Load & Efficiency Tests
To provide our readers with the most accurate results, Overclock3D uses a custom built PSU load tester on all reviews. This not only gives much more reliable results than the testing methods employed by other sites, but also allows for all current and future review results to be compared side-by-side.
Efficiency tests are performed by measuring the wattage consumed by the power supply at the mains (Mains Draw) against the power consumed by the OC3D power supply stress tester (PSU Load). These results may not be 100% accurate, but have proven to be extremely close to results obtained from professional equipment.
| || 0% || 50% || 100% |
| +3.3v Rail || 0w || 66w || 99w |
| +5.0v Rail || 0w || 100w || 150w |
| +12v Rail(s) || 0w || 600w || 1080w |
| Total || 0w || 766w || 1329w |
Due to a restriction with our load tester, we were only able to place a maximum load of 1329w across all rails on the Toughpower. However, this only comes 160w short of the rated 1500w output, and certainly gave us a good insight into the performance of the unit.
All rails on the Toughpower stayed well within ATX specs of ±5% and considering that a load of 90 amps was applied to the 12v rails, the fluctuation of under 0.20v was exceptional. The same can also be said for the +3.3v and +5v rails, which despite being placed under their maximum loads of 30a, didn't fluctuate more than 0.10v.
Thermaltake state that the Toughpower has an efficiency level of "up to 87%", and to be honest I was extremely sceptical of this. However the results don't lie, and as we can see from above, the Toughpower lived up to its promises, coming within a whisker of 87% at both 50% and 100% load levels.
This is actually the most efficient PSU we've ever tested here at Overclock3D - a good 2% higher than it's nearest competitor. Good job Thermaltake!
In our continuing efforts to make power supply reviews more thorough, rather than simply checking voltage stability, Overclock3D will now be recording the temperature of each PSU as it undergoes testing. Temperature recordings will be taken from the underside of the PSU's outer casing at 0%, 50% and 100% load levels using a laser infra-red thermometer in an attempt to gauge how much heat is likely to radiate into the end-users case.
One of the biggest problems when it comes to 1kw+ PSU's is the sheer amount of heat that they produce when under full load. However, considering that the efficiency of a PSU goes almost hand-in-hand with the heat it produces, it's no surprise that the Toughpower performed exceptionally well. Rising only 10°C from 0% load to 100% load, it's fair to say that the 140mm fan used inside the unit combined with it's 87% efficiency make this one very cool PSU.
Possibly the hardest part of any PSU review is summarising the level of noise given out by the unit. The threshold for what is considered 'noisy' varies from person to person and therefore what I may consider a quiet unit, another person may consider extremely loud. For this reason, all reviews from this point forward will be using a dBA meter to measure the level of noise output by the PSU.
All noise measurements are taken in a quiet room with the dB(A) meter located 30cm away from the exhaust fan on the unit at 0%, 50% and 100% load levels. During the measurements, the fans located inside the PSU load tester are briefly switched off.
The Toughpower impresses once again by showing that not only is it cool, but also quiet too. With a recorded output of 32dBA at 100% load (1329w), Thermaltake have clearly made the right choice by using a Yate Loon 140mm fan.