Today's Hard|Forum Post
Today's Hard|Forum Post

PC Power & Cooling Silencer MkII 950W PSU Review

We test one of the latest PC Power & Cooling computer power supplies on the market. Does it strike a balance between server and enthusiast needs? We at least know one thing just by looking at the box, this one might actually live up to the "Silencer" branding for a change since the 80mm cooling fan is now gone.

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Overview

The first thing we are going to look at with the PC Power & Cooling Silencer Mk II 950W is the packaging, accessories, and documentation. While normally none of these items is a make or break item for a power supply the packaging quite often contains a lot of information about the product we are purchasing. The inclusion of an owner’s manual that provides actual information about our product is also of great help. Accessories are almost unnecessary with a power supply as the unit is self contained, unless it is modular, but there cases where a manufacturer can include useful accessories to make installation, routing and use more efficient.

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Today we are looking at the second PC Power & Cooling Silencer unit to come our way post PC Power & Cooling's acquisition by OCZ, and perhaps not coincidentally this is the second retail packaged PC Power & Cooling unit we have seen to date. As with the last Silencer unit we reviewed, we see a lot of advertising points, an SLI certification stamp, 80Plus Silver logo, some basic electrical specifications, and an advertisement for a 7 year warranty on the packaging. A quick check of the SLIZone website however, does not currently turn up the Silencer MkII 950W as being certified for any level of SLI, although we do find the old Silencer 910. If the power table provided on the box, and reproduced (as well as critiqued) below, is correct there is no reason that this unit should not be able to support the same SLI based systems that the older Silencer 910 was certified for when it finally got its certification. The 80Plus website however does have the unit listed as being certified for 80Plus Silver which is excellent, and falls into the same category as the previous Silencer 910 that this unit replaces. Lastly, the unit is covered by a 7 year warranty which is great, and is a 2 year upgrade over the previous Silencer 910.

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The power label for the Silencer MkII 950W indicates that it has a total continuous capacity of 1000W, which would roughly be 50W more than the product is marketed as being capable of delivering by its name. Glad to see the product name doesn't match the actual output capacity of the unit, hopefully it indeed doesn't match by being more capable than indicated not less once we get to the load testing. Going forward, let's just go ahead and call this a 1000W unit from now on. With that in mind, we see that the 84.4A 12v rail is good for 100% of the unit's possible capacity. This represents the first PC Power & Cooling unit capable of this to date (or advertised as so anyway) and represents a healthy bump over the Silencer 910 it is replacing. To match this impressive 12v output the unit features six modified 8-pin PCI-Express connectors (which is two more than on the Silencer 910 had), twelve SATA connectors, and seven Molex connectors. The minor rails see a bump in total capacity as well today and are now capped at ~180W. As such, users with large disk arrays should be fine once they have spun up their drives and this unit seems well suited towards our modern high end enthusiast system needs.

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Once we open the PC Power & Cooling Silencer MkII 950W we find the unit, power cord, mounting screws, cable ties, and a manual! Oh guys, two units with manuals in a row? You guys are going to spoil us! Although on the flipside, where did the trusted PCP&C test report go? Guess that is not included any more. Moving on to the manual, we find that it is 11 pages long in 3 languages and it contains the power table, a wiring diagram, installation instructions, warranty information, and some troubleshooting steps. That is about it. Other than the manual the remaining items are all fairly standard, so let's move on now to the unit itself.