Articles: Cases/PSU

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Circuit Design

Although the real maker of the PSU is not declared, I guess it is Channel Well, again. I make this suggestion basing on the familiarly shaped heatsinks, characteristic heat-shrinkable pipes on chokes, and the markings on the additional cards.

Indeed, Channel Well has recently begun to produce the newest DSR series of power supplies. It is meant to replace high-wattage PUC series products which actually consist of two power supplies in a single housing and are bulky, complex and expensive.

Interestingly, Ikonik representatives told us that the DSR series design had been developed and patented by Ikonik itself, Channel Well acting only as a technical partner and contract manufacturer rather than a supplier of ready-made solutions. It means that we will not see the DSR platform in PSUs from other brands.

The DSR series is more traditional than PUC in its circuit design. It is an ordinary power supply with only one transformer. It has active PFC and dedicated voltage regulation.

Well, you can see it clearly that the platform is modern. For example, the main regulator yields only one voltage (+12V) whereas the other voltages (+5V and +3.3V) are generated from it by means of individual step-down switching converters placed on small additional cards. By the way, you can notice very similar converters in PUC series power supplies.

One more feature of the DSR series is that it uses capacitors with polymer electrolyte not only in the mentioned converters’ cards but also in the main 12V output of the PSU. The manufacturer of the capacitors is Chinsan Electronic.

What are the benefits of such capacitors? It is a common opinion that they have a longer life span at high temperatures, but this point is arguable. A KZE series capacitor from Nippon Chemi-Con (2700µF, 16V, 12.5x30mm dimensions) has a specified service life of 5 thousand hours at a temperature of 105°C. An RP series capacitor from Chinsan has a specified service life of 2 thousand hours (but it should be acknowledged that its parameters deflect less from the nominal values over this time than the parameters of a KZE capacitor in its 5000 hours). So, what are the benefits? If you take a look at other parameters, you can see that Chinsan’s products have a lower equivalent resistance and a smaller loss tangent than Nippon’s capacitors whereas their allowable operating currents are, on the contrary, higher. In practical terms, it means that under the same conditions capacitors with polymer electrolyte will be colder, so it is incorrect to compare the service life parameter at the same temperature.

By the way, Ikonik says that honesty is its corporate priority and that the Vulcan PSUs use Japanese capacitors. Chinsan Electronic is a Thai company but, on the other hand, no one promises that all capacitors will be from Japan.

Cables and Connectors

Both PSUs are equipped with the following cables and connectors:

  • Mainboard cable with a 20+4-pin connector (63cm)
  • CPU cable with a 4+4-pin connector (50cm)
  • CPU cable with an 8-pin connector (50cm)
  • Two graphics card cables with one 6+2-pin connector on each (49cm)
  • Four connectors for graphics card cables
  • Five connectors for peripheral cables

Included with the PSUs are:

  • Four graphics card cables with one 6+2-pin connector on each (64cm)
  • One cable with two Molex connectors and one floppy-drive plug (65+15+15cm)
  • Two cables with three Molex connectors on each (65+15+15cm)
  • Four cables with three SATA power connectors on each (65+15+15cm)

The selection of cables is gorgeous. You can connect (without any adapters) as many as three graphics cards and a dozen SATA drives. The cables are long. Most of them are longer than 60cm to the first connector, like the cables of the junior models of the Vulcan series.

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