Many moons ago, Corsair rocked the power supply world with the release of the AX1500i… a very impressive and also very expensive piece of hardware that showed just what this company was capable of. But that was then and this is now. Corsair’s come back to the table today with another beast of a flagship to succeed that model in the AX1600i. This unit comes with a lot of design improvements inside, particularly in the PFC section. Let’s see if it’s worthy of carrying the Corsair torch for a few more years.
SUPPLIED BY: Corsair
PRODUCT: AX1600i 1600W
PROD LINK: AX1600i Product Page
PRICE: $499.99 @ NewEgg
Price is at time of testing!
Hold onto your hats, people, we’re looking at a big one today. That’s right, Corsair has at long last produced a new flagship model to replace the venerable and still bloody awesome AX1500i. Since the day that unit came out, other companies came to town to challenge Corsair’s crown, but only the big Super Flower–EVGA Titanium units were ever really up to the job. Despite, that is, neither one of them offering DSP control over the innards and software monitoring. Even so, the AX1500i has, like all other units, come to the end of its run. Thanks to crypto mining, Corsair has to be running on empty with their stock of those units now.
So, evidently, Corsair has decided to come out with a new beast. Something to improve on the outgoing AX1500i, adding the missing power it gave up to the competition. That something is the AX1600i, as you can see by the box picture above. They promise even better efficiency, regulation, and ripple control… all in a housing slightly smaller than the old model, keeping all the Corsair Link functionality, and adding three years to the warranty.
Of course, cardboard just isn’t cardboard without a bunch of marketing hype all over it. Here’s the back of the box. However, there isn’t a whole lot being mentioned here the AX1500i didn’t already boast. You had the same digital control, Titanium efficiency, Corsair Link, and semi-fanless operation. The only major difference so far is the extra power output in a smaller package.
And there’s not much different on the rest of the box, either. This side brags about a brilliant design, but this only alludes to full modularity. Something every other high end unit like this already boasts. The self test switch is nothing new, either. Nor is anything in the compatibility column new. It’s all old hat to us. No, to get to the really exciting stuff, you have to look at the side panels.
It’s downplayed to the point of being easily overlooked, but this unit brags about something I don’t think I’ve seen anywhere else – a totem pole PFC circuit using Gallium Nitride parts. The change to this from silicon means lower resistance and faster switching. Thus, a more efficient PFC circuit. In turn, this unit has the potential for being the most efficient power supply I’ve tested to date. We’ll see if that pans out later. There’s more to a power supply than the PFC section.
Otherwise, everything else I see here we’ve already seen before from this unit’s predecessor.
Pfft. Gallium Nitride. I’d have called it Galleon Nitride. This is a Corsair product, is it not?
Now… there is another side to the box with cables and connectors printed on it, but we’ll be looking at those later anyway. So, I’ll get right to the unboxing shot. So far, the retail box seems smaller than the AX1500i’s box, but I can’t check because I don’t know where I put it.
The AX1500i itself is still up and running to this day, powering one of my mining computers. Will I get the urge to replace it with this bad boy? We’ll see. I’m more of the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mind on that one.
The box contents: one power supply in a bag, a box with the documentation and some magnetic side panel decals, some cable ties, a power cord, some zip ties, what I can only assume is a sleeping bag, and a case sticker.
Wait, that’s no sleeping bag, that’s a modular cable bag that unrolls. Damn. I wanted to sleep in it tonight.
Here’s a better look at the magnetic decals. I really like the inclusion of these. Don’t like the color or orientation of the AX1600i side stickers? You can change that.
Documentation is fantastic on this unit.