Corsair AXi Series 1600 W Review 12

Corsair AXi Series 1600 W Review

Efficiency, Temperatures & Noise »

Test Setup

All measurements were performed using two Chroma 6314A mainframes equipped with the following electronic loads: six 63123A [350 W each], one 63102A [100 W x2], and one 63101A [200 W]. The aforementioned equipment is capable of delivering 2500 W of load, and all loads are controlled by a custom-made software. The AC source is a Chroma 6530 capable of delivering up to 3 kW of power. We also used a Keysight DSOX3024A oscilloscope, Rigol DS2072A oscilloscope kindly sponsored by Batronix, Picoscope 3424 oscilloscope, Picotech TC-08 thermocouple data logger, two Fluke multimeters (models 289 and 175), a Keithley 2015 THD 6.5 digit bench DMM, and lab-grade N4L PPA1530 3-phase power analyzer along with a Yokogawa WT210 power meter. We also included a wooden box, which, along with some heating elements, was used as a hot box and had at our disposal three more oscilloscopes (Rigol VS5042, Stingray DS1M12, and a second Picoscope 3424), and a Class 1 Bruel & Kjaer 2250-L G4 Sound Analyzer equipped with a Type 4955a microphone that features a 6.5-110 dBA-weighted dynamic range on paper (it can actually go even lower at 5 dB[A]). You will find more details about our equipment and the review methodology we follow in this article. We also conduct all of our tests at 40-45 °C ambient to simulate the environment seen inside a typical system more accurately, with 40-45 °C being derived from a standard ambient assumption of 23 °C and 17-22 °C being added for the typical temperature rise within a system.

To control the Chroma 6530 source, we use a GPIB-USB controller, which avoids its extra picky Serial port. This controller was kindly provided by Prologix.

To protect our very expensive Chroma AC source, we use an FSP Champ online UPS with a capacity of 3000 VA/2700 W.

The FSP Champ UPS is kindly provided by:

Primary Rails Load Regulation

The following charts show the voltage values of the main rails, recorded over a range from 60 W to the maximum specified load, and the deviation (in percent) for the same load range.

5VSB Regulation

The following chart shows how the 5VSB rail deals with the load we throw at it.

Hold-up Time

Hold-up time, measured in milliseconds, is a very important PSU characteristic and represents the amount of time a PSU can maintain output regulations as defined by the ATX specification without input power. In other words, it is the amount of time the system can continue to run without shutting down or rebooting during a power interruption. The ATX specification sets the minimum hold-up time to 17 ms with the maximum continuous output load.

According to the ATX specification, the PWR_OK is a "power good" signal. This signal should be asserted as high, at 5V, by the power supply to indicate that the +12V, 5V, and 3.3V outputs are within the regulation thresholds and that sufficient mains energy is stored by the APFC converter to guarantee the continuous power operation within specifications for at least 17 ms. Conversely, PWR_OK should be de-asserted to a low state, 0V, when any of the +12V, 5V, or 3.3V output voltages fall below its under voltage threshold, or when mains power has been removed for a sufficiently long time, such that the power supply's operation cannot be guaranteed. The AC loss to PWR_OK minimum hold-up time is set at 16 ms, which is less than the hold-up time described in the paragraph above, but the ATX specification also states that the PWR_OK inactive to DC loss delay should be more than 1 ms. This means that the AC loss to PWR_OK hold-up time should always be lower than the PSU's overall hold-up time, which ensures that the power supply will never continue to send a power good signal while any of the +12V, 5V, and 3.3V rails are out of spec.

In the following screenshots, the blue line is the mains signal and the green line is the "Power Good" signal, and the yellow line represents the +12V rail.

This PSU's hold-up is pretty long, and the power ok signal is accurate.

Inrush Current

Inrush current, also referred to as switch-on surge, refers to the maximum, instantaneous input current drawn by an electrical device when it is first turned on. Because of the charging current of the APFC capacitor(s), PSUs produce a lot of inrush current right as they are turned on. A lot of inrush current can cause the tripping of circuit breakers and fuses and may also damage switches, relays, and bridge rectifiers; as a result, the lower a PSU's inrush current right as it is turned on, the better.

An effective design keeps this unit's inrush current in check despite the use of large capacity bulk caps.

Load Regulation and Efficiency Measurements

The first set of tests revealed the stability of the voltage rails and the AX1600i's efficiency. The applied load was equal to (approximately) 10%-110% of the maximum load the PSU can handle, in 10% steps.

We conducted two additional tests. In the first test, we stressed the two minor rails (5V and 3.3V) with a high load while the load at +12V was only 0.10 A. This test reveals whether the PSU is compatible with Intel's C6 and C7 sleep states. In the second test, we dialed in the maximum load the +12V rail can handle while the load on the minor rails is minimal.

Load Regulation & Efficiency Testing Data - Corsair AX1600i
Test12 V5 V3.3 V5VSBPower
EfficiencyFan SpeedPSU NoiseTemp
10% Load11.494A2.004A1.995A1.001A159.867W93.313%0 RPM<6.0 dB(A) 46.06°C0.961
12.030V4.996V3.306V4.983V171.323W 37.94°C230.14V
20% Load24.020A3.000A2.994A1.205A319.806W95.062%0 RPM<6.0 dB(A) 46.84°C0.987
12.029V4.993V3.304V4.978V336.418W 38.21°C230.23V
30% Load36.892A3.508A3.511A1.406A479.828W95.673%0 RPM<6.0 dB(A) 47.42°C0.995
12.028V4.990V3.302V4.974V501.531W 38.56°C230.14V
40% Load49.759A4.006A3.996A1.607A639.608W95.375%0 RPM<6.0 dB(A) 48.48°C0.994
12.027V4.989V3.299V4.970V670.625W 39.22°C230.16V
50% Load62.289A5.007A5.000A1.811A799.485W95.297%564 RPM8.5 dB(A) 40.08°C0.997
12.025V4.988V3.298V4.967V838.943W 49.69°C230.15V
60% Load74.821A6.017A6.004A2.015A959.424W95.232%644 RPM13.3 dB(A) 40.43°C0.998
12.024V4.984V3.296V4.962V1007.455W 50.35°C230.14V
70% Load87.355A7.019A7.009A2.215A1119.315W95.025%745 RPM17.0 dB(A) 41.63°C0.997
12.023V4.983V3.294V4.958V1177.914W 51.82°C230.17V
80% Load99.892A8.033A8.018A2.421A1279.286W94.719%866 RPM21.5 dB(A) 42.81°C0.998
12.022V4.980V3.291V4.954V1350.611W 53.34°C230.16V
90% Load112.870A8.540A8.542A2.421A1439.386W94.359%1469 RPM37.0 dB(A) 44.13°C0.998
12.021V4.977V3.288V4.951V1525.439W 54.83°C230.17V
100% Load125.386A9.053A9.039A3.546A1599.237W93.921%1802 RPM42.5 dB(A) 45.19°C0.999
12.019V4.974V3.285V4.935V1702.743W 56.15°C230.17V
110% Load138.710A9.056A9.044A3.546A1759.223W93.604%1943 RPM45.4 dB(A) 46.60°C0.999
12.018V4.972V3.283V4.932V1879.433W 57.79°C230.19V
Crossload 10.110A22.030A19.999A0.005A177.908W89.661%816 RPM19.2 dB(A) 44.56°C0.966
12.019V5.007V3.313V5.031V198.423W 49.17°C230.19V
Crossload 2133.269A1.002A1.003A1.002A1615.411W94.103%1759 RPM42.5 dB(A) 45.47°C0.999
12.022V4.977V3.281V4.964V1716.642W 53.62°C230.19V
Load regulation is perfect at +12V and very tight on the other rails. As you can tell by looking at the table above, the PSU is also very efficient, and resilient to high operating temperatures. Its fan profile is very relaxed, especially if we take into account this unit's incredible capacity. We had to push the PSU hard to make its fan spin at high speeds, which had it crack the 40 dB(A) noise output barrier. We seriously doubt average users will ever put a full load on this unit under the same conditions as those we applied during these tests. There is no doubt that this is a hell of a PSU which shows all other brands and manufacturers that wish to build a similar platform featuring a totem-pole bridgeless PFC how it is done.

Corsair Link Screenshots

Several screenshots of the Corsair Link software, which we took during our test sessions, follow. The order of these screenshots is the same as the order of the tests shown in the table above (10% load to Cross-load 2).
Next Page »Efficiency, Temperatures & Noise