When will we have enough Wattage?

June 7, 2007 | 01:23

Tags: #1000w #1200w #adapter #bequiet #certified #crossfire #high #pci-express #power #psu #supply #unit #watt

Companies: #silverstone #thermaltake

Thermaltake, maker of car accessories PC gear, has not only a 1500W PSU that was initially shown at CeBit(enhoff) on demonstration, but it's also now showing off a 2000W PSU. We took pictures of another very comical 2000W PSU previously at CeBit, that required an external unit the size of a fridge and two power adapters to spread the load from the socket.

Inquiring about the potential hazard of overpowering the socket, the poor lass had to check the manual for which only the rated power usage for the 1500W was listed. After flicking through the pages we found it can suck down 120Amps of power, so a 2000W should require nothing short of a 160A!

Unfortunately on finding out this information and seeing my jaw hit the floor, she inquired, "Is that a lot?". I tried to put it down to the language barrier but it's still very worrying that Thermaltake seems unaware of the consequences of such a large PSU on a home user's power grid, let alone the cost of running it.

Silverstone had a new 1200W unit to offer, and after chatting to a couple of the guys there the ethos seems to be quietness, even if it's at the expense of a leaving it a little hotter because it's "generally a bit colder in Europe". Thankfully us cold blooded Europeans don't require heated houses either.

Despite this, they assured me that it's far from being too hot, and should work very efficiently. The PSU uses a large fan with a longer than standard chassis, although it's still not quite as big as the Enermax Galaxy.

Finally we dropped by BeQuiet, German PSU manufacturer, who was also demonstrating its new 1000W DarkPower Pro. The PSU is modular and has been compacted into a standard sized PSU case, but uses a revised large 13.5cm fan, with a slower 1800RPM speed to keep it cool, yet still quiet. BeQuiet told bit-tech that it rated the unit at 87% efficiency (which is optimistic of any PSU in our opinion) and are obtaining 80PLUS certification which tests for at least 80% efficiency from 20-100% load.

In addition, the modular PSU has coloured connectors to differentiate between PCI-Express, Molex and 8-pin power plugs. There are two 6+2-pin cables and two 6pin cables provided making it suitable for ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT CrossFire, and they are also ferrite shielded to provide additionally clean power lines.

Finally, there are some super long 105cm cables supplied with 90 degree connectors, which should be suitable for even the largest cases. While this may seem excessive, a 1000W supply should allow you to have a dozen hard drives and a handful of optical drives amongst plenty of other high power hardware, so it's expected a large case is necessary.

Is 1000W too much or is 2000W not enough? Let us know your super powers in the forums.

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