Corsair AX1500i 1500W Power Supply

Once in a while, something comes along in the power supply world that promises not only the moon but the rest of the solar system as well. Today’s review unit looks to break new ground not just for efficiency, but for offering sheer mind-melting power with the kind of stability that was unheard of back when I started reviewing power supplies. People, today’s review unit is the brand new 80 Plus Titanium Corsair AX1500i. Let’s see if it lives up to our rather lofty expectations.

PRODUCT: AX1500i 1500W
PROD LINK: AX1500i Product Page
PRICE: $449.99 @ Corsair
Price is at the time of testing!

Folks, I’m positively giddy with excitement today. You see, ever since I started reviewing power supplies, one thing, in particular, has been a dream of mine: to review one of these things with a special celebrity guest. And now that’s happened. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s my tremendous honor to introduce you all to…

NBA superstar Shaquiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiile O’Neaaaaaaaaaal!!! Welcome to the lab, Shaq man. Why so quiet big man? Oh, wait, forgot to put the glasses on. Ah, there we go, and…

GOOD GOD!!! Someone has sent me a forty-one story high rise to review! How did they even get this thing in here? I don’t… oh, wait, these are my old glasses. I need the new ones.

Ok, a Corsair AX1500i is what I’m reviewing today. That makes a little more sense.

Peoples, meet the very first 80 Plus Titanium unit to grace my lab with its presence. Not only is this a first for my lab, but it’s also very nearly a first for 80 Plus. Seriously, there’s only one other unit at this certification level listed at their site and it’s not anywhere near this size.

Clearly, Corsair is out for world domination today, for this box has so much marketing on it that it needs a flip-up cardboard flap to hold it all. Digitally controlled power. Upgraded internal components and digital design. Fanless mode. Fully modular. And this is just the bottom half.

Even if Corsair is becoming more fond of the word “digital” than Dyson, this is already looking incredibly promising. For quite some time now, people have been asking when Corsair would come up with a power supply this size, and for the longest time there was no answer to that question but “Dude, check out our AX1200i instead.” And don’t get me wrong, that unit was amazing when we looked at it. It’s just that it’s still a 1200 watt unit. It gives up 400 watts to a Lepa G1600, the reigning king of the big boys. It gives up 300 watts to the EVGA NEX1500 running in non “overclock” mode.

Corsair simply hasn’t had something until today capable of maxing out a standard household 15A circuit. A 20A circuit, you say? I’m still waiting for the power supply company that offers something that powerful. Yeah, I know Ultra’s first 1600W technically counts but I never saw one of those. That one was also too inefficient to do full power on a 15A circuit, unlike the Lepa I just mentioned.

But enough talk about the competition. We have more marketing to go through. This is the top half of the box flap, featuring some cables. We also find out that this unit comes with an easy to use self-test feature so you can see if the unit is working before trying to use it. I’m not going to bother, because I have something better than a self-test button: I have specialized load testers and measurement devices.

Are we done with the marketing yet? Nope. We’re on the back of the box now, where we find that this unit is equipped for Corsair Link, the hardware monitoring software I started out hating with a passion and have since come to… well, at least tolerate. My AX860i in the other room was a pain to get the software to work with at first, as it wouldn’t even detect the unit at first, but things have improved since those days. I’m not expecting great things from the software today, because as of this writing I’m basically working with a beta version of it when it comes to supporting this particular model, but it’s nice to know Corsair’s going for the throat in the marketplace. MSRP on this thing is so high that software functionality of some sort is pretty much expected.

Even so, the best software I’ve seen when it comes to monitoring a power supply still comes from EVGA, followed closely by Thermaltake. Corsair Link attempts to be a whole system solution in regards to monitoring, and that extra functionality makes it hard to get everything up and running the way it’s supposed to. It’s decent now, but for a long time, it was the bane of my existence.

Enough marketing now. Let’s evict this entire apartment building and see what’s inside. You start in the basement, I’ll work my way down from the top floor. I wonder if there’s a swimming pool in here somewhere… I could use a swim.

Ah, look, this place has its own zip code!

Inside the box, I found a user guide, 14 gauge power cord, a gigantic bag of cables, a gigantic power supply in a cloth bag, some goodies, a warranty info sheet, and a Corsair Link sheet.

Here’s our goody bag now with a pile of zip ties, some screws, and a case sticker.

The user guide is practically a novel on this thing. It’s lacking in specifications, but those can be found easily enough at the Corsair site. I won’t go too hard on them for saving some paper.

There’s not much to see of these two things, so I’ll combine both in one shot and just move on.