5-way High-End 1KW+ PSU Round-Up
Looking at the results over the previous two pages combined with the appearance and features of each of the PSU's, it's hard to single out one overall winner. Both the Silverstone, Enermax and Cooler Master units provide very stable voltages on the +12v rails with the Corsair unit also showing rock solid voltage up to 75% load, and only dipping slightly once 100% load is applied. Results on the +5v rail are very good for all units with the lowest voltage (4.89v) coming from the Enermax Revolution at 100% load.
The +3.3v rail results show a bit of separation between the units with the Corsair HX1000 having the lowest output voltages of 3.2v at full load, but also having the least fluctuation of 0.3v between 50% and 100% load levels. Units providing the best combination of voltage and stability on the +3.3v rail are Cooler Master's UCP and Enermax's Revolution, both of which not only have substantially higher output voltages than the Corsair, but also came within a whisker of its fluctuation results.
When it comes to efficiency the Enermax Revolution is the clear winner with levels approaching 90%. As expected, this also has the side-effect of making the Revolution one of the quietest and coolest running PSU's in the group with the least amount of energy being transformed into heat. Cooler Master and Corsair are also worthy of a mention here with their 135mm fans and almost-as-impressive efficiency levels resulting in cool running, reasonably quiet operation under heavy load.
While we've only touched on the actual features of each unit in today's review, the Cooler Master, Enermax, Silverstone and Corsair units need to be commended for their full support of triple-GPU systems. In addition to this, certain aesthetic features of each PSU, such as the rugged finish of the Cooler Master UCP, the excellent modular cables on the Corsair and the compact size of the Be-Quiet are all things that will appeal to enthusiasts depending on the intended use of the PSU.
The awards, final score and pro's and con's of each PSU can be seen below, but while some manufacturers will be going home empty handed, there are no real losers in this round-up. Each PSU has its own merits, and while some couldn't quite keep up with the stability and voltage output of the rest, no unit failed to provide its rated wattage output.
Be-Quiet Dark Power Pro 1200w - £173.89 from After Hours
• Compact size makes it a good candidate for smaller PC Cases.
• Easy to use, colour coded modular system with high quality cables.
• Good looks.
Lack of PCI-E connectors for triple-GPU configurations. *
• Average efficiency for the group. Between 83-84%.
• Not the quietest of the bunch despite its name.
• Low performance on the +12v rails.
* UPDATE 06/10/08 - Be-Quiet have informed us that an adapter cable should have been included in the box which provides the ability to run triple-GPU configurations with six PCI-E connectors.
Cooler Master UCP 1100w - £179.98 from Ebuyer The Good
• Fairly quiet under heavy load.
• High efficiency levels around 86-87%.
• Extremely rugged finish and tough looks.
• Good all-round voltages and stability.
• Features such as soft-on and a 5yr warranty.
• Fairly expensive.
• Cable sleeving quite slack and spoils the units look.The Bad
• Nothing to report.
Corsair HX1000 1000w - £146.99 from EbuyerThe Good
• Silent and cool operation.
• Amazing value for money.
• Extremely nice and easy to route modular cables.
• Support for triple-GPU configurations with 6x PCI-E connectors.
• +3.3v rail voltages run a little low.
• Very stable +12v rails up to 75% load, but slight droop thereafter.
Enermax Revolution 1050w - £TBA
• Unmatchable efficiency at almost 90%.
• Very cool and quiet operation.
• Stable +3.3 and +12v rails.
• Support for triple-GPU configurations with only four cables.The Mediocre
• +5v not quite as stable as other units, but nothing to worry about.
• Bit of an ugly ducking in its current form, but Enermax have already corrected this (1,2)
• No official price as yet.
• Only a pre-production unit. Things may change on the retail product.
Silverstone Zeus ZM1200M - $399.99 from NeweggThe Good
• Good overall voltage stability on all rails.
• Manages a 0.98-0.99 power factor.
• Support for triple-GPU configurations.The Mediocre
• Pretty poor efficiency compared to the rest of the group.
• Noisy and hot under full load.
• Longest PSU in the group makes it not suitable for smaller cases.
Thanks to Be-Quiet, Cooler Master, Corsair, Enermax and Silverstone for making this review possible.
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