Hot Test Results (~45°C Ambient)

Switching to hot box testing, as expected, the Dark Power Pro 12 1500W PSU faces a very small efficiency drop when the ambient temperature is very high. That is because the active components of the unit are extremely efficient and resilient to thermal stressing, otherwise it would be practically impossible to output this kind of power with such a platform at all. The average efficiency reduction is 0.6%, with a marginally higher drop of 0.7% at 100% load.

Despite the relatively high conversion efficiency of the Dark Power Pro 12, the platform still needs to cope with very high raw thermal losses inside a very hot operating environment. Thermally, the Dark Power Pro 12 performed better than what we initially hoped for. Although the internal temperatures of the unit are always high – going higher than 70°C on the major active components – the temperature is not greatly affected in relation to the unit’s load. As such, even at maximum load, the Dark Power Pro 12 still copes well with the thermal losses and keeps on operating seamlessly.

The key element behind the Dark Power Pro 12’s ability to withstand such thermal losses in such a hot environment is the Silent Wings cooling fan that, under these operating conditions, is anything but silent. The thermal control circuitry of the PSU is reading the very high temperature and reacts to it by putting the fan to work, boosting its speed up to 100% before the load is even 50% of the unit’s rated capacity. The result of this approach may be a very loud PSU but, apparently, Be Quiet!’s engineers knew better than sacrificing reliability over acoustics.

Cold Test Results (~22°C Ambient) Power Supply Quality & Conclusion
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  • Speed-o - Monday, January 10, 2022 - link

    Given that SLI is basically dead, what's the primary market for a 1500W PSU these days?

    The 3090 is a total porker. But even that and a 12900K is below 1000 watts, isn't it?
  • meacupla - Monday, January 10, 2022 - link

    maybe RTX3090+12900K will be under 1000W on sustained loads, but when it comes to transient loads, 1000W is unlikely to be enough.
    RTX3090 transient load spike is reported by seasonic to be upwards of 550W. If you want to leave a bit of headroom with a 12900K, you're probably looking at, at least, 1200W PSU.

    And then we also have the RTX3090Tie incoming, which is even known to be more power hungry than RTX3090. So maybe 1500W will be the new 'norm' for high end gaming desktops.
  • austinsguitar - Monday, January 10, 2022 - link

    usually a 1200w psu has an ocp of up to 1500w or so. how they deal with that is different, but 1200w will still probably be the maximum needed.
  • Showtime - Friday, January 14, 2022 - link

    How are you mixing transient loads with sustained loads? If transients are 550w according to you, how are the sustained loads 1k? The issue with transient loads is the spike/speed, and any decent 850w PSU will cover it. Problem is too many people have a little bit of information, but understand the whole picture. For a gaming there is no situation where the GPU, and 12900k will be under full load. You are either GPU, or CPU limited, and there are no games fully utilize 16 threads. That's why you can use power consumption (GPU+CPU) as measured by 3rd party sites, give yourself 100w of headroom, and can be fine with any decent PSU. The only people who had issues after that, were using cheap PSU's, or unit's with design, or QC issues, like those EVGA's a couple years back.
  • satai - Tuesday, January 11, 2022 - link

    SLI may be dead but multiple GPUs for computation are not dead.
  • shabby - Tuesday, January 11, 2022 - link

    Or mining...
  • lilkwarrior - Wednesday, January 12, 2022 - link

    mGPU is not dead. The 3090 and up have NVLINK for a reason. You're talking like you're a gamer. Productive GPU users use mGPU all the time; even the 2019 Mac Pro has 1400W and optimized for mGPU rendering.
  • lilkwarrior - Wednesday, January 12, 2022 - link

    Note that all that happened in gaming is that Microsoft in a consumer-first move delegated mGPU mode to game software engineers instead of allowing Nvidia, AMD, or any new player like Intel from dominating mGPU rendering in games by the means of drivers.

    DX12 mGPU even allows you to use iGPU and dGPUs together, pool the memory of multiple GPUs, and use GPUs from different vendors together.

    Game developers haven't elected to leverage it; that said, a single GPU could do 4K@60hz which was last gen's optimal target being the max for HDMI 2.0 for the highest tier consoles; gaming is a console-oriented business.

    With current-gen consoles and HDMI 2.1, it can be more feasible again to pursue mGPU gaming support by game developers to accommodate 4K@120hz which will be the standard for the highest end version of PS5 (PS5 Pro) and Series X (who knows what that will be called).
  • lilkwarrior - Wednesday, January 12, 2022 - link

    I will emphasize SLI is dead because it's deliberately replaced by DX12 mGPU mode which makes much more sense–especially now that Intel is also making dGPUs.

    It should stay dead because it's 2022. Current gen games should be permanently making the transition to DX12 and Vulkan that both support DX12 mGPU mode.
  • Xajel - Thursday, January 13, 2022 - link

    Multi GPU for compute is not dead, PS. some people try to not fully saturate their PSU, this keeps their PSU cool, lengthen it's life time, and maybe even give it more efficiency.

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