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Need a straight answer from Corsair on multiple rails


sluggo69

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Dear Corsair Support Guru -

 

I've designed a few switching supplies in my time, and "rail" has always indicated an independently regulated supply, so the recent trend in the ATX business of calling what seems to be a cabling bundle a "rail" is a bit confusing. :confused:

 

Can you confirm what "rail" means as Corsair uses the term? Specifically:

- Does each +12V "rail" in the 620HX have it's own regulation circuit?

- Does each +12V "rail" have it's own output filter?

- Does each +12V "rail" have it's own overcurrent and overvoltage protection?

 

Please don't take this as any veiled criticism of your product. The 620HX is by far the best ATX supply I've ever used, and if you continue to offer products of similar quality you;ll have a customer for life. But I would like to know the answers to these questions without opening up supply and invalidating my warranty :biggrin:

 

Thanks a lot :)

sluggo69

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks Wired - JG's review is inconclusive. The best data comes from the scope traces from the load testing, but these are ambiguous. The fact that the ripple figures for the three +12 outputs are different might indicate that the regulation and filtering are independent, but it could also mean that the three outputs are just routed differently and are picking up different magnetic fields. It could also reflect differing levels of interaction with the dynamic loads.

 

Still need a straight, simple answer from Corsair. Any spokespersons care to comment?

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http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/371/5

 

The 12V rails are not independently regulated, and they do not have OCP. The HX series are built by Seasonic and based off the M12 platform with beefed up components. You will find that the Antec Earthwatts, TP Trio & NeoHE series are also built by Seasonic (lower end but still high quality) with multiple 12V rails listed on the label, but they are in fact a single rail with similar characteristics as the Corsair HX series.

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  • Corsair Employees

- Does each +12V "rail" in the 620HX have it's own regulation circuit?

- Does each +12V "rail" have it's own output filter?

- Does each +12V "rail" have it's own overcurrent and overvoltage protection?

 

The answer is no to each of these, as the PSU is actually a single-rail design.

 

The reason for this confusion is due to the ATX specification changes from ATX 2.0 to ATX 2.2.

 

At one point there was a 240va limitation per output, which meant any PSU with more than 20A of +12V output would have to have multiple "rails". As these weren't usually separate +12V sources, they were typically just separate OCP points on each physical trace, thus creating a 20A OCP point on 2 or 3 or 4 or 6 or however many "rails" were in the design.

 

As we were designing the product, the ATX spec changed from the 240va limitation being a requirement to being merely a recommendation, but we already had packaging, manuals, and labels finished and a significant amount of money in them. The decision was made to change the PSUs functionality so that it only had one "rail", but to leave the specs as they were so we wouldn't take a huge loss of money on packaging and such.

 

It's a bit confusing but for most users it does not matter. For our customers who want to know (those who read forums or email us) we will answer honestly. It's spec'd as a 3-rail design but functions as a single-rail design.

 

There is a single OCP/OVP point, a single +12V source inside the HX520/HX620 supplies.

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Thanks Elite, that answers the questions I had.

 

This whole fake "rail" business has been a real marketing cock-up from day one. Lots of misleading info from the manufacturers leading to lots of unnecessary questions and concern from customers about how many "rails" they should have on their supply.

 

Granted, it was a flawed spec, but the manufacturers didn't make the situation any better by using it to create a "feature" that didn't really exist. I hope they take a lesson from this and play it straight with their customers from now on. When you sell a good product like the HX620 you don't need to rely on marketing FUD.

 

EDIT: Cross-reply with Power Guy. Great answer PG, and exactly the type of answer I was hoping to see. Thanks for the response, and thanks for clearing this up. :)

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  • 2 years later...

Is multiple ocp/ovp points better than single one or not?

The former seems to provide more protection.

Can you explain why Corsair insist on providing single ocp/ovp point?

Or it is unnecessary to use multiple ocp/ovp points, because they provide same safety to your system.

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