Best CPU Coolers for i5-11600K

While building a high-end PC, it’s very intriguing to spend money on CPU, motherboard, GPU, and flashy components that make your rig fast and stand out of the crowd. But even the best of the rigs will fail if not coupled with a suitable CPU cooler. The CPU is prone to heat up during processing. The more the workload, the hotter it will get. If the CPU is not cooled, it will reduce its clock speed to lower the heat dissipation or even shutdown. Therefore a need for the CPU cooler arose to keep the CPU within the normal temperature range and keep it performing at optimum levels. 

With the recent advancement in computer hardware, more powerful rigs with more capable CPUs like Intel Core i5-11600K ( Amazon ) are emerging due to the need for the ultimate performance required during intense gaming. The CPU clocks are getting higher and higher, and manufacturers provide tools to overclock it way higher than the base speeds for even better performance, which even the stock cooler couldn’t handle. These high-performance rigs have extreme loads on the CPU, and thus, intense cooling is required to keep the system up and running smoothly and prevent the CPU from burnout. A CPU cooler also helps to reduce the aging of the CPU due to thermal stress and increases its life span.

Here are some quick shopping tips that will help you buy the best CPU cooler for i5 11600k to let it perform at optimum levels.

Quick Shopping Tips:

Dimension and Clearance: The most important factor while searching for a CPU cooler is to check its compatibility with your CPU, and its dimensions match your system’s available margins. You must also see that the cooler fits comfortably on the CPU without touching any other component like RAMs or VRM heat sinks, or the case panels. If the dimensions are out, it will cause more harm than benefit. 

Cooling Capacity: The next important thing is the cooling capacity of the CPU cooler. The heat dissipation capacity of the cooler must be greater than the maximum TDP of the CPU for optimum performance. For extreme overclocking, this requirement is even greater. The air-based CPU cooler’s cooling capacity depends on the number of fans and flow of air. In liquid coolers, it is dependent on the number of radiators.

Noise: As the CPU load increases, the heat generation increases, which signals the cooler to work harder by increasing its fan speed. Higher fan speed equates to higher noise, which may be a problem for some people. If you are anxious about noise, you may opt for quieter liquid coolers or find air coolers with low noise fans.

RGBs: Nowadays, performance or productivity is not the only thing people look for while building their rig, and aesthetics is one big part. If you admire the art within designing your rig, you can find appealing CPU coolers with customizable RGB fans or lighting for a pleasant appearance and unique expression.

Best CPU Coolers for i5-11600K at a glance:

  1. Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition
  2. Noctua NH-D15S Chromax.Black
  3. be quiet! Dark Rock 4
  4. Corsair Hydro H100x
  5. Arctic Liquid Freezer II 240
  6. EVGA CLC 280
  7. DEEPCOOL Castle 280EX
  8. Arctic Freezer 50

The Best CPU Coolers for i5-11600K You Can Buy Today

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition (Image credit: Amazon)

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition

Best Value CPU Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 120mm x 79.6mm x 158.8mm | Fans: 1 x 120 x 25 mm RGB | Fan Speed: 650 - 2000 RPM | Weight: 0.7 Kg | Socket Support: 115x, 1366, 2011x, 2066, FM2, FM1, AM2, AM3, AM4 | Warranty: 2 years

REASONS TO BUY

An additional fan can be installed

4-pin RGB and speed control fan header

FP120 Silencio fan for lower noise levels

REASONS TO AVOID

A bit noisy with RGB fan variant

Struggles in extreme overclocking

Heat pipe coolers have been around for the last decade and are a go-to choice for most overclockers and high-end gamers due to their low cost and good performance. Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition is the high-end CPU cooler. It belongs to Corsair’s well-established hyper cooler series but with better performance and incredible looks owing to nickel-plated fins and brushed aluminum top plate.

It comes in two variants, RGB and Stealth. The RGB variant comes fitted with an RGB fan, while the stealth variant boasts a 120mm FP120 Silencio silent fan for a low profile footprint. In our benchmark with 11600K CPU, the fan provides an outstanding 57.3 CFM of flow rate to cool the CPU and maintain it below 100C at all times, even at peak loads, while averaging at around 80C.

The cooler is suitable for most mid to high-end gaming rigs, but as a heat pipe cooler, it has its limitations in extreme overclocking, where it struggles to perform. But most people deliver adequate performance with most high-end processors, provide the best value for money, and are the best CPU Cooler for i5-11600K.

Noctua NH-D15S Chromax.Black (Image credit: Amazon)

Noctua NH-D15S Chromax.Black

Best Air Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 160 x 150 x 135 mm | Fans: 1 x 120 x 25 mm| Fan Speed: 300 to 1500 RPM | Weight: 1.15 Kg | Socket Support: Intel LGA 775 – LGA 2066; AMD AM2 – AM3+, FM1 – FM2+ | Warranty: 6 years

REASONS TO BUY

Low noise adapter

Extended RAM clearance of up to 65mm

One of the most prolonged warranty period

REASONS TO AVOID

Large in size

Single fan as compared to NH-D15 version

Noctua NH-D15S Chromax.Black is a complete black variant of the famous and award-winning Noctua NH-D15S high-performance silent coolers. Except for the color, there isn’t any performance difference between the two. It offers a unique asymmetrical dual-tower heatsink design with a fan in the middle that offers wider compatibility for motherboards. It even fits in some micro-ATX and mini ITX cases where other dual-tower coolers cannot.

It also supports high-performance RAMs with larger heat spreaders due to its higher clearance of 65mm. The NH-D15S only sports a single fan compared to two fans in the NH-D15 model; a slight reduction in thermal performance can be expected. The fan speed varies between 300 to 1500 rpm depending on the heat load, which is further limited to 1200 rpm with the low noise adapter.

The performance of this cooler is extraordinary, though. In the Intel Burn test, the CPU temperature remained below 60C at max load and peak clock speed, significantly better than what most heat pipe coolers can do. This cooler provides beautiful aesthetics, superior cooling performance, and easier installation, making it the best CPU Cooler for i5 11600K.

be quiet! Dark Rock 4 (Image credit: Amazon)

be quiet! Dark Rock 4

Best Overall CPU Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 74 x 136 x 160 mm | Fans: 1 x 135 mm | Fan Speed: 600-1400 rpm | Weight: 0.92 Kg | Socket Support: 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1200, 1366, 2011(-3), 2066, AM2(+), AM3(+), AM4, FM1, FM2(+) | Warranty: 3 years

REASONS TO BUY

Super quiet operation

200W TDP Cooling capacity

Support additional fan installation

REASONS TO AVOID

Slightly reduced RAM compatibility

It doesn’t support some AMD processors

As the name suggests, Be quiet! Dark Rock 4 is a high-end, top-of-the-line super silent CPU cooler, stacking just below the Dark Rock Pro 4 version. It offers an outstanding cooling of 200W TDP and is more suitable for high-end workstations and hardcore gaming rigs with high-end CPUs and is the best CPU Cooler for i5-11600K.

It offers a super quiet operation with just 21.4 dB noise (just like the rustling of leaves) even at the highest fan speed. This outstandingly low noise level is achieved by optimizing airflow, contoured fan blades, and anti-vibration pads for the fan. Due to its symmetrical design and a protruding fan outside the CPU boundary may limit some RAM sizes.

In our benchmark testing (Prime95), the Cooler kept the CPU below 64C at maximum load and fans at full speed. This temperature goes up to 79C if the fan is reduced to 50% speed.  The results indicate that the cooler offers superior cooling performance and keeps the CPU at very reasonable temperatures at higher loads while maintaining a whisper-quiet operation.

Corsair Hydro H100x (Image credit: Amazon)

Corsair Hydro H100x

Best 240mm AIO Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 275 x 120 x 27 mm | Fans: 2 x 120 mm x 25 mm| Fan Speed: 600-1700 rpm | Weight: 0.675 Kg | Socket Support: 1200, 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1366, 2011, 2066, AMD AM4, AM3, AM2 | Warranty: 5 years

REASONS TO BUY

Extreme performance

AIO (All in One) solution

Fans can go up to 1700 rpm

REASONS TO AVOID

Noisy at high speeds

No In-built RGB lighting

Corsair is famous for its All In One liquid cooling solutions due to their excellent performance in extreme builds, superior build quality, and competitive prices. Corsair Hydro H100x is the latest edition in the H100 legacy and offers even superior thermal performance than before, and is the best CPU Cooler for i5-11600K in a top-performing gaming rig with extreme overclocking.

The cooler comes with a massive 240mm aluminum radiator with a dual 120mm fan attached, which does all the magic. The CPU block is relatively compact than the previous iteration and offers better RAM clearance than before. The coolers performed as expected in our overclocking tests and maintained the CPU around 57C at peak speeds, which is better than most high-end coolers.

Although its cooling performance is undoubtedly the best, this comes at the cost of a higher noise level during operation (around 37dB). It isn’t a deal-breaker, but if you are bothered by the noise, it can easily reduce that by simply replacing the stock fan with a silent one. Overall, this cooler puts many premium and more expensive coolers to shame and is worth buying when it comes to raw thermal performance.

Arctic Liquid Freezer II 240 (Image credit: Amazon)

Arctic Liquid Freezer II 240

Best CPU Cooler for Overclocking the i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 277 x 120 x 38 mm | Fans: 2 x 120 x 25 mm | Fan Speed: 200-1800 rpm | Weight: 1.191 Kg | Socket Support: 1200, 115X, 2011-3, 2066 Square ILM, AMD4 | Warranty: 6 years

REASONS TO BUY

Large RAM clearance

Two-pass Cross Flow design

CPU block boasts a 40mm fan for VRM cooling

REASONS TO AVOID

A little Louder

Arctic Liquid Freezer II 240 won the best CPU cooler award for 2020 by the European Hardware Awards. It is an enthusiast-level AIO cooler that effortlessly performs even with the most powerful CPUs and dissipates over 200W of heat smoothly and efficiently. The Freezer II comes in 240 and 420 variants, the number denoting the radiator size. 

The Freezer II 240 comes with a 240mm radiator with a two-pass cross-flow design and two fans, which provides better thermal performance than one can ask.  Even in the most extreme overclocking, the cooler never struggles to cool the CPU. In our Intel CPU Burn test, the temp averaged around 50C while never going beyond 58C and easily outperform its competitors. 

The noise level of this cooler is a bit on the higher side (around 35 dB) which is expected as it’s essentially a high-performance cooler and silent operation is not its primary feature. The CPU block is different from competitors as it contains a 40mm small fan for cooling motherboard circuitry, including VRMs. Due to its high performance in overclocking setups, it is the best CPU Cooler for i5 11600K.

EVGA CLC 280 (Image credit: Amazon)

EVGA CLC 280

Best 280mm AIO Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 312 x 139 x 27 mm| Fans: 2 x 140 x 25 mm | Fan Speed: 600-2200 rpm | Weight: 0.997 Kg | Socket Support: LGA20XX, 1200, 115X, 1366, AM2, AM3, AM4, FM1, FM2, TR4 | Warranty: 5 years

REASONS TO BUY

Large 280mm radiator

Customizable RGB lighting

Super speed 2200 rpm fans

REASONS TO AVOID

Extra clearance required for the larger radiator

If you don’t have the money to build yourself a custom-loop liquid cooling system for your high-performance rig, then EVGA CLC 280 All in One (AIO) liquid cooler is the right choice for you. It provides ample cooling to cool an overclocked CPU without breaking a sweat and is very easy to install. 

As the name suggests, it packs a comprehensive 280mm radiator with dual FX13 140mm fans attached to it. The fans can reach an impressive 2200 rpm depending on the CPU temperature, ensuring optimum cooling even in the most intense workload or extreme overclocking. As the fans speed up to keep the CPU below 55C under full load, it makes the noise, but it is capped at around 39dB and doesn’t make you very uncomfortable. 

It offers wider compatibility for most of the latest Intel as well AMD CPUs. RAM clearance is sufficient due to a smaller CPU block, though its bigger radiator needs more space and may be a problem in some smaller case sizes. Overall it is a reasonable and cost-effective alternative to custom cooling loops for high-end performance rigs and is the best CPU Cooler for i5-11600K.

DEEPCOOL Castle 280EX (Image credit: Amazon)

DEEPCOOL Castle 280EX

Best Liquid CPU Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 322 × 138 × 27 mm | Fans: 2 x 140 x 25 mm| Fan Speed: 400-1600 rpm | Weight: 1.6 Kg | Socket Support: LGA20XX, LGA 1200, 1151, 1150, 1155, LGA1366, TRX4, TR4, AM4, AM3+, AM3, AM2+, AM2, FM2+, FM2, FM1 | Warranty: 3 years

REASONS TO BUY

Massive fan output of 97 CFM

Skived fins for higher thermal efficiency

Anti leakage technology promotes safety

REASONS TO AVOID

Fans are loud

Bulky pump housing

Deep cool is famous for its enthusiast-centered, reliable, and robust heat sinks, fans, power supplies, and AIO liquid coolers. DEEPCOOL Castle 280EX is another example of its craftsmanship, furnished with the patented Anti leakage technology that, with the help of its pressure relief device, prevents leakage and ensures operational safety at all times. It packs a 280mm radiator made with heat resistant and anti-corrosive material ensuring reliability and longevity.

Its 140mm dual fans are specially designed to ensure maximum flow and heat extraction and deliver a massive 97 CFM of airflow at the maximum speed of 1600 rpm. Noise is an issue with high-efficiency coolers with dual fan designs, but it manages to keep it below 38dB even under the highest loads. Moreover, the radiator uses the skived fins manufacturing, ensuring the best thermal conductivity between the CPU and the radiator.

The Castle 280EX is easy on the eyes with customizable RGB lighting compatible with most motherboard brands. It also kept the CPU (8700K) temp below 55C at full loads and 73C at the maximum overclocked speed of 4.8 GHz. Its exceptional performance, state-of-the-art anti-leakage technology, and beautiful RGBs make it the best CPU Cooler for i5 11600K in all AIO coolers.

Arctic Freezer 50 (Image credit: Amazon)

Arctic Freezer 50

Quietest CPU Cooler for i5-11600K

SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions: 148 x 150 x 166 mm | Fans: 1 x 120 mm, 1 x 140 mm | Fan Speed: | Weight: 1.26 Kg | Socket Support: 1200, 115X, 2066, 2011(-3), AM4 | Warranty: 6 years

REASONS TO BUY

Long 6-year warranty

Quietest cooler out there

REASONS TO AVOID

Inability to change fan

RAM larger than 37.5mm cannot be mounted

As the latest CPUs are becoming more and more powerful and overclocking becoming a new norm, the pressure to catch up is immense on the cooler manufacturers. Moreover, enthusiasts are demanding premium features like quieter operation to be part of their cooler in addition to exquisite looks and exceptional performance. Fortunately, Arctic Freezer 50 fulfills all of their needs and then some.

Arctic Freezer 50 claims to be the quietest AIO liquid cooler out there.  In our full load CPU test, the cooler managed to take a respectable position among competitors with the lower noise and still managed to perform exceptionally well and kept CPU temp below 65C. Like most CPU coolers, it also comes with minor annoyances. It offers limited RAM clearance of 37.5mm, restricting a few massive RAM sizes like the G-Skill Trident overclocked series, but there are alternatives.

Overall it’s a reasonable choice for most people requiring quieter operation in their high-end rigs for a fully immersive experience while enjoying their favorite action-packed game or doing some highly productive work requiring immense focus. Moreover, its customizable RGBs can add tons of charm to your rig. Conclusively it is the best CPU Cooler for i5 11600K for quieter yet powerful cooling.

Conclusion

Core i5- 11600K is an 11th gen high-end Intel Processor packing six cores and 12 threads. It has faster single-core performance and graphics performance than its predecessors due to higher IPC and PCIe 4.0. It is most suitable for high-end gaming rigs and requires a suitably efficient cooler to cool its immense heat during full-load operation. The most efficient yet reasonably priced heat pipe cooler is none other than Noctua NH-D15S Chromax.Black offers performance with swag and sufficiently cools the 11600K to keep it up and running optimally.

 If you are a delicate and exquisite person and require a quieter yet powerful CPU cooler that sits neatly in your rig, don’t go further than the Be Quiet! Dark Rock 4. It packs a striking balance between performance, noise, and elegance. It can effortlessly cool a massive 200W of TDP load without irritating you with its noise and is the best CPU Cooler for i5-11600K. Most users who want a budget cooler that does its job effectively go for the pocket-friendly Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition that can keep your CPU cool in all scenarios other than overclocking.

Frequently Asked Questions

What CPU cooler should I get for i5-11600K?

i5-11600K has a TDP of 125W. A cooler with a higher heat transfer rate than the max TDP of the CPU will do the job. If you get a CPU cooler with lower thermal capacity, it will not adequately cool the CPU and make it resort to lower speeds or even damage it. Corsair Hydro H100x is a no-brainer, as it has a higher cooling capacity and can effortlessly cool the 11600K.

Which cooler is best for i5-11600K?

The best CPU Cooler for i5 11600K is Arctic Liquid Freezer II 240 that offers superior cooling performance even during extreme overclocking and ultimate loads. It has a massive 200W of TDP cooling capacity, easily maintains the CPU temperature within limits, and packs a 40mm VRM cooling fan.

Does i5-11600K comes with cooler?

It doesn’t come with a stock cooler. As i5-11600K has an unlocked multiplier, the stock cooler usually comes with CPUs with limited capabilities that don’t entirely cool it at peak loads. So an aftermarket cooler like DEEPCOOL Castle 280EX is required that truly understands its needs and fulfills them accordingly while maintaining safe and reliable operation with its anti-leakage technology.

Does i5-11600K need a cooler?

CPU is sophisticated equipment with millions of high-performing transistors packed in very tiny space. This generates a lot of heat during operation and if not cooled and maintained within limits, may damage the CPU. Similarly, 11600K is a high-end gaming CPU with a TDP of 125W and more during overclocking, requiring a CPU cooler such as EVGA CLC 280 that cools it efficiently even at extreme loads. It is the best CPU Cooler for i5-11600K