Corsair HX and AX PSU Information and Misinformation . . . Please Help . . .
Corsair AX850 or HX850? . . .
I am putting together a system and have been scouring the net for advice on which PSU line to choose. While I have learned that the AX series is fully modular and the HX is partially modular . . . 2011 posts suggest the HX series is newer than the AX series and perhaps slightly more "stable" . . . while other posts suggest the AX is the more stable and more quiet . . . some of these 2011 posts suggest the AX series is dated and "about to be updated" (has it been since these 2011 posts--I see there is now an AX1200i Platinum--is this the begining of the discussed AX series update change?) . . . while other posts discuss "popping" sounds(??) in their AX850s. Pictures of some AX850s show green in their labels while others gold (like in the current Conair site pics).
All of this variation has me wondering what is current info and what is not. I am new to building and would deeply appreciate hearing which PSU would deliver the most quiet, dependable power for my system. The full modularity of the AX seems like a desireable thing in that, should the PSU fail and need to be returned, I could simply pull the cords and not need to undo wiring to replace . . . but maybe this is not realistic (i.e. I should replace any wiring anyway?)?
The system I would like to build consists of:
Motherboard: ASUS Maximus V Extreme
System Cooling: Sealed Liquid Cooling System (Still contemplating . . . likely Corsair's)
Processors: Intel Core i7 3770K 3.5GHz/3.9GHz Turbo LGA 1155 Quad-Core Processor (8MB L3 Cache)
Graphic Cards: Single 2GB GDDR5 NVIDIA GTX 680
Memory: 16GB Kingston HyperX DDR3 1600Mhz (4x 4GB) Memory
Operating System: MS Windows 7 Professional 64-Bit Edition
Hard Drive One: 240GB Intel 520 Series - Solid State Drive
Hard Drive Two: 1TB Western Digital Caviar Black SATA 6.0Gb/s, 7200RPM, 64MB Cache HDD
Optical Drive One: 14X Blu-ray Disc (BD) Burner
Media Card Reader: 40-in-1 Media Card Reader
Power Supply: Corsair AX850 or HX850 . . . or maybe if going with HX series, for a few dollars more the 1050 Watt Corsair HX1050 PSU. (I plan on SLI'ing another GTX680, adding 2 more HDs in addition to case's current HD hot swap dock and a few other minor pieces within the next 6 mos).
Don't know if significant , but I am a pilot and will be running flight simulator program, video editing and general multi-monitor work.
Thanks--I really appreciate the help.
You would be best in looking for reviews of the individual units (not people buying and posting their opinion, scientific tests)
As for modular and returning it.. you would have to return it with ALL the wires that came with it anyway.. so thats a mute point.
The only point to modular is that you can customize the cables easier and only have to put in what you need..
Also look at Seasonic stuff... will be slightly better than the corsair (corsair uses seasonic units in some lines) and also look at the TX line from corsair..
850 should be fine for SLI. not much breathing room at full load but that happens only really when stress testing..
Sorry I can't actually fill you in with specifics of your post but hopefully it helps you find the answers yourself if you need to.
The HX series is a Silver efficiency PSU, they've been around since 2009 but with refreshes to some of the models.
The AX is a Gold efficiency PSU, introduced mid-2011 I believe.
The TX850M is a Bronze efficiency partially modular PSU. They are recent model. Don't confuse them with the TX (no M) series, which is a non-modular version that's been around for years. You'll see TX V2 models now.
I don't know about Corsair's RMA policy on modular PSU's, but when I RMA'd a fully modular Silverstone Strider last year, they only wanted the base unit back and not the cables.
Which would I pick personally? The AX850 if it's within 20 dollars of the HX850. Or as suggested check out Seasonic modular models.
I experienced Corsair's RMA service and it was pretty good. I own a AX850 and sent the unit back to them without the modular cables when it died. They accepted it within less than a week and sent me a brand new AX850 the following week. So now I have two bags of fully modular cables.
So yeah to answer one of your questions. I believe you can just send in the unit itself if it is fully modular. But I don't really know when it comes to North America cause I RMA'd mine at Corsair's Hong Kong branch.
is there a reason semi-modular PSUs are frowned upon compared to fully modular PSUs?
aren't the non-modular plugs things such as the 24-pin, 8-pin, and PCIE 6+2? AKA things that you will need for every build anyways?
/|\ This. :biggrin:
The HX is still a very potent PSU, while the AX is amongst the best out there. And having RMA'ed an AX750 a few weeks back to Cali, I can tell you it went without an issue.
You can't really go wrong with any of the HX, AX, TX lineup.
Do you want or care for a certain efficiency number? If not, go for any good PSU with an 80PLUS sticker and you're good to go.
Don't be a spec whore. Sure things look so impressive on paper, but that 2% difference on speed, efficiency, or whatever is not worth double the price, usually.
Hell, going from SDR to DDR didn't maybe added 1 FPS in games back in the day.
Read reviews and find one that delivers the cleanest power for the price you want to pay. Avoid anything that uses cheap chinese capacitors as a rule.
I currently own a HX650 and an AX850 and they are both great. With the HX650 I got an early model that didn't have the 8 pin PCI-E cable that I needed after a video card upgrade and they sent one to me for no cost. They have both been extremely solid psu's and I don't hesitate to recommend either one.
Now that said if I was to pick between the AX and HX 850's I would say go with the AX850 just because I know it works well with my 580's in SLI and 2600K @ 4.8GHz. It can handle that at full load so you should be good with the 680's as they use less power than my 580's do.
Thank you all very much for all of your very helpful replies . . . I am most grateful.
I like the modularity of the AX850, particularly bkz I really appreciate that if there should ever be a PSU issue, I could simply unplug and repace without necessarily having to undo the wiring. Given the aproximate $20 difference between the AX and HX, this simple benefit seems like a reasonable consideration.
Of one note, it appears the HX was recently upgraded to Gold Certified so apart from wiring and fan size (HX: 1400mm, AX:120mm) . . . the differences are narrowing.
Thank you all very much for your help!
Just a small correction and probably where some of the damn confusion comes into play (Corsair, this one wasn't handled so well). The 'Old' HX Series was CWT's Silver platform DSG (80 plus silver). However they have recently refreshed the HX to CWT's new PUQ design (Same with the GS series) and now it has Gold level efficency too.
Corsair HX850 Gold Review
So although now corsair has the AX Gold and HX Gold , the HX is actually a 'newer' platform than the AX.
That being said, everything else is right, and no matter which way you go (even with the GS series) you cannot go wrong with Corsairs products.
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