Overall and Final Verdict
Now let's be honest, with fans there is only so much testing that you can do. But I was surprised at how much time I ended up spending playing around with the lighting for Corsair’s new QL series fans. They took the lighting effects that their last set of fans, the LL series or the Light Loop fans had and doubled up with over twice as many addressable LEDs. This time putting the same light loop on the back of the fan. Having LEDs inside of the fan center and on the outside makes for interesting effects, then you double it and you can do some weird stuff. You can even have a different theme inside of your case as you have facing out when you have fans visible through a mesh or front glass. Corsair also designed the new fans to allow both the front and backlighting to be visible from the side allowing a cool look for every angle, assuming RGB lighting is your thing but I assume it is if you are checking these out.
The fans had solid performance, running quiet, though not as quiet as fans like Noctuas, and with the static pressure to handle most radiators. Especially the thinner radiators you find with All in One kits. My only complaint was with the wiring. Two wires per fan and then USB and power connections for the Lighting Node Core that is included in the kit can make for a wiring mess. I would love to see Corsair go with a simpler one wire setup that combined fan controls or maybe a daisy chain option either of which could cut down on the mess.
Beyond that my only other complaint was with the pricing because at $139.99 for the 3 fan kit you are spending more than a lot of people may spend individually on a case, AIO water cooler, or even some components like a motherboard or CPU depending on the build budget. These are without a doubt a premium option and just to add styling if RGB is your thing but the price for single fans at $45.99 for a QL120 and a QL140 at $49.99 make even the most premium fans look cheap. Of course, you might be able to find fans with lighting on both sides, but not with 36 addressable LEDs and with the control that Corsair is offering so the QL series fans are unique. But you do pay a big premium for that. Would I spend that? On a crazy high-end build, sure. But I would make sure I could use the lighting on both sides, if not the LL Series fans can save you a little and still get you a similar look.
Live Pricing: HERE
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