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The Best CPU Cooler for i9 10900k

One of the most powerful CPUs right now is the Intel Core i9-10900K, and is considered to be one of the best processors for gaming in the market. The processor comes with 10 cores, 20 threads, and enough speed to guarantee the best gaming, rendering, and productivity performance possible.

But with this power comes heavy drawbacks, namely high power consumption and high temperatures. To keep performance optimal, you need a powerful CPU cooler for the i9-10900K. With this kind of CPU, you have the budget to get the best CPU cooler for i9 10900K.

And don’t worry. In this article, we’ll list down the best CPU coolers that money can buy, including affordable (but still quality) options. .

What Is The Best CPU Cooler for i9 10900K?

Whether you’re looking for air coolers or a liquid cooler for the i9 10900k, the cooling performance on these items on the list is guaranteed to be excellent and will give you the best bang for your buck.

Editor’s note: These are not arranged in any particular order.

EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB

The Best Liquid Cooler for Intel i9 10900k

EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB CPU Cooler for i9 10900k

What are the specifications?

  • Type: AIO Liquid Cooler
  • Colors: Black
  • TDP: 200+ W
  • RGB: Yes
  • Radiator Dimensions:  395 x 120 x 27 mm
  • Fan: 6x EK-Vardar S 120ER D-RGB
  • Fan Speed: 550 – 2200 RPM ± 10%
  • Noise: 31.6 dB(A)
  • Socket Support:
    • Intel: LGA 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1200, 2011, 2011-3, 2066, 1200
    • AMD: AM4

Why buy it?

  • High performing fans
  • Excellent cooling performance
  • Tool-less installation
  • Easy tube adjustment
  • Comes with PWM Connector Hub for RGB lighting and 6 fans

Why shouldn’t you buy it?

  • Expensive
  • The PWM Conenctor Hub is not magnetic
  • RAM clearance issues

Much like Noctua, EK is one of the premier brands of liquid coolers. They have everything you need for water cooling, from reservoirs to water blocks, to fittings.

Out of all the liquid coolers provided by EK, one model stands out that’s perfect for the i9 10900k: the EK-AIO Elite. The EK-AIO Elite is part of their high-end line of AIO coolers, ranging from 280mm to 360mm. For this part, we have the EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB.

The EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB has a slightly different design compared to the other EK-AIO models. For one, the pump block for the EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB has a grey steel surface, whereas the standard EK-AIO Elite is a white translucent plastic.

The EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB’s pump has speeds of up to 1000RPM at 25% and can go all the way up to 3300 RPM at 100%. Their pump uses a 400mm long ultra-low evaporation rubber tube with nylon braided sleeves covered with lightweight aluminum.

As for the fans, the EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB comes with the EK-Vardar S 120mm fans, which is intended for high-performance liquid cooling solutions. The fans can be controlled through the EK-Hub PWM or through the motherboard.

The EK-Vardar S fans have speeds of up to 2200RPM with an airflow of 66.04 CFM and generate only about 31.6dBA. Talk about being quiet.

But what we really like about the EK-AIO Elite 360mm D-RGB is its tool-less installation. You only need to install the radiator mount with ruby-cut rotating installations. The RGB Lighting is fully customizable through the EK-Hub PWM.

The EK-Hub PWM comes with six PWM connectors and six RGB headers. It also comes with two additional connectors for the motherboard A-RGB and the motherboard fan. There’s also a SATA cable for the D-RGB controller.

The EK-AIO Elite 360mm is one of the coolest looking CPU coolers in the market right now, and yes, they’re just as functional as they’re aesthetically pleasing to look at. If you’re going to invest in an AIO cooler, then the EK-AIO Elite 360mm is a solid choice.

But don’t hold your breath for the EK-AIO Elite 360mm as we got other options for CPU coolers later below.

DeepCool AK620

Best Overall High Performance CPU Cooler

DeepCool AK620 Best CPU Cooler for i9 10900k

What are the specifications?

  • Type: Dual-Tower Air Cooler
  • Colors: Black and White
  • TDP: 150+ W
  • RGB: No
  • Dimensions: 129 mm x 138 mm x 160 mm
  • Fan: 2x ML Series 120 PWM RGB Fans
  • Fan Speed: 500~1850 RPM ± 10%
  • Noise: ~ 28 dBA
  • Socket Support
    • Intel: LGA2066 / 2011-v3 / 2011 / 1700 / 1200 / 1151 / 1150 / 1155
    • AMD: AM4

Why buy it?

  • Air cooler with clean white aesthetics
  • Reasonable price even for a dual tower cooler
  • Excellent performance

Why shouldn’t you buy it?

  • No RGB lighting
  • Not aesthetically easy to match

DeepCool is another one of those companies who’re known for their high end air coolers and other cooling system products. But they’re mostly known for the former. On this list, we have a high end air cooler called the DeepCool AK620.

The DeepCool AK620 is a dual-tower air cooler with a heatsink attached to two fans. The heatsink has 6mm nickel-coated heat pipes running under it, traveling all the way down to the cold base plate.

It’s a good CPU cooler mostly because the only gripe its users have is its lack of color availability. At this time of writing, the DeepCool AK620 comes in a matte white shade for most of its parts, while the fans and fin arrays are colored black. The heat pipes bear a shiny silver shade. But overall, the DeepCool AK620 is predominantly white in color.

Speaking of fans, the DeepCool AK620 carries two 120mm DeepCool FK 120 PWM fans connected through a 4-pin connector. However, these are not RGB fans, and only available in black and white. The fan speed is decent enough at 500RPM minimum and a maximum of 1850RPM.

In terms of size, the DeepCool AK620 is convenient enough where it gives you enough RAM clearance to install standard RAM sticks. If you’re going for larger RAMs, like Corsair RAMs, then you just need to tilt the fans slightly upwards to make more room.

All in all, the DeepCool AK620 might be the best cooler for the Intel Core i9 10900k, or any other CPU for that matter. It has almost the same performance as its high end competitors, minus the steep price tag.  

Noctua NH-L9i Chromax.Black

The Best Low Profile CPU Cooler

Noctua NH-L9i chromax.Black Best CPU Cooler for i9 10900k

What are the specifications?

  • Type: Low-Profile Air Cooler
  • Colors: Black and wood brown
  • TDP: 95+ W
  • RGB: No
  • Dimensions:  37 mm x  95 mm x 95 mm
  • Fan: 1x Noctua NF-A9x14 HS-PWM chromax.black 92 mm fan
  • Fan Speed: 600–2500 RPM (+/- 10%), 1800 RPM with LNA 
  • Noise: 23.6 dBA and 14.8 dBA with LNA
  • Socket Support:
    • Intel: Intel LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA1200
    • AMD: AM4 with NM-AM4-L9aL9i

Why buy it?

  • Maximum airflow is guaranteed
  • Low noise levels
  • Maximum RAM clearance

Why shouldn’t you buy it?

  • Can’t handle overclocking

When it comes to the best CPU cooler for i9 10900k, we have the Noctua NH-L9. Best known for its excellent cooling performance and their affordable pricing, Noctua has become popular over the last few years.

So, if you’re on a tight budget, the Noctua NH-L9 is an excellent option. Under the series, you have the Noctua NH-L9i and Noctua NH-L9a. Both are considered low profile coolers, with the only difference being which processor they’re inteded for. The “i” is for Intel CPUs, and the “a” is for AMD.

Both models will come in the same color that Noctua is popular for: a shade of wood brown. But the Noctua NH-L9i will come in another shade: an all-block color theme. Everything is painted black, from the fin arrays to the mounting kit to the screws.

The Noctua NH-L9i is a small form-factor CPU cooler, so there’s no issue with RAM clearance. The heatsink is two 6mm copper-made heat pipes that come in direct contact with the plate’s backside, forming a U-shaped layout. For the base plate, it uses a nickel-plated copper as its main material and has a radial pattern finish, allowing for a better thermal compound spread.

For performance, the Noctua NH-L9i uses the Noctua NF-A9X14 HS PWM 922mm fan, with a thickness of 14mm. The max speed goes up to 2500RPM, but you can slow it down to as low as 1800RPM if you want to reduce the noise levels. At the bare minimum, however, the fan speeds go as low as 600RPM. Even at maximum RPMs, the Noctua NH-L9i only generates a noise level of 23.6 dBA, and all the way to 14.8 dBA with the help of a low-noise adapter.

CORSAIR iCUE H100i Elite Capellix

The Best 240mm Liquid Cooler for Intel i9 10900k

CORSAIR iCUE H100i Elite Capellix Best CPU Cooler for i9 10900k

What are the specifications?

  • Type: AIO Liquid Cooler
  • Colors: Black and White
  • TDP: 175+ W
  • RGB: Yes, Corsair’s Capellix LED Technology
  • Radiator Dimensions: 277 mm x 120 mm x 27 mm
  • Fan: 2x ML Series 120 PWM RGB Fans
  • Fan Speed: 2400 RPM 
  • Noise: 37 dB(A)
  • Socket Support
    • Intel: LGA 2066, 2011,  1700, 1366, 1200, 1156, 1155,  1151, 1150
    • AMD: AM4 / AM3 / AM2 / sTR4 / sTRX4

Why buy it?

  • Translucent pump cover (swappable)
  • LCD pump cover kit is upgradable
  • Special LEDs generate less power and consume less heat
  • PWM Connector Hub for LED light strips and fans

Why shouldn’t you buy it?

  • Bulky and tall
  • Pump tubes may droop over the graphics card

Another popular brand of computer hardware is Corsair, and they do everything. They have mice, PC cases, PSUs or power supply units, and then cooling solutions. Do they have the best CPU coolers though? Debatable, but you’ll have some fans say that Corsair is one of the best.

And for their entry for the best CPU cooler for i9 10900k is the Corsair iCUE H100i Elite Capellix. The Corsair iCUE H100i comes in three variants, namely the H100i Elite Capellix, the H115i Elite Capellix, and the H150i Elite Capellix. All variants come in different sizes, ranging from 240mm to 280mm to 360mm.

The Corsair iCUE H100i Elite Capellix is the 240mm liquid cooler from their Elite Capellix lineup and looks a lot like its older sibling, the H100i RGB Pro XT, but with some differences.

First, the Corsair iCUE H100i Elite Capellix has a taller and bigger pump measuring at 50mm. Underneath the pump, you’ll find Corsair’s LED technology, Capellix, hence the name. The Corsair iCUE H100i Elite Capellix has about 33 RGB LED lights to provide a full RGB lighting along the entire cover. This is made possible because the Capellix consumes less power and generates less heat than standard RGB lighting.

Under the pump is a split-flow cold copper plate, bolted around its circumference. This plate contains 128 micro-skived fins per inch, so the heat dissipation is off the charts. Let’s also add the two fans that Corsair iCUE H100i Elite Capellix uses, which is ML series PWM RGB 120mm fans with magnetically levitated bearings. These bearings allow the fan to spin at faster speeds compared to traditional fans. Fan speeds can go as high as 2400RPM with an airflow of 75CFM and noise level of 37 dBA. Each fan gets 8 RGB leds, all located in the middle.

Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition

A Decent Budget CPU Cooler

Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition Best CPU Cooler for i9 10900k

Specifications

  • Type: Single Tower Air Cooler
  • Colors: Black and Grey-Blue
  • TDP: 150+ W
  • RGB: No
  • Dimensions: 155 x 136 x 110 mm
  • Fan: 1x Kaze Flex 120 Black
  • Fan Speed: 300–1500 RPM 
  • Noise: 29.75 dBA
  • Socket Support
    • Intel: LGA1200, LGA115X, LGA2011 (Square ILM), and LGA2066
    • AMD: AM4, AM3(+), AM2(+), FM2(+), and FM1

Why buy it?

  • Low noise levels
  • Great fan speed
  • Easy to install

Why shouldn’t you buy it?

  • Asymmetrical shape
  • No RGB

Scythe is one of those newer brands of hardware that specialize in air coolers. They get their name from their fan blades’ sharpness, which is far from your typical CPU cooling fan.

They have a wide range of air coolers out there right now, but the one that’s perfect for the Intel Core i9 10900k is the Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition, or you could go for the standard Scythe Mugen 5 which has a grey-blue shade. Both editions have the same specs, but the Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition is $10 more expensive.

The Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition uses the Kaze Flex 120 Black and has a max speed of 1500RPM. The standard Kaze Flex 120 only went as fast as 1200RPM, so there’s that to consider as well. At 30 dBA, the Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition is a silent air cooler.

The only thing that doesn’t really sit well with us is its asymmetrical design, which looks aesthetically off. However, the design was intended to bring fans forward above the mounting bracket so it doesn’t hit the memory sticks.

But for the price you’re paying, the Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition is worth less than $60. Cheaper than most of the air coolers on this list, but it doesn’t mean that the quality and functionality is sub par.

NZXT Kraken Z53

One Of the Best White-Themed AIO Liquid Coolers

What are the specifications?

  • Type: AIO Liquid Cooler
  • Colors: Matte Black and Matte White
  • TDP: 175+W
  • RGB: Yes
  • Radiator Dimensions: 123 x 275 x 30mm
  • Fan: 2x Aer RGB 2 120mm fans
  • Fan Speed: 500 – 1,500 ± 300RPM 
  • Noise: 22 – 33 dBA
  • Socket Support
    • Intel: Socket LGA 1200, 115X, 1366, 2011, 2011-3, 2066
    • AMD: AMD Socket AM4, sTRX4*, TR4* (*Threadripper bracket not included)

Why buy it?

  • Fully customizable LCD screen
  • Low noise
  • Excellent performance
  • Minimalistic
  • Premium NZXT fans

Why shouldn’t you buy it?

  • Expensive
  • Fans don’t have RGB

NZXT is a brand that needs no introduction. When it comes to CPU coolers, from air coolers to AIO liquid coolers, they’re the kings. If you want something to cool your i9 10900k, why not take a crack at the NZXT Kraken Z53 .

The NZXT Kraken Z53’s pump carries both a SATA port and micro USB port for power. The pump doesn’t have a top cover, but instead, you get a 2.36″ LCD screen that’s customizable. The default screen shows you the current temperature of the CPU, but you can change it so it shows you the GPU temp too.

The pump’s water block also contains a circular copper base plate and pre-applied thermal paste applied on the base plate. There are two 400mm tubes connected to the radiator made of low-evaporation rubber with nylon braided sleeves. Leaks are next to impossible with this kind of sleeve.

For the fans, we get the NZXT Aer RGB 2 120mm fans with a minimum fan speed of 500RPM and a maximum fan speed of 1500RPM. Max airflow is about 52.44 CFM and a max noise level of 33dBA. Certainly not the quietest liquid cooler in the market, but definitely still not as loud as the others.

If you want guaranteed cooling performance, you can’t go wrong with the NZXT Kraken Z53.

The Wrap Up

There you have it, our list of the best CPU coolers for the Intel i9 10900k pr0cessor. The list is a good combination of air coolers and liquid coolers, so you really can’t wrong with one or the other.

If air cooling is your preference, we suggest the Scythe Mugen 5 Black Edition. But if liquid cooling is more your aesthetic and function, then the NZXT Kraken Z53 is the only option on the table.

James Stephenson

james stephenson profile picJames is a gaming and tech enthusiast. He has been playing computer games since the Commodore 64 days in the 80s. He has worked as a Broadcast Engineer with BBC News and knows a thing or two about building, fixing, and playing with PCs.