NZXT Kraken Z63 RGB 280mm AIO CPU Cooler Review

Rejoice, all you architects of arctic PC builds – previous and new: the Kraken now is available in matte white! 

No, we didn’t take an image of the fallacious field and also you learn the title proper, associates: after years of system builders begging for this selection, NZXT has launched an aesthetic replace into the X and Z households of Kraken all-in-one CPU coolers. Does the brand new colour change how the Kraken performs? Hardly. However that doesn’t make them any much less cool. That is our assessment of the NZXT Kraken Z63 RGB All-in-One Liquid Cooler. 

  • Present MSRP: $279.99 USD (280mm) (Kraken Z53 240mm – $269.99, Z73 360mm – $309.99) 
  • Water Block
    • Dimensions(LxWxH): 80 x 80 x 52 mm
    • Materials: Block: Copper, Housing: Plastic
    • Pump: Motor Velocity & Energy: 800 – 2,800 + 300 RPM, 12V DC, 0.3A
  • Radiator
    • Dimensions: 143 x 315 x 30mm
    • Materials: Aluminum
  • Tube
    • Size: 400mm
    • Materials: Extremely-low Evaporation Rubber with Nylon Braided Sleeve
  • Cap
    • Show Orientation: Software program adjustable 90° increments
    • Show Panel Energetic Space: 2.36” (60mm) diameter
    • Show Shade: 24-bit true colour LCD
    • Show Decision: 320 x 320 px
    • Show Brightness: 650 cd/m²
  • Followers
    • Aer RGB 2 140 x 2
    • Dimension: 140 x 140 x 26mm
    • Velocity: 500-1,500 + 300 RPM
    • Air Movement: 30.39 – 91.19 CFM
    • Air Strain: 0.17 – 1.52mm – H2O
    • Noise: 22-33dBA
    • Bearing: Fluid Dynamic Bearing
    • Energy Consumption: 12V DC, 0.32A, 3.84W
    • Connector: 4-pin PWM
  • Appropriate Socket & CPU
    • Intel Socket LGA 1151, 1150, 1155, 1156, 1366, 2011, 2011-3, 2066
    • Intel Core i9 / Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron
    • AMD Socket AM4, TR4(bracket not included)
    • AMD Ryzen 7 / Ryzen 5 / Ryzen 3 / Ryzen 9 / Threadripper
  • Life: 60,000 hours / 6 Years
  • Guarantee: 6 Years


It’s arduous to argue that NZXT’s Kraken merchandise are among the many most iconic all-in-one CPU coolers available on the market right this moment. Whether or not it’s mirrored LEDs of the Infinity Mirror Show or simply that modern NZXT design across the Asetek pump head, there are few that come near being so instantly recognizable. However, when you’ve got a product like this that’s so iconic, the place do you go from there?

Final yr, NZXT launched us to the Z-series of Kraken CPU coolers – the most recent iteration on the Kraken with an up to date pump design… with a customizable LCD show. Whether or not using for real-time thermal monitoring or to throw a gif of the face Future 2’s Drifter makes watching you dunk on 4 Guardians in a Gambit match, the show is simply restricted by your creativeness. 

Bringing us to the current, NZXT has launched a brand new set of packages for each the Kraken Z-3 and X-3 collection. These all-in-one coolers include NZXT’s AER 2 RGB followers, out there in both the brand new matte white choice or the basic matte black. The corporate can even be making white variations of their AER 2 RGB followers out there for buy individually. Every collection has choices 240mm, 280mm, and 360mm radiators with costs that begin at $169.99 USD and go as much as $309.99 USD.

Word: We’re more likely to see an industry-wide improve on merchandise just like the NZXT Kraken as shipping container costs out of China increase – (Reuters)

Set up

In case you haven’t put in an all-in-one cooler earlier than, it will possibly appear daunting, however an choice like that Kraken makes it pretty easy on both facet of the CPU aisle. 

With AM4, it is so simple as changing a couple of screws and the inventory bracket with some threaded posts and altering out the mounting ring on the pump head. On the Intel facet of issues, NZXT included a separate bracket for mounting to your motherboard… after which, it’s fairly comparable from there. The most important distinction for Intel installs is simply ensuring you’re utilizing the suitable top of threaded posts in your CPU socket. After the suitable {hardware} is in place and thermal compound utilized, the pump head sits straight on high and may be secured with thumbscrews. 

As soon as the guts of the Kraken was safe, the set up of the radiator and followers have been pretty easy. NZXT contains {hardware} for each direct (PC case to radiator to followers) and oblique (PC case to followers to radiator) mounting. In our testing, we used the oblique mounting methodology. This enables us to indicate off the AER 2 RGB followers!


Talking of those followers, NZXT has a superb factor going for it in terms of the AER 2 RGB. Every fan has out and in ports constructed into them with detachable wiring, permitting for daisy-chaining the RGB components. This protects on additional cables to handle all through the case in addition to on ports in “sensible hubs.” Within the case of the Kraken, that’s the hub for RGB connection is constructed into the pump’s breakout cable – which additionally accommodates three fan header connections as nicely. 

Of the all-in-one coolers I’ve put in over time, I can’t argue with the simplicity of the NZXT Kraken, due to Asetek’s mounting design. That is very true when working with AM4 sockets! 


Efficiency Testing

Since we now have seen the 360mm Kraken Z73 in addition to the X63 in motion, the logical selection for our assessment was the 280mm Z63. We did have a singular alternative throughout our testing when deciding the place to combine the Kraken. Since we now have utilized Corsair’s iCUE 4000X PC case for different AiO evaluations, we wished to maintain the situations as shut as we might, however we additionally had our hand on an NZXT H510 Elite PC case. Our official knowledge was collected within the iCUE 4000X, however we’ll speak anecdotally in regards to the H510 Elite.

Our check bench for this assessment is as follows: 

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3800X 
  • Cooler: NZXT Kraken Z63
  • RAM: 32GB Essential Ballistix DDR4-4000
  • Motherboard: Gigabyte X570S AERO-G
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Founders Version
  • Storage: 1TB WD_Black SN750, 1TB Kingston KC2500, 2 TB Seagate FireCuda
  • PSU: Corsair RMx850
  • Case: Corsair 4000X

To ensure that us to get a superb image of how a cooler will function within the on a regular basis, we glance intently at comparative temperature whereas idle in addition to beneath heavy computational load. The testing setting is a managed  (as finest as doable) 22 levels Celsius with coolers set to their highest efficiency choice. We gather load temperatures from the CPU after a twenty minute check by way of Prime95. This offers the fluid throughout the AiO an opportunity to heat up as we document any developments that we’d see alongside the way in which. The temperatures charted consider present the temperature improve over ambient.

Right here is how the Kraken Z63 appears to be like in comparison with different AiOs available on the market: 


(It is very important notice that the testing benches used to gather the comparative knowledge have been completely different. Nevertheless, the situations of the testing have been meticulous replicated as finest as doable)

Let’s look past a singular quantity for a second. Thermal temperatures peaked at across the 5 minute mark of the check, coincidentally, for round 5 minutes, holding at roughly 62C over ambient temperatures. After being beneath load for about twelve minutes into the check, temperatures dipped to round 42C over ambient temperatures because the Kraken stabilized. Within the ultimate three minutes, it rose to 60 C over ambient close to the tip of our twenty minute check. After a short while, the Kraken sat comfortably at round 18C over ambient temperatures. 

All of those numbers are with the inventory, out-of-the-box thermal paste. Whereas we discovered it to be enough throughout our checks, we did swap it for some Arctic MX-4 thermal compound to see if we might get higher contact with the Kraken Z63. What we discovered was that the temperatures beneath load have been across the identical, however we observed a ~2C drop because the Kraken stabilized beneath heavy load and a ~3C drop throughout idle.

As we talked about earlier than, we did wish to check out the Kraken Z63 in NZXT’s personal setting. Because it turned out, I occurred to be accumulating some components to throw collectively an Intel Core i5 10600K-based system. And what we noticed was a remarkably comparable story. The Kraken Z63 held the CPU at just below 60C whereas beneath load and saved the CPU at round 40C (18C over ambient) instantly following. 

In different phrases, no matter platform, the Kraken saved its cools. Whereas not as frosty as a few of its competitors whereas idling, it dealt with excessive temperatures at bay whereas beneath load with consistency, not permitting any spikes. 


Ultimate Ideas

The NZXT Kraken Z63 RGB is a spiffy, albeit spendy, choice for CPU cooling. Constructed on the monitor document its predecessors have discovered success on, this is identical previous breed of CPU coolers we noticed final yr. The distinction is that it has a recent coat of paint and a few fairly, new lighted followers. 

That isn’t a criticism; the Kraken Z-3 collection is among the most stunning CPU coolers we now have seen up to now. The lively thermal monitoring on the pump’s LCD is a pleasant characteristic and the AER 2 followers present multi-zone RGB with restricted cabling. You’re going to pay fanatic costs for these options, however right here are some things to contemplate.

The Kraken Z-3 collection will not be for each builder. Whereas the CPU cooler is each aesthetically gorgeous and does its job very nicely, the identical is true for the X-3 Sequence. So, it’s important to ask your self if you actually need animated gifs in your CPU? Most likely not. Is the thermal stability of your machine an ever-present nervousness for you that requires lively monitoring? Most likely not. 

However, it’s fairly cool.

NZXT’s addition of matte white choices for each AiO coolers and their AER 2 permits for brand new, inventive constructing choices when contemplating system cooling. And, to me, merchandise like these are thrilling, particularly when contemplating how PC builders will make the most of them in inventive and attention-grabbing builds but to return!

The product described on this article was supplied by the producer for analysis functions. | NZXT Kraken Z63 RGB 280mm AIO CPU Cooler Evaluation


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