Welcome everyone to another episode of "Painting Stripes on Things to Make Them Go Faster."
It is common knowledge that painting stripes on things indeed makes them go faster and perform better. Take my cordless phone for example. Before, it was just a plain old phone. Now, with the bright yellow stripes I crookedly painted on the back, it dials faster, hangs up faster, and indeed even drains the battery faster. What does this have to do with today's review sample? Why, today's review sample also has stripes painted on it. Folks, it's time to have a look at the Antec Truepower Quattro 1200 watt unit.
Now, this isn't the first Quattro model we've looked at here at Wacky Wolf's Barbecue Emporium, better known as jonnyGURU.com, but it is the first model from the series I've personally looked at. It is also the flagship of the TPQ line, and the most powerful Antec unit I've worked on.
One of the more interesting marketing points about this unit can be found just north of dead center in the above picture - PowerCache™. From the looks of things, Antec has added extra capacitors to the ends of the cables on this unit to, as the box says, deliver extra power reserve where you need it, when you need it most. I can't help but wonder, though, if those capacitors are there purely for marketing or if there's some other reason they decided to do this. Just as long as the unit doesn't PowerCrash. We'll find out on pages two and three, and then you can be the judge. And I'll be the judge too. We'll all be the judge. Be right back - I have to go paint some pink stripes on my gavel.
The box wastes no time getting right into some marketing, as you can see here. Uh... Antec? The number of 12V rails has nothing to do with 80 Plus certification, you do realize, right? It's the design of the unit and the components being used that impacts efficiency the most.
Here's some more marketing for us, along with an 80 Plus Silver certification logo.
NVIDIA™ SLI™-ready certified
-Interesting. Is it certified to be ready, or ready to be certified?
80 Plus® Silver Certified - 85% or more efficiency at 20%, 50%, and 100% load
Designed to support three GPUs and dual/quad core CPUs
Six +12V output rails and DC to DC Voltage Regulator Modules ensure supreme system stability
80mm cooling fan uses Pulse Width Modulation for whisper-quiet operation
-I have to say here, usually 80mm fans and quiet don't always go together on units this big. Maybe the fan has stripes on it.
Advanced hybrid cable management system improves airflow and reduces clutter
Industrial grade protection circuitry prevents damage resulting from short circuits (SCP), over voltages (OVP), under voltages (UVP), and over current (OCP)
On this side of the box, several marketing points are given as fancy icons.
Going over to this side, we find a really hard to photograph load table and a few more icons, one of which is the "AQ5" logo that tells us this model has a five year warranty.
Yes, Mr. Box, I believe you. There's an Antec somewhere in there.
The contents of the box included a product information sheet, a bag of modular cables, a bag of screws, a nice and thick power cord, and a Formula 1 race car. I tried to start the car seventeen times before I realized it was a power supply, and only looked like a race car.
Here's that product info sheet I spoke of. Antec's been tossing these in with most of their units lately to keep from having to throw a full manual in there with each unit. In turn, users are directed by this sheet to go to the website to get the full manual.
Sadly, there do not appear to be stripes on the fan. What there does appear to be is one of them there C19 receptacles next to the fan and a status LED. This usually means we're dealing with an Enhance built unit, and indeed this is what we have here today. Some of these big Enhances are excellent, others, not so much. It will be interesting to see where this one comes in.
Another angle shows us a small embossed "Antec" logo on the side, as well as a better look at the status LED. Hmm... I seem to be typing faster. Must be the green stripes I painted on my hands.
Here's the rear panel from straight on. Don't lose that power cord - even though you can find them off eBay among other places online now and then, you'll be paying for it. Well, I guess you'd be paying for it anyway, but C19 power cords tend to cost a bit more. It'll be like painting stripes on your wallet.
Even the label has stripes on it. It's nice that I was able to read the label faster than usual, for it looks like this unit is capable of throwing all 1200 watts right into the 12V rails if it wants to. That's a new one on me - usually even DC to DC conversion designs like this still have some gap between the total output and the combined 12V output.
I don't know about you folks, but it sure looks like those PowerCache™ capacitors add some bulk to the cabling on this unit. That sleeve over the ATX connector, as I found out later, is hiding even more capacitors; which makes me suspect again there is another reason beyond marketing that they did this.
Here's the modular connector panel. As you can see, Antec hardwired an awful lot of cables to this unit again, and they're not sleeved all the way into the unit. Instead, they're terminated with those plastic beads we first saw in the Signature series units.
And here are the modular cables themselves. Interesting - the peripheral cables are missing PowerCache™ capacitors. Given that the hardwired peripheral cables do have 220uF PowerCache™ dealies on them, I really hope this isn't an oversight. We'll find that out on page four.
A close-up of the PowerCache™ capacitor housing on one of the PCI-E cables. This is a pretty good size plastic bubble here... given that most of the cables cannot be removed, I'm not sure how practical it is to have all these big plastic bubbles on the cables considering some will have to be hidden away somewhere in one's case if one is not using them all, like me.
Type of connector:
ATX connector (615mm)
5.25" Drive (560mm+150mm+150mm)
3.5" Drive (+150mm)
4+4 pin EPS12V/ATX12V (660mm)
8 pin EPS12V (670mm)
6+2 pin PCIe (560mm)
6 pin PCIe (+150mm)
5.25" Drive (550mm+150mm+150mm)
3.5" Drive (+150mm)
6+2 pin PCIe (540mm)
6 pin PCIe (+150mm)
Unit Dimensions(L x W x H)
200mm x 150mm x 86mm
I'm sorry, but this is getting ridiculous. Why have modular when only a few cables are modular? I didn't mind this approach so much back when Antec first used it on the Signature units, but honestly... this thing has so many hardwired cables, you may never need the modular ones.
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