The Performance score is 40% of the total score...
The performance of this Enhance built Antec unit is excellent. From very good voltage regulation, to minimal ripple and noise and, quite frankly, a fairly quiet 80MM fan, this power supply scores a 10. Of course, the efficiency isn't quite "perfect 10" material and the fan is still not as quiet as a large overhead model would be, so I'm inclined to give the Quattro 850 a 9.5 in this category.
The Functionality score is 20% of the total score...
The cables are plenty long. Check. The unit is large, but not "huge." Check. The unit is semi-modular, but there is a good deal of fixed cables on this unit. I can see most people having at least one or two cables to tuck away. That's not horrible, but I think just having a 4+4 connector for the CPU or perhaps providing more modular interfaces would help improve functionality. I'm going to give the Quattro a score of 9.5 for functionality.
The Value score is 30% of the total score...
The "value" of this unit is really amazing. I was shocked when I found this power supply typically retailing well below $199. While most 800 to 850W power supplies are at or just over $200, I can find the Quattro 850W as low as $170, without rebate, at a reputable vendor. A decent 850W power supply for $170? That's a 10 in my book.
The Aesthetics score is 10% of the total score...
Aesthetics is going to be a mixed bag with this power supply. Antec must have known they were taking a chance with the yellow racing stripes. Sure, Corsair did the yellow thing, but the yellow on black the Corsair HX520W uses is not nearly as blatent as the Super Bee racing stripes on the Quattro. I don't mind it, but outside of this eye-popping feature, the basic black does little for the Quattro in the aesthetics category. The cables are nicely sleeved, and they are sleeved to the last connector. Just be mindful of the little rubber grommet thingies that keep the sleeves in place. Be careful handling them and if you receive a unit where the sleeve has come undone from the grommet, contact Antec or the company you bought the PSU from because it will only be a matter of time before that sleeving unravels. The TruePower Quattro 850W scores an 8.5 here.
If we add up our numbers, we end up with a score of 9.5.
It seems that once again the argument for larger capacity power supplies has another proponent. I simply haven't seen this level of over all quality in an Antec power supply in some time. Outside of the efficiency, you would be hard pressed to find a power supply with this good of regulation, this minimal of ripple, an ample number of connectors and acceptable noise level. And then one has to mention the price.
The only real argument against this power supply is the poor efficiency at low loads. If you have a chance to plug your PC into a Kill-A-Watt or similar device and find that your PC only draws 200W AC or less from the wall, then I don't suggest this power supply. But if you find that you may need a bigger power supply and your PC can maintain a load on this unit in the 200W DC and up range, this is a great deal.
Active Power Factor Correction
Very minimal ripple and noise
Excellent voltage regulation
Very quiet for a PSU with an 80MM fan
Nice sleeved cables
Not efficient at loads less than 200W
Yellow racing stripe isn't for everyone
Keep an eye on those rubber grommets on the cable sleeves
Despite being modular, there may still be one or two cables to hide
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