If you’ve been keeping track of my on-going upgrade to my computer which I’ve tentatively renamed “The Almost Cool Dadcaster”, you’d know that I’ve been slowly squiring new hardware to replace the dinosaur bones I have in it currently. One of my most prized finds is an all-in-one CPU cooler by a company called Deep Cool called the Captain 120 EX liquid cooler. Deep Cool was gracious enough to provide me with one for review and I’m blown away by beautiful it looks in-person and how efficient it was in cooling down my CPU temperature.
The box comes with everything you need to get started but as a newbie to the whole liquid cooling thing, I was still a bit nervous about screwing up and damaging my computer. Fortunately, the Captain EX 120 EX had clear, straight forward instructions included and I needed nothing but a screwdriver and the included hex tool to make installation super easy. After taking off my old CPU fan, cleaning the chip (Always use 90% or higher Isopropyl alcohol and a clean lint-free cloth) of old thermal paste, I attached the appropriate backside bracket to my motherboard. I would usually have to apply a pea-sized amount of thermal paste to the CPU but the Captain 120 EX already comes with a coating pre-applied! All I had to do next was screw on the front side support brackets and be done. This is where paying close attention comes into practice. You have to make sure you’re using the right screws or you’ll have a few moments of frustration as I did but then again, reading the instructions carefully will remedy that. Even with that flub on my part, there was no damage and when I got it right, everything went smoothly.
After attaching the CPU block to the CPU, I screwed the radiator to my backside exhaust fan. In my particular case, I wanted what’s called a “push/pull configuration”. That means you have the radiator sandwiched between two case fans. One fan blows air through the radiator while the other sucks air out. Just remember to point the fan’s company logo sticker towards the direction you want the air to flow and you’ll be fine. I must note though, the fan screws for the Captain 120 EX aren’t compatible with every case fan from other companies. As a result, I had to get creative with the install by using one screw in the opposite corners of both fans. So instead of using all four screws in the included white fan, I used two in the black fan I already had and the other two in the white one. Luckily it worked out perfectly. Out of curiosity, I shot an email to Deep Cool’s customer service to see if I could order more screws.
The Deep Cool/GamerStorm Captain 120 EX is available now at online retailers for $79.99. Click here to order.
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