Best CPU Coolers for i7 12700k

The Intel Core i7-12700k processor falls in the mid-category of the latest 12th generation Intel core processors packed with numerous advanced features and technologies. If you’re a gamer and spend a majority of your time playing the latest AAA title games, this is the best option for you. It offers entirely redolent hybrid architecture stipulating a huge generational jump, plus it supports DDR5 type memory, PCIe 5.0 connectivity, and more. Some practical stats show that the chip performed 15% faster than the previous Core i7-11700k chip. Most importantly, this could be an excellent speed source if you need an affordable gaming rig. 

You can utilize this mid-range chip to fetch probably sufficient power to keep running your gaming system. However, a rated TDP requirement of 125 watts may cultivate an unsafe amount of heat. No doubt, the processor is a pillar for a gaming system, and heat production can affect the component’s overall performance. Precisely at this spot, we need the best CPU cooler for i7 12700k to maintain the peak-level output. 

We all know that a system produces an enormous amount of heat when playing games at the highest settings. Every element is running at its full pace to keep up with the processor’s performance, leaving behind a massive amount of heat. Well, don’t worry, a compatible CPU cooler can help us in such circumstances. It effectively throws away heat through the elements keeping the temperature at an optimal and safe level. We have used the word ‘compatible’ with the cooler because we need to have an appropriate type of this element. Otherwise,  it is all in vain. We have thoroughly discussed intelligently picking one in this article. 

Quick Shopping Tips:

We already mentioned that Intel Core i7 12700k and other rig components produce heat when running at maximum-level performance. That’s why we need an appropriate CPU cooler to effectively manage the temperature and heat. We have included some crucial factors to check whether it’s compatible or not. Make sure to read the entire quick shopping guide action thoroughly. 

Socket compatibility: What if you buy a cooler and cannot connect it to the motherboard due to an incompatible socket? I guess it would be a useless purchase. Just because of this reason, we have added this factor at the first number looking at its importance. The i7 12700k compatible mobos come with an LGA 1700 socket; hence, you must ensure that the CPU cooler also has the same socket support. Otherwise, you may have to purchase a separate LGA 1700 support bracket kit. 

RAM Modules: In this RAM clearance factor, we are trying to make you check the form factor of both the RAM modules and CPU cooler. The RAMs that offer RGB lighting or have a heatsink on the top come with high-profile form factors. Due to this reason, numerous air-based coolers cannot properly fit over the modules. In short, before dropping an order, ensure that your cooler can be appropriately installed over the memory modules.  

Rated TDP: Cutting a long story short, the processor’s TDP is the power consumption that can occur when the component is operating at the maximum level. In contrast, the TDP of a CPU cooler indicates the maximum heat production of the chip it can tackle and manage during peak-level operations. Let’s say your CPU has a rated TDP of the value of 150; hence, you need to have a cooler with either an equal or higher TDP rating, but not one with lesser.

Air-base cooler or liquid cooler: There are several cooling systems, but the most famous ones are Air-based coolers and liquid coolers. The Air-based uses fans and heatsinks to dissipate the heat and throw the air away from the system. In contrast, the liquid coolers use liquid blocks structure, and when liquid moves from inside-out of the component, it brings the heat away. If you have an air-based system, the fans may move heat back to the system.

Best CPU Coolers for i7 12700k at a Glance:

  1. Noctua NH-D15
  2. ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II Series
  3. be quiet! 280
  4. Noctua NH-U12S
  5. Be Quiet! Pro 4
  6. Noctua chromax.black
  7. ARCTIC Freezer 34
  8. Corsair H100i RGB

Best CPU Coolers for i7 12700k You Can Buy Today


Noctua NH-D15
Noctua NH-D15 (Image credit: Amazon)

Noctua NH-D15

Best CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:Noctua | Cooling:Fan | Noise Level:24.6 dB | Material:Copper | Dimension:5.91 x 6.34 x 6.5 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA115x (LGA1150, LGA1151, LGA1155, LGA1156), LGA2011, LGA2066 and AMD (AM4 (since 2019), AM3(+), AM2(+), FM1, FM2(+)

REASONS TO BUY

SecuFirm2 mounting system

Two Low-Noise Adaptors

PWM support

NT-H1 thermal compound included

REASONS TO AVOID

No RGB

Taller

The previous NH-D14 from the brand has earned a wide name in being a high-end component. Keeping this in mind, the brand has designed this Noctua NH-D15 air-based cooler based on its legendary ancestor carrying sound-less operations and flagship features. Water coolers take the winning titles most of the time but not this time. You will get either the same or better cooling performance compared to the liquid-based coolers. When we track its previous performance history and current real-time gaming performance, it becomes the best CPU cooler for i7-12700k

During the manufacturing process, high-quality materials are used to ensure durability and heat dissipation efficiency. Besides properly soldered joints and nickel plating, the cooler’s base and heat pipes are made of copper, and cooling fins comprise aluminum. Further, it features a dual-tower design with six heat pipes for a larger surface area resulting in better heat dissipation and ultra-edge airflow. There are two 140mm premium-class fans that constructively operate with the well-calculated aerodynamics design of the product. Most importantly, a pair of low-noise adaptors (LNA) will let the fans disturb you during your intense gaming sessions.

Other than one downside, we have not found any other con in the case of this best CPU cooler for i7 12700k. Talking about the pitfall, it has 165mm of with-fan profile height and 150mm of width that may cause clearance issues with the RAM modules. You may have to buy memory sticks either with smaller heights or without heatsink or RGB lighting. Anyhow, the maximum noise level it can generate can go up to 24.6dB with a maximum fan rotation of 1500 RPM. Overall, it is excellent and a good-named cooler regarding operational stability; you must go for it.

ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II Series
ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II Series (Image credit: Amazon)

ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II Series

Best Premium CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:ARCTIC | Cooling:Water | Noise Level:43.8 dB | Material:Aluminium | Dimension:157 x 120 x 38 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel 115X, 2011-3, 2066

REASONS TO BUY

Affordable

PWM controlled VRM fan

Low power consumption

Maintenance-free water loop

REASONS TO AVOID

No Low-noise adapter

If you’re a gaming enthusiast, you would definitely hear a lot about the Arctic since it is a well-acknowledged brand around the globe. The Arctic has been in the field for years manufacturing tech-related products with advanced cooling technologies to keep the heat to an optimal extent. The ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II Series water coolers cool the CPU temperature like it is not a big deal. It seems that the manufacturer has intelligently put all his efforts into developing such a compact water cooling pump. 

The aluminum radiator further enhances the heat dissipation as the aluminum is an excellent source of transferring heat, being an excellent conductor. Besides the latest spec, this cooler is the best CPU cooler for i7-12700k due to its affordable price. Talking about the specifications, it has a 40 mm VRM fan with varying RPM of 1000 – 3000, plus the pump can run between 800 to 2000 RPM. The additional 40mm fan ensures to keep the mobo’s VRM chip as cool as possible, helping in stable overclocking performance. 

Further, the users can supervise the speed of the fan and pump with the help of the PWM controller. There are still numerous aspects to discuss of this best 240mm AIO in the market. As per the power consumption matter, the rated 0.5 – 2.7W indicates low power usage that further improves the effectiveness. It’s the best premium CPU Cooler for i7-12700k that comes with quiet operation, high static pressure, fewer vibrations, and a sealed water loop to not worry about refilling water or any additive for smooth functioning.

be quiet! 280
be quiet! 280 (Image credit: Amazon)

be quiet! 280

Best 280mm AIO for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:be quiet! | Cooling:Fan | Noise Level:22.5 dB | Material:Copper | Dimension:5.67 x 2.17 x 12.56 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel: 1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1200 / 2011(-3) square ILM / 2066; AMD: AM3(+) / AM4

REASONS TO BUY

Perfect GPU clearance

Nickel-coated cold plate

Easy-to-access refill port

Doubly decoupled pump

Wide RPM ranges

REASONS TO AVOID

No powder-coating on fans

Be quiet is a german-based computer component manufacturing brand that offered the latest advancement in its product. It mainly focused on sound-less and quiet operations of the products, which the name also suggested. Coming to the be quiet! 280 pure loop series, it comprises durable CPU liquid coolers specifically outlined for mid-sized gaming rigs. Further, each cooler has a perfect balance of performance, features, attractive design, and more. Looking at the price to performance ratio, we can call it the best CPU Cooler for i7 12700k without any doubt. 

Looking at the specs sheet, we can connect the latest Intel Core and Ryzen AM4 compatible motherboards without any due. The noise level can go up to 38.1dB depending upon the speeds of the fans; the speed can be increased up to 5500 RPM. You get a pair of Pure Wings 2 140mm fans having nine airflow-optimized fan blades that guarantee sound-proof operation and ultra-edge cooling efficiency. In the case of the liquid cooler, the refilling process becomes a head-pain; however, it is easy to access the refill port making the process easier. 

For RGB lovers, no RGB lighting might be a piece of sad news; however, there are white LEDs that look pretty much attractive. Further, the all-black design conveys a sophisticated glance combining perfectly with the white LEDs combination. Compatibility-wise, being not a very husky product, we can put it into the PC case without worrying about the clearance issues above the RAM modules. Moreover, it’s the best 280mm AIO for i7 12700k having an aluminum-style cooling block ensures the pure loop perfectly merges into the overall element’s theme.

Noctua NH-U12S
Noctua NH-U12S (Image credit: Amazon)

Noctua NH-U12S

Best Value CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:Noctua | Cooling:Fan | Noise Level:22.4 dB | Material:Copper | Dimension:6.22 x 1.77 x 4.92 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel LGA2066, LGA2011-0 & LGA2011-3, LGA1200, LGA1156, LGA1155, LGA1151, LGA1150 & AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1, FM2, FM2+

REASONS TO BUY

Wide-range socket compatibility

Anti-vibration pads

A second fan can be added

Provides the best value

REASONS TO AVOID

Beige and brown color scheme

Repeating the history of launching matchless products, Noctua has played well while designing and manufacturing top-quality NH-U12S CPU coolers. This advanced 12cm variant is a feature-rich edition into Noctua’s classic U-series of CPU coolers having a single tower design. Looking at the specs sheet, it offers a wide range of compatibility with all high-profile RAM sockets. Further, it supports a long list of sockets; hence, you can connect it with plenty of systems, including the latest and oldest ones. The best part of this best CPU cooler for i7-12700k is that you can install it effortlessly with the Intel processors with its SecuFirm2 mounting system. 

Finally, we have reached its most exciting and fun part, the NF-F12 Focused Flow fan with PWM support. This is acknowledged among gaming enthusiasts for maintaining superb static pressure, performing quiet operations with the low-noise adaptor plus automatically controlling the speed via PWM support, and exhibiting a jaw-dropping heatsink performance. Moreover, the build quality is pretty solid because the product has nickel plating for enhanced quality and cleanly soldered joints ensuring longer life.

 The price-to-performance ratio is only one aspect that is enough to make it the best value cooler for i7 12700k. The cooler comprises only one fan, enough for pretty-solid performance. However, for high-demanding tasks, the NH-U12S includes fan clips and an extra set of custom anti-vibration pads to mount a second fan according to your needs. Design-wise, the product has a fine-tuned look that seems eye-catching. In the end, I would like to add the only downside; the brown color. It seems that the design does not carry beige and brown colors effectively, making it slightly unaesthetic.

Be Quiet! Pro 4
Be Quiet! Pro 4 (Image credit: Amazon)

Be Quiet! Pro 4

Best Quietest CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:be quiet! | Cooling:Fan | Noise Level:24.3 dB | Material:Copper | Dimension:5.3 x 5.7 x 6.4 inches | Compatible Sockets:1150 / 1151 / 1155 / 1156 / 1200 / 1366 / 2011(-3) Square ILM / 2066 AM2(+) / AM3(+) / AM4 / FM1 / FM2(+)

REASONS TO BUY

All-black attractive design

Quietest operations

Seven heat pipes

Oppositely rotating two fans

REASONS TO AVOID

No anti-vibration pads

We have talked about some aspects of the popularity of be Quiet all across the globe the soundless operations of its products. Besides this quietness aspect, the Dark Rock Pro series has a lot for its users, being a flagship CPU cooler. The size becomes a bit large due to having more significant heatsinks and fans for intensively managing the temperature and heat. However, with the asymmetric design, the modern PC cases can effectively accommodate it without creating any issue for RAM modules. 

In short, it is an excellent choice for current-era modern gaming rigs. It has a two-fan structure where one is a 120mm silent wings fan and the second is a 135mm silent wings fan; both are PWM-based. The interesting fun fact is that both fans rotate in opposite directions, ultimately causing oscillation cancellation, resulting in no vibration operations. Moreover, at the maximum 1200 PWM RPM, the top noise level is 24dB, and you barely hear it while playing games. These stats are enough to make this the best quietest CPU cooler for i7 12700k.

Finally, we have reached to most-crucial aspect for any cooler, the cooling capabilities. The Pro 4 has seven heat pipes passing between nickel-plated copper base plates. We all know that copper helps in enormously dissipating heat. Further, running overclocked systems and graphically high-demanding applications wouldn’t be an issue. The rated 150W TDP impressively supports the processor performance and system efficiency. Look-wise, it presents elite-class aesthetics with a brushed aluminum top cover finished with diamond cut and an all-black beautifully designed body.

Noctua chromax.black
Noctua chromax.black (Image credit: Amazon)

Noctua chromax.black

Best Overall CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:Noctua | Cooling:Air | Noise Level:24.6 dB | Material:Copper | Dimension:6.33 x 5.9 x 6.49 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel LGA1200, LGA1156, LGA1155, LGA1151, LGA1150, LGA1700, LGA2066, LGA2011-0 & LGA2011-3 AMD AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, FM1, FM2, FM2+, AM4

REASONS TO BUY

Wide range of socket compatibility

Dual-tower design

Six copper-made heat sinks

Noise reduction up to 19.2dB

REASONS TO AVOID

Maybe pricier for some uses

Unsuitable for some RAM kits in dual-fan mode

Noctua has been in the market for several years with advanced technologies in all the tech products it designed and manufactured. Take this Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black as an example. Being the latest water cooler, it offers all-in-one performance, starting from ultimate cooling efficiency to quiet operations. As the cooler has SecuFirm2 multi-socket mounting system, it is evident that you will be able to connect with several types of sockets while fetching a good amount of performance. In short, this is the best overall CPU cooler for i7 12700k and perfect for overclockers and silence enthusiasts. 

The cooler has the option to use either one-fan mode or dual-fan mode for different types of purposes. Like, if your system contains taller memory kits, then the single-fans mode provides 64mm of clearance to accommodate up-to-date memory modules. We can switch to the dual-fan mode for the RAM modules requiring 32mm clearance. Further, there are two Noctua NF-A15 HS-PWM chromax.black fans with low-noise adaptors. Usually, the noise can go up to 24.4 dB, but it can be reduced to 19.2dB when using low-noise adaptors. 

If you have read the Noctua NH-U12S review above, you would know that many buyers were unhappy regarding the beige and brown color scheme. So, this time the brand has redesigned NH-D15 chromax.black into all-black version. You get black fans and black coated heatsinks combined with an attractive and sleek look to impress the users. Moreover, the cooler’s base and six heat pipes are made of copper, and the cooling fins have an aluminum build, joints are well-soldered and nickel-plated. The package has anti-vibration pads as well to cancel out the rattling, thus canceling the noise.

ARCTIC Freezer 34
ARCTIC Freezer 34 (Image credit: Amazon)

ARCTIC Freezer 34

Best Air CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:ARCTIC | Cooling:Fan | Noise Level:42.7dB | Material:Aluminum | Dimension:4.88 x 4.06 x 6.18 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel 2066, 2011(-3), 1155, 1151, 1150, 1200, 1700

REASONS TO BUY

Affordable

Ideal airflow and heat dissipation

Available in many colors

Fans with push-pull-configuration

REASONS TO AVOID

No 8-pin connector

Before adding any product to our list, we look at numerous factors it is offering, especially price and performance. We have added the ARCTIC Freezer 34 to our list due to these reasons. Despite being an air-based CPU cooler, it provides more performance-efficient stats compared to the latest liquid coolers. It has approximately the same temperature management skills as Noctua NH-D15, and Be Quiet! Dark Rock Pro coolers. You can buy this best air CPU cooler for i7 12700k without putting too much burden on your pocket. 

Looking at the rated dimensions of the cooler, you can connect even larger RAM modules with more significant heat sinks without any issue. The mounting system of this Freezer 34 eSports DUO is compatible with numerous Intel sockets and AMD’s AM4 type socket. You can install this product extremely easily without creating any issues. Talking about its P-fan architecture. It has two 120mm Fluid Dynamic Bearing fans that can run between 200-2100 RPM generating a maximum of 37dB noise. 

Other functionalities of this cooler include high static pressure to increase the performance, lower power consumption, fewer vibrations, high-quality built, effective fan control with PWM PST, and more. The cooler has many features for faster heat dissipation and ideal airflow. It has direct-touch heat pipes and an optimized heatsink design resulting in more improved heat dissipation. Moreover, the thermal coating further enhances heat dissipation. In short, this is the air cooler with equivalent results to numerous excellent water coolers, plus it is available at an affordable price.

Corsair H100i RGB
Corsair H100i RGB (Image credit: Amazon)

Corsair H100i RGB

Best Water CPU cooler for i7 12700k

SPECIFICATIONS

Brand:Corsair | Cooling:Water | Noise Level:37 dB | Material:Copper | Dimension:10.9 x 4.72 x 1.06 inches | Compatible Sockets:Intel 1200, 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1366, 2011, 2066, AMD AM4, AM3, AM2, sTRX4, sTR4

REASONS TO BUY

Pre-applied thermal paste

Easy to install

Eye-catching white look with RGB lighting

Wide-range compatibility

All-in-one cooler

REASONS TO AVOID

No anti-vibration pads

The Hydro Series H100i RGB PLATINUM SE is the first CPU cooler from Corsair on our list. We always add some of the famous products from the Corsair family in every article due to its creamy manufacturing techniques. It is the best CPU cooler for i7 12700k that supplies the world with outperforming hardware and advanced-tech pieces to win the hearts of gaming enthusiasts. Coming back to the H100i RGB, it is an all-in-one cooler having a 240mm radiator. Looking at the socket compatibility chart, we can use it with a wide range of Intel and AMD sockets like AM4, AM3, and more. 

It offers the most-easiest and painless installation with a tool-free mounting bracket, plus you can watch an installation video on the official website before doing so. Anyhow, both of the two fans have 120mm of diameters and can run at a maximum of 2200RPM. Mentioning again, the dual radiator is 240mm in size. The fans and the aluminum-made radiators operate coherently to dissipate the heat effectively. Further, there is a 56×56 mm cold plate made of copper material having a solid hand in maintaining the temperature at an optimal level. 

The title of being the best water CPU cooler for i7 12700k is not only because of the features and specs we have discussed above but also due to a clean design and attractive RGB lighting. The clean look includes white fan housing, a white pump cap, and a white accent radiator; these mirrors RGB lighting without breaking the attractiveness. There are 48 addressable RGB LEDs that can be controlled by powerful CORSAIR iCUE software and can inherit various RGB profiles.

Conclusion

The Intel Core 12th generation processors are the latest editions into the gaming and content creation world with a long list of advanced technologies. At the same time, the i7 12700k falls in the mid-category of the series while becoming the best option for gaming. However, it produces enormous heat during intensive load sessions and overclocking periods. To solve such thermal-related issues, we need to add another element into the system; that addition is the CPU cooler. But, there are numerous factors, specs, technologies, and various other knowledge bits we need to absorb before buying the best CPU cooler for i7 12700k

Therefore, we have added buying guide section at the beginning of our discussion and then eight coolers, including air-based and liquid-based. If you need one with an affordable price tag, you can choose either air-based ARCTIC Freezer 34 or liquid-based ARCTIC Liquid Freezer II Series cooler. The list does not end here. We have tried out best to bring something for every customer. Those who don’t like the noise during gameplay can go for Be Quiet! Pro 4 because it provides ultimate quietness even when fans are running at full pace. Moreover, if you’re an RGB lover, the Corsair H100i RGB PLATINUM SE is the top option for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What cooler do I need for i7 12700K?

The tech market is full of hundreds of CPU coolers that offer numerous good reasons to buy them. However, the Noctua chromax.black can be a perfect pair for i7 12700k due to several reasons. It provides a wide range of socket compatibility, dual-tower design, six copper-made heat sinks, low noise of 19.2dB, and more.

Do I need a Cooler for i7 12700K?

Yes, you have to use a CPU cooler for the i7 12700k Core processor. The chip is perfect for AAA titles and serious content creation. However, it produces an extensive amount of heat when running at full pace and overclocking for extreme performance. Hence, we expect you to use a cooler to effectively tackle the thermal issues.

Is 240mm enough for 12700K?

The short answer is ‘YES’. It provides a good amount of cooling, resulting in a good performance flow for the 12700k Core processor. Indeed, we can further enhance the cooling efficiency by enabling push-pull. Moreover, having better static pressure fans is the cherry on the top. You must go for these CPU coolers without worrying about anything.

What CPU cooler should I get for i7 12700K?

Before answering this question, we need to know your many aspects like budget, usage, and more. Overall, the Noctua chromax.black is the winner of our list offers numerous high-end features. This cooler has a wide range of socket compatibility, faster heat dissipation, soundless operation, and more.

Aleem Iqbal
Aleem Iqbal is a hardcore gamer since childhood. He developed his passion for writing due to gaming. He is a graduate of Virtual University. He started writing about 4 years ago.