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Corsair AX860i Digital ATX Platinum Power Supply Review

Manufacturer: Corsair

A Detailed Look

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The Corsair AX860i Digital power supply enclosure is painted matte black and is only 160mm (6.25”) deep so it should easily fit into most cases.  It uses a single high-quality 120mm fan on the bottom for cooling, instead of the 140mm version used in the AX1200i (even though the AX860i literature describes the fan as being 140mm).

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The fan speed is automatically controlled by the internal component temperature (but can optionally be configured through the Corsair Link software) and doesn’t turn on and start spinning until the PSU exceeds ~30% load.  Up until that point the AX860i is silent. The dual ball bearing Yate Loon Electronics fan (D12BH-12) is a relatively powerful high-speed fan that has the potential to provide excellent airflow and is rated for 0.30A at 12 VDC.

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The back panel includes a heavy duty On-Off switch and AC receptacle along with an open honeycomb grill that allows the exhaust air to exit the power supply with minimal resistance and turbulence.

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The front panel incorporates fifteen modular cable connectors, all nicely labeled. The six 6-pin connectors on the left are for the peripheral cables and there are six 8-pin connectors on the right for PCI-E and extra CPU cables. The 24-pin mobo cable uses two connectors.  The 4-pin Comm Port connector is where the cable from the Corsair Link USB dongle cable plugs in. Also note the Self-Test push-button and LED indicator in the upper left corner.

Note: The AXi Self Test feature can only be used when the DC output cables are disconnected from the PSU (i.e. before installation). The Self Test feature is disabled once the DC output cables are plugged into the PSU, which means you can't run a self test while the PSU is installed in a PC (unless you disconnect the DC output cables).

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The Corsair AX860i Digital power supply comes with a good assortment of all modular cables and connectors.  Some of the cables are covered with braided plastic mesh sleeving while others are a flat ribbon-style cable. 

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The Corsair AX860i package includes six PCI-E connector cables for multiple, high-end graphic card support.  Corsair uses the 6+2-pin configuration for added flexibility.
 

December 16, 2012 | 12:14 PM - Posted by BetoAnonymous (not verified)

I wonder if Ron Holt would have ever imagine such awesomeness.

December 18, 2012 | 05:06 AM - Posted by Hood (not verified)

I wonder that nobody thought of PSU monitoring software before this; after all, the least a computer should be able to do is monitor itself, and user control of the power supply is a no-brainer. Kudos to Corsair for taking this bold step, which is kind of a gamble given the price range and state of the world economy. I think the "i" series will be a runaway best seller, despite the high price tag. Same for the "i" series of liquid CPU coolers. Enthusiasts love anything that gives them more info, control, or both, and Corsair has been delivering nicely.

December 28, 2012 | 07:00 PM - Posted by WillRock (not verified)

Gigabyte has thought of PSU monitoring software years ago, so did nVidia with ESA supportive PSU's.

The "i" series won't be the runaway best seller. How many people shell out $250 for a 860W unit like seriously?

Most people are after bang for the buck, which is what this unit definately is not.

February 22, 2013 | 04:45 AM - Posted by FearTec (not verified)

WillRock

I have one on the way to replace my Silverstone ST65ZF.

Silence and dual/tri SLI 680 will be awesome.

March 20, 2014 | 07:59 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I bought one and it failed to self test. First time I've spent such an amount of a PSU thinking I was getting quality and all I've got is something they couldn't be bothered to QC before leaving the factory. Very disappointed, not buying anything from Corsair ever again.

January 9, 2013 | 03:41 AM - Posted by rrr (not verified)

One thing "i" version is worse at than non "i" version, is having lower quality fan. AX860 non "i" has San Ace fan - generally regarded as higher quality than Yate Loons. One can argue it doesn't matter with semi passive mode in place, but it still looks out of place to have lower end fan on a supposedly premium unit.

November 28, 2013 | 03:17 PM - Posted by the pirate bay.apk (not verified)

The two murdered troopers, Power and Cahill, were men from good Irish families.
Not only does a digger realize that it's very possible
he might discover a lots of gold with little or no
trouble, but, worse still, he knows he might work very, very
hard without getting any gold at all. Juni, als Bombenanschläge in
Kathmandu und anderen Städten Nepals acht Tote und 22 Verletzte forderten.

February 22, 2013 | 09:45 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Does anyone know if you have to use Corsair Link in order for this PSU to work?

July 15, 2014 | 05:55 PM - Posted by Paige Thompson (not verified)

You probably do, and assuming they insist that you do (Ive never seen the fan spin up on its own) you also need to use this powersupply exclusively on a windows machine, or at least have a windows virtual machine in linux running the software with the USB attached to the virtual machine (most VM apps support this) and yes I did do this until the stupid connector broke, now I just want to figure out the pinouts and voltages (which they don't release the spec for) to find out if it's really PMBus like they claim:

if it is, my motherboard has a connector for it granted I will have to make my own because the PSU's connector is missing a NC (no connection) "null" pin. This corsair link is the most idiotic thing I've ever seen and I expected to at least not get jacked for what I paid for my 1200i ... nothing more or short of that was acceptable when I made the decision to purchase it, I really shouldn't have to detail check things that are supposed to be standard.

July 15, 2014 | 05:47 PM - Posted by Paige Thompson (not verified)

This is a complete ripoff. Supposedly its a USB to PMBus (SMbus) interface and they indicate that it's pmbus, except every motherboard that supports pmbus is 5 pin at least, granted there is an NC pin. This power supply should be connected to mine, especially since the cheap cable broke and I never saw any advantage to this device (which is only supported in windows, so I had to attach it to a windows VM to do anything with it.) The ASMB4 management chip in my server does a decent job of managing the fan speeds and temp thresholds, and supposedly supports a conntected pmbus device, so I think I'll wait (which I really dont want to wait because I just want to be done with this already) until I can get my volt meter out of storage and see if I can hook this psu up to the pmbus connector on my motherboard. I can't think of any good reason why this wasn't done right the first time, especially on a "high end" power supply like this one.

I reckon if despite my best efforts and intentions, I may just pour lighter fluid all over the $5,000 dollar computer and set it on fire like I did the Senn. HD380 pros when I couldn't salvage the cable myself after 10 tries I could have just paid the 30 dollars, but no and I don't think I'll let this one go either.

mass produced crap is never worth what you pay for it: http://www.formfactors.org/developer%5Cspecs%5CATX_ATX12V_PS_1_1.pdf

August 20, 2014 | 10:26 AM - Posted by Fred B. (not verified)

It seems that Corsair has destroyed the value of the Link system by refusing to release the protocol used on it, so no one can do anything on Linux, or do anything on Windows for that matter other than through the GUI. Of course competitors will be motivated to reverse engineer the protocol, so the only one that Corsair is "protecting" itself from, are the army of eager software engineers that would write free software, boosting Corsair's sales. Good thinking Corsair!

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