NZXT Aer fans join the RGB LED whirlwind

The RGB craze that's gripped the custom PC industry of late is unrelenting. NZXT is continuing the onslaught of bright colors with its new Aer RGB fans. These PWM fans come in 120-mm and 140-mm sizes, both of which include fluid-dynamic bearings. Of course, the headline feature is the fans' ability to synchronize their software-configurable RGB lighting using NZXT's own Hue+ controller. Each Aer RGB fan includes eight LEDs arrayed around its housing for maximum Technicolor enjoyment.

System builders can chain the Aer fans together to create fan groups and synchronize both lighting effects and fan behavior. Doing so will require installing NZXT's CAM software, although given that application's laundry list of features, it may be of interest even for those without any NZXT RGB equipment to configure. CAM offers some useful system- and performance-monitoring features regardless of whether one has NZXT hardware in a system.

As we noted, the Aer fans won't offer much of a light show unless they're connected to one of NZXT's Hue+ lighting controllers. Each fan controller can support forty LEDs per channel, which means four of NZXT's lightstrips or five Aer RGB fans on each of the controller's two channels. The Hue+ controller normally includes four lightstrips in its $60 price, but NZXT now offers a bundle with the Hue+ and two Aer RGB fans for $80. The fans themselves are $30 apiece. The Aer fans and bundles will arrive at the end of October.

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    • mkk
    • 3 years ago

    There will always be new tweens to sell blinking things to.

      • drfish
      • 3 years ago

      There could be some truth to this. The kids that got the BBQ prizes loved the RGB LEDs.

    • christos_thski
    • 3 years ago

    The “CAM” application, while full of features and theoretically useful, is full of bugs (and don’t even let me start on its mobile counterpart). Hope they eventually fix it because it is a solid idea, but for me so far the actual implementation has been a real disincentive for buying NZXT software controlled products.

      • RAGEPRO
      • 3 years ago

      Thanks for the report on that. I actually was curious about the quality of CAM. I haven’t tried it myself, but I was interested because (as I wrote in the piece) it seems to be a sort of “do it all” app. The mobile integration seems cool. I’ll have to keep an eye out for updates and patches for it.

      I had a similar experience (to yours, with CAM) with Corsair’s Corsair Link software. Trying to use it on an H100i cooler was one of the most awful, frustrating experiences I have ever had as a hardware enthusiast and tweaker. It was so bad I returned the cooler to Newegg despite the restocking fee.

    • tsk
    • 3 years ago

    ‘Omg I love that they’re putting RBG in everything, it’s so beautiful and cool.’
    -No one ever.

      • Waco
      • 3 years ago

      This. Hell, even Corsair, one of the last bastions of clean case design, have fallen to this stupid RGB craze.

        • moose17145
        • 3 years ago

        Corsair still has clean and understated designs and cases. They are just also now including similar products with LEDs for those who want it.

          • Waco
          • 3 years ago

          I just worry that the market will drive the clean designs away. 😛

            • moose17145
            • 3 years ago

            I wouldn’t worry about that too much. From what I can tell, the clean designs are still quite popular. Heck you can even still buy the individual PARTS from corsair for almost all of their case series, including the Obsidian Series, which is arguably their most understated design in terms of clean lines and aesthetics. And looking at reviews on amazon and newegg, it seems that there are several people still buying clean designs. Most of those clean designs do still have case windows. So what sort of LED mess is going on inside that clean looking case is anyways guess…

            • Waco
            • 3 years ago

            I only worry it will go the way of the manual transmission, in that it isn’t even offered on cheap cars much of the time – generally these days it’s a sports-car only option.

            I can see cases going the same way…

      • bibbity
      • 3 years ago

      ‘I prefer blinky lights over minimalism’
      -quite a few people including myself

      As a rule of thumb if it seems every company is making products you think are ugly then some non trivial number of customers must think they are pretty or there would be no market.

      sorry im just a bit tired of the echo chamber against a style choice I enjoy.

        • christos_thski
        • 3 years ago

        Moreover, RGB lighting is customizable and can be set to personal taste. Even people who dislike lighting in cases should at least acknowledge RGB’s capacity for more discrete and tasteful setups, compared to older “set” garish lighting with no customization options.

          • slowriot
          • 3 years ago

          I don’t recall any of the usual detractors of RGB lights on TR ever acknowledging you can simply turn the lights off. They’re too busy complaining over and over about something they don’t have to buy or use. Half the time I’m not even sure these people realize the non-RGB products haven’t gone anywhere.

            • DPete27
            • 3 years ago

            In this situation though, those Aer fans are crazy expensive compared to the majority of the market. I’d bet the actual FAN component pales in comparison to non-LED fans out there also. So why buy a fan that’s expensive JUST because it’s got leds if you’re just going to turn them off.

            Other items, like graphics cards & mobos generally get the rgb treatment in the flagship tier. I don’t personally mind it in those products as long as I don’t have to have some stupid software running in the background all the time, ESPECIALLY if I have to use the software just to turn off the leds.

            I believe sapphire has a physical button on their gpus that can be used to toggle througha limited number preset colors and modes while their software unlocks the full flexibility.

            • slowriot
            • 3 years ago

            So don’t buy the fan.

            Was that hard? Nope.

            I’m frankly lost at what point you think you’re trying to make here. My point is simple “If you don’t like RGB products then simply don’t buy them and stop telling everyone else about how you don’t like them.” That’s my damn point. I also point out how they can be turned off. So if its a product that for some reason ONLY comes with RGB lights you’re still not screwed.

            This is literally a win for everyone. People who don’t like lights? Cool, tons of products out there for you. People who like tons of lights? Sweet, now there’s a lot of options for you too. The majority of people in the middle who maybe like a couple here and there? Awesome, now you can even customize the lighted options to however you exactly want them.

            There’s NOTHING to complain about with these products. Nothing has been lost. People have simply been given more options. And yet the same damn posters every time making the same pointless complaints.

            • Waco
            • 3 years ago

            Except that the non-RGB models, in some cases, are being dropped at the “premium” tiers.

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