ProsOffers unmatched cooling for compact systems that can't fit standard tower coolers; cool ARGB effects; quiet at idle
ConsToo loud at maximum 2200RPM
Here at TBG, we have a thing for coolers. In fact, at this point, we've tested more coolers than any other PC component, with 50 under our belt. That means we have a very good sense of what the best models are, and more importantly, where they are best put to use. And that's what this review is all about: finding the best cooler at the best price for a small form factor system!
In our recent 120mm CPU Cooler shootout, we found that the best options came in the form of tower coolers fitted with dual fans. The one liquid cooler we reviewed, the Corsair Hydro H60, was near the bottom of the pack. But in a follow-up review pitting the H60 against low-profile air coolers that are typically required for small form factor builds, the H60 did much better, easily outperforming the small air coolers, at the cost of higher noise.
Which brings us to the review today: the SilverStone PF120, a direct competitor to the Hydro H60 that may deliver similar performance, but hopefully better noise levels, all while offering up the latest in addressable RGB effects.
So without further ado, on to the review!
Special thanks to SilverStone for providing a sample of its Permafrost PF120 Liquid CPU Cooler.
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So, the PF120 easily beat every low-profile cooler on the market, as well as the Hydro H60. It was a bit of a trade-off, though: either it could deliver better performance at higher noise levels than the H60, or the same performance at lower noise levels. Either way, we'll take it, and we love the ARGB effects too! It's a perfect setup for a stylin' ITX rig!
As always, check out our Small Form Factor Buyer's Guides to find all the best SFF PC builds!