Back in 2014, NZXT came up with a clever way to incorporate your graphics card into any of several compatible all-in-one liquid coolers designed for CPUs. It was called the Kraken G10 and it was basically just a custom liquid cooling bracket and fan combo. Now it has a new version, the Kraken G12, that promises easier installation and wider compatibility.
To be clear, the Kraken G12 commandeers your AIO cooler from the CPU—you can't cool both at the same time with the same AIO setup. The idea is that you can repurpose an existing AIO you're no longer using to significantly reduce temps on your graphics card compared to its stock cooler, or purchase an AIO cooler and attach it to the Kraken G12.
NZXT claims its Kraken G12 offers 40 percent better cooling compared to stock GPU coolers. In its own testing, NZXT observed a temp reduction from 80C to 45C from swapping out the stock cooler on a GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition and replacing it with a Kraken G12 attached to a Kraken X42 AIO cooler (at 1,100 RPM).
"Being able to play the latest games at the highest settings, without sacrificing performance is something all gamers want. While aftermarket graphic cards have improved lately, most stock cooling systems still can’t reach the performance level of liquid cooling. That’s why we decided to design the updated Kraken G12 to be easier to install and support the latest liquid AIOs," said Johnny Hou, founder and CEO of NZXT.
The Kraken G12 itself is pretty affordable—just $30 MSRP. However, if you don't have an existing AIO cooler laying around collecting dust, you have to factor in that cost as well. The Kraken X42 that NZXT used for testing streets for around $130, so you'd be looking at an all-in cost of $160 if going that route.
You have other options. The Kraken G12 works with several coolers from NZXT (Kraken X62, X52, X42, X61, X41, X31, X60, X40), Corsair (H105, H110, H90, H75, H55, H50 [CW-906006-WW only], Thermaltake (Water 3.0 Riing RGB 360, 280, 240, Red 280, 140, Water 3.0 Ultimate, Extreme S, Pro, Performer, Water 2.0 Extreme, Pro, Performance), Antec (Kuhler H20 920V4, 620V4, 920, 620, and Zalman (LQ-320, LQ-315, LQ-310).
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