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Alphacool Cool Answer Compact 120 review

A ready-to-go cooling system, but can it do the job?

The Compact 120 is ready to go, but doesn't go far

Our Verdict

An appealing package, but ultimately this kit doesn't perform as well as its rivals


  • Simple to fit
  • Quiet
  • Attractive price
  • Looks good


  • Disappointing results

Here's an interesting proposition: an all-in-one, simple to fit CPU water cooler that comes ready connected and for a mere £80.

That's got to raise a few eyebrows, hasn't it?

Efficient and affordable

Amazingly enough it is, in fact, stupidly easy to fit. For a 775 board the CPU block clips in like a stock Intel cooler. Strap the radiator to a rear case port and you're off.

It's very quiet setup, and does the job, but ultimately we're a little disappointed with the results. The cooling efficiency turned out to be worse than a good air cooler, which wouldn't be much louder either.

Water cooling for the masses it may be, but it's also for aesthetic purposes only, being marginally quieter and much better looking than a normal sink.

Test results:

Full resource draw stress test: Prime 95: 51°C

Max load multi-core stress test: HL2 map draw: 58°C

Real-world gaming stress test: World in Conflict: 46°C

Idle recovery (1 min after stress test): Resting: 43°C