If you happen to be a hardware enthusiast, then you are most likely familiar with all-in-one liquid coolers. They just so happen to be the new norm these days. Sure, air coolers are just as good, but we see AIOs more frequently these days. Originally, they were expensive and hard to get. As such, the average PC gamer didn’t see a use for them. However, they are more accessible and affordable these days. That is exactly why they are so popular.
PRODUCT INFO Pure Loop 240 Manufacture be quiet! Available at View at Amazon
Also, that just so happens to be the reason why we’re here today. We’re taking a look at be quiet’s new lineup of Pure Loop coolers. Specifically, we are taking a look at the be quiet! Pure Loop 240 Essential AIO. be quiet! is already known for its craftsmanship, and the Pure Loop 240 embodies that perfectly.
So, if we’re going to sum up this cooler in one word, it would be “refreshing”. This is the first time the German company is taking its shot at AIOs. Usually, the first attempt does not go well. However, we were left presently surprised, and you might be as well. Let’s find out what’s so special about this liquid cooler.
The Unboxing Experience
Be Quiet is known for its sleek and stealthy approach to its products. This mentality remains true even with the whole unboxing experience. The entire box is black, as we have come to expect from the brand. They don’t exactly use any flashy colors in their products or their packaging. The front of the box has the branding and a picture of the Pure Loop 240 itself.
The sides of the box briefly list the features and the back of the box breaks them down in detail. You can crack open the box from either side. The cooler and all the accessories sit inside a familiar cardboard enclosure. First off, we have access to the radiator and pump/cooling block. Of course, all of those are pre-fitted. Inside the box, we also have the fans and other accessories.
After pulling out the cooler itself, we can take a look at the Silent Wings 2 fans inside the package. These are two 120mm fans, as we have the 240 version of the Pure Loop on our hands. Apart from that, the packaging includes AMD and Intel mounting accessories, fan and radiator screws, thermal compound, and an extensive quick start guide. We also have coolant for the entire loop, which we’ll get to later on.
The box contents for the be quiet! Pure Loop 240 include the following items:
- Pure Loop 240 cooler
- Mounting kit for Intel
- Mounting kit for AMD
- Fan and radiator mounting screws
- Thermal compound
- Quick start guide
- Be Quiet! Coolant
Design And Closer Look
To be perfectly frank, AIO liquid coolers can get a bit boring at times. Asetek is the company that owns the patent for the usual AIO design. This is why so many coolers are similar to each other, as most of them are just “rebrands”. This is exactly why the Be Quiet! Pure Loop 240 stands out. It has a few tricks up itself that helps it to stand out from the crowd.
First off, let’s talk about that excellent construction. The company always does a great job in this department. The entire cooler feels like it is put together quite well. For the price, it certainly feels quite premium and gives other coolers a run for its money.
We know that a lot of people care about RGB, but the brand skipped it for this cooler. This does not come as much of a surprise, because it fits in with their other products. Be Quiet makes no-nonsense products, and this is one of them.
Of course, that does not mean the Pure Loop 240 is boring by any means. It has an array of white LEDs on the front plate of the CPU block. It gets power via a 12V connector that goes into the SATA adapter in the box. The LEDs are quite bright and vivid. The top plate of the block can be removed and can be positioned in any way you want. This means you can easily decide the positioning of the brand’s logo.
This is a minor complaint, but the branding is a bit on the nose here. Especially since the white lighting is so bright. However, the brand tried something different here and we think some people will like it for sure. Aesthetics are subjective after all. This cooler would look quite good in a clean/minimalistic build.
The base plate here uses nickel, and it has a nice smooth finish. Of course, the rest of the materials inside are aluminum. The top plate also feels like brushed aluminum and has a nice feel to it. You’ll notice that the pump is right beside the radiator. This is exactly what makes this cooler so interesting. Be Quiet did this so that they could avoid the Asetek patent. This means that the pump can’t be regulated, as it connects to the SATA adapter cable.
So, the point of AIOs or closed-loop coolers is that you don’t have to mess with them in any way. You just install them and you are good to go. However, the Pure Loop 240 goes the extra mile here. If you look at the radiator, you’ll notice a large screw near the right side of it. You can call that a filler screw or even a gasket.
This means that down the line, you can refill the liquid or coolant inside the cooler. Be Quiet even includes their own coolant inside the box. This is a nice touch and adds to the already long lifespan of this liquid cooler. Most of them, liquid coolers run fine for three to four years, maybe, even more, depending on how you use them. The fact that this cooler is refillable makes things even better. Be Quiet even includes a three-year warranty and that shows that they are confident with the durability of this product.
Installation And Compatibility
Installation is also one of the major differences between air and liquid coolers. Both have their pros and cons, but we’d argue that air coolers are easier to install. Actually, it’s not about ease of use, it’s just that liquid coolers have more components that need to be installed. Still, the Pure Loop 240 is a relatively easy product to install inside your case.
First off, we install the two 140mm fans. You need to use four screws each to attach the fans to the radiator. These screws are included in the box. A Y-splitter cable is included so you can attach the fan cable together. This makes cable management a bit easier in the end. Once that is done, plug the LED connector from the block and the pump cable into the SATA power adapter. This will go into your power supply.
From here, the process should be quite familiar. For Intel, we’ll need to attach the backplate to the back of the motherboard. You can do this either inside or outside the case, whichever seems easier to you. Then, install four standoff screws to the backplate. This will secure the plates so you can put the CPU cooler on top. Before doing so, make sure to apply a dab of thermal paste.
After that, you’ll just have to attach the block and screw it in. Route the cables and plug them in, and we are good to go. The process is almost the same for AMD, it’s just that the mounting kit is a bit different. Speaking of which let us quickly talk about compatibility.
Fortunately, the Pure Loop 240 is compatible with most motherboards out there. It supports Intel’s LGA 2066, 2011, 115x, 1200, and AMD’s FM1, AM2/+, AM3/+, and AM4/+ sockets. So, if you put a PC together recently, you don’t need to worry about compatibility. Just remember that there is no Threadripper support here.
Our testing methodology isn’t exactly something out of the ordinary. We want to represent how this cooler would perform in real-world scenarios. A lot of people these days are using AMD Ryzen processors, and so are we. So, most of our testing is done with a Ryzen 5 3600, and the same goes for this review. With that said, sometimes Ryzen can be a bit tricky to properly. This is mostly because of precision boost overdrive and unpredictable overclocking behaviors.
For that reason alone, we don’t want to go overboard with the overclocking ordeal. The average gamer would not want to overclock their 3600 anyway, as it doesn’t affect gaming for the most part. Now, let’s talk about how we do our testing.
We test all of our CPU coolers inside of a PC case with positive airflow. For our load tests, we run Cinebench R20 on a constant loop to put the CPU in full stress thus imitating the real-world workloads of an end-user. We also test our Overclocks’ stability through Prime95’s extended tests with AVX Enabled for Ryzen CPUs for at least 10 hours and more. Idle test results are taken at least 10 minutes after the system has booted up with a handful of day-to-day programs opened up in the background, again simulating the real-world idle state of a PC.
For noise tests, we place our RISEPRO Decibel Meter very close to the PC case in order to gain accurate idle and load results. In every test, the CPU fan curves are set to default for accurate measurements. The radiator was mounted in front of the case and the orientation of the fans was set to intake for a positive airflow environment in the case. Lastly, we test all of our CPU coolers at a controlled ambient room temperature of 26 °C.
Note: Our ambient noise levels (52dBA) were a bit higher than usual due to our testing environment’s ventilation system. Thus making the noise tests of the cooler seem higher than usual.
As we mentioned before, we are mostly looking at the stock performance here for the Ryzen 5 3600. PBO/Auto OC is turned on for this test. When PBO is turned on, the processor usually goes higher than 60W TDP, around 70 to 80 watts in fact. Depending on the scenario, PBO does do a decent job of boosting the frequency on all core. However, this means that the processor will draw more voltage under load (1.347v).
Of course, all of that is perfectly normal. However, it does mean that the 3600 is being pushed to its limit. With most entry-level CPU coolers, this would be a problem. Fortunately, the be quiet! Pure Loop 240 handles it with ease. At idle, the temperatures hovered near 48 degrees, and under full load, they went up to 74 degrees. Those numbers are very impressive.
With that said, keep in mind that the testing conditions are at play here. So, of course, your numbers might be slightly different. The fact of the matter is that the Pure Loop 240 can keep up with the Dark Rock Pro 4 and Noctua’s NHD15. Not bad at all considering both of those are very beefy high-end dual tower coolers.
Believe it or not, thermals are not everything when it comes to liquid coolers. Sure, keeping your processor cool is important, but not at the cost of your comfort. There are a lot of high-performance coolers out there that perform well but are quite loud. This isn’t exactly an ideal situation. So, where does the be quiet! Pure Loop 240 fall in this scenario?
Well, surprisingly it is somewhere in the middle. For context, we are putting it against the Noctua NHD15 and the Dark Rock Pro 4. However, to make the point clear, we are using both of our air coolers in a single fan configuration. Obviously, a liquid cooler with two 140mm and a pump is going to be louder. So, the Pure Loop 240 isn’t quite annoying or frustratingly loud.
However, we weren’t expecting this to be the case. The main noise comes from the pump itself. If you’re looking for it, you can definitely hear. There’s a sort of resonating hum to it. Again, it’s not annoying, but it could have been handled in a better way. At idle, it stays at around 56dBA which is quite respectful. However, it goes up to 74dBA when we’re pushing the system to its limit.
Overall, the Be Quiet Pure Loop 240 is a very interesting product. As we said in the introduction, it is a no-nonsense liquid cooler that gets the job done quite well. It competes with other major players and does so at a lower price. Again, that is nothing to scoff at. We expect the Pure Loop lineup to be quite successful. Of course, you can get a 120, 280, and 360mm version as well.
There are some minor drawbacks here. For example, it’s a bit louder than we initially thought, and the design of the CPU block won’t be for everyone. However, neither of those things are major dealbreakers. The Pure Loop 240 has a competitive price, it performs well, and has a few innovative ideas like the refillable design. It earns our respect and if you’re looking for an AIO, this is one worth considering.
be quiet! Pure Loop 240
A Very Compelling Value
- Exceptional build quality
- Impressive performance
- Competitive pricing
- Refillable design
- Louder than expected
- Design not for everyone
TDP: 250 W+ | Coldplate material: Nickel | Dimensions (Radiator): L277 mm x W120 mm x H52 mm | Motherboard Compatibility: 2066, 2011(-3), 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1200 FM1, FM2/+, AM2/+, AM3/+, AM4
VERDICT:The Be Quiet Pure Loop 240 is a very interesting CPU cooler. It takes a few steps towards new ideas, and that's refreshing to see in this space. Liquid coolers have been traditional for a while now, and the Pure Loop lineup manages to standout. Considering the overall value here, this is a very enthralling product.