Introduction and Specifications, Availability and Pricing
It has been a very long time since we have had a Cooler Master power supply up for review so we are quite happy to be able to take a look this unit.
Cooler Master is well known for a variety of PC components, cases, peripherals and such. Cooler Master has a wide selection of power supplies available to cater to just about any builder's needs. Today we are looking at one of their power supplies that is geared towards high-end enthusiasts.
The selection of power supplies above 1000-watt has been increasing steadily over the past year or so. The Cooler Master Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt power supply is one of the new contenders.
The power supply offers full modular cabling, quad-GPU support, 80Plus Gold efficiency, an integrated fan controller and has enough power to cook a frozen dinner faster than my microwave. All of this doesn't matter much unless the unit performs well.
Our expectations are quite high as enthusiasts seeking power of this quantity demand nothing but the best.
Specifications, Availability and Pricing
Cooler Master chose to utilize a single 12V rail on the Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt power supply and it is capable of 105A of power. This isn't quite the full capacity of the power supply, but very close. The 3.3V rail is rated for 22A while the 5V rail is rated for a tad more at 25A. Both combined are capable of 150W. The 5VSB rail is rated for a grand 3A. Normally this is the end of the list, but there is another rail on this unit. Since the Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt is capable of powering two 3-pin system fans directly from the power supply, it has a 7V rail rated for 1.8A.
We were really hoping to be able to give the Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt a full list of green checkmarks, but it just didn't quite work out that way. The unit is filled with more protections than Planned Parenthood and is fully modular. All of the cables are of the flat ribbon variety with the exception of the 24-pin Main connector and don't need to be sleeved. The Main is of course sleeved as you would expect. Cooler Master made sure the unit was efficient enough to achieve an 80Plus Gold efficiency rating, but alas the unit is not rated for 100% continuous output at 50C. Fortunately they do rate the unit at 40C.
Cooler Master has the Silent Pro Hybrid 1300W for sale direct from their website for $329.99. Fortunately it can be had for much cheaper elsewhere. Tiger Direct has the power supply for $259.99 after $10 MIR and free shipping, which is a much more reasonably priced. Cooler Master gives the Silent Pro hybrid 1300-watt unit a five year warranty.
Cooler Master gives us a good glimpse of the unit on the front and some good information to distinguish it from other units. The 200W Fanless Mode is a nice feature and we can see that the unit comes with a 5.25" bay fan controller.
Little more information is given on the back other than a few bullets of information in several different languages.
No useful information on the top of the box.
The bottom simply directs you toward their website in about 20 different languages. This is becoming somewhat standard and doesn't offer the consumer much information if they are trying to do some shopping at their local Fry's or similar retailer.
Finally we get some specifications looking at one side of the box.
The other side simply displays the product logo.
Inside the Box
This is one of the best packing jobs we have seen in quite some time. Everything has almost an inch of foam protecting it on all sides.
The I/O specification label can be found on the top of the unit.
The Silent Pro Hybrid logo can be found on one side of the power supply.
The other side also displays the SPH logo. This one is inverted in case you are installing the case in the bottom of a case instead of the top.
The back has your standard honeycomb mesh vent with AC input and on/off rocker switch.
Quite the selection of modular connectors can be found on the front of the unit. Note there are two additional connectors for 3-pin fans as well as an additional connector for the 5.25" bay.
Moving to the bottom we find the 135mm fan that cools the Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt PSU. The added aluminum bezel gives the power supply a great bit of tasteful flair.
The included fan controller comes with two 3-pin extension cables and the cable to run to the power supply.
You'll notice that the controller allows you to control system fans as well as the power supply fan. This is a great feature for those who are seeking silence. Hopefully the power supply overrides the manual selection if the unit starts to overheat in case the user forgets that the left it on manual mode.
The back of the fan controller shows that there isn't much to the unit. A few capacitors and three voltage regulators make up the majority of the controller.
Cooler Master includes a full complement of modular cables to fill the power supply up. The 24-pin main is the only sleeved connector.
The rest of the cables are of the ribbon type and should prove to aid in routing all around the case.
Also included with the unit is the user manual, AC input cord, warranty card and mounting screws. Unfortunately no cable management or thumbscrews are included.
Cabling Arrangement and A Look Inside
Cooler Master provides an almost flawless selection of cables and connectors with the Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt unit.
One thing that few will notice is that the 24-pin Main connector is just that...a 24-pin connector. It does not break down into a 20+4 pin connector. They give you twelve SATA connectors, five Molex and one FDD connector on top of the eight PCI-E connectors. Unfortunately the lone FDD connector isn't just an adapter, but part of the second Molex cable. Three are also two 3-pin extension cables for fans. All cables for the power supply are modular.
Rail distribution is as simple as it gets with a single 12V rail.
A Look Inside
Passive cooling is provided by Cooler Master's patented "L" shaped heatsink layout that is designed to improve the air circulation inside the unit.
A pair of Japanese made Panasonic capacitors adorns the primary side of the power supply.
Nippon Chemi-Con capacitors can be found on the secondary side of the PSU. Cooler Master uses the Young Lin Tech DFS132512H 135mm fan to cool the unit should it need to kick the fan on.
Test Results and Final Thoughts
Our load tests utilize a couple of FAST ATE active load testers and a variety of other equipment such as an oscilloscope, power conditioner, temperature probe and a power consumption meter. You can read more about our standard testing approach here.
The tests performed are based around six conceivable setups that are out there and progressively load down the PSU up to the power supply's limits or 1000W, whichever comes first. Since our test equipment's limits are lower than that of the Cooler Master Silent Pro Hybrid 1300W PSU, we can only test it to 1000W.
The above tests represent typical loads that we have measured from various systems and are meant to give a rough idea of where your computer might fall in line with our tests. Please keep in mind that each system is different and actual loads can vary greatly even with similar hardware.
Let's start by taking a look at the voltages to see how well this unit did during testing. Starting with the 12V rail, we see 2% regulation from with a total drop of .11V from start to finish. The 5V rail also stayed within 2% voltage regulation and displayed a total drop of .12V. Moving towards the 3.3V rail, we see that regulation was again within 2% with a total voltage drop of .06V.
DC output quality was excellent from start to finish. Starting out, we were able to see a ripple on the scope during Test 1 where we measured noise at a low 17mV peak to peak. This steadily increased as the loads also increased. By the time we had reached around 50% load, the unit ripple had crept up to 23mV. Under Test 6, we saw that the noise on the 12V rail had crept up to 27mV. This is representative of 76% of the total output of this power supply.
The Cooler Master Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt PSU is rated for 80Plus Gold efficiency. This means that the power supply must perform at 87%/90%/87% efficiency at 20%/50%/100% loads respectively. As you can see, the Silent Pro Hybrid had no trouble achieving this while on our test bench.
Cooler Master produced one of the best enthusiast grade power supplies on the market today. The Silent Pro Hybrid 1300W is top notch from start to finish with only a few nuances to keep it from being the best of the best.
Build quality and features are off the charts as the unit and short of the lack of included cable management, you'll be hard pressed to find yourself needing something that is not provided by the Cooler Master Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt power supply. Fan controller, modular cables and a complete complement of connectors should keep just about anyone happy.
The unit performs very well all the way around. Voltage regulation was great and this unit had one of the most stable 12V rails we have ever seen. DC output quality was amazing and barely changed from Test 1 through Test 6. If it would drop the noise by about 5mV all the way around, it would be as close to perfect as it would come. Efficiency for the unit was also spot on. Even though we weren't able to test the unit to full load, we have absolutely no reason to believe that the unit would have come even close to failing in any of our tests.
To fault the unit anywhere along the line, you have to really nitpick at it. We felt that the sleeving for the 24-pin Main connector felt cheap compared to the rest of the cables and they could have sleeved it with something different. Other than that, the forced inclusion of the single FDD connector on one of the cables was all we could find and these two things are hardly something one can really fault the unit for. Chances are that if you are using this power supply, you'll have no need for the Molex + FDD cable anyway.
Simply put, you just can't go wrong with the Cooler Master Silent Pro Hybrid 1300-watt unit. This is before you even factor in the price of $259.99 and the five year warranty. After taking that into consideration, it makes it difficult to even consider another power supply on the market at this level.