The DEEPCOOL Captain EX 240 RGB Cooler

The DEEPCOOL Captain EX 240 RGB is a classic CPU-only AIO cooler design, with the CPU block assembly attached to the radiator via two hoses. The CPU block assembly includes the CPU contact plate, the pump, RGB LED lighting, and the speed control electronics. All of the parts are black. The tubing is thick and has a nylon braiding surrounding it. It is not very flexible but it certainly is very tough. DEEPCOOL has the tubing entering the CPU block assembly from the side, using 90° joints.

The radiator of the kit is a typical two-pass design, very similar to that used by almost every 2×120 mm fans AIO kit in the market. It is 275 mm long, 120 mm wide and 27 mm thick (10.83 × 4.73 × 1.1 inches). Its narrow dimensions suggest that a push-pull fan configuration will not provide reasonable performance benefits, as it has little airflow impedance to begin with. The design is common and that is not a bad thing, as it is proven to provide relatively good performance. Interestingly, it has a visible refill port but DEEPCOOL has sealed it.

The highlight of this cooler is the CPU block. It is almost cubic in shape, with the company logo etched on the sides of the assembly and a decorative fin circular array on the top. DEEPCOOL has designed it so as to make the liquid flow visible to the user via a clear plastic tube that comes out of the assembly’s center and goes back in from the side. The downside is that it has two wires, one power wire for the pump and one for the RGB LEDs. The wire for the RGB LEDs need to be connected to the bundled cable with the attached controller for the RGB LEDs to work, requiring a SATA power connector and skillful cable routing to hide everything.

The RGB lighting of the Captain EX 240 RGB is somewhat limiting, as the user can only choose from seven solid colors (red, blue, green, magenta, cyan, orange, and white), or from a couple of basic pre-programmed visual effects. Unfortunately, the included controller is unable to generate any other configuration. However, it can be replaced by a more advanced aftermarket controller or be connected directly to a header of a motherboard that offers onboard RGB strip support, as both the included strip and the integrated LEDs are typical 4-pin RGB products.

  

The square copper contact base of the Captain EX 240 RGB is attached to the main body of the cooler via large and visible Allen bolts. It comes with the thermal compound pre-applied and is polished to a very smooth, yet not a mirror finish. The DEEPCOOL Captain EX 240 RGB supports AMD AM4 but not TR4 CPUs.

Introduction, Packaging & Bundle Testing Methodology
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  • Yuriman - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    It would be nice to see some common heatsinks within the same price bracket included in the comparison charts, even if it's only a handful. They're direct competition after all. Reply
  • HollyDOL - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    I have to agree, otherwise the results are quite relative.
    Put in at least a couple for reference (like Intel highend stock, AMD highend stock, and some elite one like Noctua NH-D15), it would make the info much more worthwhile for general public
    Reply
  • HollyDOL - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    not like stock coolers could hope to do anything except bbq with 340W load ofc... Reply
  • Dr. Swag - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    Awesome! A decent alternative to the S24 when it comes to quiet AIOs that also has rgb! Reply
  • sweetca - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    Catchy name. Reply
  • Lord of the Bored - Saturday, December 16, 2017 - link

    "I am Captain DeepCool, of the Federation starship EX RGB." Reply
  • ReeZun - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    Sometimes I wonder... if some of these reviews are sponsored (either by one manufacturer or a group of manufacturers, to boost brand exposure and potentially sales)... and not necessarily direct monetary sponsorship. I also wonder... if the reason Anandtech didn't include a high-end air cooler (e.g., NH-D15)... is because it would make a strong case for the AIO solutions making a very poor value proposition... especially when considering noise/cooling ratios... and, in turn, rendering this entire review pointless. Reply
  • E.Fyll - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    Actually, the answer to your question is far less complicated than that. We only compare air coolers to air coolers and liquid coolers to liquid coolers because each represents a specific type of product. It's an "apples to apples" kind of thing. I also personally do not believe that these two actually compete with each other. Users are much more likely to go for an AIO cooler because they want easier access to their system, or because they just don't like a 2kg piece of metal hanging off their motherboard, or just because it "looks cool", than for the performance. If acceptable performance is all that a user needs, an average air cooler can do the job just fine, they do not even need a NH-D15 to begin with.

    Besides that, the magic of having and using professional equipment like ours is that everything is both repetitive and comparable. They were all tested on the exact same device and everything is in our methodology page that can be found in every cooler review. Long story short, you can easily go to our review of the NH-D15 cooler (or any cooler that you'd like to compare, regardless of its type and platform) and just compare any of its performance figures to any AIO cooler that you want to, taking into account your personal requirements too.
    Reply
  • tricomp - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    Sorry no.. it is green apples to red apples in most buyers considerations.. or dreams, and they really need to know what they are paying extra in case their dream comes true. Reply
  • rtfmx9 - Thursday, December 14, 2017 - link

    I think that "apples to apples" does not hold here. After all, both liquid and air coolers serve the same purpose. It would be nice to be able to compare them without having to do research through Anandtech's archives. Is it possible that once comparison is made obvious liquid coolers don't make sense from the cost/performance point of view? I don't know since review does not try to inform me from that perspective. My guess is that there are many people who would like to inform themselves of whether upgrade to a liquid cooler would make sense or not but to do that you recommend that they dig though the past reviews instead of you offering that information in your review. All for the sake of keeping apples and oranges separated. I don't buy that reasoning. Reply

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