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ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB Water Cooling Review

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ASUS produces excellent liquid cooling systems. This includes examples like the ROG RYUO III 360 ARGB and ROG RYUJIN III 360 ARGB, which I’ve introduced to you before. Today, I’ll be discussing the new AIO cooler from the TUF GAMING series – the ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB. In this review, as always, I’ll delve into its functionality and application areas, advise on the processors it pairs best with, compare the LC II 360 ARGB with competitors, and, of course, conduct testing under maximum loads.

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Price and market positioning

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

The ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB is a simplified AIO cooler when compared to its counterpart, the ROG RYUJIN III 360 ARGB. However, this doesn’t impact its efficiency in any way. The only difference lies in the display, or rather, its absence. The price of the LC II 360 ARGB is exceptionally favorable – only $150, which is more than two times less than the RYUO III 360 ARGB. Quite a tempting offer, isn’t it? There aren’t many full-fledged 360-millimeter cooling systems with three fans on the market at such a low cost. And it comes with ARGB to top it off. But the time for comparisons with competitors will come later; for now, let’s take a closer look at the LC II 360.

Specifications

  • Radiator material: aluminum
  • Substrate material: copper
  • Sockets for AMD: AM4, AM5
  • Sockets for Intel: LGA1150, LGA1155, LGA1156, LGA 1151, LGA 1200, LGA 1700
  • Number of fans: 3
  • Fan size: 120 mm
  • Type of fan bearings: hydrodynamic
  • Maximum fan speed: 2000 rpm
  • Maximum airflow of the fans: 67 CFM
  • Backlight: Aura RGB
  • Radiator size: 360 mm
  • Pump size: 73×73×45 mm
  • Pump rotation speed: 5500 rpm
  • Length of the nozzles: 400 mm
  • Noise level: 29 dB

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Package contents

The box in which the ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB is delivered is of high quality and informative. Similar packaging is a classic approach for ASUS products. The warranty provided by the manufacturer for their devices has become customary. For the LC II 360 ARGB, it extends to a remarkable 6 years!

Inside the box, the components of the liquid cooling system are neatly arranged in their respective compartments. It’s time to take a closer look at the supply kit.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

I will note the fans with integrated Aura RGB lighting right away. They are, of course, simpler than those in the ROG series cooling systems, but they inspire confidence. Rotating the fans by hand is quiet and smooth. I’m confident they will perform well in operation.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGBIn a separate package, you’ll find various mounting components: bolts, nuts, and transition plates for different sockets. I particularly liked the backplate installed on the back of the motherboard for the overall structure’s strength. In the TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB, it’s robust and reliable, much better in quality than even more expensive models with the ROG designation. Of course, there are wires for power and fan lighting connections. The installation instructions and a set of branded stickers are also included.

The coolest thing is that the manufacturer included a tube of thermal paste in the package, around 2 ml, which is more than enough for multiple applications. My respect!

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

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Well, the main component is the pump with a substantial radiator, the dense and neat cells of which contribute to excellent cooling. Everything is as it should be. As for the water block design, it can be said to be unique, but more on that a bit later.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

In its assembled form, the ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB looks like this.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

Main features

As I mentioned before, the LC II 360 ARGB has a completely unconventional water block. What are we used to? That the pump and the heat dissipation plate are a single unit, in one housing. But in the case of the LC II 360 ARGB, the engineers went for a trick, separating the pump from the main module. The copper plate is now in a separate housing with illumination, and the pump motor is directly attached to the pipes closer to the radiator. You might wonder why complicate things? Let me explain.

Firstly, it reduces vibrations. The pump, located on the pipes, does not transmit vibrations to the motherboard. This leads to a reduction in noise during the operation of the cooling system and an extended lifespan of the motherboard.

Secondly, it reduces the size. The water block without a built-in motor is much smaller than the standard one. This means you won’t face difficulties when installing the AIO cooler with massive radiators. Moreover, such a design generally has a more aesthetic appearance.

Thirdly, there is no overheating, specifically of the pump. It is positioned far from the hot processor. The motor does not require additional cooling, which is both reliable and efficient.

Are there any downsides to such a design? After some thought, I couldn’t come up with anything. As they say, time will tell.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

What else is interesting? For instance, there is a glowing TUF GAMING logo on the pump housing. It’s a small detail that, nevertheless, can add a touch of sophistication to the overall assembly. Control over all the lighting is managed through the proprietary Armoury Crate utility, which I will elaborate on shortly.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB

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Application

The renowned Armoury Crate program is powerful and versatile. It combines tools for tuning ASUS hardware. For the TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB, the main menu item is Fan Expert 4. It allows adjustments to the cooling system parameters. Pump and fan rotation speed, curve diagram construction, pre-set, and custom profiles – all at your disposal.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB
Click to enlarge

However, there is no separate section for custom lighting settings for the LC II 360 ARGB. Well, there’s the Aura Sync tool in the Armoury Crate arsenal, which can do a lot. The only difference is that it allows configuring color effects for all devices connected to the motherboard, not individually. However, there are plenty of beautiful effects to choose from, such as a starry night, a rainbow, and even light music. You have a wide range of options to pick from that might suit your taste.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB
Click to enlarge

Applicability

Choosing the right CPU cooling system is a crucial factor. It determines the effectiveness of cooling, noise levels, CPU longevity, and the stability of its operation. Rationality should also be taken into account. Purchasing a cooling system that costs more than the CPU itself is quite unusual. In the review of the ROG RYUO III 360, I thoroughly explored this topic, and I highly recommend checking it out. So, without repeating, let’s focus on the key features of the ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB.

So, the thermal design power (TDP) for the LC II 360 ARGB is 350W. This is a very significant indicator considering its low price. The ROG RYUO III 360 ARGB, which is significantly more expensive, also handles the same power. Well, let’s see which processors the cooling system will feel most comfortable with.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB
Click to enlarge

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Comparison with competitors

Of course, I won’t leave you without the joy of comparing the ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB with its competitors. I won’t even consider models cheaper than $150 but will focus on the range from $150 to $180. Let the LC II 360 ARGB compete with more expensive rivals; it is more than capable of handling it.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB
Click to enlarge

Isn’t it true that the LC II 360 ARGB stands out advantageously from its competitors? It even surpasses more expensive models in many aspects. Simply excellent results!

Testing

Well, of course, I will conduct testing of the LC II 360 ARGB under load. The processor will be a challenging one – the hot and powerful Intel Core i5-13600. By the way, you can check out the tests of the ASUS ROG RYUO III 360 ARGB and ASUS ROG RYUJIN III 360 ARGB for now. So, let’s start by obtaining the initial CPU temperature after an hour of idle time. In my conditions, it reached 29°C.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB
Click to enlarge

Now, moving on to the stress test in AIDA64 for 30 minutes. The processor heated up to 50°C, which is 21°C higher than the initial temperature.

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB
Click to enlarge

This result is not just good; it’s excellent, even without adjusting for the budget-friendly nature of the LC II 360 ARGB.

Summary

ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB has proven to be an excellent cooling system. Of course, it lacks features typical of high-end models, which is logical. Affordable, stylish, and incredibly efficient – that’s all about LC II 360 ARGB. A cooling solution that can handle almost any modern processor with ease – what more could a gamer dream of? However, LC II 360 ARGB is suitable not only for gaming PCs. This AIO cooler can enhance the aesthetics of any workstation. I am very satisfied, and it’s a solid 10 out of 10!

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Approved

Review ratings
Package contents
10
Appearance
10
Build quality
10
Performance
10
Price
10
The ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB has proven itself as an excellent cooling system. While it lacks features found in top-tier models, this is to be expected. It is affordable, visually appealing, and remarkably efficient – encompassing all that LC II 360 ARGB is about. A cooling solution capable of effortlessly handling nearly any modern processor – a dream come true for gamers. However, LC II 360 ARGB is not only suitable for gaming PCs; it can also enhance the aesthetics of any workstation.
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Floge
1 month ago

Which way do the fans blow? I just received this product but there is no indicator at all telling me the orientation of the fans for the radiator. I need to install it in the front part of my case.

The ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB has proven itself as an excellent cooling system. While it lacks features found in top-tier models, this is to be expected. It is affordable, visually appealing, and remarkably efficient – encompassing all that LC II 360 ARGB is about. A cooling solution capable of effortlessly handling nearly any modern processor – a dream come true for gamers. However, LC II 360 ARGB is not only suitable for gaming PCs; it can also enhance the aesthetics of any workstation.ASUS TUF GAMING LC II 360 ARGB Water Cooling Review