May 15, 2018 // 5 p.m.
UK price (as reviewed): £119.99 (inc. VAT)
US price (as reviewed): $119.99 (exc. tax)
Antec’s current PSU lineup is pretty straightforward, and the HCG (High Current Gamer) series is its second-tier offering behind the HCP (High Current Pro) family that accommodate greater-than-850W capacities and carry the prestigious 80 Plus Platinum certification. As the name indicates, the HCG Gold 850W unit drops to the more mainstream enthusiast 80 Plus Gold rating, and this is the highest capacity offered. 850W is good for many dual-GPU systems using mainstream CPUs, so it’s only the high-end desktop market or those obsessed with efficiency that need look higher in Antec’s product stack.
The HCG Gold 850W certainly doesn’t waste space, fitting itself into a shell that is just 140mm deep, meaning it should find a comfortable home even in less spacious ATX enclosures.
The OEM of this power supply is Seasonic, a well respected manufacturer, and the HCG Gold bears an uncanny and unsurprising resemblance to the Focus Plus Gold unit from said OEM. Aesthetics these days doesn’t mean much these days since most modern cases do their best to keep PSUs hidden, but our take at least is that Antec’s model could do with a style upgrade.
Of course, it’s what inside that matters, and here we find a nice internal layout that utilises only Japanese capacitors.
Being so small, the HCG Gold 850W only has room for a 120mm fan, with the model used being one with fluid dynamic bearings. Antec has also enabled a hybrid fan mode, meaning it stays off completely and is thus totally silent whenever the power supply is under a certain load level. Our testing revealed this to be around the 30 percent mark, so whenever your system is idle or running small loads, it should be off.
As a fully modular unit, the HCG Gold offers maximum cable cleanliness and flexibility, and the arrangement of the ports is clean and sensible.
With 10 SATA connections, six 6+2-pin PCIe plugs, and dual 4+4-pin EPS12V headers, this power supply is more than up to spec for its given capacity, and we can’t see any users being left wanting. Cable lengths are all suitably long, too, so if you have a large full tower case you should be good to go. Antec incorporates a ‘PowerCache’ capacitor onto certain 12V cables, which it says helps to counter problems resulting from sudden demand spikes.
This PSU, like most others nowadays, has a single 12V rail, and it’s capable of delivering nearly 99 percent of its entire capacity along this at an ambient temperature of 40°C, which is good enough for us.
Antec clearly believes in the quality and reliability of this unit, as it backs it up with a 10-year warranty. This is what we’re starting to expect of more premium units, so it’s good to see Antec is on the ball here.