Over the past year, we’ve seen a lot of users going for a white-themed PC build, and this trend is growing. So when Enermax sent us the latest LIQMAX III 360 cooler in the white version, I have to say I’m really pleased to see the white edition of this cooler, that’s because you don’t see a lot manufacturers releasing white version of their cooling products.
The LIQMAX III 240 cooler already received our recommendation, so we only count on something better from the model with a 360mm radiator. This is also the recommended size for top series processors. Since recently was a premiere of the Intel Rocket Lake series, then for tests, we will use i7-11700K CPU.
As usual, some technical data and features at first, while later we will focus on the performance and additional tests.
The LIQMAX III ARGB All-in-One CPU liquid cooler with RGB lighting. The water block with its acrylic look is equipped with the Aurabelt™ design, which provides brilliant lighting effects. LIQMAX III ARGB supports addressable RGB synchronization with motherboards that have 4-pin addressable (5V/Data/-/GND). Thanks to ENERMAX’s patented Dual-Chamber Design, Central Coolant Inlet (CCI) and Shunt-Channel Technology (SCT) the cooler achieves faster heat transfer and extended lifetime. The RGB fans with dual-convex blades are optimized for radiators and generate high static pressure to drive heat out of the cooling fins. The LIQMAX III ARGB is an excellent cooler for gaming cases that do not want to miss RGB lighting.
The LIQMAX III ARGB is an All-in-One CPU liquid cooler with a pre-filled coolant. This makes a water cooler as simple as a regular air cooler. Easy installation and no maintenance. The fully sealed design ensures the lowest evaporation of liquid and a long product lifetime.
Dual-Chamber Water Block
The patented Dual-Chamber Design isolates the pump from the heated coolant, extending the life of the cooler.
The cold coolant enters the first chamber with the pump inside and is then forced through the cold plate, absorbing heat. The heated coolant is collected in the second chamber and then transported to the radiator for cooling.
Central Coolant Inlet (CCI) Design
The Central Coolant Inlet (CCI) injects coolant in the middle area above the CPU and distributes it evenly across the cold plate using the patented Shunt Channel Technology (SCT). The result is a shorter coolant flow path and faster heat transfer.
Aurabelt™ Water Block
The Aurabelt™ water block of LIQMAX III ARGB is equipped with addressable RGB LEDs. For stand-alone operation, the water block displays the rainbow RGB lighting effect.
Synchronizable RGB lighting via addressable RGB headers of motherboards from Asus, Asrock, MSI, and Gigabyte. Programmable lighting effects via motherboards software. Razer Chroma support with compatible motherboards of Asrock and MSI.
Note: Addressable RGB LEDs run on 5V, do not connect them to a non-addressable 4 pin header with 12V.
RGB Control Box
The integrated RGB control box offers a quick setup of 10 pre-set lighting effects without the need for an RGB motherboard or additional software.
The premium woven tubings are made of flexible and long-lasting polyamide rubber with multiple layers ensuring zero permeability and long-lasting operation. The tubes offer an easy system installation thanks to a length of 400mm. For maximum safety, the connections to the fittings are sealed with extra strong glue.
The radiator offers a large cooling surface with high heat exchange capacity thanks to the fine channels and thin aluminum fins. LIQMAX III ARGB is available with a 240mm radiator with 330W TDP and a 360mm radiator with 360W TDP cooling capacity.
Quick & user-friendly universal mounting system supporting Intel® and AMD® sockets (excluding TR4/SP3 socket). The pressure adjustment spring system and high conductive Dow-Corning® thermal grease ensure perfect contact with the CPUs heat spreader.
LIQMAX III ARGB is compatible with 120mm fan mountings. Please ensure your case offers enough space to install the radiator.
Above are full specifications, which already look good. The cooler is compatible with all popular motherboard brands, so ARGB is fully supported. If the motherboard doesn’t have ARGB connectors or has only RGB 12V, we can use the included controller. Simple addition, but reviewed previously, Raijintek EOS cooler didn’t have it.
Now let’s take a look at the package and its contents.
Package and its contents
The LIQMAX III cooler comes in quite a large box which is at the same time typical for AIO coolers with a 360mm radiator. The box design about the same as in the 240 version but is larger. The most important is that the description tells us everything we need to know about the product inside. The cooler inside is well-protected and includes everything we may need for the installation.
Enermax LIQMAX III uses Dual-Convex ARGB series fans designed to deliver high performance and low noise and have ARGB illumination. The fan blades are milky white, so they are spreading the light well. Fans are designed to work between 500 and 1600 RPM but, for most of the time, are spinning at about 1000-1200 RPM. At this speed, we can expect quiet work with even the most demanding processors.
The water block with a built-in pump is similar to what we could see in the AQUAFUSION series. It doesn’t have the mirror effect but still looks well. The base is made of copper and has the same focused flow technology as the AQUAFUSION series. It suggests that the performance suppose to be similar.
The installation is quite simple and shouldn’t cause issues to less advanced users. Everything is well described in the attached manual. Above is a video with an installation guide so you can check it yourself.
Below are some photos of our test rig. Everything works and looks great. There were no problems with installation or RGB lighting.
On the next page of this review, we will take a closer look at the performance.
All tests were performed on the Intel i7-11700K 8-core processor, ASRock Z590 Extreme motherboard, HyperX Predator 16GB DDR4-4600 memory kit, and ASRock RX 6800 XT 16GB graphics card. The rig photos include the SuperO C9Z590-CGW motherboard, but we couldn’t use it for the comparison because of a bit different voltage settings.
There are three tests. The first is called Idle, so an operating system without additional load besides standard processes in the background. The second test is based on the PCMark 10 Extended benchmark, which simulates daily work. The last one is a high CPU load tested with AIDA64 with AVX instructions.
The i7-11700K is a very demanding CPU, and because of power limits and frequency ranges, we had to modify its settings, so it was possible to compare the performance. The CPU was working at its rated frequency. However, to keep it at the higher frequency for longer, we had to unlock power limits and their duration and set a fixed voltage of 1.30V. The default Intel settings cause the CPU to limit the frequency and voltages, giving hard to compare results. At fully automatic settings, the voltage would go down to around 1V, and the frequency would balance between 3.6GHz and 4.6GHz, depends on many factors.
Let’s take a look at our test results.
The LIQMAX III is clearly one of the best coolers on the market. It doesn’t change that the i7-11700K runs very hot, and it is hard to keep it below the throttling point at manual settings. The fully-loaded processor had about 93°C what seems high but, at the same time, is still far from the throttling point, so the CPU clock was stable.
Tests with AVX instructions could easily push the CPU up to 270W, even at a lower voltage. Because of the temperature and voltage requirements, it wasn’t possible to overclock the CPU. At 1.35V, the temperature was exceeding 100°C. If we use fully automatic settings, we won’t see more than 90°C, and the CPU will use its maximum turbo frequency.
The LIQMAX III shows high performance, but I guess we are reaching the thermal limits of new processors as clearly there is no cooling that can keep up with the latest Intel series with unlocked power limits. On the other hand, AMD processors are also limited so that they won’t heat up too much.
While gaming, the LIQMAX III performs excellent and is very quiet, so I can recommend it to every gamer. The typical noise was not much higher than the ambient noise, so around 32-33dB. We can expect about 2-4dB more during high load, depending on the used CPU and its settings. The cooler was slightly quieter than the previously reviewed Raijintek EOS 360, while both were performing about the same. On the other hand, Enermax AQUAFUSION performed a bit better in our tests, but it costs some more than the LIQMAX III. Either way, Enermax is providing great coolers so everyone can pick something that meets the expectations.
Conclusion and Verdict
Enermax released one more great cooler, which delivers a mix of high performance and exceptional design. The white version of the LIQMAX III looks even better with ARGB lighting as the white elements spread and reflect the light.
Anyone searching for a high-performance AIO cooler should look at Enermax products as they never disappoint. The LIQMAX III is another Enermax cooler that is a high-quality product and well designed to give the best experience for demanding users.
The cooler is quiet, works well with all popular motherboards, and supports all popular CPU series. It’s hard to find any weak side of this product as even the price isn’t really high.
The Enermax LIQMAX III 360 AIO cooler costs around $160 in the Amazon store. I assume you can find it cheaper but it’s still a very reasonable price for this product. There are some cheaper coolers, but there are also more expensive. Enermax delivers all the best at the medium price, so I feel it’s a good deal.
- High performance
- Quiet work
- Interesting design
- Amazing RGB effects
- Reasonable price
- Backplate not compatible with some motherboards