PC Power & Cooling 1kw Turbo-Cool TC1KW PSU Page: 1
Introduction

When the subject of power supplies comes up in forums, there is always one name mentioned: PC Power & Cooling. The general consensus amongst PC enthusiasts is that if you need the highest quality power supply, and money is not an object then there's no contest.

Back in 1986, the company introduced its Silencer 150 and Turbo-Cool 200 units, the industry's first ultra-quiet and high-performance power supplies. Other high-end products followed, the reviews were great, and the company continued to grow.

Today, demands for high-end power supplies are greater than ever. With the introduction of multi-gpu systems and some high-end processors consuming excessive power, consumers are starting to realise the importance of choosing a quality power supply to ensure trouble free operation of their machines.

Enter the PC Power & Cooling 1kilowatt power supply....


Packaging


When I received the news that a huge box with "PC Power & Cooling" written down the side of it had arrived for me, I could hardly contain my excitement - and not without reason either, this power supply is quite often regarded as the "big daddy" of all power supplies!

PCP&C Box PCP&C Box

PCP&C Box Desc PCP&C Box Open

Unlike every other power supply on the market the PCP&C 1kw doesn't come with any fancy packaging. Instead PCP&C have decided to package the unit up in a double-walled corrugated cardboard box with the name and specifications of the unit printed on the front and sides. I very much doubt that this unit will find its way into many retail outlets, which could well be the reason why PCP&C chose to package the unit this way - along with the fact that PCP&C can probably shift their units on reputation alone, without the need for any marketing-gimmick packaging.

Opening up the box, I was presented with an absolute monster of a power supply - this unit is seriously huge in comparison with other power supplies I've tested in the past. Also included in the box was the following items (images below):

- Invoices/Receipts
- Turbo-Cool Manual
- Certified Test Report
- 24-pin to 20-pin ATX adapter
- Molex to P4-12v (4 pin) adapter
- 8-Pin EPS12v to P4-12v (4 pin) adapter.
- Power lead
- Case screws
- PCP&C Sticker

PCP&C Package PCP&C Test Report

PCP&C Warrenty PCP&C Sticker

The included 'Certified Test Report' sheet contains all of results obtained from the testing of the power supply at the PCP&C factory. Just browsing over the page we can see some very impressive results from the rails under load and the efficiency of the unit (79.87%).

The power supply comes with a 5 year warranty, which is possibly the best warranty I've heard given for any kind of PC components. Obviously you will void the warranty if you use the power supply in other than the specified manner, so it maybe worth having a quick read of the manual before you go ahead and rip the unit open or do anything else silly.

Also included in the package is a "Powered by Turbo-Cool 1 Kilowatt" sticker, for those of us without windowed panels who still want to show off their purchase :)


PC Power & Cooling 1kw Turbo-Cool TC1KW PSU Page: 2
Specification

The following specification has been taken in most part from the PC Power & Cooling website:

Developed to power next-gen graphics and ultra high-end servers, the Turbo-Cool® 1KW delivers 1000 watts (one kilowatt) of continuous, rock-solid power with a peak of 1100 watts! Built with three independent AC-DC power modules, the Turbo-Cool® 1KW is an efficient, amazingly quiet, EPS12V/SLI power supply with 66A (70A peak) of 12VDC in a form factor that fits most ATX cases. Truly, the ultimate computer power supply!

- 1KW Continuous (1.1KW Peak) @ 50°C
- Fits Std. ATX Cases (20” min. depth)
- +12VDC Rails Total 66A (70A Peak)
- High Efficiency with .99 Power Factor
- Rock-Solid, Super-Clean DC Output
- Amazingly Quiet Cooling System
- Dual PCI Express Video Connectors
- 15 Drive Connectors (incl. 6 SATA)
- EPS12V and nVidia SLI certified
- 5-Year Warranty; Unbeatable Support


PCP&C Specs

The most impressive specification about this power supply is its ability to produce 36a on the +12v3 rail, which in this model is dedicated to PCI-E graphics cards and hard disk drives / molexes.

I can confidently say that the Turbo-Cool 1kw will have no problems powering any kind of SLI / Crossfire rig or servers with large RAID arrays with ease.

Connector Layout

PC Power & Cooling do produce other versions of the Turbo-Cool 1kw, in which the +12v3 rail is used for PCI-E connectors only, and is actually Quad-SLI compatible.


PC Power & Cooling 1kw Turbo-Cool TC1KW PSU Page: 3
Appearance

Measuring in at 149mm x 86mm x 231mm (WxHxD) the Turbo-Cool is longer than your average power supply. People with small cases, cases with PSU cages or cases with fans situated at the top should take measurements before considering this power supply.

Under normal circumstances the Turbo-Cool would have no problems fitting inside my Silverstone TJ05, however, with my dual radiator mounted at the top, the power supply is about 50mm too long.

PCP&C Front PCP&C Side

As you can see above, the Turbo-Cool is a simplistic 'no-bling' unit sprayed in matt black paint. The label on top of the unit informs the user of its vital statistics such as peak output and rail amperages. Proudly placed on the side of the unit is the Nvidia SLI Certified sticker.

The front of the unit sports an 80mm fan covered with a black painted fan grill. We can also see that the Turbo-Cool is capable of auto-detecting the input voltage (230v/110v) as a voltage switch has been omitted from the unit.

PCP&C Top PCP&C Back

The back of the unit makes use of a honeycomb grill to allow for the 80mm fan placed around the front to pull air over the components. Also something you don't normally see on most power supplies is the inclusion of a small 'lip' with two screw holes. I can only assume that this can be used to bolt the end of the power supply to the top of a case, thus stopping the end of the power supply from 'sagging' downwards under the weight of its internal components.


PC Power & Cooling 1kw Turbo-Cool TC1KW PSU Page: 4
Connectors

On a power supply with 1kw of power, you'd expect it to have enough connectors to take advantage of it. I'm pleased to say that you won't be disappointed. The Turbo-Cool has enough connectors for almost any kind of setup, including a multiple drive RAID setup.

PCP&C Cables PCP&C Cables

I was slightly amused by the way that the cables were bundled together with an elastic band. A functional method i guess, and it kind of fits in with the simplistic theme of the rest of the packaging.

The cables are all sleved in black nylon mesh with the ends finished off with black heatshrink. The sleeving job is very professional, but yet again quite primitive with the heatshrink being held in place by clear cable ties. In my opinion PCP&C would have been better to place the heatshrink over the cable ties in a similar way seen on other power supplies. This is just a minor gripe and would only really benefit in makes things look tidier.

PCP&C ATX PCP&C EPS12v

PCP&C Adapter PCP&C Adapter

Another minor cosmetic gripe is the use of White ATX/EPS12v connectors. In my opinion it would have looked much better if they had opted to use Black plastic on all of the connectors - including the molex's.

PCP&C have adopted the latest technology (24-Pin ATX and EPS12v) for their connectors, but have also provided backward compatability for older systems by means of plug-in adapter cables, which provide 20-Pin ATX and 4-Pin PC12v connectors for older motherboards.

Connectors Connectors Connectors

Connectors Connectors

With 8 Molex and 6 SATA connectors, the Turbo-Cool actually holds the records for the most connectors on any power supply we've tested here at OC3D so far.

The only thing that i found slightly strange was the fact that the Turbo-Cool only has one floppy disk power cable. Most power supplies provide two at least, which is often required when boards like the DFI NF4 make use of a floppy connector to power certain parts of the board.


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Looking Inside

Quite often the quality of a power supply can be determined by its weight. Heavy power supplies are generally of better build quality and on the whole perform better.

In addition to the weight, another way to determine the quality of a power supply is to take a look at its internal components. Generally power supplies with large capacitors and heatsinks are likely to perform better than units on the opposite end of the scale.

PCP&C Inside PCP&C Inside

PCP&C Heatsinks PCP&C Heatsinks

The insides of the Turbo-Cool 1kw are well arranged and very tidy, which will clearly aid in keeping good airflow through the unit.

I was most impressed with the number of heatsinks cooling things down, and also that PCP&C had gone to the effort of using thermal interface compound on the heatsinks to enable maximum heat transfer.

PCP&C Adjustable Pots

If you've read any of my previous power supply reviews, you will know that I am constantly disappointed by power supplies that do not have adjustable potentiometers (pots). These pots allow you to fine tune the voltages output on each rail of a power supply, which can be handy if one of the rails falls below ATX specification.

I am pleased to say that the Turbo-Cool 1kw DOES indeed have adjustable pots for controlling the voltages on all of the rails.
If you look at the circuit board just behind the pots (I was unable to get a picture) and you will see that PCP&C have printed what each pot is responsible for adjusting which takes the guess work out of changing your rail voltages.

PCP&C Delta Fan PCP&C Delta Fan

No expense has been spared when selecting a fan to cool the unit. Above you can see the installed 80mm fan manufactured by Delta, which are renowned for their high performance. At 12v this fan pushes an impressive 52cfm at a rather noisy 42.5dBA. However, the Turbo-Cool 1kw does employ a fan speed controller to keep the fan running at lowest possible noise levels when the power supply is not running hot.


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Load Testing

In order for the results from all current and future PSU reviews to remain fair and comparable, Overclock3D uses a custom built Power Supply load stress tester.

The tester is capable of placing loads on the following rails:

+3.3v - 20a Load
+5.0v - 20a Load
+12v1 - 10a Load
+12v2 - 10a Load
+12v3 - 10a Load
+12v4 - 10a Load
(or 40a on a single +12v rail)

The results are collected from a Mastech MAS-345 Multimeter which logs its readings via RS232 to a PC.

PCP&C 3.3v Rail PCP&C 5v Rail

Here we see some outstanding results from the Turbo-Cool 1kw. There was absolutely no voltage fluctuation on the +3.3v rail and only a 0.02v fluctuation on the +5v rail. This is without doubt the best results I have seen from a power supply tested by OC3D yet.

PCP&C +12v1 PCP&C +12v2

PCP&C +12v3

The trend continues with the Turbo-Cool 1kw breezing through our load tests with only small voltage fluctuations of around 0.05v. I am simply amazed by the amount of power this unit has and its excellent voltage regulation.

This power supply is clearly perfect for any server system or desktop PC with voltage sensitive PCI-E cards.


Temperature Testing

A new introduction to the OC3D power supply testing procedures is the testing of heat put into the case by the unit.
Quite often, the cooling methods employed by some manufacturers are inadequate, and result in heat from the power supply finding its way back into your case.

The OC3D Temperature Tester involves placing the power supply into a standard ATX case, and measuring temperatures at various places around the power supply after 30 minutes at idle and full load on the OC3D PSU Tester.

Idle Temps Load

Ambient: Room temperature taken approx 10ft away from testing equipment.
In: Temperature taken 5" away from the PSU ventilation grill inside the case.
Out: Temperature taken 5" away from the PSU fan at the back of the case.

We can see here that the temperature inside the case compared to ambient varies by 1.3°C. This would imply that the cooling method used inside the Turbo-Cool is very effective at removing the heat from the PSU's components and expelling the heat out of the back of the case.


Noise Testing

At present Overclock3D doesn't have the correct equipment to reproduce accurate stats on the dBA output, so for the moment you will have to rely on my ear :)

Right from the word go the fan installed in the Turbo-Cool was clearly audible. Comparing the noise with some fans installed in my machine, I would say that the noise emitted was around 34dBA.

Under load the noise didn't appear to increase by much, which would suggest that the fan has been set to a speed capable of cooling the unit under most load conditions.

Check back on this review at a later date for professional noise level testing results.


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Conclusion

The results given by the Turbo-Cool on the power supply load tests nothing short of stunned me. The OC3D PSU tester which normally leaves most power supplies crying for mercy was unable to make any noticeable hit on the Turbo-Cool's voltages.

At this point in the review I could comment on the lack of fancy packaging, or the different coloured ATX connectors, but I'm not going to. Why? Because the PCP&C Turbo-Cool 1kw has never once claimed or tried to be anything more than a rock solid power supply.

If you're looking for a power supply that power any combination of PC both present and future, and have a spare $500, you should look no further than the Turbo-Cool 1kw.


Pro's
- Rock solid power and plenty of it
- Ability to power any kind of graphics setup.
- Very little heat escape into PC case
- Adjustable potentiometers
- High Efficiency
- Sleeved Cables
- Plenty of connectors
- 5yr Warranty

Con's
- May be over priced for some
- May not fix some ATX cases


Editors Choice

A big thank you to PC Power & Cooling for providing this unit for review :)

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