While ID-Cooling offers both types of cooling solutions, the vast majority of what we have gotten from them happens to be AIO liquid cooling solutions, which come with all sorts of styling cues and minor changes between each series, to try to ensure they cover the market and their desires.
With that in mind, we are not surprised to see them coming out and offering the masses even more options. However, this time we are promised a more powerful pump to drive these systems, which could help to bring thermals down, without needing increased fan speeds, which can easily take coolers from nearly silent to annoying to the ear in no time flat.
Not only is the promise of more pump speed compelling, but the new aesthetic used on the head unit is attractive without getting gaudy, and the fans that ID-Cooling paired with this system near silent as well as able to deliver quite the RGB light show. The cooler in question this time is the ZOOMFLOW 240, and on paper, we feel that ID-Cooling may be on the right path, an evolution to the previous designs if you will.
As always though, while we will be covering the fine details of the specifications, and offering a visual tour around the product, it all comes down to price and performance, and after seeing what the ZOOMFLOW 240 is capable of, both thermally and audibly, we can stack it up against all the others looking for your hard-earned dollars, and deliver the verdict, beyond the excitement of the new implementations that have initially attracted us to this product.
In the chart borrowed from the product page, we see quite a bit of information has been provided on the ZOOMFLOW 240. At the top of the chart is compatibility, as if the cooler will not fit your processor, there is no need to continue. In that respect, we see that for Intel users, LGA115X, 1366, 2011, and 2066 are all supported. With AMD, supports starts back at AM2, and goes right on through all of the sockets including AM4 and TR4. Outside of the usual specs, we see that ID-Cooling does list a 250W TDP for this cooler before we get to the dimensions and materials.
The radiator of the ZOOMFLOW 240 is 274mm long, 120mm wide, is 27mm thick, and is made entirely of aluminum. Between the radiator and the head unit are two tubes, both 400mm long and both covered in a premium sleeve material. The head unit on the other end of the tubes is 72mm diameter and stands 52mm tall, using a copper cold-plate to initially move the heat away from the CPU. Under the head, unit cover is where the pump is contained as well. The ceramic bearing pump with increased fin count is capable of 2100 RPM and 106 L/H of flow, should run without issue for 50,000 hours, and should not exceed 25 dB(A).
Cooling the radiator is done with a pair of ID-12025M12S 120mm ARGB fans supported with hydraulic bearings. These fans are rated to spin within a range of 900 to 2000 RPM with a maximum of 55.2 CFM of airflow per fan. The maximum static pressure of 2.13 mmH2O is better than a lot of what we see, and the noise is shown to range from 16.3 on the low-end, to top out at 33.5 dB(A) on the other. Between the 3W per fan and the 4.32W of the pump, all told, at full blast, the ZOOMFLOW 240 will consume under 12W of power.
A huge factor in any purchase is the cost, and with the ZOOMFLOW 240, things are confusing, but there is a good deal to be had in all of that confusion. We initially looked at Amazon for this kit and found the ZOOMFLOW 240 listed at $139.99, but quickly realized it is a third party company trying to make a quick buck, so we left Amazon not wanting to be taken advantage of.
Off to Newegg, we went, where we saw the MSRP listed at just $119.99, which seems much more fitting to the market as we know it. However, if this cooler interests you, and you act fast, Newegg is currently selling this setup for just $79.99, which completely changes the perspective of how we look at the ZOOMFLOW 240. Even though the sale is enticing, we do realize this may not be what you see, and as our judgment in the conclusion comes up, we will be basing those opinions on the retail price, not the current, rapidly ending, offer from Newegg.