What all gamers have in common is they like to play their games at ultra graphics settings above 60fps. But performance aside another thing gamers love is RGB. It helps in setting the overall mood but also improves the gameplay experience. So we tested and reviewed the best RGB case fans for improving aesthetics along with performance.
But if looks were all gamers wanted, they would just use LED strips. But we also have to look at performance, because lights will not reduce temps on your CPU or improve airflow. Both of these can actually affect how your system will react.
We all know higher temps are bad for not only gaming but for your system overall. If you reach high temperatures due to having low or no airflow, you will only end up harming your components.
But case fans can help in improving airflow and also in pushing air through obstructions and keeping temps low. But RGB technology has come very far. So you do not have to compromise on performance or aesthetics.
You can get both of them with the best RGB case fans that will not only make your PC look cool but keep it cool too.
But there are a few things that you might want to understand about case fans before going into the reviews. So let us discuss those things briefly in this buyer’s guide.
Buyer’s Guide for RGB Case Fans
So people often get confused about two things the most when they are selecting case fans, one is airflow and other static pressure. They often cannot understand the difference and case fan manufacturers do take advantage of that fact.
Usually, there are two types of fans, one has a high airflow and others have good static pressure. Both are equally important in any case fan with or without RGB.
There is also the question of what is the difference in RGB and ARGB in case fans. Let us go through all of the things that you may encounter when you buy a case fan.
Usually, when you think of fan, your thought goes towards fan speed. Or at least that is what our mind goes towards when we are talking about fans at home on our ceilings. But case fans have a different set of principles that gauge their capability. One of them is, of course, RPM.
But if you end up buying the highest RPM fans and ignoring the other three, you are wasting your money. Because RPM isn’t the only thing in case fans. One important aspect is the amount of air it blows in the PC case, namely, airflow.
Airflow is the amount of air that a fan can throw into the case and is measured in CFM or cubic feet per minute. It is the amount of air that is moved in the cubic feet of the case per minute. So a high airflow case is going to blow more air inside the case and cool components.
Most case fan manufacturers either flaunt high RPM or airflow. Most of these case fan manufacturers do not normally show off one figure, which is static pressure.
The static pressure of a case fan is basically the pressure needed to move air through some space. It is basically the air pressure needed to move air better through the crevices and obstructions in a PC case.
PC case manufacturers have started to introduce mesh and dust filters in their case as a norm. Mesh allows for better airflow, however, dust filter impedes airflow, so no matter how much air the fan tries to blow, it can’t.
That is unless the fan is capable of having high static pressure, which pushes air through obstacles easily. That is why it is used in radiators and air coolers so that they can push the air through the radiator better and in case of air coolers so that it can cool the fins better by pushing air through every corner of it.
High Static Pressure vs. Airflow
So if having a high RPM fan does not work, and since better airflow means more air in case, you should go for that, right? But it is not that easy because there are many variables to look at here.
If you have something like drive cages in front of the case, a high static pressure fan would benefit. This is because that fan will be able to push air harder through the drive cage so it can reach other components easier.
Same with dust filters and things like RAM height along with other obstructions. A high static pressure fan will benefit when you want to move air through small spaces.
But if there is not enough air to push through obstructions, what is the use? So a fan also needs high airflow as well. Neither is enough alone, and that is why a good ratio of both is the essential thing.
RGB vs. ARGB
we all know and love RGB, but RGB means the case fan will be lighting up in one color at a time. But ARGB or addressable RGB means that the fan has individually addressable lights.
Individually addressable lights work in harmony to create various colorful effects. One of the lights in the fan can be one color and brighter than rest while others are dim. This is only possible with ARGB fans and they can be a bit more expensive than normal RGB fans.
One side effect of a high RPM fan is none other than noise. If you have ever seen a streamer game on his system and suddenly you hear a whirring sound behind them, it’s their PC fans.
With advanced bearing technology in the motors of the case fans, the noise has been significantly reduced regardless of high speed. But it is not completely gone, so every case fan manufacturer has mentioned sound levels on their fan specs.
If you are someone who loves their peace and quiet, then maybe you should check the noise levels out before buying any fan. If the noise does not bother you a lot, then you can look over that part in the specs.
Best RGB Case Fans For Performance Along with Aesthetics Reviewed
The MasterFan MF120R is such an amazing case fan, its hybrid fan blades actually aid in improving the fan performance significantly.
Cooler Master has long been a brand that strives to bring out better cooling solutions at affordable prices. But regardless of their tech being affordable, it is still top-notch and is often preferred by many tech enthusiasts.
They also have some really good PC cases and PSUs in their product line up along with cooling solutions. We have seen many people opt for Cooler Master PSUs for their good quality output and heat dissipation regardless of high loads.
The MF120R from Cooler Master is a great example of how they were able to innovate something to tackle a problem without sacrificing anything. The hybrid fan blade design between a jet and a helicopter allows for not only high airflow but also great static pressure.
Very rarely you find case fans that balance the ratio between airflow and static pressure like the MF120R does. And with the added benefit of it being affordable and not only RGB but ARGB, it automatically won the first place for us.
The ARGB is so beautiful as well, we love how beautifully the transparent blades diffuse the ARGB lighting. The fan also comes with a rubberized mounting mechanism to decrease noise levels from vibrations.
Let us talk about the performance now, it has an airflow of 59 CFM and static pressure of 2.14 mmH2O. The static pressure and airflow ratio are pretty decent and that is why this fan can be used on liquid IO cooler radiators as well.
The fan can be a bit noisy on the highest speed setting, but it is still bearable at 31 dBA. It has a Rifle Bearing which is able to reduce the noise levels significantly compared to a sleeve or ball bearing.
Lastly, we can talk about the fan speed, with a 4-pin PWM header, the fan runs at 650-2000 RPM. The PWM header enables you to either lower or increases the fan speed according to your needs.
Corsair has some of the best cooling solutions from liquid IO coolers to powerful yet beautiful case fans. They are one of the leading brands when it comes to computer components.
From PSU, RAM to case fans, Corsair has it all, as they are one of the top brands in computer hardware manufacturing these days. Corsair seems to have it all under their brand name and all of it is premium.
This time the premium product we reviewed is their LL Series case fan, which is mesmerizingly beautiful. We are talking about 16 individually addressable RGB lights in a dual-loop setup.
The transparent fan blades when they spin on high RPM diffuse the light so perfectly it’s like a colorful glass panel. They achieve this effect by dividing the LEDs between two loops.
If you are buying more than one of these in a pack of 3 it comes with the Corsair Lighting Node PRO. This allows you to control the lighting effects using the iCUE software.
The fan spins at 1500RPM at maximum and 600 at minimum. This can be controlled either through the motherboard software or through the iCUE software as well.
The static pressure of the fan is 1.61 mm-H2O while the airflow is 43.25 CFM. The fan has a pretty good ratio between static pressure and airflow in it.
Due to premium pricing, people often opt for the ML series fans which are slightly cheaper and have an advanced bearing in it. This one contains a hydraulic bearing which is pretty good as well and only produces noise levels of 24.8 dBA on maximum speed.
Lastly, the pack of three along with the Lighting Node PRO costs around $130. This is a big amount but the Corsair brand name was never inexpensive plus these look really nice.
Enermax T.B. RGB AD Edition has really good airflow and static fan pressure ratio. Performance-wise it is similar to Corsair’s premium fan and has a unique patented bearing technology to reduce noise even further.
Enermax is more famous for having great liquid IO coolers than their case fans. But even their case fans seem to be really great as they provide performance on par with expensive RGB case fans.
Their patented twister bearing technology seems to be the key to the performance. Not only does this fan have a great ratio of static pressure and airflow, but it also has really low noise.
The RGB is addressable and can be controlled using the added controller or your motherboard’s software. The control box already has 10 pre-set effects on it for the RGB lighting.
The fan has adjustable speed from 500 RPM to 1500 RPM, but even at high speed, it has low noise compared to most case fans. The noise levels only go as high as 22dBA which is not so high compared to some other fans out there.
The airflow is around 47.53 CFM at max speed while the static pressure is 1.66 mm-H2O. The airflow to static pressure ratio seems pretty solid on the Enermax T.B. RGB AD Edition thanks to its bearing construction.
The low noise is also thanks to the patented bearing construction as well as the rubberized mounts to decrease vibration from fan rotation.
A pack of 3 fans along with a control box will cost you somewhere around the neighborhood of $55 on Amazon. This is pretty cheap compared to our other picks but also it has peak performance.
Noctua has taken the cooling components’ market by storm with the Noctua NF-S12B redux-1200 case fan. Noctua is known for its premium-grade cooling components that offer exceptional cooling performance and low noise levels. While Noctua has a signature brown-and-tan color combo for its cooling fans, they went in a different direction with the redux-1200.
The Noctua case fans are known for being oddballs when it comes to the aesthetics of the PC. However, the redux-1200 has a grey and black combo that matches perfectly with almost every rig. The redux-1200 is the perfect combo of performance and aesthetics that the people have been waiting for.
The Noctua NF-S12B redux-1200 gives a solid cooling performance at the lowest of noise levels. The redux-1200 is capable of blowing out almost 59 cubic feet of air in a minute. The fan is also one the quieter ones at a noise level of just 18.1 dB.
Not quite enough? Well, there is an option to make the fans even quieter using the optional anti-vibration pads that also come in a variety of different colors, giving your case fan an even better look. The redux-1200 can also be operated on low voltage to get the noise levels down.
It is safe to say that the Noctua NF-S12B redux-1200 is the ultimate package in a case fan. The aesthetics, the performance, it has it all. Hence the reason, it is the choice case fan for many a user.
Thermaltake has been one of the big names in cooling solutions in the industry for a long time. They have been doing a great job for the budget audience in the past.
The Thermaltake Riing Trio is one of their premium products with a really beautiful diffusing RGB lighting. The design is somewhat similar to the Corsair LL120 where there are RGB lighting zones where the motor is and at the outer ring.
It has a total of 30 addressable RGB lights 12 in the front outer ring, 12 in the back, and 6 in the middle. So we are looking at a really beautiful harmony of RGB lighting all around this case fan.
It also uses a similar bearing like the LL120, a hydraulic bearing that has good results when it comes to performance. You get noise levels of up to 25.2 dBA on the max speed of 1500RPM.
The minimum fan speed of Thermaltake Riing is 500RPM at which you will have almost inaudible sound. Unless your ears are really sensitive you will not be able to hear it out.
There are a total of 9 fan blades on this thing, which might be the contributing factor for a good static pressure to airflow ratio. You are getting 1. 4mm-H2O static pressure while the airflow is 41.13 CFM.
It also has rubberized mounts for lower noise operation to reduce vibrations from the fan rotation. This fan will cost you in the neighborhood of $125, which is kind of expensive.