Question radiator as intake or exhaust?

Feb 19, 2020
im new to AIO liquid cooling, so i am unsure of the best way to mount a new 240mm radiator.
[this radiator specifically - ]

i recently finished my first pc build, and currently have 3 fans in the front of the case as intake, one fan on the back and one on the top as exhaust.
i thought that having it front mounted as intake would have less airflow for all the other components and heat everything up a bit, and having it on the top as exhaust would still keep the CPU cooler and only a small difference due to the already heated air inside the case.

any kind of help would be appreciated.

[also as a side question, im thinking replace the fans that come with the radiator for different ones, if someone could say if they are good or not or suggest different one]
[ Fans - ]
It is a catch 22 issue.
You have analyzed the situation properly.

Front mounted, your cpu is cooled the best, but our graphics card and motherboard get warmed air for cooling.

If you mount on top, your cpu is not cooled as well because the radiator gets warmed air to work with.

Pick your poison.
On balance, I would mount on top.

The situation is one reason why I would prefer a top air cooler at half the price,


Sep 1, 2020
Try one, then the other. Then pick the one you're most comfortable with. The only thing I would suggest to keep in mind is to keep the pump (which is on the CPU end of the cooler) lower than the highest point of the AIO, however it's installed.