Before we have a closer look at the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark from EKWB, I have found the specifications from their website.
The technical specifications:
All about the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark
EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark is an AIO water cooling. It's a pitch-black cooler that doesn't come with RGB. It is designed to fit the most popular cases on the market, with a thin radiator design. It supports the latest Intel and AMD sockets, and should be ready for the next-gen Intel socket. It is possible to turn the pump head so that the logo always stands correctly.
The accessories themselves in the box come in a nice packaging, which contains everything necessary to be able to mount on both Intel and AMD. EKWB offers the more modern and common sockets, where LGA1366 has been deprecated. However, it is ready with 115x, as well as the next generation of Intel. On the AMD side, it supports both AM4 and AM5. Extra cooling paste and tools for mounting the equipment are also included.
The fans that are used are three EK-FPT FAN 120 – Black Full Pressure Technology fans. Which is optimized to provide high cooling capacity, with a maximum speed of 2300 RPM, and a noise level of 36 dB. They have an air flow of 72 CFM. Next to that, the fans also have a daisy chain, which makes it possible to minimize cables that have to go around the cabinet.
The plate that touches the CPU is made of copper, improving heat distribution, along with a dense stack of micro fins that should boost heat transfer. The pump head has a speed of 3100 RPM.
As previously mentioned, it is all collected in a box, and provides an easy overview of everything that comes with it. There are no screws that need to be on the bracket in the first place. However, you must pay attention to which screws you use for the bracket, as it depends on which socket the Intel CPU is.
As it is Intel, the bracket is placed behind the motherboard, and fixed with screws, which must also ensure that the pump head is mounted.
The Test – Use and Performance
The test is set up so that we first warm up the system with Cinebench for 5 minutes. Then run it further for 10 minutes where we measure the average temperature in HWiNFO64. We then finally subtract the room temperature at the given time and land on a delta temperature to give as neutral a picture as possible. The fans are set to run at full speed, so that you get a picture of the maximum cooling performance with the load we are now giving it. It should give a real picture of how much you can stress on the various coolers, and whether they can take more or less than what we give it.
**After following up a bit on the I9 12900K and heat generation, I have chosen to turn off Hyper-Threading, to give the cooler the opportunity to show what it can do, rather than pushing the CPU to its maximum. All tests in the future will run like this.
As always, we start out quietly with idle. Where we can see the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark gets off to a good start with 1 degree in delta temperature, which puts it well in the field together with many of the others.
One of the most relevant tests, however, happens here when we take a look at the load test. Here too, magic happens when the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark outruns the other models, and ends up scoring the best result with 42 degrees in delta temperature.
Our noise measurements were made with a UNI-T UT353 dB meter. The measurements were made in a "real world" setup and therefore not in a sound chamber. External influences have of course been tried to be reduced as much as possible, but as I said, this has not been done in a sound chamber. Our measurements must therefore most of all be taken as a general indicator and not a scientific measurement. They primarily serve as a basis for comparison across tested products, which are always tested under as comparable conditions as possible.
It has not been possible to find the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark on Danish pages during the test. But directly from EKWB it can be had for 170$.
We must of course have completed the test of the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark. As you may have noticed, there is not much difference between the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark and the little brother EK Nucleus AIO CR240 Dark, other than a slightly larger radiator and an extra fan. The extra fan, however, can do a lot of things, and one of them is that, for some reason, it gave a lower result on the noise level. In addition to that, we of course also got a very nice result, and got further down in temperature, which ended up with 42 degrees in delta temperature.
But the similarities also mean that we achieve "almost" the same test, because it shows that EKWB has come up with some products that deliver an incredibly good result, and it's more about the need for whether you have space in the cabinet and want to pay the price, for a larger cooler that can make sure your CPU just gets cooler. Or whether you'd rather compromise a bit and get a smaller cooler.
If we look at the price, it is not because it is the highest on the market, but there are still cheaper alternatives. However, we cannot run away from the numbers, and here is a good example of a cooler that has fallen in the middle with their price, but still delivers a performance that many of the others do not reach.
All the coolers from EKWB that have arrived for testing are with a different type of connection, a 4-pin. This makes more and more sense to me, in relation to data transfer, and daisy chaining.
Although the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark has had an additional fan installed, I measured a lower noise level than with the CR240. However, it was very minimal, and you also have to remember, this is at 100%. which few will experience on a daily basis.
I conclude the test by giving the EK Nucleus AIO CR360 Dark a score of 9 out of 10, along with the great product award. We cannot avoid the fact that some extra awards will be given to EK this time, but viewed objectively at the test, it is also a grade and award that is justified.
Score: 9 + Great Product