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Best CPU Coolers For i7-9700K In 2021 – Top 8 Rated Reviews

We have written numerous guides about the best motherboards and best CPUs for them. But the critical factor in achieving the best performance is the temperature of your processor. For optimal returns, you must keep your CPU cool and within an acceptable temperature range.

In this review, we will go through a selection of the very best CPU Coolers for i7-9700K currently on the market. There are many options to choose from when it comes to CPU coolers; You can either go with an AIO cooler (Liquid) or AIR CPU coolers.

We have included both types in this review, so there is plenty of choice as we find the perfect CPU cooler for your i7-9700K…

First off is an air cooler.

Best CPU Coolers For i7-9700K

Top 8 Best CPU Coolers For i7-9700K In 2021 Review

  1. Noctua NH-D15 – Best Air Cooler for i7-9700K
  2. be quiet! Dark Rock 4 – Best Rated CPU Cooler for i7-9700K
  3. Thermalright Le Grand Macho – Best Budget CPU Cooler for i7-9700K
  4. EVGA CLC 280 – Best Premium CPU Cooler for i7-9700K
  5. Cooler Master MasterAir MA410M – Best Value for the Money CPU Cooler for i7-9700K
  6. Cryorig R1 Ultimate – Best Mid Range CPU Cooler for i7-9700K
  7. Corsair H150i Pro – Best AIO Cooler for i7-9700K
  8. Arctic Liquid Freezer 360 – Most Recommended Cooler for Core i7 9700K

1 Noctua NH-D15 – Best Air Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1151 / 1155 / 1156 / 1159 / 2066 / 2011-0 / 2011-3
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2 / AM2+ / AM3 / AM3+ / FM1 / FM2 / FM2+ / AM4
  • Dimensions: LWH 165 x 150 x 161mm
  • Weight: 1320g

The Noctua NH-D15 is a relatively old but powerful and well-respected CPU cooler. It was first released in 2014 and was based on the award-winning NH-D14.

But it has its own specifications and features. The most highlighted part is the dual-fans. Many cooling systems fail because they only have one fan. The fans are premium quality NF-A15 fans. The fact that they are 140mm makes the entire cooling system even more effective. The PWN can be used to control the speed of the fans.

Dual-tower design with six heat pipes… 

The NH-D15 has a dual-tower design with six heat pipes making the system more coherent. The dual-tower is an all-in-one feature as it maximizes the surface area to ensure equal heat distribution. The dual-tower, in combination with the dual fans, improves the quality of the airflow. The design is very competent and is one step ahead of its competitors.

Heat distribution is a crucial factor for any air cooler and determines how well the air cooler handles the heat. With the NH-D15, heat is distributed across the entire motherboard. The fin stack has a 150mm spacing, which maximizes the heat distribution.

The already quiet fans can become even quieter…

Even though the fans are reticent at adequate speeds, you can still manually control the speed and reduce it from 1500 to 1200 RPM through the low noise adapter for an even quieter environment.

The NH-D15 uses the SecuFirm2 mounting system making it compatible with various sockets. Since it also includes the NM-I3 mounting kit, you get even more mounting options.

What’s our verdict?

If you want a cooler that is silent and can overclock well, the Noctua NH-D15 is an excellent choice. The NH-D15 is on par with some of the top-rated water coolers. Even though it’s quiet, you might not like the colors (brown and beige), but the overall experience is unmatched. Whether you want to overclock your CPU or not, The NH-D15 is one of the best CPU air coolers for i7 9700k.


Noctua NH-D15

Our rating:4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

Pros

  • Quiet.
  • Excellent cooling performance.
  • Outperforms some water coolers.
  • Outstanding build quality.
  • Easy installation.

Cons

  • The size may cause RAM slot clearance issues.
  • Expensive.
  • The color scheme isn’t the nicest.

2 be quiet! Dark Rock 4 – Best Rated CPU Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1156 / 1366 / 2011(-3) / 2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2 / AM2+ / AM3 / AM3+ / FM1 / FM2 / FM2+ / AM4
  • Dimensions: LWH 96.3 x 136 x 159.4mm
  • Weight: 920g

Next, in our Best CPU Coolers for i7-9700K review, we have the Dark Rock 4, a CPU cooler designed by be quiet! The build quality is excellent, and you can tell it’s made with passion. It features one radiator along with a powerful 135mm PWM fan.

Don’t let the compactness of the Dark Roch 4 fool you; the cooling performance is genuinely premium. If you know anything about be quiet, you should know that they specialize in high-performing, noise-reducing products. The Dark Rock 4 can be compared to many water coolers, except it makes a lot less noise.

Performs like a 280mm AIO cooler…

The be quiet! Dark Rock 4 is a great air cooler and performs similar to 280mm AIO coolers. It’s an excellent cooler for the i7-9700K, and the overclocking ability is also good.

If aesthetics are essential for you, too, the Dark Rock 4 is a lot more visually pleasing to look at than many other air coolers. The black color matches well with most builds. The name says it all; even when it’s operating at full speed, it isn’t nearly as loud as other coolers on the market. The noise level reaches a mear 21.4 dBA, which shouldn’t be a problem.

But that’s not all…

It’s equipped with seven advanced 6mm copper heat pipes for maximizing heat conductance. It also has airflow optimized, wave-like cooling fins, and small dots on their surfaces increase the air circulation. The unique black coating, including ceramic particles, perfectly transfers the heat. Like the Noctua NH-D15, it has a dual-tower design with two aluminum heatsinks.

The cutouts enhance its RAM compatibility. It has two pre-installed fans, and you can add another 120mm fan for even better cooling if you want.

What’s our verdict?

There isn’t much to say except acknowledging the fact of how quiet it is. Even after overclocking, the maximum noise level is 21.4 dB. Overall it’s a great air cooler well worth a place in your build, but there are two things we rather dislike.

It doesn’t include thermal paste even if it says it does, and it’s expensive if you look at the overall price-to-performance ratio. Regardless of this, the be quiet! Dark Rock 4 is an excellent option for the i7-9700K.


be quiet! Dark Rock 4

Our rating:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • Excellent build quality.
  • Great color scheme.
  • Excellent cooling performance.
  • Very quiet.

Cons

  • Expensive for some.
  • Quite large.

3 Thermalright Le Grand Macho – Best Budget CPU Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA775/1150/1151/1155/1156/1200/1366/2011/2011-3/2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2/AM2 /AM3/AM3 /AM4/FM1/FM2/FM2
  • Dimensions: LWH 159 x 120 x 150mm
  • Weight: 1057g

The Thermalright Le Grand Macho has a different design to other air coolers and will blow you away with its specs. The fins are optimally placed to create a round and hollow structure. The design is constructed, so one fan occupies one side of the fin.

More compact than most…

It has seven heat pipes, which are also relatively rare to find and only available from a few brands. Each tube is 6mm, and the fins dimensions are also very reasonable, making the unit slightly compact.

The fin is 0.4 mm thick, and there is a 3.1 mm gap between the two of them. The gap prevents dust from getting trapped, increasing efficiency and reduces the need for constant cleaning. If you compare the Le Grand Macho to the predecessors and previous models, this is the most portable version of them all.

Surprisingly lightweight… 

The fact that Thermalright uses metal as a material makes the product worth considering. The base is Nickel-plated copper. Despite using these materials, the unit is very lightweight. The airflow is way better than seen on many standard small coolers. Airflow is a vital key factor and determines the efficiency of air that cools the system. Even though its design is very similar to its predecessors, it still has its distinctions.

It holds a 140mm fan that varies from 300 to 1300 RPM. At 300 RPM, you can hardly hear the fan, but it gets a little louder at 1300 RPM, not loud enough to disturb you but still.

What’s our verdict?

The Thermalright Le Grand Macho is a capable air cooler. It may only hold one fan, but it still efficiently cools your system, thanks to the unique design. The build is high-quality and will last for a long time. The RAM compatibility is excellent, and the design is compact and the perfect height.


Thermalright Le Grand Macho

Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • Portable.
  • Compact design lightweight design.
  • Outstanding RAM compatibility.
  • Perfect height.

Cons

  • Overlapping between high spots lowers the contact area.
  • Mounting might be a bit tricky for some.

4 EVGA CLC 280 – Best Premium CPU Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1156/ 1366/ 2011/ 2011-v3 /2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2 / AM3 / AM4 / FM1 / FM2 / TR4
  • Dimensions: LWH 312 x 139 x 27mm
  • Weight: 998g

Up next, in our reviews of the Best CPU Coolers for i7-9700K, we have the EVGA CLC, a reliable 280mm liquid cooler with extraordinary overall cooling abilities. The cooling block provides an efficient design made for increased flow rate, and the copper base offers a great heat transference. It has a completely self-contained cooling solution that doesn’t require re-filling, maintenance, or custom tubing.

That’s not all…

The dual-fans are extremely quiet, peaking at 20 dB, due to the Teflon nano bearing inside the fans. The bearings not only decrease the noise output but also prolong the lifespan of the fans.

Another great feature is the fan speed. The speed depends on the CPUs temperature. If the CPU has a cool temperature, the fan speed will reduce or shut down entirely to decrease the noise. The two fans are 140x140x25, and it also has a dual-fan radiator.

The CLC stands for closed-loop cool, which is the type of cooling provided by the system. The cooling is looped, so it doesn’t get lost and dissipated.

What’s our verdict?

The EVGA CLC 280 is an excellent pick if you’re looking for the best reliable all-around liquid cooler. It runs quiet, features RGB lighting, has excellent build quality, exceptional performance, and sleeved tubing.

The design is simple, and the all-black color scheme can’t go wrong. You also have the option of having RGB on the CPU block by fiddling through the provided software. If you buy the EVGA CLC 280, you will find yourself owning an excellent performer that does wonders for the i7-9700K.


EVGA CLC 280

Our rating:4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Pros

  • Copper base.
  • Quiet fans that peak at 20 dB.
  • Durable.
  • Amazing cooling performance.
  • Sleeved tubing.
  • RGB lighting.
  • Easy to install.

Cons

  • A large radiator that doesn’t fit in all cases.

5 Cooler Master MasterAir MA410M – Best Value for the Money CPU Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1156/ 1366/ 2011-v3 / 2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2+ / AM3 / AM3+ / AM4 / FM1 / FM2 / FM2+
  • Dimensions: LWH 111.8 x 130.9 x 165.1mm
  • Weight: 820g

The MasterAir MA410M includes a few exciting features. One that especially caught our eye was the thermal detection sensor. The RGB lighting’s default color is blue, but as the CPU heats, the RGB color changes to red, indicating the CPUs temperature.

It’s equipped with four heatsinks with CDC2.0, which compresses the heat pipes together, resulting in 45% more surface area. This feature makes the MasterAir MA410M outperform its predecessors in terms of heat dissipation.

What’s our verdict?

The MasterAir MA410M is certainly a viable option for the i7-9700K. And it produces adequate temperatures due to the CDC2.0 feature. Overclocking the cooler makes perfect sense even though you might not reach extreme core speeds, but the thermal detection sensor gives you an insight into the temperatures inside your system.

If you’re into RGB lighting, the MasterAir MA410M looks amazing inside transparent cases.


Cooler Master MasterAir MA410M

Our rating:4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Pros

  • RGB lighting.
  • Impressive cooling performance.
  • Takes up less space than other coolers.
  • CDC2.0 feature.
  • Thermal detection sensor.

Cons

  • It will get rather noisy.

6 Cryorig R1 Ultimate – Best Mid Range CPU Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1156/ 2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2+ / AM3+ / AM4 / FM1 / FM2
  • Dimensions: LWH 142.4 x 140 x 168.3mm
  • Weight: 1282g

The CRYORIG R1 Ultimate is one of the top air coolers available today in terms of overall performance. Installing the R1ultimate with CRYORIG’s MultiSeg mounting makes it a walk in the park. Add an exceptional build quality on par with Noctua, and you have a premium cooler for the i7-9700K.

Even though it’s equipped with dual-fans, there is still an option to add a third fan to increase the performance. Most important, though, is the support CRYORIG puts behind their products. A three-year warranty turns into six-year if you register and includes a free AM4 upgrade kit. If you want a bit more flair, you can grab CUSTOMOD covers to match your build better.

However, there are a few faults…

There are a few issues that keep the R1 Ultimate from being genuinely stellar. It’s expensive, which is on par with a top-end cooler but which can influence potential buyers. It also blocks the first expansion slot on the motherboard, which means that some micro-ATX and mini-ITX users can’t use the R1 Ultimate.

The cooler even soars over two memory slots and infringes on a third. With a maximum height of 35mm for RAM, it limits your memory options.

What’s our verdict?

The R1 Ultimate is one of the top-performing coolers on the market. Cooling the i7-9700K is never going to be an issue as it cools slightly under the NH-D15. You can achieve significant overclocking with the R1 due to the accelerated air exhaust along with the Direct compress feature. Both aid in dispursing heat fast and efficiently.

The noise levels are on par with the NH-D15 at maximum speed, it’s 1 dB louder, but you won’t notice the difference.


Cryorig R1 Ultimate

Our rating:4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • Easy to install.
  • Good cooling performance.
  • Quiet even at maximum RPM.
  • Excellent build quality.

Cons

  • Limits RAM options.
  • Blocks expansion slots.
  • Expensive for some.

7 Corsair H150i Pro – Best AIO Cooler for i7-9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1156/ 1366 / 2011 / 2011-3 / 2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2 / AM3 / AM4 / FM1 / FM2
  • Dimensions: LWH 396 x 120 x 27mm
  • Weight: 960g

The Corsair H150i Pro is a 360mm liquid cooler built for low noise levels. It’s aesthetically pleasing with RGB lighting and provides an excellent performance. The pump has fully customizable RGB lights, which provide striking lighting effects.

Quiet but with increased airflow…

Corsair wanted this cooler to be as quiet as possible while increasing airflow, so they introduced magnetic levitation in PWM driven fans. The result is a noise level at 25dB at maximum speed.

The Zero RPM feature adds to the overall performance by letting the fans stop once a low enough CPU temperature is met. The H150i Pro has triple 120mm fans, and since it’s slightly more significant than the H115i, you want to make sure it fits in your system before you buy it.

Installation is simple with the included mounting system, so you shouldn’t have any problems installing it onto your motherboard.

Clean, simple design…

The black and white design looks clean, even though that’s an opinionated statement. You will experience the only color change on the pump and the RGB lighting on the CPU block. If you don’t care too much about RGB lighting, you can easily disable it through the software.

As for cooling, it has a near-perfect balance between performance and noise. Cooling the i7-9700k is no problem, even when overclocked to 5GHz.

What’s our verdict?

Unless you want a small and compact CPU cooler with a small radiator or are on a tight budget, there is no excuse not to buy the Corsair H150i Pro. With a five-year warranty, beautiful RGB lighting, and remarkable performance, it’s one of the best coolers for the i7-9700K on the market.


Corsair H150i Pro

Our rating:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • Excellent cooling performance.
  • Low noise levels.
  • Easy to install.

Cons

  • Expensive.
  • Large 360mm radiator.

8 Arctic Liquid Freezer 360 – Most Recommended Cooler for Core i7 9700K

Features:

  • Intel Compatibility List: LGA1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 2011 / 2011-3 / 2066
  • AMD Compatability List: AM2+ / AM3+ / FM2+ / TR4
  • Dimensions: LWH 272 x 120 x 38mm
  • Weight: 1540g

The Arctic Liquid Freezer 360 was made to have top of the range cooling abilities and low noise output. The pump is energy efficient using only a 2-watt power consumption because of the new motor technology. The radiator features six 120mm fans, where one pushes air in while the others pull air out.

The liquid cooler is enormous but compensates by its excellent cooling performance. It performs better than coolers like the Noctua NH-D15, but you should only buy it if your case is big enough to fit it.

One of the best coolers available…

If a cooler performs even close to the NH-D15, cooling the i7-9700K even when overclocked is a painless process. You can quickly achieve stable temperatures with a cooler like the Arctic Liquid Freezer 360.

Despite having six fans, it performs with acceptable noise levels peaking at 32 dB. The design is clean, and the black and white colors are appealing even though it lacks RGB lighting.

What’s our verdict?

The Arctic Liquid Freezer 360 is great. Mix in a short two-year warranty, and it gets better. It’s a game-changer. It’s a true king of value in its corner of the market. It has so much value that we are shocked that Artic can sell this 360mm AIO at the given price and still make a profit. But it isn’t perfect.

It’s like a “generation 1” design with room for improvement. It will be interesting to see what future Liquid Freezer models have in store, but in the meantime, yes, we highly recommend this beast from the east. Even though it isn’t perfect, it’s still better than the vast majority of available AIOs right now. At least once you get it installed and working correctly.


Arctic Liquid Freezer 360

Our rating:4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Pros

  • Fantastic build quality.
  • Quiet.
  • Excellent cooling performance.
  • Shocking price for the value.

Cons

  • Massive, due to the six fans.
  • No RGB.
  • Unbraided tubing.

Best CPU Coolers for i7-9700K Buying Guide

Now that we have reviewed eight of the best CPU coolers for the i7-9700K, we believe you deserve to know the criteria behind our fantastic selection. So, here are the points that we considered:

  • Compatibility
  • Type of cooler
  • Performance
  • Price to performance ratio

CPU coolers are crucial to get the best performance of your CPU. A wrong decision can seriously harm your CPU, which is why choosing the best and dedicated one for your processor is crucial.

Compatibility

be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4, BK022, 250W TDP, CPU Cooler

Typically, the first thing you have to check is that the cooler is compatible with the possible CPU. Since our guide is for the best cooler for the i7-9700K, we already tested the compatibility. All the coolers above work flawlessly with the CPU.

To check if a cooler is compatible or not, you only have to check compatible CPU sockets. The compatible sockets are usually found on the manufacturer’s websites. The most commonly used and accessible CPU socket for Intel processors is LGA1151, but a CPU cooler usually supports more sockets than just that.

For example:

The Corsair Hydro Series H150i Pro supports 13 CPU sockets. We listed the compatible Intel and AMD CPU sockets for every cooler in our review.

To make it even easier for you, you only need to ask yourself two questions to know if your desired cooler will work or not. What CPU socket does my processor use? And does this CPU cooler support that socket.

But there’s more…

Size also matters. For instance, the Arctic Liquid Freezer 360 will never fit in a mini-ITX case. Another thing you need to check is how compatible the cooler is for your RAM. Some coolers will cover the RAM slots limiting your options in how much RAM you can use.

Type of Cooler

There are two types of coolers:

  • AIO Coolers
  • AIR coolers

AIO coolers use liquids for cooling while the AIR coolers, yes, use air. Both have their pros and cons.

If you never bought a cooler before, we recommend you buy an air cooler. The reason for that is that AIO coolers are harder to install, and some models need maintenance for optimal performance and lifespan. If you don’t know how to maintain and clean an AIO cooler, an AIR cooler’s benefit is that they’re easier to clean and, therefore, lasts longer.

What’s The Difference?

The most significant difference between the two types isn’t cooling performance as you might think, even though liquid coolers tend to be a bit better, but no, it’s the aesthetics.

Liquid coolers define beauty since they have an attractive design and excellent RGB setup. That doesn’t mean that air coolers aren’t beautiful, but there are limited options for RGB lighting and visually stunning bodies. AIR coolers are usually designed for one thing, and that is cooling. But yes, you can find beautiful AIR coolers as well.

Convenience

AIR coolers are more convenient for most users. The reason is simple, after installing it in the perfect place, there is nothing else to do except give it a clean one in a while to get rid of dust. On the other hand, AIO coolers need proper management since you have to take care of the radiators, fans, etc.

AIR coolers are often cheaper than the AIO coolers, and AIO coolers produce more noise than AIR coolers at maximum speeds.

Performance And Price-to-Performance Ratio

We always check if a product is priced too high compared to its performance. Needless to say, the best coolers come with a higher price, but there are exceptions. There are cheap coolers that outperform the more expensive ones. Two examples are the Noctua NH-D15 and the be quiet! Dark Rock 4. Both have a reasonable price and outperform many other CPU coolers.

They both perform excellently, even if the CPU is overclocked to its fullest potential. Despite working at maximum speeds, they both keep sound levels to a minimum.

What Other Gaming And Computer Products Do We Recommend?

Cooler Master MasterAir MA410M Addressable RGB CPU Air Cooler

To find out, check out our Best 140mm Case Fans Review, our Best Motherboard CPU Combos Review, our Best B450 Motherboards For AMD Ryzen Review, our Best Gaming Monitor Under 100 Review, and our ASUS VG248QE Gaming Monitor Review.

But don’t stop there…

Also, pop on over and read our Best Expensive Gaming Keyboards Review, our Best Budget Gaming Chairs Under 200 Reviews, our Best CPU For Gaming Reviews, and our Best Gaming Desks Review. And don’t miss our comprehensive review of the Best Gaming Monitors Under 200 dollars you can buy in 2021.

Which Is The Best CPU Coolers For i7-9700K?

Since it’s hard to choose the best CPU cooler for the i7-9700K, we decided to break it down into three categories, best AIR cooler, best AIO cooler, and best budget CPU cooler. Hopefully, that will help you make a qualified decision whether you’re on a tight budget or prefer AIR or AIO coolers. These three coolers are excellent and are great choices for the i7-9700K.

The best AIR CPU cooler for the i7-9700K is the…

Noctua NH-D15

Its cooling performance outclasses the other AIR coolers and many of the AIO coolers. It’s quiet, has excellent build quality, and is easy to install.

The best AIO cooler for i7-9700K is the…

Corsair H150i Pro

It also has a fantastic build quality; it’s equipped with RGB lighting, has deficient noise levels, and excellent cooling performance. The main factor that made us choose this over the Arctic Liquid Freezer 360 is installing it. Suppose you want a great AIO cooler for an excellent price, you can select the Liquid Freezer 360. The only thing is that it’s tricky to install.

The best budget CPU cooler for i7-9700K is the…

be quiet! Dark Rock 4

Apart from fantastic build quality, a grand color scheme, and excellent cooling performance, it’s also tranquil. And the price is affordable.

Happy PC building, and remember to always keep your cool!

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