Though the H80i has enjoyed a brief period as king of our LGA1155 cooling chart, the H100i has usurped it with seeming ease. With a delta T of just 31°C with its fans set to their maximum speed, the H100i was able to knock 3°C off the H80i's best temperature, as well as 5°C from that of the original H100. However, the cooler is unpleasantly loud at this setting, so it's excellent to see that dropping the fan profiles to Balanced and Quiet only adds 2°C and 3°C respectively to the delta T. This means that the H100i with low speed fans is able to perform roughly the same as a H80i (or any other all-in-one liquid cooler we've tested) with high speed fans.
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The news is equally sweet for users of LGA2011 rigs, as the H100i was able to claim the top spot again in this test. Its delta T in Maximum Profile of 44°C was 2°C lower than both the H100 and the Thermaltake Water 2.0 Pro at their loudest settings. Though its delta T result of 47°C in Balanced mode only matched that of the H100 at the comparable medium speed setting, it produced a cool delta T of 50°C in Quiet mode, which is 2°C less than the H100 at its lowest speed, making it an excellent balance between cooling and performance.
Offering the best cooling that we've ever seen from a single cooler, the H100i is an undeniably impressive piece of kit. Though £90 is a lot to pay for a CPU cooler, it's much cheaper than a custom water-cooling loop (and far less hassle to install) and represents fairly good value over the original H100 too, given that its temperatures, build quality and ease of use have all improved, not to mention the excellent software control.
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It's important to remember that the dual radiator design of the H100i will immediately disqualify it for those whose cases won't be able to house it. We'd also argue that, impressive as the temperatures for LGA1155 chips certainly are, the H100i begins to stray into the territory of overkill. Coolers costing less than half of its price, like Thermalright's Macho Rev.A, won't offer the same performance, but they still offer perfectly healthy temperatures for such efficient CPUs and very low noise levels. That said, if only the best will do and you can afford and house the H100i, don't let us stop you buying it, as it won't let you down.
It's in LGA2011 rigs that the H100i really excels, however, and for which it would make a brilliant purchase. Not only is it joyfully simple to install, but it offers outstanding performance even at low speed settings, meaning it's fairly priced compared with the £15 cheaper H80i.