Best CPU Cooler for i5 12600K in 2022

Furqan Shahid
Furqan Shahid
Best CPU Cooler for i5 12600K

The Intel Core i5 12600K is one of my favorite processors that you can buy. I have featured it in multiple round ups I have done and to be honest, for anyone who wants to get their hands on a good CPU that brings excellent value to the table and at the same time, delivers great performance, too. Then this is the CPU that you should be going for.

However, every good CPU needs a good CPU cooler, and getting something that is inadequate is not what I would suggest. It is true that the i5 12600K does not ship with a CPU cooler and considering how it comes with an unlocked multiplier, the chances are that most of us would want to overclock it, as well.

That is why we have decided to explore some of the best CPU coolers for i5 12600K. Sure, the processor is not something that generates a lot of heat but it is always better to get your hands on something reliable and something that can keep the temperatures down. Let’s not waste more time and have a look, shall we?

Reviewing the Best CPU Cooler for i5 12600K

AwardsModelPrice
Editor’s Choice
Buy on Amazon
Runner Up Air Cooler for i5 12600k
Buy on Amazon
Best Silent Air Cooler for i5 12600k
Buy on Amazon
Best RGB CPU Cooler for i5 12600k
Buy on Amazon
Best Budget Cooler for i5 12600k
Buy on Amazon

Now, we are going to keep the round up small and more importantly, we are going to feature a mix of air and liquid coolers. So, for those who are looking to make a decision, there is more than enough for you to go around. Let’s get started.

Our Top Pick
Corsair H150i Elite Capellix

Corsair H150i Elite Capellix

Editor’s Choice

Specifications:

  • Type: AIO.
  • Socket Support Intel: LGA 1700, 115x, 1200, 2011x, 2066
  • Socket Support AMD: AMD AM4, sTR4, sTRX4.
  • Fans: 3x 120mm fans.

The first cooler that we are looking at is from none other than Corsair. It is safe to say that in the world of liquid cooling, Corsair is considered to be one of the best brands, to a point that you are not really going to look the other way when you are looking at their coolers. The performance, looks, value, and everything else between is something that Corsair is known to deliver.

The Corsair H150i Elite Capellix is one of the best coolers available in the market and one of the reasons why I featured this cooler here is because I have been using the standard variant of H150i and it has not failed me still, and it has been a long, long time. So, it is rather obvious that the new cooler is going to deliver good performance overall. 

The Corsair H150i Elite Capellix delivers exceptionally well balanced cooling performance, something that is not really going to run into issues. In my testing, I managed to overclock the Core i5 12600K and never really ran into any issues. The processor in general did not really heat up and ran without any issues.

However, performance is just one aspect of the cooler I love. You are also getting the Commander CORE module in the box, which might sound like an overkill but if you are paying for the Corsair H150i Elite Capellix, you should be getting treated the right way. 

Another thing to love about this cooler is the fact that the iCUE software is excellent as it allows you to customize almost every aspect of your system. The more iCUE compliant components you add, the more you can go ahead and customize. Thankfully, the software in general has become a lot better than it used to be, to a point that you are not going to run into a steep learning curve.

Another great thing about the Corsair H150i Elite Capellix is the fact that the face plate can be changed. So, if you are looking for some customization or you want to go ahead and make your own face plates, you are free to go ahead and do that without any complications that might ruin your experience.

In my testing, I did not really run into any issues with the Corsair H150i Elite Capellix. However, the cooler tends to get loud when the fan speed is maxed out, and the Corsair 4-pin RGB compatibility is not something that most people will like.

Overall, the Corsair H150i Elite Capellix manages to deliver excellent performance across the board and that too, with ease. Whether you are planning on running stock settings or going for overclocked settings, things are easy as they are convenient with this cooler.

Pros
  • One of the best performing coolers.
  • Comes with the Commander Core module.
  • iCUE software is great for customization
  • Face plate can easily be customized.
Cons
  • Noticeable fan noise at 100%.
  • Corsair’s 4-pin RGB compatibility can be annoying.
2

Noctua NH-D15 Chromax

Noctua NH-D15 Chromax

Runner Up Air Cooler for i5 12600k

Specifications:

  • Type: Air.
  • Socket Support Intel: LGA 1700, 115x, 1200, 2011x, 2066
  • Socket Support AMD: AMD AM4, sTR4, sTRX4.
  • Fans: 2x 140mm fans.

There is no shortage of some excellent coolers in the market and gone are the days when air coolers were considered to be useless and the one company to ensure that it actually happens is Noctua. I know that this is a household name for anyone who is looking for a powerful cooler that delivers exceptional performance. We all know about Noctua and their history of delivering some exceptional coolers.

With that said, the Noctua NH-D15 Chromax is the one that we are looking at right now. Now, before I go any further, I have to say that every Noctua NH-D15 Chromax that is released after the Q4 2021 ships with LGA 1700 supported hardware. However, if you are looking at an earlier model, then Noctua actually provides a free mounting kit that you can get from them with ease.

Moving further, this is one of the best looking coolers as it is entirely black, and that certainly is something that I would prefer. The all-black theme might not go with anyone who is looking for a lot of RGB but hey, if you are looking to build something stealthy, this is a great cooler to put your money in.

But you know what I love the most about the Noctua NH-D15 Chromax? It is the fact that the cooler manages to deliver surprisingly great performance all over. How is that so? Well, you are looking at a cooler that can easily outperform liquid coolers and all of this is done using a pretty amazingly built cooler with great quality all around. You can overclock your i5 12600K without having to worry about the temperatures going out of control.

The Noctua NH-D15 Chromax is also a cooler that requires no software to work, you simply have to install the cooler, plug in the fans, and you are good to go. This is as simple as it can get and I’m honestly in awe as to just how convenient all of this really is that you do not have to worry about how things are going to work. If you want convenience, this is the way to go.

Another thing to love about this cooler is just how quiet it is despite the fans being powerful and spinning at full speed whenever you feel like turning up the RPM. Honestly, this is one of the things that surprised me the most and I love the attention to detail Noctua has put here, absolutely brilliant.

The overall installation process might overwhelm people at first, but the cooler took me less than 5 minutes to install without any apparent instructions. Sure, Noctua has provided you with everything that you need to install the cooler but if you genuinely are terrified of installing it, then don’t be as it is not going to be an issue. 

On top of everything that you are getting with this cooler, Noctua also ships the cooler with a six-year warranty, allowing you to be at peace knowing that this cooler is not going to fail you.

If you are going to ask me about the things that I do not like about the Noctua NH-D15 Chromax, then honestly, my only issue here is that this cooler is massive. You really have to be sure about the RAM clearance not becoming an issue.

Overall, the Noctua NH-D15 Chromax does deliver one of the best performances that can easily match up the more expensive liquid coolers. So, if you have been looking for something that is great with performance and aesthetics, then getting the Noctua NH-D15 Chromax makes a lot of sense.

Pros
  • The cooler looks excellent in black.
  • Performance easily matches and surpasses some AIO coolers.
  • You do not need any software.
  • Runs quiet even under load.
  • Super-easy installation process.
  • Six-year warranty.
Cons
  • The size of the cooler can be an issue.
3

be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4

be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4

Best Silent Air Cooler for i5 12600k

Specifications:

  • Type: Air
  • Socket Support Intel: LGA 1700, 115x, 1200, 2011x, 2066
  • Socket Support AMD:AMD AM4, sTR4, sTRX4.
  • Fans: 1x Silent Wings 3 120mm PWM / 1x Silent Wings 135mm

There is no denying that finding a good CPU cooler can be a difficult task for most of the people, especially those who are not sure what they want to get and what they want to avoid. However, what if I tell you that be quiet! has been making amazing CPU coolers for as long as one can remember and they are offering CPU coolers both in air and water variants, allowing you to choose something that you genuinely enjoy and like, at the same time.

The cooler in hand is amazing be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 and honestly, anyone who is familiar with PC gaming knows that this is one of the best coolers that money can buy. With that said, the performance on this cooler is no joke and honestly, I still remember my first time with the cooler and when I did test it out, even I was surprised after this seemingly massive cooler managed to outperform everything I had used before.

Although the Core i5 12600K does not require a lot of cooling power, the be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 comes with 250W TDP, which is more than most of the modern processors’ TDP. This is more than a guarantee that your processor is not going to run into any issues when it comes to being cool.

Another thing to love here is the fact that this cooler is quiet, it is nearly silent, if you ask me. Now, I am used to loud coolers so when this came around, I was surprised by just how silent this cooler is without sacrificing any performance. The Silent Wings fans are truly amazing.

Furthermore, be quiet! has ensured that the build quality of the Dark Rock 4 Pro is not something that is taken lightly; the cooler is built like a tank. So, if you have been concerned that you are getting something that is not going to deliver the right experience in terms of how it looks, performs, and is built. Needless to say, I love be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 in more ways than one. 

My only complaint here is that if you are buying this cooler hoping that it is going to be small, then that is not the case as you are looking at one hefty and big cooler that overhangs the DIMM slots, too.

Overall, the be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 does not really have a lot of downsides, to be honest. Aside from its massive size that can cause some RAM compatibility issues, I really cannot think that there is anything wrong with this cooler as the performance here remains excellent across the board.

Pros
  • Top of the line performance.
  • Excellent looks and even better build quality.
  • The installation process is super easy.
  • The cooler is surprisingly silent.
Cons
  • The cooler easily covers the DIMM slots.
4

NZXT Kraken X53

NZXT Kraken X53

Best RGB CPU Cooler for i5 12600k

Specifications:

  • Type: AIO.
  • Socket Support Intel: LGA 1700, 115x, 1200, 2011x, 2066
  • Socket Support AMD: AMD AM4, sTR4, sTRX4.
  • Fans: 2x 120mm fans.

We are all aware of the work that NZXT has done to make the PC gaming industry a lot more accessible. However, we also have to admit the fact that when you are talking about solid components and great overall value, NZXT is always there. Don’t worry, though. If you are in the mood to spend a little more than you might want to otherwise, NZXT has gotten you covered and you will be able to get an excellent experience therefore.

With that said, the NZXT Kraken X53 is the cooler at hand and it is one of the smaller coolers in terms of the overall size. Most of the liquid coolers that people normally tend to gravitate towards are all 360mm and in some cases, 280mm. However, considering how the i5 12600K does not generate a lot of heat, getting a 240mm cooler makes more sense than one might think and you can actually get some decent performance out of it, too.

With that said, you will love this cooler for a number of reasons including one of the most impressive pumps I have seen. Generally, the coolers that we have been seeing in the market use older pumps and while they are convenient as they are cheap, they do not bring any noticeable performance improvements or sustainability. However, this time around, the pump is better.

The LCD infinity effect on the CPU block is one of my favorite things about the CPU block. I have tested various offerings in the market and not a single one performed on the same level as this one. If you are looking for something truly amazing, going this way is not really going to be a problem.

Moving onto the performance of the NZXT Kraken X53, I am more than pleased to tell you that the 240mm radiator performs more than adequately even when paired with an overclocked i5 12600K. Sure, there is a limit to how high you can go as far as the overclock is concerned but for the sake of performance, it’s a great one.

NZXT also ships the cooler with 2 RGB Aer fans, which look really cool and considering how we are talking about an NZXT product, how can we forget the CAM software, which is finally something that one can use as it has become super-convenient and easy.

As far as the downsides are concerned, my only concern is that the fans on this cooler can only be controlled through the CAM software and there is no other manual control.

Overall, the NZXT Kraken X53 is an excellent cooler that delivers great performance with great looks. If you have been looking for something that just works, this is the one to get.

Pros
  • One of the best RGB implementations.
  • Uses the 7th generation Asetek pump.
  • Great performance even for a 240mm radiator.
  • The infinity mirror design on the CPU block is gorgeous.
Cons
  • The fans cannot be manually controlled.
5

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition

Best Budget Cooler for i5 12600k

Specifications:

  • Type: Air.
  • Socket Support Intel: LGA1700, LGA1200, LGA2066, LGA2011-v3, LGA2011, LGA1151, LGA1150, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA1366,
  • Socket Support AMD: AM4, AM3+, AM3, AM2+, AM2, FM2+, FM2, FM1
  • Fans: 1x 120mm fans.

The last cooler that we are looking at is from Cooler Master, now we all know Cooler Master as one of the companies that have been around for as long as one can remember. I remember back in the days when the first Crysis installment came out and the world lost its collective mind, a lot of my friends were using Cooler Master cases and fans and although the company has gone in a number of directions, it never really forgot its DNA.

The Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition is the cooler I am looking at and it is indeed an updated version of the legendary Hyper 212 that more or less solidified Cooler Master as a brand that is seriously value-oriented. However, this CPU cooler has aged like fine wine and looks better than ever but can it keep up with the Core i5 12600K?

Thankfully, the Core i5 12600K naturally does not generate a lot of heat. Which might seem like something that is not as important but in reality, does matter a lot because you are looking at a CPU that does not ask you to spend all your money on a cooler. The CPU itself is easy to cool and you are good to go in absolute no time.

Moving further, you are also looking at a cooler that delivers excellent out of the box cooling performance and the provided fan is more than enough. However, if you do want to go ahead and get an even better performance boost, I would happily advise that you are getting your hands more powerful fans that spin faster. 

The Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition is also an extremely easy to install cooler, and during my testing, I had absolutely no issues whatsoever with the installation process of it.

As far as the downsides go, there really is nothing about this cooler that needs to be looked down upon, aside from the fact that it is a fairly simple package.

Overall, the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition is an excellent cooler that is more than capable of handling the Core i5 12600K on both stock and slightly overclocked states.

Pros
  • Surprisingly excellent performance.
  • One of the best budget coolers.
  • Can support almost all the platforms.
  • Super-easy to install.
Cons
  • The package itself is basic at best.

Conclusion 

If you have just gotten your hands on the Core i5 12600K and you are looking for a good cooler, then this list is definitely something that you should be going through. All the coolers in this list are decent and will deliver fantastic performance through and through, and that too, without any issues coming your way.

Frequently Asked Questions 

The i5 12600K does not really require a massive cooler. However, all the coolers in this list are more than capable of handling the CPU with ease.

The Core i5 12600K or any other CPU from the K series does not come with a CPU cooler.

Thankfully, the Core i5 12600K does not run hot and can easily be cooled with a good and affordable CPU cooler.

Furqan Shahid

I have been gaming for almost 24 years with extensive knowledge of all platforms and the gaming industry, in general. With interests in literature, art, gaming, and PC hardware.

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