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My impressions of the Cooler Master MasterLiquid 360L ARGB CPU Liquid Cooler (2024)

My view on the Cooler Master MasterLiquid 360L ARGB: design elegance, cooling power, noise levels, and value
Robert Williams



January 4, 2024


I recently upgraded my PC cooling system with the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB: below are some prons and cons of this cooler.


Property Value Property Value
Product Dimensions 4.71”L x 1.07”W x 15.51”H Brand Cooler Master
Power Connector Type 4-Pin Voltage 12 Volts (DC)
Wattage 144 Milliwatts Cooling Method Water
Compatible Devices Desktop Noise Level 27.2 dB
Material Copper Maximum Rotational Speed 1750 RPM


Click on photos to enlarge them:

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Design and Aesthetics of the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB

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Designing a PC build that not only functions efficiently but also boasts a striking visual appeal can be quite the balancing act. However, when I got my hands on the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB, I knew that both aesthetics and practicality were considered during its development. Let’s break down the design elements that make this cooler stand out from the crowd:

  • The sleek, updated design gives any PC build a modern edge.
  • ARGB lighting on the fans adds that customizable flair many enthusiasts crave.
  • Redesigned copper plate efficiently targets high-heat areas for optimized performance.

Firstly, I can’t help but appreciate the minimalist design approach. The clean lines and subtle branding on the pump ensure that the cooler blends in effortlessly with various build themes. While looks are subjective, Cooler Master’s decision to keep the design understated means it’s likely to appeal to a broad audience.

The ARGB fans are quite the show-stopper - providing a vibrant spectrum of colors that light up any case interior. I find that it creates a dynamic ambiance, especially when matched with other ARGB components. Installation was a breeze, thanks to the universal bracket system. However, the lack of an included RGB controller might be a drawback for some, something to consider if your motherboard doesn’t support ARGB natively.

The Dual Chamber Gen S pump is not just about aesthetics; the bump in water flow and pressure from this update ensures better cooling, something crucial for sustained performance. I also noticed the redesigned copper plate - another practical design aspect that allows for a more targeted approach to removing heat from the CPU.

With a larger radiator surface area, this cooler provides efficient heat dissipation, a practical design consideration for high-performing systems. Though keep in mind, the size of the unit means that it may not fit in all cases. Always measure before you buy!

In terms of durability, the copper materials used throughout - particularly in the cold plate - not only improve thermal conductivity but also contribute to the longevity of the unit. And, while I find the power connector and voltage requirements standard, the low wattage of just 144 milliwatts stands out, making the cooler energy-efficient.

From a personal standpoint, I find the design and aesthetics of the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB a great fusion of form and function. It’s a cooler that doesn’t scream for attention but has the capability to shine when you want it to, both literally and figuratively. The potential concerns about size and RGB controller absence are there but don’t massively detract from an otherwise solid design offering.

Performance and Cooling Efficiency

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In the world of CPU cooling, the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB by Cooler Master stands out for its impressive performance and cooling efficiency, which I found to be quite compelling. With my hands-on experience and rigorous testing, I’ve distilled my observations into key points that paint a clear picture of what this cooler has to offer:

  • The Dual Chamber Gen S pump is a game changer, ensuring a more efficient flow and pressure to combat CPU heat.

  • Thanks to the newly designed radiator with deeper fins, the surface area is larger, which significantly aids in heat dissipation.

  • The upgraded 120 mm ARGB fans are a breath of fresh air, pushing out a generous airflow while keeping the noise levels surprisingly low for such a potent system.

But it’s not just about the raw stats; it’s how it translates into real-world use. I found my CPU temperatures have been remarkably stable, even under heavy loads. The dreaded temperature spikes that can throttle performance were nowhere to be seen.

I reckon they’ve done a fantastic job accommodating a wide range of CPUs. The compatibility with latest gen Intel and AMD processors meant that I could recommend this cooling system to just about anyone, whether they’re running an Intel 1700 or AMD AM5 and the likes.

As with most things in life, however, it’s not without its drawbacks. The actual installation can be a bit cumbersome - aligning those fans on the radiator feels like a puzzle at times. I also noticed the absence of an RGB controller in the package, which can be a letdown for those who are particular about their build’s aesthetics.

Another hitch I encountered was the pre-applied thermal paste, which was past its prime and had hardened, making the first-time installation less than ideal. I had to remove it and apply a fresh layer, which wasn’t too much of a hassle but something to keep in mind.

That said, the reasons I’d lean towards recommending the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB overshadow the negatives:

  • Consistent Thermal Performance: Does an excellent job of keeping the CPU cooled under various workloads.

  • Ease of Integration: Fits well with most current CPUs on the market.

  • Efficient Fans: Create significant airflow without the racket.

Overall, the performance and cooling efficiency of the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB have left a positive impression on me. It strikes a pleasant balance between high-end features and accessibility, managing to cater to the custom build needs without becoming too complex for the average user.

Noise Levels and User Experience

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When it comes to liquid coolers, I’ve always valued silence as much as efficiency. The MasterLiquid 360L ARGB, by and large, provides a whisper-quiet experience, which was a pleasant surprise given the size and power of this cooler. Here’s my take:

  • Airflow: The fans on this cooler push a lot of air - 71.93 CFM to be exact. That’s a number you can’t ignore, and, more importantly, you can feel the airflow helping to keep the temperatures down.

  • Noise Levels: Despite the airflow, the noise levels are kept to a relatively low 27.2 dBA. However, I noticed that under heavy load, there can be a slight uptick in noise, but nothing too intrusive.

  • Pump Noise: The Dual Chamber Gen S pump is designed to be quieter than previous models. In my rig, the pump hum is almost inaudible, which is critical when you’re focusing on work or during intensive gaming sessions.

That said, I’ve noticed that some users have experienced issues with noise. It’s something to keep in mind when purchasing – quality control can be a hit or miss, and it seems some units are louder than others. In my case, it’s been smooth sailing, so maybe I got lucky.

There’s also a level of flexibility that comes with the installation. The cooler fits a wide range of CPU sockets, which made it easy for me to install. But I have to point out that based on some feedback, if you’re installing it on an AMD setup, you might find it a touch more finicky than on an Intel.

Lastly, let’s talk about those beautiful ARGB fans. They’re not just good-looking; they contribute to the silence by not needing to spin at max speed to be effective. They are the centerpiece of this cooler’s user experience, enhancing the aesthetics without compromising on performance. The lighting is easily customizable, which is a nice touch, though, I found that it may not sync seamlessly with all motherboard software out there.

In sum, the balance this cooler strikes between quiet operation and powerful cooling is its biggest selling point. It runs quietly, is easy enough to install, and looks fantastic. The potential for a noisy unit and the slight complications with AMD installations are drawbacks, but they are balanced by the cooler’s overall excellent performance. This fits my priorities as a user who wants a hushed operation without sacrificing thermal efficiency.

Value for Money and Overall Verdict

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After thoroughly testing the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB CPU Liquid Cooler, here’s the bottom line on its value for money and my overall verdict:

  • Price-point: The cooler is priced competitively, making it an appealing choice for those on a budget. Given the features and performance, I see it as a solid investment for most builds.

  • Design Upgrades: The new design elements, such as the Dual Chamber Gen S pump and deeper radiator fins, show that Cooler Master is committed to improving performance.

  • Compatibility: The broad CPU compatibility is a huge plus, alleviating the need for extra purchases or concerns about future upgrades.

While I am overall impressed with the improvements Cooler Master has brought to this series, a few drawbacks are worth noting. The missing RGB controller and the hardened thermal paste can be frustrating out of the gate. Those of us who value a hands-off installation and immediate optimal performance might be put off by these oversights.

On the other hand, the increase in airflow and noise reduction from the 120 mm ARGB fans are noteworthy positives. The enhanced cooling capabilities without a significant rise in decibels add to the appeal of this cooler.

One hiccup I’ve encountered was with the installation process, specifically when attaching the fans to the radiator. The misalignment between the fixture points adds extra time and a bit of hassle to what should be a straightforward installation. This quirk seems to contradict the inclusive stance Cooler Master aims for, particularly towards novices.

In terms of performance, I can’t help but appreciate the excellent temperature management it provides. Even under stress tests, my CPU stays cool, which is a testament to the cooler’s efficiency. However, I’ve heard reports that not all CPUs, like the Ryzen 7 7700x, received the same level of thermal relief. It appears performance may vary depending on the build, which suggests a slight inconsistency.

Despite some niggles, the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB CPU Liquid Cooler punches above its weight in terms of value. Users need to be ready to tackle minor inconveniences, such as potential installation difficulties and acquiring separate RGB controllers or thermal paste. Performance-wise, for its price bracket, it outshines several competitors, delivering a chilling effect that’s hard to overlook for both casual and intense computing sessions.

In conclusion, if you can deal with the few manageable drawbacks and are looking for a reliable, high-performing, and cost-effective liquid cooling solution, the MasterLiquid 360L ARGB is a powerhouse that merits serious consideration.