Corsair introduced the SP120 RGB LED fans, and the HD120 RGB LED fans to coincide with PAX West 2016, one of the biggest gaming trade shows today. These were introduced along with a few other products, including an RGB LED mousepad and a tempered glass panel case with RGB fans, as part of their “RGB Family” that also includes RGB lit peripherals. The SP120 RGB fans, reviewed here, had 4 RGB LEDs on the motor PCB similar to the ML120/ML140 Pro LED fans and these differed from previous, and most other LED fans today, that had them on the fan corners. For many these were plenty and offered more opportunities to personalize a computer and also be able to use one of 7 different colors to match other components used. Corsair could have stopped here, but they have grown tremendously in the PC gaming market via their peripherals and their CUE (Corsair Utility Engine) software is more powerful and offers more lighting customization than anything else I have seen so far. Corsair Link too has received a revamp and has more support for components and lighting alike. Enter then the HD120 RGB fan series that aims to go further into the realm of RGB and lighting customization than anything else they have released so far. Thanks again to Corsair for providing samples to better understand these fans, and test them too.
The SP120 RGB fans come in 3 SKUs- a single fan, a single fan w/controller, a three pack of fans w/controller. I had initially requested a three pack w/controller to get some sample to sample variation tested as well as using the controller to show off the lighting effects. However, I was informed there is one special lighting mode that takes advantage of 6 fans and so I got 2 three packs instead. That aside, there is nothing different about the fans themselves. Here’s a look at the specs from the product page:
The HD120 RGB is a PWM fan and rated at 1725 RPM, and different from the SP120 RGB which is a voltage control fan rated at 1400 RPM. This is one of the many things as we will see- a different motor- that aims to differentiate the HD120 RGB from the SP120 RGB fan and create a brand new series of cooling solutions. Both use the same hydraulic bearing, although it is unclear if it is a true FDB or a workaround, and unfortunately so is the warranty period of 2 years. I already mentioned my thoughts on this before, but yeah- increase this, Corsair. These are standard 25 mm thick, 120 x 120 mm fans and with a “Static Pressure” flow type rating, I imagine Corsair intends for these to be used with their Hydro series of liquid coolers as well. Interestingly, despite the higher rated speed, the max CFM rating is barely above that of the SP120 RGB fan. Let’s see how this works out in practice, beginning with a detailed look at the fans on the next page.