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NZXT Kraken X73 RGB AIO CPU Cooler Review

When NZXT got in touch with KitGuru about these new Kraken X-3 RGB AIOs, I was wondering whether the addition of more RGB would be a good thing or not. The original X-3 and Z-3 series were already impressive coolers in terms of thermal performance, before this review the X73 was the leader in our thermal performance charts by a clear margin and the regular non-RGB versions already impressed in the looks department too.

Hardcore RGB enthusiasts may have been a little put off by the lack of RGB fans with the regular Kraken X-3 series so I can see why NZXT wanted to make this addition. The new Aer RGB 2 fans have little resemblance to the Aer P fans and I'm still unsure of which fans I prefer the look of when the RGB lighting isn't powered on, the Aer P fans probably just edge it for me.

However, once the RGB lighting effects are switched on, the Aer RGB 2 fans look fantastic and will be sure to please RGB enthusiasts. The colours are bright and vivid, there is very little in the way of LED hotspots or light bleed coming from the light diffusers, and the fans still look pretty subtle as far as RGB fans go.

Adding RGB fans to the Kraken X-3 range has affected the price of course. The cost of the X73 RGB is around £40 higher than the regular non-RGB version which isn't a huge increase but it does bump up the price to almost £200, which is at the top end for a 360mm AIO and may put this cooler out of reach of many user’s budgets.

Nonetheless, you really can't argue with the thermal performance, coming not far behind the regular X73 in our tests is an impressive achievement, especially with the speed reduction of 500RPM of the Aer RGB 2 fans used in the Kraken X73 RGB. This new fan design also lowers noise output considerably compared with the regular X73 so that is a bonus for those who want a quiet system too.

Taken as a whole, the new Kraken X-3 RGB coolers thermal performance is solid, aesthetics look great with the addition of RGB fans and there is only a slight increase in installation time and difficulty compared with the regular X-3, as you just have to connect a few extra cables. The whole installation takes approximately 15-20 minutes, even a complete PC builder novice shouldn’t find it too difficult.

It is very difficult to find many faults with the Kraken X-3 series, the only complaint with the regular version could have been the lack of RGB fans, but now with this new X-3 RGB series, that problem doesn’t exist. The lack of motherboard RGB synchronisation could also be an issue for some and admittedly not everyone is a fan of the NZXT CAM software.

One other potential sticking point for some could be the price, but when you take all the features, Asetek's high build quality, the class-leading thermal performance and six-year warranty, is it worth paying out that little bit extra for peace of mind? Maybe.

The NZXT Kraken X73 RGB is available to pre-order from Overclockers UK, priced at £199.99 HERE.

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  • Two RGB lighting zones.
  • Easy installation.
  • Great thermal performance.
  • Low noise output.


  • Lack of motherboard RGB synchronisation.

KitGuru says: It was difficult to see how NZXT could improve the original X-3 AIO series but the addition of RGB fans has certainly covered all bases now, especially for hardcore RGB enthusiasts looking for the full RGB effect. Even with lower fan speed, the Kraken X73 RGB is still a top performer for cooling high-end overclocked CPUs.

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Rating: 9.0.

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