It's really hard to surprise me after ten years of constant power supply reviewing. Units come and go, some big, some small. Some make waves in the industry, some sink without leaving so much as a ripple. But once in a while, a company decides to do something so far out of the box that people talk about it for years. The first time I can remember that happening was when EVGA decided to make as big a splash as possible in entering the market for the first time by contracting an OEM known for server grade beasts. Their efforts produced the NEX1500, a unit that did get us talking, but didn't quite do enough to be competitive in the marketplace. Not too long after that, Corsair came out with the AX1500i to show us how a unit like that is really done.
Well, we've got another one of these "once in a blue moon" units on our hands today. Cooler Master is looking to create a whole new market for power supplies with this here Masterwatt Maker 1200 MIJ. They've seen what people pay for high end audio equipment, and decided that there may in fact be a market for something like this... a super high end, super exclusive power supply designed for the guy down the street who has more money than he knows what to do with.
And the crazy part of it is, CM may actually be right. There might be a market, here. And to try to tap into it, they've gone further than any other power supply I know of... they left all the Chinese OEMs behind for this one and have gone to Japan.
Quick question... how many of you know the name Murata? I see a few hands up, but I'll pretend they're down so I can make myself feel like a smarty-pants. Murata is the OEM for this extra special unit. This is a company specializing in high build quality who has few competitors in the market. In the server grade power supply realm, they compete directly with the likes of Zippy and Delta. In fact, some of their units are specified to full operating specs at sixty degrees, higher than the industry standard of fifty. These guys are super serious about their units holding up, and have apparently been working with Cooler Master on the design of this unit for a few years now.
That said, I want to remind you of something I've said before... these high end industrial power supply companies often do have different priorities for their units. Performance within ATX specs is often good enough, with only a few companies willing to really push the envelope. Build quality is paramount importance for them, and if they have to lose a bit of performance to get there so be it. We'll find out soon enough where this unit lies, however because of the really high price tag, it'll take some seriously good build quality to make me forget about any performance issues.
And about that price tag, since I can already hear some of you complaining about that. Go to Digikey's website and search Murata. Say, for the D1U86P-W-1600-12-HB3DC. See that? That is a six hundred dollar power supply. 1600 watts at fifty-five degrees, Platinum 230V efficiency, with only two DC outputs. Murata units go for some money, and in this unit they've had to custom build and engineer something completely out of the ordinary for them. Of course this unit is going to be expensive, if you want them to do it right.
The marketing thus far isn't anything too new or unusual. We have all the usual protections and features. I am surprised to see no mention of Bluetooth or software monitoring support so far... I thought those were supposed to be notable features of this unit. That said, given what I was just talking about, it is entirely possible that adding those features may have driven up the price even more. I could see Cooler Master deciding to cut their losses there and just focus on build quality and performance.
No, the marketing on this unit is all in the Murata build quality and performance. I can't say for sure I'll miss the software stuff if this thing nails those two aspects.
For more information, please visit the website. For less information, please stare at a blank wall. I'm tired of looking at the outside of the box... let's get in there now.
Fancy unit, fancy packaging. The first thing we see upon opening the box is a big white sheet telling us all about Cooler Master's hopes and dreams for this unit, along with two hard cases in which I assume we'll find the various cables and other goodies. The power supply itself is entombed in plenty of foam, which I can only assume is the same level of packing used for shipping Fabergé eggs.
So far, we have the two hard cases, one heck of a long power supply, the mission statement, and a bag with the user and warranty guides.
Here's the user guide. For a power supply costing a grand, it's surprisingly sparse with the details.
And now, the mission statement. You know, I don't even see much mention of performance, only build quality. We're still two pages away from seeing how it performs, so let's get started on the next page now.
No, wait, let's look at the hard cases first. Not seeing much in the way of accessories yet, are we? Ok, now we'll do the next page.
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