HEC Compucase Cougar 1000CM Modular PSU

Conclusion

Conclusion
 
If I were to base this review on looks alone, then the HEC Cougar 1000CM would easily be in my top 5. The orange paint job is really is striking and has an almost colour-shift effect to it that changes under different lighting angles. The black fan grill and screws contrast really well. And the snake-like black/white/orange striped sleeving is totally unique and completes the look.
 
Unfortunately what lets this PSU down is the performance. Never before have I seen such large ripple spikes across all rails on a PSU. 140mV on the +12v rail at idle is simply unacceptable and I can only hope that this is the result of a faulty sample rather than anything to do with the sparing use of unidentifiable capacitors on the secondary side of the unit. Things only got worse throughout the testing with ripple consistently breaking 200mV and sometimes even briefly coming close to 300mV although this happened to infrequently to catch in a screenshot.
 
The voltage stability on the other hand was slightly more acceptable with the worst results being seen in tests 4 and 7 where the +12v rail dropped down to 11.70v. Of course this is well inside ATX specifications and only represents a 3.3% fluctuation from the idle voltage of 12.10v. Similarly the +3.3v and +5v rails only dropped as low as 3.21v and 4.81v respectively representing less than 5% fluctuation on each rail. Never less, enthusiasts will undoubtedly frown on these results knowing that there are plenty of other PSU's out there than can achieve much tighter regulation.
 
Efficiency however, regularly exceeded expectations with the Cougar achieving around 89% at 500-750w loads. Only in tests 5  where the unit was subjected to a heavy crossload did the efficiency drop to 79%, but this is pretty much expected as a 170w load on only the +3.3v and +5v rails is not going to be something easily replicated in any ordinary PC system.
 
At the end of the day, it's hard to recommend the Cougar 1000CM due to the ripple issues. If HEC can get this fixed or prove that this was simply a faulty batch then the outcome would certainly be different. The Cougar is one very smartly dressed PSU that would go down a treat inside any PC with an orange theme, but unfortunately looks count for very little when it comes to powering high-end PC systems.
 
The Good
- Orange paintwork looks great.
- High quality, unique sleeving.
- Great efficiency at medium load levels.
- Silent operation.
 
The Mediocre
- Appearance of PSU is only likely to appeal to small market segment.
- Voltage regulation is fairly average.
- Little white lie about the 14cm fan which is actually 13.5cm.
 
The Bad
- Awful ripple results from all rails at all loads.
 
 
Thanks to HEC Compucase for sending the Cougar 1000CM in for review. Discuss in our forums.
 
 
Further to the publishing of this review, HEC Compucase have responded with the following statement:
 
Dear James,

Firstly I would like to thank you and Overclock3d for reviewing our Cougar power supply posted 23rd October 2009. Admittedly it was not the kind of review that we were hoping for nor expecting.

Action had to be taken by Compucase HEC, this industry relies heavily on reviews and word of mouth, for us to not do anything was unthinkable, therefore the review went directly to our R&D department and the product manager in Taiwan where they took the review apart paragraph by paragraph.

The good news is a revised version will be going into production next week of the 1000w, that will address the ripple issue that you highlighted as well as some other smaller points you brought to our attention.

I firmly believe this has been a worthwhile exercise that has allowed us to revisit, review and correct the issues you highlighted, we wanted to demonstrate the level of support you could expect from Compucase HEC, being the “new kid on the block” (excuse the pun) we have to work that little bit harder to prove ourselves.

Mark Szachno
Compucase UK Ltd.
 
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Most Recent Comments

22-10-2009, 21:07:37

tinytomlogan
When we first saw the pictures of the Couger 1000w psu we couldnt wait to test it and see if it performs as well as it looks. By the power that is - Jim.

Continue Reading

23-10-2009, 02:27:38

Socks
shame he didnt destroy it... Horrible results for such a costly piece of hardware...

23-10-2009, 03:03:09

Skitzo_Zac
It's a shame that peformance wasn't better. I would definately have bought one of these units for my rig otherwise. Maybe if they sort out some issues I might get one when I get around to painting my case orange.

23-10-2009, 03:14:45

JN
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Socks'
shame he didnt destroy it... Horrible results for such a costly piece of hardware...
As Tom will attest, when I was doing the Max load testing on this unit I was positively bricking myself. It got up to 1400w before powering off the first time and I had my eyes practically closed the entire time (still a bit tender from the XFX ordeal)

Luckily the OCP/OPP kicked in before anything went "POP" every time. So at least the safety is there.

23-10-2009, 04:08:44

Socks
still... no match for corsair or cm psus.. especially for the money...its like buying thermal take watercooling kit cos it "looks nice"....

looks over performance = FAIL!

23-10-2009, 09:37:39

JN
Compucase have responded to the review with the following statement:



Dear James,

Firstly I would like to thank you and Overclock3d for reviewing our Cougar power supply posted 23rd October 2009. Admittedly it was not the kind of review that we were hoping for nor expecting.

Action had to be taken by Compucase HEC, this industry relies heavily on reviews and word of mouth, for us to not do anything was unthinkable, therefore the review went directly to our R&D department and the product manager in Taiwan where they took the review apart paragraph by paragraph.

The good news is a revised version will be going into production next week of the 1000w, that will address the ripple issue that you highlighted as well as some other smaller points you brought to our attention.

I firmly believe this has been a worthwhile exercise that has allowed us to revisit, review and correct the issues you highlighted, we wanted to demonstrate the level of support you could expect from Compucase HEC, being the “new kid on the block” (excuse the pun) we have to work that little bit harder to prove ourselves.

Mark Szachno

Compucase UK Ltd.





Furthermore, Compucase have also agreed to send us a revised unit when they are available.

23-10-2009, 13:50:08

tinytomlogan
Now thats what you call a reply, they put there hands up and are looking to fix the problem.....

Now where is that XFX reply........? Nope cant find one.

23-10-2009, 14:00:08

Ham
Good on them! Nice to see a manuf listening.

23-10-2009, 14:27:17

ToeJam
thats quality from them, shud make u feel its all worth while

23-10-2009, 17:12:44

lasher
Now thats a pleasant suprise.

Its not often in this day and age that a manufacturer would actually listen to a review and even let the R&D dept know of the findings so pre production changes can be tweaked.

money spent pre production will save on warranty exchanges and give a "new kid on the block" a far better reputation.

Better to be known for reliability than have a good RMA service imo.

Good on you Compucase HEC.

As Tom mentioned, XFX come out of the shadows , we know you are watching, too ashamed perhaps?

23-10-2009, 17:30:00

zak4994
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='lasher'
As Tom mentioned, XFX come out of the shadows , we know you are watching, too ashamed perhaps?
Maybe they will follow suit?

Or maybe they are too busy attempting to fix their PSU as we speak.

XFX's name is too good to be tarnished so they can not leave this behind.

23-10-2009, 18:09:11

Stefan Payne
I wonder why they didn't send you the better equipped German Version of the Cougar CM 1kW.

That Version has solid caps on the VRM for example and looks a little better, as you can see There planet3dnow.de/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=368324&garpg=4

The primary cap for example is a 105C Nippon Chemicon over here...

I hope you can review the fixed version soon...

24-10-2009, 05:26:24

JN
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Stefan Payne'
I wonder why they didn't send you the better equipped German Version of the Cougar CM 1kW.

That Version has solid caps on the VRM for example and looks a little better, as you can see There planet3dnow.de/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=368324&garpg=4

The primary cap for example is a 105C Nippon Chemicon over here...

I hope you can review the fixed version soon...
That is very interesting, thanks for bringing that up. Does indeed make me wonder why they decided to send us that model, especially when they knew the kind of equipment we'd be testing it on.

EDIT: Although its hard to see from the picture on their site, it does look like the unit still has a really weak amount of caps on the secondary side.

24-10-2009, 09:48:42

Stefan Payne
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Jim'
That is very interesting, thanks for bringing that up. Does indeed make me wonder why they decided to send us that model, especially when they knew the kind of equipment we'd be testing it on.
Well the Cougar Label (without a big HEC Label) is at the moment exklusively to Germany.

I don't know why the lineup of PSU from HEC/Compucase UK is completely different to the rest of Europe...

You may want to take a look at cougar-world.com.

Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Jim'

EDIT: Although its hard to see from the picture on their site, it does look like the unit still has a really weak amount of caps on the secondary side.
What kind of caps or how many should such a PSU have?

Would it make any difference if some of the caps were polymers?

25-10-2009, 17:45:45

Bungral
Jimbo, ya know if they are gonna send you a revised sample when made?

25-10-2009, 17:47:00

monkey7
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Bungral'
Jimbo, ya know if they are gonna send you a revised sample when made?
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Jim'
Furthermore, Compucase have also agreed to send us a revised unit when they are available.
1 character -.-

25-10-2009, 17:48:22

Stefan Payne
Well the 'revised model' is already available look at the (broken) Link I postet further up.

I hope it'll be soon.

I'd think that the Chief of the Cougar label wasn't happy at all...

25-10-2009, 18:22:08

Mr. Smith
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Jim'
Compucase have responded to the review with the following statement:

Furthermore, Compucase have also agreed to send us a revised unit when they are available.
Good to hear Compucase are doing something about this.

Looking forward to the re-review

25-10-2009, 18:25:28

Bungral
Oops... Read the response in the article, so skipped that post from Jim.

Quote:
Originally Posted by name='monkey7'
1 character -.-

27-10-2009, 07:02:44

-VK-
That's a really awesome reply. *salutes*

05-09-2011, 01:23:31

adi518
I know this is a rather old review but I'm wondering if by 2011 they've revised or fixed the PSUs from this series? I'm thinking of buying the Cougar CM 550W. The price looks good on it, but does it still come in the expense of proper performance?

15-09-2011, 00:55:16

CocaCola
Hmmm.....Compucase HEC sounds so familiar.... If memory serves, I recall they have been around for many yrs and have been a big manufacture of PC cases. I remember seeing their products at an exhibit.
Reply
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